BILLY- We’ve been awesome! It was a super ending to 2015, and 2016 is picking up right where we left off!
Why from all the songs you decided to cover ¨Livin On A Prayer¨?
BILLY- For starters, growing up, the song was one that helped me through tough times. Like my own, I think the message and the story ring true to so many people’s own lives. Then, the fact that one of our big inspirations and heroes sang the song… and he’s from Jersey… it was a no-brainer! Ultimately, we wanted to make something special, and something that honored such a classic American anthem.
NICK- We covered “Livin’ On A Prayer” because it was one of our favorite songs growing up in Jersey. We wanted to pay homage to one of the musicians that inspired us, as well as to the home state that made us who we are. It was a big task to remake it, trying to honor both Bon Jovi purists, and please our core fans. We tried to make it enjoyable & refreshing.
How do you feel about the reception?
BILLY- You know, it’s one thing to have family, friends, and fans like our new version, but the fact that the living legend himself, Mr. Jon Bon Jovi, approved and applauded our rendition… it was literally a moment I will never forget. When an artist of that status speaks positively about a cover you did for one of his classics, it’s validation that you’re doing something right!
NICK- It has been received really well. The three original writers (Jon Bon Jovi, Desmond Child,Richie Sambora) all gave their blessings, and they praised us for reinventing their classic for a new generation. Can’t hope for much more than that.
What´s like to have the approval of the band itself, Bon Jovi?
NICK- When Jon’s brother (Matt Bongiovi) hit us up after finding our video in his Facebook newsfeed, we were so excited. And then when he shared it with Jon… and Jon said it was “amazing”… the experience became completely surreal. It was pretty much the “in your wildest dreams” scenario.
How was the recording and writing process?
BILLY- Well, it was long. Haha. It stretched out almost over a year, and it was truly a team effort. It began with our executive producer John Sepetys and eventually extended all the way down to input from family members. It’s such a beloved song, we knew we had to nail it… or not do it at all.
NICK- The process was tough because we didn’t want to step all over the original. Jon’s voice is inimitable, and we knew that if we delivered anything less than stellar it would fall completely flat. We kept the concept of the song the same, and tried to tap into the “Tommy and Gina” inside all of us. No matter your circumstances… everyone has faced, or will face, a time where they’ll have to hold on and ride on nothing but hope. We went back to the drawing board a few times, and then we just let the song write itself– from our hearts to our pens.
How has poverty and war have influence your music?
BILLY- Poverty is the reason I found music. Music was my escape a long time ago when there were no lights and no heat. All I had was my old battery-powered Yamaha that kept me going, and gave me the dream of one day leaving the ghetto. And that’s still the dream to this day; it’s everything to me. In addition, poverty gave me a work ethic and a hunger that is unmatched. Poverty gave my music grit, and in some ways a chip on its shoulder, a little street cred if you will. A lot of pop music doesn’t have that.
NICK- Growing up poor has given us both the extra motivation to rise above our circumstances . Our music reflects the positive nature in which we view the world… even though everything isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. Every day above ground is a gift. For most of our adult lives our nation and world have been at war, and that has changed our entire landscape. The best way for me to climb up and out of my environment was to join the service. It was my ticket to attend college, it was my path to a bright and stable future. With those perks also came the responsibility of defending our Nation. Should I ever have to do that in a combat role, I am always physically and mentally prepared. To see a soldier willing to lay down their life for a cause is a humbling experience, and it makes me want to fight harder to achieve my dreams for all those who have given their life in spite of their own personal dreams.
Does the new single mean we can expect a new material – how´s that coming?
BILLY- We’re always making new music; it never stops. We’re constantly experimenting with new sounds and new mixes. We try to be inventive, but consistent. We wanna be as versatile as possible, and keep it fresh.
NICK- We are constantly working on new music. We’ve been experimenting with different things and have some really great material in the chute for release. But, as of right now, we still have a lot of momentum with our singles “Champion” and “Livin’ on a Prayer”, so we’re focusing those.
Any tentative release date or title in mind?
BILLY- Our debut, self-titled EP is out now, and we’re really focused on our singles “Champion” & “Livin’ on a Prayer”. As far as the next single and full release, they’re in the works as we speak. When the time is right, we intend to both change and “wow” the world with a full-blown album of “Epoch” proportions!
Any plans to hit the road?
BILLY- We currently have a few shows lined up locally, in the tri-state area. I’m sure 2016 is gonna be full of adventure, and hopefully the road will lead us out west. I needs some Cali sun!
What else is happening next in Epoch Failure´s world?
NICK- We’re still in heavy NFL mode now. ESPN has been using our version of “Livin’ on a Prayer” throughout their NFL Countdown programming, and that will continue up through the Super Bowl. The Broncos played “Champion” in-stadium about 20 minutes before kickoff of the AFC Championship. So, now, the dream would be to hear it during Super Bowl post-game celebrations. It seems like a stretch, but so did the Bon Jovi stuff. So you never know!