Hailing from Toronto, Down with Webster is an alternative rock band founded by its members in middle school. Since they first performed in their school talent show, the group has released two full-length albums and toured around the US and Canada. Beginning a new tour on January 14, all five members of the band create a unique sound that is almost impossible to describe.
Before their concert at the Boston House of Blues, Blast Magazine spoke with band members Martin “Bucky” Seja, Patrick “Pat” Gillett, and Cameron “Camm” Hunter about their journey from contestants in a Battle of the Bands contest in 1998 to an internationally traveling band signed to Universal Music.
Blast Magazine: Since winning Rogers Mobile’s “Best Unsigned Recognition” contest, the band’s fan base has grown dramatically in size. How has becoming more popular affected the group’s dynamic?
Cameron “Camm” Hunter: Our goal is just to write songs that people love. Popularity hasn’t changed us really. We’re still the same people. That’s partially because we’ve all know each other since we were eleven or twelve years old and it helps when you are surrounded by friends that have known you for a long time.
Blast Magazine: For people who are unfamiliar with the band, how would you describe your sound?
Hunter: I wouldn’t describe our sound. It’s absolutely all over the place. I have no idea and I can’t put a name on it. Just go listen.
Martin “Bucky” Seja: I’d say if you could name a band to every song that’s on your iPod and that was a band, that’s kinda what we sound like.
Hunter: Go listen and tweet us and tell us what you think.
Blast Magazine: Your first full-length album, Time to Win, was released in two parts. What was the reasoning behind that?
Hunter: The reasoning originally was that there were supposed to be two half albums that made up one full album. It just turned into being full albums so that whole idea went out the window.
Patrick “Pat” Gillett: We really set ourselves up for a doozy by calling the first one volume one. It meant we had to follow it up with something (a volume two).
Hunter: The original idea was just thrown out the window and it just got turned into two albums.
Blast Magazine: Where did the idea for the title of your most recent album, Party for Your Life, come from?
For our recent album, Pat came up with the song “Party for Your Life” and it was a cool song. We said it kinda sums up the feeling of the record and we just went with it. We have been partying for our lives for quite some time now. It felt appropriate.
Blast Magazine: You are currently on tour with Timeflies and will be on tour with Jonny Craig, Kyle Lucas and Captain Midnite! starting Jan. 14. Who would you most like to collaborate with in the future and why?
Hunter: That’s always a tough question because we have so many voices on our track and our music is all over the place. So it’d be one of those things where we have to get in the room with someone and if amazing music came out of it, then great. But I can’t off hand think of one particular group or person. We’ve been talking a lot about doing a feature with a girl because we’ve never had a girl on any of our records and I think it would be a cool dynamic.
Blast Magazine: You’ve had the opportunity to perform all over the united States and Canada. Where was your favorite place to perform and where would you most like to perform in the future?
Hunter: Probably the best place has been Toronto. We played a couple Toronto shows that were just insane cause that’s our hometown and it was nuts. But we love any big city. We love LA, we love NY and Boston’s big. The name of the game for us is to keep making music and play bigger shows. We may go to Australia, because we got signed out there like five months ago and there’s been talk of getting us out there on some festival stuff. We have never been to Australia before but Bucky is half-Australian and we’ve never been out there.
Blast Magazine: Your first group performance was at a talent show together. How do you feel that you guys have changed musically and personally since then?
Seja: It’s been natural. Like when you grow up, you change. You’re still you but you’re not the same person you were 10 years ago.
Hunter: We’ve just got better at what we do individually and figured out what our place in the band is. It’s become more honed in. it was a lot more scattered back in the day.
Blast Magazine: What is the best piece of advice any of you have for an aspiring musician?
Seja: Do it because you love music, not because you want to get famous.
Hunter: Keep at it. We’ve been doing it for a really long time and it’s always a number of things that have to go right for it to be right. So keep doing it because you love doing it and want to make music. Don’t get discouraged.