Hundred Reasons Biography
Surrey-based rock outfit HUNDRED REASONS finally ended much speculation following a massive amount of A&R interest when they penned a worldwide recording deal with Columbia Records in mid-April 2001. What most people don’t know about is the 14 months of touring, working and rehearsing it took to get them there.
January 2000 saw HR in a familiar situation to anyone who’s just started out in a new band. Their equipment was temperamental, their bank balances were in the red and they were unsigned. Each member was a reluctant employee with a ‘get you by’ job to make the rent and pay for rehearsals. Prior to the end of 1999, HR members had existed in two different guises, namely Jetpak and Floor. Both bands shared the same management and drifted around their local scene, gaining notoriety amongst those who knew about them but not much else. Both bands eventually crumbled and Hundred Reasons was the outcome, their name taken from a poster at the extreme sports company where drummer Andy Bews was working - "We thought 'Hundred something' or 'something Hundred' was cool and the poster was 1000 reasons why you should learn to skate, so we meshed the two together."
Under the watchful eye of their longterm management, a partnership was forged that would see them all move forward with incredible speed. Only three copies of their first demo were handed out initially, one of which ended up at Kerrang! Within weeks the band were playing their third ever show - supporting flavour-of-the-moment Canadian girl rockers Kittie at a Kerrang-sponsored event in London. Simon Williams from Fierce Panda Records saw the band and was so impressed he offered to release their first EP, which was duly recorded with longtime cohort John Hannon, formerly of UK hardcore legends Understand.
Following on from a near-legendary three shows in one night in London and a self-organised jaunt round the UK with Miocene, the EP, cunningly entitled "One" and featuring “Cerebra”, hit the streets at the end of July, along with a collection of press that heralded them as the new kids to watch on the rocking block. The summer shot past with the band continuing to play as much as possible (including the only two UK shows from the hottest emo pop band of the summer, The Get Up Kids), their popularity growing among both kids and press with every show. Following on from an Evening Session for Steve Lamacq came the Kerrang! Awards 2000 where they were nominated for “Best New British Band” - a whole new ball game! They shared the category with far more established names like My Vitriol, Raging Speedhorn and Muse, to name but three. Singer Colin recalls “We all thought Muse or My Vitriol would walk it. We really didn’t think we stood a chance of winning and it was more than enough to be nominated and get to go to the awards.” HR were announced as winners to looks of utter shock and disbelief from the band. "The band members and our managers had been together one way or another for about 7 years by the time we won that award and it totally made all the hard work and commitment worthwhile. It meant a hell of a lot to all of us," says guitarist Larry. With that accolade firmly under their belts, the band got on with the hard work that would justify their win.
A support slot with Idlewild kept them continually in the eye of the rock media and witnessed them cross into the main music press, with an NME 'On Tour' feature tipping them as leaders of the ‘new’ UK rock scene. The band also had their first live broadcast on national radio from "One Live in Cardiff" for Radio One.
November 2000 saw HR undertake a headline tour of Scotland sponsored by Radio One’s Scottish Evening Session. Add that to support slots already undertaken with as diverse a collection of bands as A, Boy Sets Fire, Earthtone 9, Garrison, Rachel Stamp and Rival Schools and the band's profile within the rock fraternity was riding high. They finished 2000 winning the influential Kerrang! Readers Poll, where they scooped Best Unsigned Band.
The band had established themselves in the UK press as ‘ones to watch’, collecting a healthy fanbase along the way. Having demoed an arsenal of strong new songs, a collection of offers was waiting for them as 2001 started. Following a series of talks and meetings, Columbia were the only real contenders, due in no small part to the relationship the band had built up with MD Blair McDonald.
With the deal being finalised, Hundred Reasons scooped the main support slot at one of the most anticipated shows of the year so far - multi-million-selling US rock sensations Papa Roach at Brixton Academy, as part of Radio One’s ‘One Live'. A packed house saw the boys tear through a live set with such incredible ease it was clear to see the hard work was beginning to pay off.
Finally able to quit the day jobs, the boys kicked off their new careers back out on the road for the whole of May on what was to be their first ‘proper’ headline tour, managing to fit in a couple of days recording their debut single for Columbia (EP 2 featuring "Remmus") and shooting the video for it along the way! They then joined US heavyweights Incubus as their only support band on a sold out UK and European tour throughout June. When the UK leg of the tour climaxed in London, again at Brixton Academy, Hundred Reasons took to the stage like old hands, proof that the band has developed enough in the last 14 months to stand up and be counted as one of the most exciting bands anywhere, as the brilliant reaction from crowds in Europe (where the band were mobbed after each show) will testify to.
There’s no big “rock” attitude, arrogant views or pretentious behaviour, just great songs, loads of emotion and energy. Hundred Reasons are, quite simply, five very normal, hardworking guys with one hell of a day job – and that’s the way they want it to stay.
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