Article: Jonas Brothers vs Hanson

By | June 23, 2009

The Jonas Brothers and Hanson sure seem to have a lot of cosmetic similarities: they’re both bands of three brothers named after their surname who make girls go bananas. But there’s actually more to it than that. With the Jonas Brothers hitting the road for their World Tour 2009 (check out photos here) and word of a new Hanson release on the horizon, Rolling Stone took a closer look at how the two bands line up:


“Poison Ivy”
Hanson recorded a cover of the Coasters’ 1959 track about a promiscuous woman on their 1995 independent release Boomerang. Their take features the Hansons (then aged 15, 12 and 10) singing in three-part harmony over an unexpectedly techno-sounding beat. Eldest brother Isaac — the only one past puberty — sang lead, as he did on much of Hanson’s earlier material.
Jonas Brothers penned an original track using the poisonous plant as a metaphor for a relationship you can’t get away from on their new Lines, Vines and Trying Times. Middle brother Joe sings most of the track, though youngest Nick handles the funky interlude on the bridge.

Jonny Lang
Hanson featured the acclaimed blues guitar prodigy (and older brother of this season’s American Idol contestant Jesse Langseth) on 2000’s This Time Around including the funky cha-cha “You Never Know” and the angsty break-up tune “Hand in Hand.”
Jonas Brothers brought Lang on board for Lines, Vines and Trying Times‘ “Hey Baby” which blends Lang’s blues with a funk similar to Jonas’ “Poison Ivy” for another relationship lament.

Steve Greenberg
Hanson were discovered by Greenberg in 1996, who signed them to his then-employer, Mercury Records. In 2007, Greenberg re-launched S-Curve records, now the home of Tinted Windows, Taylor Hanson’s side project with James Iha, Cheap Tricks’ Bun E. Carlos and Fountains of Wayne’s Adam Schlesinger.
Jonas Brothers were signed to Columbia Records by Greenberg in 2005 before landing a deal with their current label, Hollywood Records.

Adam Schlesinger
Hanson have known Schlesinger since the mid-’90s, and now he and Taylor form one-half of pop supergroup Tinted Windows.
Jonas Brothers worked with Schlesinger on their 2006 debut It’s About Time, co-writing “I Am What I Am” with the rocker.

Robert Schwartzman
Hanson recorded “Wake Up” for the 2001 soundtrack to Princess Diaries, which co-starred the Rooney frontman.
Jonas Brothers co-wrote “Letting You Down” with Schwartzman and performed the track at one of their sold-out Madison Square Garden gigs last year. Rooney also opened for the Jonas Brothers in 2008.

SNL Skits
Hanson appeared on the show in December 1997, making a cameo in a skit called “Torturing Hanson” in which Will Ferrell and episode host Helen Hunt tried to inflict the pain of repeated “MMMBop” listenings upon Isaaac, Taylor and Zac.
Jonas Brothers appeared on the show in February 2009, making a cameo in a skit in which Alec Baldwin played the older brother who Joe, Nick and Kevin were kicking out of the band.

Grammy Awards
Hanson were nominated for Best New Artist in 1998, but lost to Paula Cole.
Jonas Brothers were nominated for Best New Artist in 2009, but lost to Adele.

Hanson has been raising money to fight poverty and HIV/AIDS in Africa since the release of 2007’s The Walk. The band has also been leading one-mile walks before their concerts to raise funds and awareness.
Jonas Brothers founded the Change for the Children foundation to raise money for organizations such as the American Diabetes Foundation and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.

Taking Their Friends on Tour
Hanson brought fellow Tulsans Admiral Twin on 1998’s Albertane Tour, and in recent years chosen to bring back opening acts they’ve befriended for another outing.
Jonas Brothers chose Honor Society, an act they’ve befriended since discovering last year, to open their summer tour.

Each other
Hanson have told various media outlets they wish the Jonas Brothers luck, with Taylor telling MSNBC, “I hope they can translate what they’ve done into a career — a long career — in a similar way that we’ve been able to for many years.”
Jonas Brothers referred to the inevitable comparisons in “That’s Just the Way We Roll” off 2007’s Jonas Brothers, singing “You got moves, I got shoes, let’s go dancing/pop and lock, battle dance, against Hanson.”

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