Andy Hull of Manchester Orchestra used oppression to motivate his musical career.
Hull, 20, attended a “totally politically weird Christian private school” in Atlanta that was “so fundamentalist, and scary in a lot of ways.” Needless to say, rock ’n’ roll was not an endorsed career path there, and Hull was even told he’d be suspended if he performed in certain clubs.
That, of course, only made him and his bandmates more interested in the forbidden fruit.
“I think if they weren’t telling us we couldn’t do it, we wouldn’t have tried as hard,” says Hull, who skipped his senior year of high school and formed Manchester Orchestra as a one-man project, later fleshing the band out with four other musicians, some of whom attended the same school.
“Since there was that pressure, telling us we were going to fail at it and weren’t allowed to even try, it made me want to do it more.”
The fruits of Hull’s persistence, “I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child,” was released in 2006 on the group’s own Favorite Gentlemen label. Rolling Stone magazine named the quintet one of its 10 Artists to Watch in 2007, while other publications such as Paste and Spin weighed in with similar plaudits. It’s not quite at the star level yet, but Hull feels like he’s made his detractors eat their words.
“What’s really weird,” he says, “is having all these people working for you — managers, publicists. These guys have kids our age. So that’s strange to me.
“But it’s also a blessing to be able to work with people that are so talented and know so much more than we do. I’m big on condoning the fact we don’t know anything about anything. We’re constantly needing to learn anything we can.”
Manchester Orchestra and the Colour Revolt perform at 8 p.m. Saturday (August 4th) at the Shelter, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Tickets are $8. Call (313) 961-6358 or visit www.livenation.com.
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