Hawk Nelson Biography
Review The Artist (49)
The concept of following a dream is often reduced to a string of cliché statements that can be easily brushed under the rug or deemed worthy of an eye roll. But despite the non-existent idealism of past generations and the mixed messages thrown at today’s youth by the media, there’s still some folks governed by tireless work ethic and a tenacious spirit who go against the odds to make a difference in the world they live in.
Hailing from a mid-sized suburb of Ontario, Canada, power pop/punk foursome Hawk Nelson cites itself as diehard believers in the transformative power of dreams, planning a course in musical expression at a young age and following through with vivaciousness each inch of the way. But more than just a haphazard pact or loose-ended commitment, the gang was very specific in plotting its destiny. As lifelong fans of pop/punk music the guys knew the steps it took to break a band and invested every ounce of energy at cultivating careers.
“We defined our sound, cut an indie disc and started getting it in the hands of people,” interjects Jason with unflinching fervor. “We toured all around Toronto- from colleges to arcades to bars- and sought to get kids into it.”
And that’s exactly what the band achieved, through continuous spurts of infectious, radio friendly sugar rushes, a dynamic live spectacle and intimate interaction with fans both on and off stage. Soon the buzz spread beyond tiny rooms and brought the band to the area’s most prominent venues, eventually attracting the attention of fellow Canadian Trevor McNevan (from Thousand Foot Krutch).
“They had come up a few years before we did and we’d always looked up to the way they operated,” says Matt of the Tooth and Nail act known for the smash hit “Rawkfist”. “Trevor went to bat for us in the early stages and pitched us hard to the label just when his band was getting on board. He’s been a huge influence in our lives and helped us get serious about our career.”
Not only did McNevan continually light the sparks of Hawk Nelson, but he gave members a big break by introducing their music to Tooth and Nail figurehead Brandon Ebel. The Seattle based record company owner was so intrigued by such sounds that he hopped on a plane to Ontario and signed the band to a record deal following an amped up crowd reaction at a sold out homecoming show.
After growing up listening to the likes of TFK, MXPX and Slick Shoes, the contract was the first of several major dream fulfillments that have led to the brand new full-length debut Letters to the President. The 14-track disc is packed to the brim with explosive power chords and fist pumping pleasure, backed behind the boards by producer Aaron Sprinkle (Pedro the Lion) with co-production and co-writing by McNevan.
Aside from the aforementioned influences, elements of Good Charlotte, Simple Plan and Blink 182 are evident, as is the slightly older schooled rock and roll rebellion of Goldfinger. Despite that popular pool from which Hawk Nelson pulls, there’s still a distinct balance of harmonies, intensity and experimentation that standout on the admittedly cluttered airwaves.
“The way we blend the different elements and diversify the sounds really helps our personalities shine through,” observes Jason. “Beyond just the music, we’re a group of lifelong friends who are pouring everything we have into this. We look at this as being on a journey together.”
Everyone’s character traits and artistic muses shine through loud and proud with gut-wrenching honesty and demographic spanning relatability. One moment the record may be busting with summertime sights and sounds (“California”) another it may be funneling angst (“Things We Go Through”) or even bustling with carpe diem appeal (“First Time”). Even more energetic is the disc’s title cut, which propels the guys’ aggressive instrumental thunder against Jason’s pleading vocals.
“‘Letters to the President’ really sets the tone to the record,” he explains. “It’s bursting at the seams with passion and introduces the band’s sonic direction on the whole. It’s one you can sing with the windows rolled down to or sing along loud to in concert.”
No matter what the pacing or dynamic in a given track, the band hopes its listeners will take away a sense a sense of encouragement deeper than the beat blasts. Beyond just a general pick me up, members hope to instill a similar sense of dream pursuit that’s fueled their quest thus far.
“We seek to create anthems to get you thinking about what it is that you want to do with your life and then give you a jump start to go all out for it,” concludes Matt. “No matter what the ambition, get out there and go do it. We are and we’re having the time of our lives!”
Thanks to rachel blodgett for submitting the biography.
