Mayday Parade on being Rockstars and Five Things they know about NZ

Credit: Mayday Parade

This story was originally published on 10/07/2015

Alex Garcia and I sat down for a chat ahead of Mayday Parade’s shows here in New Zealand.

He wasn’t particularly talkative — press runs can be brutal — but he was, in turns, poignant and insightful. They’re a band that have lived their lives on the road and they’ve opened their hearts to thousands of fans in every song that they’ve ever written.

It’s hard to grasp the level of success they’ve had, hard to put yourself in their shoes and think about what life would be like. It’s probably harder to try to grasp what Mayday Parade mean to their millions of fans across the world.

When you think about all of that, Alex is one incredibly laid back dude. He could almost be a kiwi. Almost.

“I think we are all just very normal guys.” He says, “We don’t try to put on this persona of rock idol, at least not off stage. I think our fans understand that.”

That’s not to say that their fans and successes haven’t changed them as people. After all, how could it not?

“I’m sure it does but it’s difficult to say,” Alex tells me. “I think everyone in the band is pretty grounded though, ultimately. I mean, to our fans we may seem like idols but you have to understand that when I get my car serviced at the mechanics he doesn’t know I’m in a band or care.”

The mechanic may not give a shit but it’s not about the mechanic. It’s about the people that know and care about what he, and the band, do.

“I think our fans feel strongly attached to us because our lyrics are personal.” He adds, saying despite that, he doesn’t consider them open books.

Where does it all come from though? Playing shows night after night is like any job in that you get up, go to work and do it again the next day and the one after. Even rockstars have routines.

“Life keeps changing even though our career kinda stays the same,” Alex says, completely negating my routine point, but hey, he’s Alex Garcia, he can do what he likes!

“If anything, having a routine and wanting to also be at home with loved ones creates more complexity in your life than before.”

Dealing with all of that comes with being able to see the world and meet thousands of people. Some weird, some fascinating, some awful, some awe inspiring. Talking to Alex about his fans got me wondering something: is there anyone he looks up to?

Anyone that creates or tries to better themselves in someway,” he says. “More specifically, I’ve always admired Noel Gallagher. He seems so uncompromising and that’s pretty awesome.”

So’s Alex though, so’s everyone in Mayday Parade, and reckons that being awesome is pretty easy and it doesn’t have to come with writing amazing songs or getting to travel the world (not that either of those wouldn’t be rad, of course).

“You’ve got to believe in yourself and see that you’re as awesome as you want to be.”

Top Five Things Mayday Parade know about New Zealand

1. Lord of the rings

2. Something about the word kiwis

3. The flag looks similar to the Australian flag

4. The scenery is supposed to be beautiful

5. There was an earthquake in Christchurch not long ago?

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