Teen pop stars Hanson are all grown up now

By | May 27, 2011



While the mere mention of that word, if you can call it that, sends a shiver down the spine of many right-thinking music fans these days, there was a time when Hanson’s 1997 chart-topper was impossible to escape.

The catchy ditty propelled the band to global superstardom, while its associated album, Middle of Nowhere, shifted a staggering 10million units – something a lot of current bands would give their eye teeth to achieve.

dd-may26-Hanson2.jpgEven more amazing was it was written and performed by a trio of teenage brothers from Oklahoma. For lead singer Taylor Hanson, the association with their biggest success is still something they find hard to shake off.

“People say first impressions are important and that’s true,” he said.

“It’s difficult, the transition from any type of success that broad, but it was an amazing blessing to have had it. But we’ve done a lot more since then, taking risks , so maybe people will realise we are a really good band.

“I read a magazine article about Paul McCartney and they used Love Me Do as the title, something that was years before in his history, but they still used it.

“I’m not trying to compare us to the Beatles, absolutely not, but it shows that for people who aren’t fans of a band it’s often the early things that they remember.

“But 13 years on it’s amazing to have fans who are still excited about us, and we’re very grateful for that.”

It’s the future that’s more of a concern to Hanson now, as they enter their 20th year in the music business. Despite garnering critical acclaim for a string of indie-rock albums they have slipped off the radar of most British music followers.

“That’s something Taylor, now 28, hopes to change, starting with five sold-out nights at King’s College next month and a new album, Shout It Out, set for release.

“This record is different,” said Taylor. “It’s a more direct connection with the stuff we listened to when we were younger. It’s feel and story is soul inspired, and that’s what made us want to make music.

“These are the first London shows we’ve done since 2007, and we’re really looking forward to it. We’re playing an album a night all the way through and it’s rare to get the chance to do something like that.”

dd-may26-Hanson.jpgUnlike Britain’s most famous musical sublings – the Gallaghers of Oasis – Hanson appear to have steered clear of band-splitting spats. Taylor, and his brothers Isaac and Zac, have continued to have a solid, if no longer spectacular, career. But it’s not always harmonious.

“We don’t always get on,” admitted Taylor.

“We might think we are getting on, but people people come in when we are discussing guitar chords and think we’re fighting, because we get quite loud. We have a lot of respect for each other, and that’s important.

“We enjoyed our childhood, even though we were working through it, and I can’t imagine having a ‘normal’ childhood. Music is what we chose to do. There’s many harder jobs than being in a band, and we’re just happy to have had the chance to do that for so long.”

Shout It Out by Hanson is released on June 5.

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