The boys are back in town and starting their North American tour in Toronto at the Mod Club. Best known for the success of “Say Something” there’s a lot more to A Great Big World. The SceneInTo was lucky enough to talk to the duo before their tour debut Tuesday, March 1 at the Mod Club. Grab your tickets here

TheSceneInTo: Why pick Toronto to start your North American tour? Is there any significance for the Mod club?

Chad: So why I picked Toronto to start our North American tour, I would say that Canada has always been really amazing to us and the shows there have always been one to remember and we want to start off with a bang and we’re based in New York so it’s a short trip away.

Ian: But also geographically it makes the most sense to start there because we definitely want to come to Canada on this run and Toronto can be a beautiful start and then make our way down the coast.

TheSceneInTo: Say Something became an uber success. Did it take you by surprise how popular that song became? In that regard considering its success does it add a level of worry that your new songs won’t compare and how do you manage that?

Chad: Well, if you were to ask us years ago what song from our last album would have the most potential to be a quote on quote hit song “Say Something” was definitely the last song on that list. Yes, it was one of the biggest surprises of our lives, it still surprises us that the song became so much bigger than us. It did add a lot of pressure and we’re still shifting through that pressure, but you know we never rotate something to be the hit.  We wrote it because we needed to write that song, it was therapy for us. So moving forward to album number two and beyond, we keep going back to why are we writing songs; we’re writing songs because we need to write them because we’re going through these things and they help us heal and discover ourselves, so we dig deep so we get to share that with other people and you know that’s what music is all about and that we’re not alone in what we’re feeling and going through.

AGBW_JL15_04_RAFTS_243 (2)TheSceneInTo: You’ve toured a lot. Given the chance what’s the one thing you wish someone had told you while starting out?  Any life lessons from the road?

Chad: Bring lots and lots of snacks and bring your vitamins and green juices along the way too because when you get to the U.S., at least when you get towards the middle of the country green juice is hard to come by.

TheSceneInTo: That’s a deep life lesson.

Ian: I would say that besides bringing snacks, I wish that someone told me early on in my life that I should do the things I was most interested in and found most beautiful about me; that I shouldn’t be fighting to sing. I waited until I was 20 years old to start singing.

TheSceneInTo: Where does your inspiration for music come from? Do you lock yourself up or do the ideas flow or is there a method you work through?

Ian: I feel like you put yourself there at a piano or a guitar or whatever and as long as you keep putting yourself there you just got to pray that inspiration is going to come. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t but when it comes, it comes like a wave and you got to ride that wave. I think we try to constantly expose ourselves to new music and as we go through life and experience things, we need to write about those so there’s always something to write about. For example, on this new album for me “One Step Ahead” was the song I proposed to my fiancé with.

Chad: For me one of the most inspiring songs on the record, “Won’t Stop Running” was all about my journey with MS. I was diagnosed in 2007 and the doctor told me that I would be paralyzed within five years. Long story short, I started treating my health with diet and exercise and I’m now pretty much symptom free and being able to put that journey in a song was such a cathartic experience.

TheSceneInTo: You have the new album, the new tour, is there anything else in the works? You guys seem to be having a lot going on all the time.

Chad: We’re working on a Broadway musical. We’ve been working on it for about three and a half years and we’re finally getting to a point where we’re about to share the music with the public for the first time. We’re playing a show at the end of April at Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater in NYC where we’re just playing songs from the musical “A Great Big World”. We’re hoping to get a director locked in and start work shopping it later in the year. The musical is called “Strokes of Genius”.

Ian: I’m getting married in April so there’s that and just preparing for this tour. It’s a 5 week tour, it’s been a while since we toured and were just really excited about that.

You can catch the band at the Mod Club, March 1 or travel along to see them tour.



About The Author

CEO: Chief Entertainment Officer

René Samulewitsch @VIPRene is a globetrotter with a hunger for adventure, but at heart, he will always be an urban tourist with big love for Toronto. When not busy with his day job as a PR strategist, he spends his time exploring the city’s culture and entertainment venues. Rene has a passion for sharing experiences, and truly believes in the power of word of mouth. Favourite place in Toronto: Kensington Market in the Summer as there’s always something new to discover. Queen Street for the urban vibe and King Street to let loose and party.

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