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Crank it Up and Sing!! | Reviewer: Sarah | 3/1/12
If I'm having a rough day, I'll crank up their music and start belting out the lyrics as I drive. I find this to be stress relieving and fun! Their lyrics are down to earth and people (like myself) are able to relate to them!
i love Hawk nelson! | Reviewer: Saralee | 3/24/10
it all started last year...i fell inlove with Jason Dunn!...Hawk Nelson is an awesome band! I have all the albums yall have released!...mann only if Jason wasnt married!..ahahaha...but yeah im kinda over it but everytime i see the Live Life Loud video i flip!...i tell my friends Jason is wicking at me not them....i once hit my friend in the face accedently, it was my first time watching the video, i remember it was i think on a friday 6th period!....ahahha...yeah i know obbsessed!:D
I am hooked on Hawk Nelson! | Reviewer: Beth | 1/23/10
Lol, two years ago i had a MAJOR crush on Jason Dunn... :) and i woz only 14... theyr a really really awesome band, and no-one knows about them!! its sooo annoying, every1 likes skillet and starfield and hillsong then when you start talking about hawk nelson they go 'who?' it drives me maaad... still, theyr becoming more popular all the time, ocz theyr sooo awesome! i got one of my non christian pals hooked on them too and then told her that they were a christian band and she was like 'whaaat?! no way!! really?' but she still loves them and is more interested in god coz she thought all christian music was hymms and stuff. Thanks HN!!!
Hawk Nelson is awesome!!! | Reviewer: Breya | 1/23/10
I love Hawk Nelson!!! THose guys are really, really good. It's just nice to get some Christian music that isn't gospel or hymms or screamo stuff. And the song Things We Go Through really helped me when I was struggling after breaking up with my bf. I've been picked to sing at my schools graduation supper and I'm singing Les We Forget from Live Life Loud! They ROCK!!! I went to one of their concerts in Toronto and it was soooo cool to see the guys in the flesh... :D It was great...
HAWK NELSON! | Reviewer: Michelle | 11/30/09
I havent been to a concert yet but i fer sure am goin to the next one thats close in MI or WI. I heard u before but than my friend really got me into your band. Thats all we ever talk about is ur band! I think you guys are AWESOME!!!!! Jason ur voice is amazing! i cnt wait to go to a concert! :D
Go hawk nelson all the way | Reviewer: anonymous | 1/5/09
I love hawk nelsons music espically Bring 'Em Out that song is darn aswome a friend of mine gave me the album for a birthday present and i also like head on collision. they just are just fantastic. I espically like the guitar parts.
love hawk nelson
WOW!! | Reviewer: Amanda | 11/4/08
Hawk nelson is amazing! Jason Dunn has a smexiest voice i have ever heard.Also to top that i had no idea that they were a christian band. Now that i know the lyrics i understand what they are talking about.
Hawk nelson RULEZ!!!!
hawk nelson | Reviewer: Anonymous | 5/26/08
i have been 2 a lot of hawk nlson conserts and getng redy 2 go 2 another i just love them so much expesily at liberty unaversity in linchberg va and revolve tour i have gotten all of my bffs stuk on hawk nelson they are so alsome and jjason whoo what a hotti and i no i shoundt b sayn that but i mean con=me on look at that gorgious face and i love the tatoo on his elbo it is so cool
yay | Reviewer: Emily | 4/7/08
it's good music. at first i didn't even know that they were a christian band. THey don't throw it in your face that they are. i like that. you can listen to their music and it doesn't sound like they are preaching about everything.
Hawk Rocks!!! | Reviewer: Lea | 3/19/08
Hawk Nelson, u guys rock. It's so great that u can make christian music w/ a great tune. I think that u prove that christianity isn't boring and that there's more to it then reprimanding people (which christians dont' do anyway). I love u'r music u'r my fav band and keep up the awesome work!
woo! Hawk Nelson | Reviewer: joanna | 1/24/08
i love you guys..woo!..i first heard from my frins ipod..now i have alotta songs on mine..i love "take me" "letters to the president" "zero" "36 days"..i love them all but those are muh fav....i love Jason!
your so awsome | Reviewer: Samantha | 1/14/08
hawk nelson is so awsome i first heard about them thourgh a freind and then she took me to the relvovle tour to see them and they rock i think hawk nelson is one of the best bands ever
just some input ! | Reviewer: foxylady | 12/18/07
i just wanted to tell you guys 'keep up the good work'! i stumbled upon one of your songs on someones playlist and now ive got all my friends listening to you! i plan on buying your CD soon! im so excited! :D you guys are great!
Loving HN | Reviewer: Dani | 12/17/07
I love Hawk Nelson. I heard them on the Gospel Channel and instantly fell in love with them. Of course, where I live, I am the only one who knows who they are. Except this one kid at the amusement park. We had a whole conversation on Hawk Nelson while getting onto the roller coaster. But anways, they send a good message and I really like them. I'm Christian but don't go to church, and I love listening to Christian Rock (skillet, decypher down, fireflight, pillar) but these guys are one of my favs....keep rocking guys!
Hawk Nelson rock!!!! | Reviewer: Anonymous | 12/13/07
Hawk Nelson is totally awesome i go nuts when i C `em play.U guys rock i freaking luv u. Jason is the bomb!!!!!
Riley from Illinois in NIgeria
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