Third Eye Blind
November 29, 2018
Phone Interview by
Sue Gruman Kraft for
the Mahnomen Pioneer
On Thursday, November 29, at about mid-day, Brad Hargreaves, who has played drums and percussion for Third Eye Blind since 1995, participated in a phone interview for the Mahnomen Pioneer. It was just before he would travel north for a concert at the Shooting Star Casino. I asked a few questions, and he gave a few answers. Enjoy!
In your years of performing with Third Eye Blind, what have you enjoyed the most?
“Just being able to be a musician for a career. Being able to focus solely on what I’ve enjoyed doing the most, performing music.”
“And the amazing things that come with being in the band, being able to travel and see those towns off the beaten path,” Hargreaves stated. Like getting on a plane in California and flying to Fargo, North Dakota, then traveling to a town in northwest Minnesota to perform at a casino in early December, with snow. It’s not something that everyone gets to do, he explained.
Of the songs that you perform with Third Eye Blind, which do you find the most challenging as a drummer? Do you have a favorite?
Challenging: ”Wounded” from our Blue album, with its different technology. And sometimes something simple and slow is hard to play when you are hyped up. It depends on the night and how you’re feeling,” Hargreaves said.
Favorite: “Wounded” because it captured everyone when we made it” he said.
How many hours a week do you practice?
“I get on the drums for an hour in the morning, then practice pads in the afternoon. Since we’ve had the kids, it ‘s harder to work it in.”
Do you find it difficult to balance work and family? Hargreaves stated that he has been married for six-and-a-half years, and they have a 3-year-old boy and an 8-month-old baby girl. The kids keep their parents busy. “When I leave, my wife gets the brunt of it,” he stated.
What influences you in your music, what inspires you?
“I’ve been getting into looking at visual artists. I am mainly inspired lately by visual artists, abstract art.” Hargreaves stated that his father is an artist.
Other than Third Eye Blind, who are your favorite bands or performers?
Hargreaves stated that he listens to a wide range of music, and he likes the classic rock artists, like Led Zeppelin, the Police, and The Who.
Do you have hobbies or interests outside of your music?
Brad Hargreaves stated that both he and Stephen Jenkins, lead vocalist and rhythm guitar for Third Eye Blind, enjoy surfing. As he was talking to me on Thursday early afternoon, he said there was a huge swell coming into California right then, and he would be missing that one, because he was getting ready to fly to North Dakota. He said he is busy raising his kids now. He has also developed a strong interest in art.
Were you encouraged by your family in your music?
Hargreaves said that his family didn’t discourage him. “They worried quite a bit, as I was getting older, and wanted to make a living at it,” Hargreaves stated. Music has a difficult path to success, he admitted. “They were supportive, but concerned.”
Who mentored you or helped you get where you are?
“I had a lot of lucky breaks that led me down my path, to get me in the right place at the right time. I was very driven as a kid. I looked into different teachers, checked out different colleges, and sought out different situations to play in. I wanted to be able to play a wide variety of music.” He was “knocking down enough doors to get where I was headed,” he stated.
Have you advice for people who want to pursue a career in music?
“Be prepared to struggle with it, but if you really want to play music, it’s not a struggle, because that’s what you signed up for.”
Hargreaves stated that he went to New York after San Francisco, and met people, and he was prepared to do what needed to be done to make it.
Hargreaves said that he enjoyed music when he was in school. In elementary school, he started with a recorder, then was introduced to many other musical instruments. He received the encouragement he needed. “I had some really good teachers, who really inspired me to a love of music,” he said.
Third Eye Blind performs at the Shooting Star Casino in Mahnomen, MN, on Friday, November 30, at 8 p.m. Third Eye Blind’s debut Album came out in 1997, and included “Semi-charmed Life,” “Jumper,” and “How’s It Going to Be.” They have put out several albums since then. Their most recent album: “Thanks for Everything,” came out in 2018.