Samantha: Hi guys! How are you all? How are you feeling today?
Max: We’re good!
Luke: Yeah we’re very good.
Gibby: Yeah we just got out of the water. Just surfed. Jammed for a little bit.
Max: We rehearsed!
Samantha: So you surfed and then rehearsed?
Luke: Rehearsed and then surfed. It was our last rehearsal before the tour.
Samantha: That’s awesome! Can you guys tell me a little bit about your background? Where are you all from and how did you guys get into music?
Ashton: I’m from San Clemente which is a little north of San Diego… I asked for a guitar when I was young, like randomly… and then I turned out really liking it. Then I played in bands and stuff and was always into music… and then ended up here I guess! That’s about it for me. (laughs)
Luke: I’m from Long Beach and I kind of got my start in music initially in Church in middle school and then I started joining garage bands in high school and it kind of got me into the genre that we’re doing now. There’s a bunch of garage-rock -bands that I grew up with in Long Beach. It’s a big scene over there where I played in a few bands.
Max: I’m from San Diego, born and raised. My dad is a musician, he grew up playing in bands, so his influence on music has pretty much-been everything to me as far as listening and learning how to play guitar, bass, drums, and whatever — always wanted to jam with him when I was a kid. I used to play the drums but I wasn’t very good (laughs). Then eventually I found more people my age who played music and then we formed a real band that started in high school and he was actually in it with me (points to Gibby)…
Gibby: Yeah let’s go!
Max: Yeah so it did pretty well for a high school band and that was kind of like the best thing for me as a musician.
Gibby: And then I pretty much grew up in the same scenario as Max. I grew up playing shows with my parents and at church camps. My parents were both… I don’t know… they played music in church a lot, all the time, but now I just play music with a bunch of people. Now, I’m in Sun Room and we’re loving it. Max and I joined the band like five/six months ago so we’re pretty fresh and they’ve been doing it the whole time (points to Luke and Ashton).
Samantha: Super cool. So, how did the band form?
Luke: So the band initially started when I got kicked out of school for Covid. This is like right when the pandemic started. They sent us all home because I was living in the dorms. I was at home super bored, as everyone was, and I just started writing some songs. I was still in a band at that point called Guest House, but I kinda wanted to start a more serious project and just go for it full force with all this new time on my hands. So I wrote the four songs that are on our first EP, the Sol Del Sur EP, and I just recorded it with a couple of friends who weren’t going to be in the band but were just helping me out. I worked with a producer in Long Beach who I’ve worked with before at a studio called Jazz Cats. So then, put out that EP, and right as I was putting that EP out, I still didn’t have a band. So I was looking for people, met Ashton through a mutual friend, one of my buddies from college, and started jamming with him and his older brother. Then flash forward to a little under a year later, we were about to go on tour, literally had like two weeks before we were going on our first tour, and we still did not have a full-time bassist or drummer. So, I hit up Max and then he joined the band, and then a week later Gibby joined the band, and then went on tour like two weeks later. It was really fast, we literally met each other, and then we were on tour together like right away.
Samantha: Wow that’s crazy… were you guys like instant friends?
Max: Yeah, we had to be (everyone is laughing). It was like being thrown into a marriage… and I’d say it worked out pretty well though.
Gibby: Yeah we figured it out.
Samantha: So how did you pick your name? Where does your band name come from?
Luke: The name. So as I was saying, the band I played in before this was called Guest House. Then I started this band and it was kind of a joke …like a sunroom is just another room – there’s a guest house and there is a sunroom – and it also fits the vibe of the music we are doing. The music is fun, summer songs, and so it just kinda fits the vibe too.
Samantha: Totally. Did you come up with any names before Sun Room that you were maybe going to go with?
Luke: Oh I have a list actually. They’re all so funny though. None of them were super serious, but I got to find this… (pulls out his phone and starts scrolling)…
Max: Oh also we never said our names too.
Gibby: So that’s Jack, Kyle, Maurice, and Jonathan
Samantha: So funny (laughs)
Gibby: I know I’m hilarious.
Max: So this is Gibby (points to Gibby), that’s Ashton over there (points to Ashton and Ashton puts his arms up), that’s Luke… and I’m Luke… (everyone laughs)… no I’m just kidding I’m Max.
Samantha: I knew that!
Luke: Okay! My band names were: Dollar Beers, Swamp Riders, Live Animals, Community Pool, and Bird Piss (everyone starts laughing).
Max: That’s hard… Bird Piss.
Gibby: Dude that’d be a crazy band.
Samantha: Those are really eclectic names you’ve got there.
Luke: Yeah. I think Sun Room was probably the most reasonable one.
Samantha: Yeah.. it definitely fits your vibe… more than the other ones.
Gibby: I don’t know I think Bird Piss would have done super well.
Samantha: (laughs) Okay so going back to what I was going to ask you… Who are your musical influences? Who did you grow up listening to?
Max: Individually I feel like we all have very different influences… so yeah let’s start with Ashton.
Ashton: My original influences were kind of like early rock, a lot of Led Zepplin and Metallica…all that stuff because it was fun to play on the guitar. But then I got more into some of the indie bands around here, or some bands like the Skegss in Australia, and stuff like that, and that kind of shaped my music taste.
