The Districts Recall Their First Influences

Robby Grote shares the memories & moments that informed his indie rock DNA

As indie band The Districts prepare for a set of tour dates that run from the start of April to the end of August they are celebrating Record Store Day 2017 with the release of a 7 inch “Ordinary Day” on a special issue that carries their hollowed-out cover of the Leonard Cohen classic “Lover, Lover, Lover”. With this stunning release, and a string of SXSW dates behind them it seems like The Districts can’t put a foot wrong – they’re drawing incredible praise from peers, fans and press.

In light of their upcoming tour and the wonderful Cohen cover ARTISTdirect thought it wise to catch up with The Districts to chat through the over influences from their formative years. We spoke with singer Robby Grote – and here are the picks of his musical make-up.

First single I bought…

“In the End” by Linkin Park

First live show I attended…

As a toddler, I was dragged by my parents to a Phish concert where they questionably passed me around the hands of strangers in a bubble house.

First song I learned to play…

“Hot Crossed Buns” on a trumpet.

The song that encouraged me to learn my instrument of choice…

“Probably Sympathy For The Devil” or something along those lines!

The song that reminds me of home…

“River” by Joni Mitchell. My mother used to play this on piano pretty often and I’ve always loved it.

My guilty secret track…

“Where are you Now?” by Justin Bieber, now that’s a good beat!!

The song I wish I wrote…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rbVI8SNzoXs

“When Doves Cry” by Prince. I sure wish I wrote that.

The finest song from my all time hero…

“Chelsea Hotel No. 2” by Leonard Cohen. You can’t go wrong with that.

The song I’ve written of which I’m most proud…

It’s hard to answer this one, because ideally every new song written would be a proudest moment. That isn’t always the case, but I think it’s a good thing to hold yourself to a high standard when creating.

The song that should be played at my funeral…

“Pour man” by Lee Hazelwood. He is the ultimate dude.

My favorite track from my most recent project…

I want to say a particular unreleased song I’m fond of, but I’m going to say “Ordinary Day”, because it’s my favorite released track!

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