Small Town Titans are an American rock n’ roll power trio from York, PA. New single; ‘Rufflin’ Feathers’ is the 5th single off of the band’s upcoming LP, The Ride, due out November 13, 2020, via AntiFragile Music. Vocalist/bassist Phil Freeman drew the short straw and had to fill in the blanks on our introduction to Small Town Titans. Catch up with Phil below, and don’t forget to give Small Town Titans a follow on social media…
What are the origins of the band, how long have you been playing together?
It will be 10 years in May of 2021! We all met at Lebanon Valley College.
How did you feel performing your first gig? And how was it?!
It was fun! We were a five-piece at a time, which is strange considering that we have been a three-piece for about 7-8 years now! We played a basement club in Harrisburg, PA called the Dragonfly. I believe the date was May 31st, 2011.
What should people expect when they check the band out? How would you describe yourself?
Punch in the face rock n roll with something for everybody! We’re three guys that like to create together and make a lot of noise. Whether it’s beautiful or not is up to the people listening!
The new music scene is bursting at the seams with fresh talent, in what ways do you feel that a band has to stand out from the others trying to build a name?
Go where people’s eyes are (the internet). Make kick-ass art and put it out there! If you love a song and want to cover it, put your own twist on it to make it stand out!
What are you working on at the minute that people can check out?
Our newest single Rufflin’ Feathers is out now! It’s part of our 10 track album The Ride, set to release digitally on November 14th!
What band out there at the minute do you feel that you would be best suited to open for?
Royal Blood, Halestorm, Shinedown, once this COVID B.S. has settled a bit, we’re game! Let’s go! We also have a lot of love for bands we’ve already toured/played shows with as well!
Who do you feel is the next band to break out?
Good question…I’ve been listening to a lot of orchestral soundtrack music lately, but I’d say you should go check out Colter Wall! He’s a badass Canadian singer-songwriter!
What are your first musical memories? And what was the lightbulb moment that made you go “I want to do that”?
Messin’ around on the family piano and spitting into the valves of my Dad’s harmonica. Haha! That and watching my cousin make waves with his band +Live+ really made an impression on me at a young age. It showed me that doing something you love can actually pay the bills if you work hard enough for it!
We have recently had the tragic passing of Eddie Van Halen, do you have a particular favorite Van Halen track?
Hot For Teacher is a jam! Panama is a ton of fun as well. Very sorry to hear about Eddie passing away…my mother died of cancer as well. Going through that is immensely difficult for the people who have it as well as their loved ones.
AC/DC – Brian or Bon? Or both?!
What was the last gig that you attended as a fan?
As a fan? Foo Fighters, I believe. It was the summer of 2018! They were on tour with The Struts! I also saw my cousin in between then and now at some point.
What current issue are you particularly passionate about?
I’m passionate about liberty and justice for all. If there’s anything providing that to human beings, I’m on board.
There is great debate at the minute about whether or not musicians should use their platform to talk about political issues, some for and some against. Music has always been a form of protest, surely an artist has just as much right as the next person to offer an opinion? Or should they “just stick to the music”?
Everyone has a right to express their opinion, but they also have to take responsibility for who they endorse or what they say. Personally, I keep my mouth shut about people, but make my voice known on certain issues or in the music I create with the guys. I’m interested in the people who want to work together, no matter what their political/organizational affiliation may be. If other people want to spend all of their energy on social media arguing with their followers over their positions, that’s their circus to manage. I’m interested in common ground and investing my money & time into organizations that are addressing issues I feel passionate about. It gets more done than simply posting it on socials.
The album that you have in your album collection/Spotify playlist that would surprise most people?
John Williams, Hans Zimmer, and Wagner. I’m also a HUGE fan of the musical Hamilton. Lin Manuel Miranda is a genius!
Who would you class as an underrated songwriter?
Charles Bradley and Allen Stone. These two songwriters are pure gold!
What are your plans for the remainder of 2020?
Release a kick-ass album, enjoy Grinch season (we’ve coined the term due to the perennial success of our cover of You’re a Mean One Mr. Grinch), and gear up for a wild 2021, pending what fate has in store for the human race!
How active are you on social media and where can people connect with you?
Small Town Titans can be found on almost every social media platform and we are super active! Find us on Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram as well as our website smalltowntitans.com!