BANGS! 16 Bullets with Lead Vocalist Mitch Arnold of Wayland

  • Do you feel the music, in general, has rules or more like guideline structure?

Mitch Arnold: First and foremost, I don’t feel like there are limitations to art at all. Artists through the years have reinvented their art a million times. With music, in particular, singers, songwriters, and musicians have been changing the game since it started.

There is always someone out there pushing the envelope to what is the “norm” and putting something out that is new and fresh. As a band, we try really hard not to limit ourselves or our options while writing a song. That being said, we still pay attention to the trends and what kind of songs are out in our particular genre.

We may look at a group of songs and say, “We need something fast with light lyrical content.” We’ll do some research and find something that’s come out (whether current or classic) and take note of the specific perimeters of that song. Doesn’t mean we are going to stick to them but as a song writer and a recording artist, it behooves us to see what other artists used as guidelines. I don’t feel like there are specific rules though.

• Has there been a particular structure the band has followed in songwriting, and performing?

Mitch Arnold: I think through our career we’ve pulled from our influences. We try to learn from our heroes and in some cases, try to do what they did better.

I’d say the only real structure we follow is the discipline within ourselves to keep going. Outside of that, we try really hard to not box each other in and have a specific structure to writing songs or putting a show together.

• Wayland have performed over 500 shows since 2010. Any particular show stand out?

Mitch Arnold: Absolutely! Every time we play The Intersection in Grand Rapids, MI it’s always an incredible night. Our record release party is happening there on September 30th.

We are inviting Wayland Warriors from all over the globe to come join us for the show and celebrate the release of this awesome record that we are so proud of. It’s going to be another rock n’ roll evening for the books, for sure!

• What if anything have you noticed has changed when performing live over the past few years?

Mitch Arnold: It’s hard to pin point even a few things. As a band, we are in a constant state of self-reflection, change, and growth. We grew up on stage. We are constantly learning about our craft and how to do it better so the fans get better albums, better shows, and better music.

We’ve grown so much in the last few years…so much has changed. As far as details, I wouldn’t even know where to start.

• When did Wayland sign with Mighty Loud/InGrooves?

Mitch Arnold: We signed on with Mighty Loud/ InGrooves along with Thermal Ent. earlier this year. We’re very excited to see what we accomplish as a team

• The band has released singles along the way, why a full length album, Rinse & Repeat, as your debut album?

Mitch Arnold: We’ve been wanting to put out a full album for a long time. Our touring schedule, along with some seemingly unfortunate coincidences has prevented us from doing so until now. It’s really just about timing. I’m grateful. Because right now the time is right for Wayland.

• How many tracks will be on the album and what sound will the Michigan based band mates be bringing?

Mitch Arnold: We will be boasting the powerful sound of the mighty Wayland on all 12 songs on the record. We are also releasing 2 bonus tracks with the album.

• You released your single "Through the Fire" and the lyrics seem to have spoken to several of your fans, reading on YouTube. How heavy at times does what music can mean to people way in on what your create and release?

Mitch Arnold: We create music based on our personal experience. The lyrics come directly out of our lives. We understand that music has a profound effect on human life. It has through the history of man.

Music changed us all in our own ways, and that’s why we are here today. We just try to write perform honest music. We feel lucky that people find life changing properties in our music.

We've got songs that are really reflective and we also have rock songs that are just about having a good time. I think a good rock band needs both.

• Who did Wayland work with on producing this album?

Mitch Arnold: Justin Rimer produced the album at CrossTrax studios in Memphis, TV. It was mixed by Jeff Tomei at Cock Of The Walk Studios in Kennesaw, GA.

• Can we get a glimpse as to what song off the new album might become the next music video to be released?

Mitch Arnold: I wish I could give you that glimpse. I honestly don’t know.

• Does the band have a particular philosophy/Motto?

Mitch Arnold: Yes we do…Rinse & Repeat. It’s our Mantra right now.

• What is it you want your music to say to the world?

Mitch Arnold: That’s such a broad question…

Music has the power to empower humans to take control over their own lives. I hope our new album speaks to enough people so that global consciousness is raised up and hate and separation is eradicated.

• Do the band mates have a 'secret' band or musician they love that everyone would go... “No Way, not them!”

Mitch Arnold: Between the four of us, our musical taste is so diverse. And it’s changed so much over the years. It may shock people to know that I really appreciated Taylor Swift’s earlier records. I haven’t really connected with anything after the “Red,” album but I learned a lot about song writing from her.

• Spotify is loved and detested at times by musicians and bands. How have you used it and overall what have you found to be its greatest asset?

The greatest asset is what ever music you want, right fucking now. I love Spotify. As a band, we came into the business at a weird time.

Early in our career, things were shifting from physical sales to digital sales to pretty much no sales at all. You’ve got to play live and shove the physical record in people’s hands. The world we know is the digital world we are in. We didn’t sit around and talk about the good ole days when we were selling records because we weren’t around then. We are just trying to make our way, make a difference with our fans and make a living.

We are happy that people stream our music. That being said, I still think the best way to listen to anything is a record player and headphones. There is no other quality like it.

• What if anything would you say you have learned the most about yourselves through your own music?

Mitch Arnold: Music taught me to love. Music has no boundaries or prejudices. Living as an artist, you’re constantly reflecting on how to live better.

If you truly accept the path, you’re going to be learning and changing all the time. I’ve learned that I’m capable of anything that I put my mind to.

I’ve learned that music is a pathway, a direct streamline to the soul. And music brought to me the whole universe and it’s ours to harvest the very best life we can imagine.

• You get to have an audience of fans undivided attention for ten minutes. What would you tell them or sing to them?

Mitch Arnold: Through the years, I’ve learned that you can’t change someone’s DNA. You can influence someone’s life through art but Bono is never going to convince people who to vote for or what cause to attach themselves to. I actually try to not push my views of politics or of our current situation on anyone.

If I had undivided attention with an audience for 10 minutes, I would play them some good songs and remind them that everything they want, everything their heart desires is within themselves. The God they seek exists and exists not in the sky but within the universe of their hearts.

All of the fulfillment they are asking for is within the stillness of their mind. It’s just up to us as humans to sit still, be silent and listen so we can uncover the path to unreasonable happiness.

• What are some of the unwritten rules of tours, performing, recording, living a band life?

Mitch Arnold: No shitting on the bus. Wash your clothes when they stink. Find a shower when you stink. Treat everyone with kindness because this is a business built on relationships. Listen. Smile at adversity. Clean up your messes and be safe driving down the road.