While taking the train back home, I spotted a hoard of people crowding around a band that was playing underground at Union Square. Originating from San Francisco, six-piece band BattleHooch were stopping people from their teens to their 60’s with their energetic vibes and loud sound. They describe their music as “tropical” and “psychedelic” with an influence from the BeeGees, Barbie Girl, and Mortal Combat. It’s not often that you see middle aged New Yorkers going up to a young hip band like BattleHooch and buying t-shirts and CD’s from them. It was apparent that I had been standing there for 10 minutes hypnotized by their sound, so immediately got in touch with them for an interview.
What’s the meaning behind the name BattleHooch?
Nothing really (laughs). It was just a name we had for the bass player. We didn’t necessarily agree with it, but that’s what we went with. We were lucky to get a monopoly name!
How was it busking around the streets of New York?
Usually we have a big van so we can bring as much nonsense as we want, but we had to be a lot more stooped down and bare-boned this time around, so there was borrowed gear. Our drummer usually has a bucket drum set with a kick drum. He puts a bucket on that, then a snare drum and he usually has a high hat. It was a very haphazard approach. He didn’t even bring a chair. It was different this time because last time it was during the summer, but this time we had to contend a little bit with the cold weather. It was really cool seeing New Yorkers coming out of their winter time cocoons.
Do you guys usually see a lot of older audiences like there were at Union Square?
Yeah we do have older audiences! We probably have fans starting from the mid 20s up to people all the way through the 60s. It’s pretty cool to see such wide range. We need more kids. And maybe more of the 70-100 year-old category. We need the baby boomers and their great grand children!
While you were in the city, did you get to do anything aside from playing music?
We went to the MET which was pretty fun. A little bit of Central Park too. It was mostly a business trip so we didn’t have much time for pleasure. We did more touristy stuff in our other tour that we did in 2010. It was all business this time round…We were not having fun! It looked like we were having fun but that was all a lie! (laughs)
Are you guys planning to come back anytime soon?
Totally! We play with a bunch of our friends, but they’re a bunch of slackers…Just kidding, our friends are rad!
Any exciting news you want to share with the world?
Yeah! We have two new singles coming imminently. We just have to get a couple details worked out and then we’re gonna put them out. We’ve played two songs a lot at our street performing gigs and our shows. Other than that, we’re headlining at a pretty large venue in San Francisco called Independence which is going to be a huge crazy extravaganza. It’s gonna be the show of the summer!