1. How has your night been going Jeff?
Jeff Rains: We're actually enjoying our day off in Niagra Falls. It's going great.
2. How have things been going on the Share The Welt Tour? How have you liked playing with these heavy bands?
Rains: We were really nervous about it before we joined the tour. We got offered about five tours all at once and I did a lot of research and basically got told that this was the tour we needed to take. Even though it's heavy, I thought, just make it work and it's been phenomenal.
3. Are you guys playing the entire tour or will you just be playing in select cities?
Rains: We started on the beginning of the tour, which was October 16th and it goes until December 19th. We are on the entire thing.
4. What has been your favorite place or venue you have performed at so far?
Rains: We love Texas and we get to hit our home state, which is Indiana. All the places that we knew were going to be great, have been phenomenal this time around. Surprisingly Pittsburgh, which we have never played before was amazing! I don't know what the deal was but holy crap it was ridiculous! So that is one of our new favorite places to play.
5. How did you guys manage to land a tour like this? When Rev Theory dropped off the tour how much time did you have to prepare for these shows?
Rains: Well initially we were supposed to join the tour November 8th. Rev Theory was dropping off on November 8th and we were coming on. That is how it was set up in the beginning and then it was a bizarre thing that happened. I had two band members quit and then that same night I got an email from Five Finger Death Punch's management asking us if we could do the whole tour and it started in three days. So we had to find a new drummer and a new bass player in three days and get some rehearsals in. Then we flew to Las Vegas and picked up our bus and we were on tour all of a sudden.
6. Where did you manage to find your new bass player and drummer?
Rains: Our current drummer (Andy Ryan) we have worked with was in a band called RA and when everything went down, I called our sound guy and asked if he happened to know a bass player that could do this? In less than two minutes after that, we had a new bass player (Matt Hopkins). I actually knew him and I forgot how awesome of a bass player he was and he signed on for the whole tour.
7. I had the chance to listen to the album "Stories". From the sound of it you seem like you might be one of the more laid back bands on stage. How have the bands and fans been reacting to your music on this tour?
Rains: Surprisingly enough, and this is no joke, the bands stand on the side of the stage and watch us every night. They say it's a very welcomed change from what they are used to. Even though our music may seem like we would be laid back on stage, we aren't at all. We play our asses off every night.
It took a couple shows for us to gain their respect, but that is the cool thing. We did gain that respect and we earned it. Every show I walk off stage and the guys come up and hug and say great show. Normally when they tour it is with bands like Hatebreed rather than someone like us. Their fans have been the hardest people to deal with, you wouldn't fucking believe it. Hatebreed fans are Hatebreed fans and that's fucking it, but somehow we have found out how to make them our fans and it's been really bizarre but really cool.
8. I have been on Youtube lately just checking out songs that have been posted by your band and I have checked out the comments from people who have recently seen you on the Share The Welt Tour. You probably know that those comments can be some of the harshest criticism you can face, but a lot of guys keep saying how surprised they are with the performances you are putting on.
Rains: Oh yah and if you get on our Facebook page it's amazing, every night we take a picture of the crowd and tell people to get on there and tag themselves. It's phenomenal. We are hitting so many markets that we have never touched before, so to get the kind of response out of those markets is just amazing to us.
9. Do you have any crazy stories about the guys touring with you or are you the crazy ones out of the bunch?
Rains: Our bus is now semi-officially called club RAINS by every other band on tour. It's really weird. The word is spreading and now fans are tweeting us and putting on Facebook, stuff like "I hope we get to come to club RAINS".
We are really laid back dudes except when we are on stage. It's funny because literally every single night Oli from All That Remains will walk on our bus and then Jason from All That Remains walks on our bus and then it's like OK the party has started. Then within ten minutes we pack twenty or thirty people in there, believe it or not it happens every night and we will basically leave sometimes and escape to the back lounge and let everyone party in our front lounge.
10. Getting back to some of your music now. You first single "Liar" I heard on Ocatane (Sirius XM radio) last year and immediately thought it was great. I loved that intro on it. Now your second single "Look In My Eyes" is out and doing well on the active rock charts. How come it has taken so long to hear some music from RAINS and get some singles on the radio?
Rains: Um, let me figure out how to do this right. We had a team of people and parted ways with that team and put together a new team.
11. Now it seems like your management is doing a great job of getting you guys out there.
Rains: The thing is, I am managing the band now. It took me a long time to put together this team, and then it took a lot of flights to LA, a lot of phone calls and it was just nonstop. Now we are completely 100 percent independent and own everything. I couldn't imagine being in a better spot.
"Liar" did great for us and gave us the national push that we wanted Octane was huge for us, but after "Look In My Eyes" we are going to re-release "Liar" as a single, nation wide and kind of go from there.
