Comprised of three siblings, Kimberly, Neil and Reid Perry, the Band Perry first splashed the scene in 2010 with their self-titled debut. The album’s popularized single “If I Die Young” catapulted the charts and both the single and TBP reeled in ACM and CMA awards as well as CMT’s ‘Breakthrough Video of the Year’ and ‘Best New Live Act’ — not too shabby of an initiation into the country music scene.
The music that permeates from these three artists shuffles between conversations of sensational eloquence and attention to elevated chord progression. Songs are powerful, dramatic and catchy regardless if the subject strikes glimpses of sorrow, angst or hope.
“Country music is always about real style stories, stylistically it may vary, but the heart behind it is the same. There are so many flavours in the sounds too, country music is not straight laced, you have bands like The Lumineers to Mumford and Sons to pop acts to rock n’ roll - there is a lot of variety and that’s what makes it special,” explains Kimberly.
With Kimberly being classically trained and all three having roots in piano precision, the move for the brothers to drums, mandolin and bass was a self-taught transition. The art of songwriting that switched between piano and guitar was one of those crutch moments that helped invigorate a new template of music authenticity.
“Playing piano and then playing in a band is like two different subjects, math and science. Piano you are all by yourself and creating solely through that mechanism, with a band it’s a completely different experience. It’s nice to have the foundation of playing the piano though, it is reassuring,” comments Reid.
The song “Back To Me Without You” is an example of how the process of songwriting and welding instruments to run the course can surface with more power amongst a collective. The highly emotional track is surrounded around a loss of a friendship that was “crashing and burning” and it was written in real time with Kimberley taking the wheel and both Reid and Neal helping steer between roadblocks; it is a song that can transcend into multiple meanings for the listener, and also brings comforting advice along the bumpy way.
The first single off Pioneer “Better Dig Two” was recently performed on Dancing with the Stars and the band’s latest country-sparking single “Done” breeds the same boldness as Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats”, with feisty guitar interludes. Other notable mentions that ring with sincerity and sass include “Mother Like Mine”, “Chainsaw” and “Lucky Ones”.
Another facet of the band is their own compass of scene and scope, both in Nashville and the brooding rotation of music styles and counterparts from varying backgrounds.
“All the collaborations that are now happening in the country music are not necessarily with only country acts, you have rappers coming with country artists, there’s the Nashville ingredient mixing with pop artists and so on, it’s a good time for country music because there are different styles and that brings in different audiences,” furthers Neal.
“Nashville itself is a small creative community making music, and it’s interwined with artists and business, it’s really the biggest small town in the world. You have to be really transparent and creative, you have to know each other and trust each other — it’s become such a haven that is bigger than many may think — it’s diverse racially, age and what not, it has long arms,” explains Kimberly.
The Band Perry may only be into their second album, however their collaborative effort is already fixating through a boy-to-girl echo. The rational, the sensual, the fear and the security are all themes exposed on the record and it’s those desires and complexities that surface through the sounds of three hungry adventurers.
Pioneer delivers songs that pursue refuge, coiling between harmonies of triumph and temper; a totality of savour-rich ballads that can morph into stadium heightened showcases and quiet corners with the same grip.
As Reid puts it, “The general idea of Pioneer is getting from one point to the other. It’s a spirit, spirituality and musically a coming together of that. Pioneer starts out soft and then grows into the grandeur bolder songs and it’s really about taking that journey with us.”
Interview on the blue carpet - BBMA
The Band Perry Billboard Music Awards backstage interview
The Band Perry Billboard Music Awards red carpet interview
The Band Perry and Madonna
The Thread: Can you tell us a little about your red carpet look for The Billboards?
Kimberly Perry: My dress is going to be two pieces—a full skirt and a matching, light-colored, lacy top with a higher neck. In terms of makeup, we’re leaning towards something subtle but still eye-catching.
TT: And are you making a change for yourperformance outfit? What can you tell us about that look?
KP: Our mother does the styling for all of our stage looks, actually. So she and I went to New York City to find something for my performance look for the Billboards and we both saw this dress at the same time—we were both drawn to it. The dress has a corset top, but the sleeves are made entirely out of this really long, like two-foot-long fringe. And then I have some totally blinged-out Jimmy Choos, of course! My favorite color is bling.
TT: Did you work with a stylist for these appearances? How many different dresses or outfits did you look at before you found “The One?”
KP: I did work with a stylist—Anita Patrickson—for my red carpet dress, but as I mentioned before, my mother does all of our stage styling. But for my red carpet dress it took us about two fittings. Originally we were looking for things in the black color family, but eventually we settled on the one we have tonight.
TT: How would you describe your personal, everyday style?
KP: Well, I’m a simple girl and so for me, comfort is key. If I could be wearing sweatpantsall day everyday I would!
TT: How does your personal style get reflected in your red carpet looks?
KP: I can’t exactly wear sweatpants on the red carpet, but my comfort is always key. Movement—my ability to move and rock it out, especially when I’m on stage is huge.
TT: Will you be bringing any good luck charms with you on the red carpet?
KP: We’re eating Lucky Charms before the red carpet—does that count?
TT: Absolutely that counts! You’re going on tour with Rascal Flatts at the end of the month—what are the 3 style items you absolutely cannot do without when you’re on the road?
KP: I’m all about my moisturizer, and I can’t be without my University of Tennessee baseball hat. Every girl has a bad hair day every now and then.
Neil Perry: I like to stock up on vintage tees—when it’s a hot day out and it’s just sweaty and gross, there’s no feeling quite like a soft, vintage tee.
Reid Perry: I need a hairdryer. You know, on the road, you don’t get to shower quite as much as you’d like, and so my hair can kind of get out of hand.
KP: It’s so unfair we’re always saying how Reid has the best hair out of the three of us and he really puts the least amount of effort in to the whole thing.
TT: One last question before you go, what was it like performing on the American Idol finale?
KP: We’ve been fans of the show since it first started, so it was so surreal. We were so happy and honored to be there for Janelle (Arthur) and it was just such an incredible experience.
YES YES YES
Better Dig Two live at 2013 Billboard Music Awards
Almost go time @Billboard Music Awards #BBMA