Hey Day doesn’t just mean Styrofoam hats and wooden canes anymore. Formed back in the spring of 2013, pop–rock band Hey Day is giving students a new, musical definition for the classic Penn tradition. The group consists of New York City trio Jesse Fink, Andrew Spelman and Andrew Underberg. “Hey Day has significance for us because we really launched this project when Jesse was going into his junior year and I my senior year,” explains Spelman. “Ergo, the Hey Day Penn tradition.” Even before the band launched, Spelman and Fink already had a musical history. The OZ duo have been writing music together for almost two years now, but Fink notes that “it wasn’t until last Spring that we decided we wanted to play music together seriously.” While studying abroad in Australia, Fink video–chatted Brown graduate Underberg, with whom he had collaborated back in New York, to see if he wanted to join the band. Underberg was in, and Hey Day was born.
According to their Facebook page, which already has 1,150 likes, the group aims to produce songs that extend beyond the realm of normal pop music. “We’ve kinda clung to the euphemism ‘accessible rock,’” says Spelman. “Our style is very much like Maroon 5, and Jesse is Adam Levine with better pecs.” “Since the music is guitar–based, there’s a sort of rock influence,” Fink clarifies. “But obviously our hooks and synth elements make it pop. I like to think that our music is commercial without being cheesy and annoying.” The diverse musical backgrounds of the three members certainly give Hey Day that accessibility they desire for listeners. Whether they’re writing a song collaboratively or in the recording studio, their individual influences combine to create music that Spelman says “everyone can latch onto and relate to.”
Each member’s role is integral to the success of Hey Day’s distinct sound. Spelman plays lead guitar, Fink accompanies with rhythmic guitar and provides the vocals and Underberg produces it all. The result is an infectious and upbeat series of tight harmonies that will have you bobbing your head or humming along the rest of the day. This much is true for their debut single, “Little Bandit,” which has been out for a month and already has over 18,000 hits on YouTube and almost 63,000 plays on SoundCloud. “We’ve gotten a bunch of industry attention from this song,” Fink states proudly, adding that Enrique Iglesias favorited and replied to two of their tweets. “We’re hoping to start playing shows at Penn this month or next, and then hopefully put on a showcase for some industry folk in May.” Hey Day also plans to drop its next single this month, and there’s talk of recording an EP at the end of the summer.
Even with its ambitious goals, Hey Day prides itself on being a band that makes music just for the fun of it. “Penn is a very pre–professional school that I think sometimes takes itself too seriously,” Fink remarks. “What I like most about playing in the band is that we’re doing something we’re truly passionate about but not taking ourselves too seriously.” “Jesse, sadly, is one of my best friends,” jokes Spelman. “So it’s great to be able to accomplish something creative together.”
“Besides,” he adds, “I don’t want a real job.”
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