12. Was your demo released in 2006 and then reworked and re-released in 2009 as "Stories"?
Rains: Well, this is kind of going back into the old team we had. I did a record called "Stories" with completely different songs and released it. That was when Myspace was starting to really get going and the whole spam bullshit wasn't taking over. We sold 12,000 copies of that terrible record on Myspace. I wish I could get every single copy back because I hate it. I'm so embarrassed by it. I had no idea what I was doing.
I think it actually got released in 2004, I don't know why so many things say 2006 out there, but regardless we did the new record and management decided to name it "Stories" too. Whatever, it's a great title for the record and it is just a collection of stories. It has created a little bit of confusion for people.
13. With the majority of this music being a few years old now, do you have some songs that are ready to be recorded? Is there a new album in the works or are you just planning to release some more singles from "Stories"?
Rains: Like I said, we never really felt like "Stories" got the proper push it should have gotten, but I probably have the next three albums written. That's the positive side of taking a while to get out to everyone. It's given me two or three years now to write the next record. The negative side is that we have been playing this record for three years. Again the positive side is that we are really good at playing these songs now.
14: One of our other writers (Kaj) got the chance to review "Stories" when it first came out in 2009, he liked songs "Liar", "Pressure" and "Something New". He felt you were really rocking on those songs. My favorite tracks are "Liar" and "Hate". Those are the kind of songs I love. What other feedback have you heard from fans or reviewers?
Rains: Haha I remember that review. We picked up three stars. I remember it very well.
Overall the feedback has been phenomenal. Ya know I saw a review the other day with the title that said "Rains, the band that's bringing real rock music back." I have been seeing a lot of stuff like that. You get random ones where people just aren't feeling your music. I get it, you like what you like and I understand that. All I want to do is put something real and honest out there and see what happens. Overall I think it has been fantastic and better than I could have expected. Obviously I want to see every review be amazingly positive, but that's life, you gotta deal with it.
If our record got sent to Snoop Dog's management and they reviewed it, they would have been like; this record is fucking bullshit! I really have no control over it. I would never be mad about it. It's actually kind of funny thinking back on it now. We sent the record to some teen girl magazine, I think it is called Relate Magazine. I was like holy shit this is going to be terrible and they had me do this big interview, I was like whatever this seems like a Justin Beiber thing, but they actually loved the record. The songs they hated were "Pressure" and "Hate" because they both say fuck in them. They said all this great stuff like these songs are so inspiring, you girls need to go check this out and all that shit and then they were like "Hate" sucks and "Pressure" sucks hahah.
15. I love the song hate. It might be my favorite song on the album. Is that going to be released as a single sometime?
Rains: A lot of people say that. Obviously we would have to do a radio edit but I think we could make it work.
16. I also really enjoy the lyrics to all your songs. What I want to know is are these actual stories from your life or just things you have thought about and never experienced?
Rains: They are 100 percent stories that I have experienced in my life. The only one that would be questionable is the song "Hurricane". For this song, I was in Austin, Texas and I was walking down the street and this homeless guy came up to me and asked if he could have three dollars and 15 cents or something like that. I said I didn't have any cash on me but I asked what he needed it for. He told me that he wanted to buy a 40 and one cigarette. I thought, ya know; it was kind of cool that he was honest with me and didn't bullshit me. I said let's sit down and will you tell my your story of how you got here and I said if you do that I will go to the ATM and get you some money as soon as we are done. We then sat down and talked, the song "Hurricane" is his life story. After that I went to the ATM and got him twenty bucks and told him to go buy his 40 and his cigarette and to please go buy some food, a blanket or something.
Everything else on the record is my own personal story. It's everything I was going through in that particular moment. There is no bullshit on the record.
17. Do you find that writing is therapeutic for you? Do you have a certain process you follow when writing?
Rains: I am one of those people that will wake up at three in the morning with a song in their head. I don't know where it came from but it will be a song with music, lyrics and everything. Ill record it right away and then check back on it in a month and think, hey this song is pretty cool and then go from there.
I don't really have a process, I have tried to sit down and write songs but they just turn out terrible. I think it's like the second album syndrome. You get forced to write and then you can't do it. That goes back to how our first album has been released and what we have gone through. It has given me a lot of time to put some good quality material together for the next album, even the next few records.
18. With the success you have garnered in 2011 what do you have in store for 2012?
Rains: One, we are hoping the world doesn't end like everyone says. First and foremost, if that doesn't happen we will be dealing with a bunch of tour offers right now and we should have a tour confirmed soon. We are basically planning out the whole year and then we will be making and announcement in the next week or so.
19. Well Jeff that wraps things up for questions. If you have any last words for our readers, now is the time to say them.
Rains: If you are an existing fan, thank you so much for your support and if you are a new fan or willing to listen, thank you so much for taking the time and I don't think you will be disappointed if you like good honest music.