Luke: I would say my biggest influences are all the surf-rock and garage-rock bands from Southern California. Like I was saying, growing up in Long Beach it was super big there and along with where they grew up too (points to the other guys). That’s all I listened to for a long time, just garage rock, surf rock, lots of cool bands from Australia and Southern California, and stuff.
Max: I always grew up listening to pretty much whatever my dad put on. So it was starting with classic rock, but also he liked new wave so like classic rock and new wave. In high school, I had a friend that introduced me to a lot of cool indie bands, local ones, and also some that are big now like Mac DeMarco or Boy Pablo. So, that was the introduction to indie music, but I like all types of music.
Gibby: I grew up with … my parents having a gospel CD… a heavy heavy southern gospel CD stuck in the car… and that’s what I grew up on, old gospel music… people going ham at church (everyone starts laughing). Then I started listening to The Growlers.
Everyone: The Growlers!
Max: That was like the gateway drug to indie music.
Gibby: Yeah that was the gateway drug, The Growlers. For sure. Now I’m super into singer-songwriter music and people as individuals, like George Harrison, not all The Beatles. I like George Harrison a lot more and singer-songwriter music.
Samantha: What is your songwriting process like? When is your favorite time to create?
Luke: Hmm that’s a tough one. I think it is always like…
Ashton: It varies from song to song a lot I think.
Luke: I’m trying to think about when I do most of the writing.
Samantha: Do you take inspiration from certain events? Times of the day? Places you go? Vacations? California?
Luke: Honestly yeah. A lot of what I normally write about is my everyday life. Life is just… I’m just in a very fun phase of life right now. I dropped out of school… but I live with a bunch of … eleven guys from my college… and in our neighborhood in San Diego there are just tons of our friends and it’s super fun… we surf everywhere, bike everywhere, jam all the time. I think a lot of the music and inspiration comes from everyday life. Hanging out with my friends, having fun, surfing, and skating, and getting into trouble… the neighbors getting pissed at us, and all that stuff. I think that is where the root of the Sun Room inspiration is honestly.
Samantha: So, you guys had a song on the Outer Banks soundtrack which is amazing. If you had to place your music in a movie, what would it be and why?
Max: Baywatch with Dwayne The Rock Johnson (everyone starts laughing).
Luke: The new super bad one. Dude yes. I could literally see Dwayne and Zac running on the beach in slow-mo to like “Fun” (makes slow-mo hand motions). The new Baywatch that’s super bad. I vote for that one.
Max: I think in Pulp Fiction there is the Dick Dale song, but I think you could sub in “Just Yesterday” or something like that.
Samantha: That would be so good.
Ashton: Lords of Dogtown or something like that. That would be sick.
Samantha: How do you feel about getting ready to have this massive undertaking of going on the road with Louis Tomlinson? What are you looking forward to, nervous about, and excited about?
Ashton: Getting to be with the boys (raises his arms and laughs).
Max: Nervous about the people, but also excited for the people too at the same time.
Luke: Hmm yeah, this is definitely going to be like the biggest shows we’ve ever played by far.
Max: By ten-fold.
Luke: I think that we are pretty shocked that we got this opportunity. It’s just pretty surreal. But yeah something I’m really excited about is to have our sound, this sound we have and play… which I feel like isn’t a lot of places… I think you know… not a lot of parts of the country have bands that sound like us… so I think it’s going to be pretty cool introducing thousands of people every night to this genre of music we are in. Super excited about that kind of thing. But also excited to meet Louis too!
Ashton: I’m excited to play these awesome venues that I’ve seen videos of bands I like playing. It will be pretty surreal to play those stages too.
Samantha: Gibby do you have anything you want to add?
Gibby: I’m excited! I don’t know. I’m excited we get to go to Detroit. I have a bunch of family there which will be cool. But I don’t know… I’m excited. I’m not super nervous, I’m one of those people who it doesn’t really hit me until I’m there.
Samantha: You’re going to Europe too right? Have you guys all been out of the country?
Gibby: I’ve been to South America once.
Max: Only Mexico.
Ashton: I’ve been to Europe but on a family vacation so this will probably be different.
Luke: I’ve only been to Europe once and the only place I went was Norway. So I haven’t seen any of the more common places to visit. We’re playing Norway which is sick. I have more family in Norway than I do in America, so I think they’re all going to come out. I’m stoked.
Samantha: Okay to kind of wrap this up (went quicker than I expected it to)… Do you have any upcoming projects and/or anything we can look forward to?
Gibby: We have a single coming out called “Clementine”, with a music video. It will be epic.
Ashton: Super cool.
Luke: Yeah I think that will be coming out in mid to late February… and then we will have another single coming out pretty soon after that as well.
Samantha: A lot of new music coming out!
Luke: Yes we’ve been grinding hard on the new music. It’s kind of been a while since we put something out. We put out “Crashed My Bike” in August or something like that… so the next year we’re gonna be going ham.
Max: Big moves this year.
Ashton: As Gibby would say “I’m excited”.
Samantha: Do you have anything else that you want to share super quickly that I didn’t ask about?
Gibby: I’m excited.
Luke: Go ham!
Gibby: Is this our outro?
Max: We’re super thankful for all our fans. We couldn’t do it without you. We love your support. Come to our shows(clapping his hands while speaking). Buy some merch. Listen to the music. Support us and we will keep it coming, we will keep it coming all day. We can’t wait to see the United States as a whole and Europe too!
Check out Sun Room and buy a ticket for their upcoming tour!