Nick Hade - Vocals
David Cardenas – Guitarist
Chigger – Bass
Steve Cardenas - Drums
Talk about how music has influenced you each individually in your daily living.
Nick Hade - Music has been every memory I've had trapped within sound, encased
in the mind. Music has been there for every moment and can bring me back to that
time and has acted as the theme to every piece of my life. It motivates me at work
or allows me to slow down time and breathe life in the moment.
David Cardenas: I feel music is everything, it can conjure a smile, a mood, a
memory, a tear. It can move the world. Music is passion. It can help drown out
the noise of the world.
Chigger: Hmmmm…..Let’s see….I’ve been playing music since I was 16 years
old. I worked in radio in New York City at Z100 and WKTU for 13 years. I
worked as a concert promoter for many years. Most recently, I was the PR
Manager for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, where I worked closely
with the entertainment on property. And I still play with one of greatest bands in
New Jersey, Rahway! I think that music has influenced my daily living pretty
Steve Cardenas: Its opened my mind to different genres of music and its giving
me a diverse appreciation for different styles of music with their different
backgrounds and different cultures.
Where do you each find yourselves listening to music most often?
Chigger: I mostly listen in my car on the way to and from work, but the music is
constantly in my head. It’s like hearing voices, only much cooler.
David: I find that I listen to music mostly while driving too. It is a good way to
relax while driving.
Nick: For me it would be in the car and the studio.
Steve: Work, driving and when I am in the bathroom doing my business.
What are your favorite brands to use when it comes to the instruments, mics, amps,
pedals and so on? Why do you favor them?
David: I really have only used Gibson, Marshall and Boss. Nothing feels better in
my hands than a Gibson guitar and nothing sounds better than it feels. My
Marshall amp is vintage, 69...you can’t get that warm thrush of sound and power
out of anything on the market today, I feel...and Boss, well because I've tried
everything else and nothing compares. It is a perfect marriage haha...
Chigger: I love my Gibson Blackbird because it reminds me of my hero, Nikki
Sixx. My good friend, Rex Brown from Pantera and Kill Devil Hill, sent me some
of his extra EMG humbuckers for my Blackbird and this bass now sounds like a
monster thanks to Rex’s donation! I love playing DR Strings because they make
these black strings that add to the appearance of my Blackbird. I play through an
SWR Goliath stack and I am totally fucked if this beast every goes down since
SWR no longer exists, but I love this cab and amp. I also use a Line 6 Bass Pod for
effects, which I always receive amazing feedback for from people who see our live
Nick: TC Helicon vocal pedals as they have anti feedback so I can stand in front of
a speaker and go crazy without worry that the crowd will be effected. Shure
wireless mic because they are solid for flipping and get good sound. Also use some
boss pedals on occasion for compression earlier in the chain before the anti-
feedback, helps keep the volume leveled throughout shows.
Steve: Lugwid drums, solid well-manufactured drum. Paiste cymbals, the perfect
sound, pristine quality.
Talk about your current project. Its conception. How it evolved. The storyline
behind its development or any anecdotes that may have occurred during the
Chigger: Our new EP Slumlords of NJ, is a combination of songs that Dave and I
wrote for our side project, which we brought in when I joined Rahway. The other
two songs were written by our drummer Steve and the fifth song was written by
some guy who used to play for The Beatles named Paul McCartney. The title of
the EP came to us during an interview with our friend Juliet Huddy when she
called us the Slumlords of New Jersey in the title. We just ran with it and hash
tagged the shit out of it. We kept on hearing how badass that hashtag was that we
decided to use it as the title for our next EP and it just stuck. By the way, all of the
cooler songs on the EP were written by me and Dave! (wink wink)
Nick: This album was done the Rah-way, straight jam in the rehearsal room.
Someone would present a vocal idea or guitar riff and bada bop boomp, pow
explosion of sound. Once the base is laid out, we figure out the vibe and mental
picture, frame the words, and build a house based on the art in your mind that
traveled through your ears.
David: We write for us in the room but ultimately, we write for are fans to enjoy.
It warms my heart to get messages like, this song got me through a tough time, or I
work out to this particular song because it gets my adrenaline pumping.
Steve: The ideas come in different forms. Some of the newer ones, as the band
gels, the sound starts to come together. Whether my brother comes us with a riff or
I come up with a song idea or chorus. Nick may run with lyrics bases on the
chorus. Songs I may write myself for the band may be based on personal growth,
life experience. Every song that RAHWAY comes out with; we try to have some
sign of hope of some of kind.
Where there any conflicts during the recording process? If so, how did you as a
band overcome them, if not what do you think is Rahway’s formula to gel so well?
Chigger: Believe it or not, we actually got along during the recording process. We
worked with Mike Orlando from Adrenaline Mob and he was our producer. He
really kept us all inline. He gave us direction and we just listened. I just know that
Rahway’s formula is a recipe for great music and good times!
Steve: I don't think were any conflicts really. This is the first time we went into a
studio to record with Mike Orlando and he was a fresh set of ears. Everything
we've done prior to this was DIY.
David: Yeah, for the most part, we got along great, but there are always bumps in
the road, that's just family.
Nick: Let go of the ego, look at the big picture, be a team, communicate, and if
something is a real pain just work to find the root of the problem. When you find
the source of the problem just remember you can't change the world, but you can
Is there a particular part you enjoy more than another in the process of a project?
Nick: Being on stage at big shows with other sick bands.
David: Yes, the 1 hour on the stage with my Family (RAHWAY) doing what we
love, and just Killing it.... the energy, the vibe, we just blend and have so much fun
up there.... it’s truly amazing, no words to describe it.
Steve: The actual putting the song together, arranging the parts. It's like putting a
Chigger: I love being able to get together with the guys to rehearse, but what I love
most is delivering our labor of love (our music) to live audiences! We cannot wait
to be able to play live again!
How do you know when a song is done and ready to be taken to the recording
studio and produced?
Chigger: A song is never done. Every rehearsal, Steve, or Dave or even Nick are
changing something, whether it’s a part or a lyric or a melody. We’re making
changes right up until we are putting it on tape, and even after that, we’re still
making changes. Thank God for Mike Orlando!
Steve: When we see the big picture. When the puzzle pieces fit.
David: When you know, you just know.
Nice: When it doesn't sound like shit or make you cringe.
Looking towards the short and long term of where you might be currently- where
do you see yourself (yourselves) as an artist/band in 2020 and beyond?
Steve: Whats going on today is it going to stop us from creating. But its hard to
tell, things may change a lot moving forward. I'm almost positive any musician
would give their right arm to play again live.
David: I live in the day, I'd really just like the world to hear, and enjoy our music.
Chigger: Well, in 2019, we made some great strides as a band. 2020 has slowed the
entire country down, but we hope the release of our new EP, Slumlords of NJ, will
pick our momentum back up. It really is a great EP. Our latest single “Sugar” has
really pumped life back into the band during this pandemic.
Nick: I imagine one of our releases getting traction online to increase our fan base,
a vaccine for corona is made, a peaceful solution for the rioting is found that
works, someone patents a system for venues to convert their spaces to corona safe
spots and big ass shows with Rahway return!