Electric Texas: A Conversation with Manny Prince of Hydra Melody

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BHAMFM: Bands of Hydra Melody’s size and cultural stature benefit greatly from the use of an endless series of social media platforms.  Personal habits aside, do you feel that this helps level the playing field within the underground, or does it create a sort of never-ending “arms race” wherein getting the most likes/retweets/YouTube views is deemed the almighty goal?

Manny Prince: This is such a thought provoking question! I think it’s a bit of both, and in a certain order. As a band, you always want the world to see, like, and retweet you, but you have to believe in your music and how people (including the music industry) will read and react to it. When you have great musicians, management, and a solid product that you truly believe in, that can absolutely level the playing field within the underground on social media off the bat. Then, I think you can really take the “arms race” and push it to as many people as you can.

BHAMFM: You’re touring with Third Eye Blind, who have become somewhat legendary on the college circuit over the past few years, which was a compelling transition to witness, given the stadium status of their earlier career.  They seem to have smartly adopted a grassroots style of marketing, promoting, and performing.  Do you consider Hydra Melody a band which operates in the same manner?  Do you try to maintain the “fans are family” vibe as much as possible?  How so?

MP: Always! We love our fans, and we love to interact with them at shows! It’s great to hang out after we play and wind down while our fans can see who we really are offstage! We consider ourselves unlike any other band because of the sound that we have created, so that alone helps us market and promote (and of course perform).

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BHAMFM: Name one album from your younger years that helped shape you, not only as an artist but as a person.

MP: This is very cliche of me, and I could list more than one, but Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon. I “discovered” the album in my early high school years when my music training was in its infant stage. I really think this album made me look outside of the box more. There are so many sounds to listen to and take in, and the fact that I loved the album 30 years later is a testament to those guys!

BHAMFM: Name one album that is currently shaping you as an artist/person.

MP: Capital Cities’ album In a Tidal Wave of Mystery has been on constant repeat for the past few months. The combination of really rhythmic, groovy instrumentation is really refreshing to hear. It also combines this “electronic” colour to it with their keyboard and synthesiser parts. If that weren’t enough, there are two lead singers that perform absolutely amazing together. I highly recommend a listen to these guys!

BHAMFM: Texas isn’t necessarily considered the “proper” South, but it’s certainly not Los Angeles or New York either.  How has San Antonio effected your work, both positively and negatively? Do you notice any regional bias when out on the road?

MP: San Antonio is an amazing city and the music scene continues to grow at an astounding rate! We have all our friends and family here, which makes life easier when we are not rehearsing or playing shows. Having those “hometown” comforts are amazing. That being said, we have always felt the need to “get out” of San Antonio. Having been to New York and Los Angeles and seeing the vastness of those cities and their music scenes, it’s truly inspiring to set foot [there] and play shows. After a long tour, though, nothing beats coming home to San Antonio!

Hydra Melody are currently opening for Third Eye Blind on their US tour.  For more information, please visit @HydraMelody on Twitter and Instagram.

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