Interview – The Foundry Town Survivors

The Foundry Town Survivors recently released a self-titled album which we reviewed. They have a fantastic talent for songwriting and their music is well worth checking out, so make sure you give the album a listen if you like the interview below!

By Jane Howkins

You recently released an album titled Foundry Town Survivors, which we reviewed. What can you tell us about this song and where can it be purchased?

Thanks for the kind review. We love it when people actually listen to our music and don’t just pull some text off our website and call it a review.

Foundry Town is Mark’s nickname for the place he spent the first 10 years of his life. It had been a mid-western manufacturing hub for decades. It was past its heyday by the time he showed up, and many of the factories were barely functioning or abandoned. That’s the sad part. The happy part is that all of those places were a perfect breeding ground for our imaginations!

The song Foundry Town is a reminiscence of growing up in such a place, and the things we did before technology turned kids into couch potatoes. It’s about how much your own imagination and the camaraderie you had with your friends made your life so… exquisite. So…boundless! We get a lot of comments on that song from people who experienced many of the same feelings growing up.

You can find us on every major platform out there, Spotify, Pandora, Apple…or you can hit us up directly on our website: www.foundr…

Has the pandemic hindered your work much?

Glad you asked. We started this in 2019 just before the pandemic really hit the states. Tommy lives in Michigan and I live in Nevada, so we had already figured out a long distance work around, and were already “knee deep” in songs by then. So, to answer the question, no the pandemic really didn’t affect our writing process at all. Quite the opposite. The fact that we had to stay isolated was a plus for us. We put close to 30 finished tracks in the can during that time.

What is the writing and recording process like for you?

It began with us digging through our respective archives to pull out the best ideas that we had been stashing away. Then we played around with melody and lyric ideas and most of them actually became finished songs. After we exhausted most of our stash, and knew where we were heading musically, we started working with new ideas. Those usually come by way of 30 second blurbs of guitar or vocal ideas that we record on our phones! We throw things back and forth until we both agree it’s good and we start to record the basic tracks. We do the basic tracks at my studio in Las Vegas and Tommy puts his parts and vocals down at his home studio in Michigan. It’s not ideal, but it’s working fine for now.

I hear you have both been in several bands previously, are there any other projects you’re currently working on?

I collaborated on a disc in 2018 with singer Khristina Kay, entitled Little Mystery. It leaned into country-rock and had some really nice songs on it. Little Mystery has 2 new songs in the wings that would be great summer releases. We’ll see what happens here in the near future…

Do you plan to release any singles in the near future?

Oh yes! We’ve been working on a cinematic video for the song Hopes and Dreams. It’s one of the songs on our Foundry Town Survivors EP. We collaborated once again with our good friend, producer/director Paul Crowder. Paul did our Mississippi Rising video, which is also on this EP. The new video should be out very soon. It’s basically a full length, neo noir film that takes place in 4 minutes… We’re excited to see the reactions…

Whereabouts are you based and what is the music scene like in your part of the world?

We’re in the U. S. of A. Tommy lives in Michigan, outside of Detroit. I live in Sin City, more commonly known as Las Vegas, Nevada. We grew up together in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The music scene isn’t what it used to be… When we were coming up, our area was a hotbed of activity. Motown and urban/suburban rock or “garage rock” were played side by side on the radio and in the clubs. There was a healthy blues and jazz scene as well. We got to see it all! Nowadays it’s pretty quiet… Hopefully that will change as the pandemic subsides and lets people get out again. Fingers crossed!

What/who influences you most as artists? What have you been listening to recently?

We love answering this question! Influences change over time. You become enamored with one and you absorb it until a new one comes along that catches your fancy. For us, almost everything we heard was an influence! We started out listening to all the original Motown artists, got wrapped up in the Beatles and the Who and just about everything else that followed. It didn’t matter, rock, blues, jazz, soul, funk, country – we were sponges.
Almost everything we watched, read, ate or drank became an influence of some sort. LOL. Although, these days our longest running influences are Rod Serling, Stephen King, and Jeff Beck. Serling and King for being able to tell a story with a twist and Beck for always pushing and twisting the envelope.

Do you have any tour dates lined up?

We are seriously looking into that now. All the pandemic uncertainty makes an already tough endeavor even tougher, but we are so ready to play live! We have a world class band that has been waiting, it seems forever, to get out there and bring these songs to life!

What can people expect from one of your shows and why should people come and see you perform live?

First, we’re all about the music. We’re not “shoe gazers” and you’re not gonna get giant set pieces with flashy lights, dancing girls and explosions. Like the bands of old, we’re there to take you on an aural journey… close your eyes, listen, and get ready to participate! We have a pretty broad spectrum of material to share. You can love, laugh, cry, dance, jump up and down, whatever! We want to get to know you while you’re getting to know us. We’ll go on this journey together! What could be better?

Any last words for the fans?

Come for the music, stay for the fun!