Philip Sneed of Story of the Year on The Value of Not Touring Constantly
Currently on tour in support of Page Avenue, 10 Years and Counting, a reworked and revised version of the band's 2003 debut, St. Louis' Story of the Year has returned from hiatus on a roll. After spending two years decompressing from endless touring, the five guys in Story of the Year decided to return to their roots and retool the album that started them on the road to success.
Courtesy of Story of the Year
From a tour stop in Las Vegas and in anticipation of Story of the Year headlining the Scream It Like You Mean It Tour this Friday at Quik Trip Park in Grand Prairie, guitarist Philip Sneed was kind enough to talk with DC9 about retooling history and why he's still pissed that he never met Madonna.
Why rework and re-release your debut album, Page Avenue?
We had taken a few years off from making records and touring, especially in the United States; and we wanted to do something special with the record that changed our lives. Most of our fans' favorite record was that record. We wanted to do something special with this a tour. We started by playing the album in its entirety in St. Louis. We then decided to do some sort of rerecording. We didn't want to do it acoustically or something like that. We wanted to do something more than that. We did remixes with different artists we've known over the years and liked. We just decided to do it ourselves. We wanted to remake or re-imagine each song. It has been going over extremely well. It is a completely independent release.
Have fans embraced both versions of the album?
I think so, a lot. We've been on this tour a few weeks and everybody has been coming up and saying that they have. We are selling physical copies on tour and a lot of people are buying it. It has gotten nothing but good reactions. You expect your fans to like your stuff. There is usually a little negative thing here or there, but on this, we haven't heard any negative things, nothing on Facebook or Twitter. People on the street and at the shows have been incredibly positive about what we have done. It makes us really happy.
Why did the band take a break in 2011 and why get back together in 2013?
Honestly, we had toured for so many years straight and, especially in the U.S., people start to not care. You show up and they keep on coming and they just don't care as much. We all need a bit of time to regroup. We all had and we all have other bands we wanted to focus on for a minute. We needed to slow down instead of running it in the ground. Some bands run themselves and their fans into the ground by thinking that they have to keep doing things and keep doing things. Going away, honestly, was the best thing for us to recharge our batteries and rededicate ourselves to our fan base. Our fans really reached out and told us that they wanted us to tour and they wanted new material. It was a good thing to do. We are still the five original members and we all still love each other. That's not a very common thing.
Do you still live in St. Louis? I know for a while you lived in California.
We are kind of all over. We lived in California for a year back in 2002, but most of us are based in St. Louis now.
I hate going up in that stupid arch. It makes you feel so claustrophobic.
We've been up there plenty. It's not for the faint of heart if you have claustrophobia or if you have a fear of heights. Most visitors see the top of the arch more than the local patrons.
What's your prediction for the World Series?
I think it will be five games and we will take it. Loving the Cardinals is kind of born into you in St. Louis.