(ABOVE: image via Council)
On the day of their new music video release, where will you find world-renowned alt-rock band Council performing?
They’ll be at Hoboken Catholic Academy, doing a favor for a friend at the school talent show.
That’s because these brothers from a family farm in Central New York, who have seen huge success with their smash hit, “Rust to Gold”—featured in American Idol, the Winter Olympics, the 2018 FIFA World Cup Finals, and reaching millions upon millions of listeners—still manage to keep themselves down to earth.
We had a chance to catch up with brothers Pat, Andy and Doug Reeves, as they find time between photo shoots and Talent Show dress rehearsals to chat with hMAG about the formation of the band, their ups and downs, and the beloved B’ville Diner…
hMAG: How did Council form? Obviously you guys have known each other for quite some time (since birth)… but how did you end up forming a band together?
Doug: In between farming and odd jobs, we taught ourselves how to play and write.
Pat: We were in college together and we knew we wanted to do something different than farming. We happened to be watching TV one day and ‘Oasis: Behind the Music’ came on. Liam [Gallagher] said, “if you think you can do better start your own band.” So we thought f-it. Lets start a band.’
Andy: Right—then I picked guitar and Doug chose drums. We left Pat with the bass.
hMAG: You grew up in Central New York, but now reside in Jersey. How long have you been in NJ and how would you describe the scene here?
Andy: We’ve been here two and a half years. So far NJ has been great to us, as far as it’s a lot less of a grind compared to NYC.
Doug: Hoboken and Montclair have such a strong and diverse music scene that it makes you not miss the NYC scene so much. It also provides a captive audience. NJ people are passionate about music, and that’s great to see.
View this post on Instagram
hMAG: The tremendous popularity of “Rust to Gold” must have been a whirlwind experience. How did the song initially come about, and how did it get to the Olympics?
Pat: It has been more than we imagined and the song has reached places we didn’t think it could go. It actually started as a song called “No Ceiling.” We had been crammed into a one-bedroom in NYC a year into our move from our hometown. We wanted to convey a message that we wouldn’t accept any limits on success we could achieve. Being in New York, we already had experienced rejection and we thought there can’t be a ceiling to our ambitions. No one has lived our life, so they don’t know what we are capable of. The verse pretty much remained the same in both songs with some cuts but when Andy was humming the chorus “Rust to Gold” took shape.
Doug: I think once the chorus melody was there it evolved into a more universal feel and we let the song lead us. “No Ceiling” was a personal statement but “Rust to Gold,” was universal and something everyone could relate to.
Andy: The Olympics came in two waves. Doug had reached out to NBC with the idea that the song would fit perfect for the Olympics. NBC responded and said they liked the song and will consider it. This was a couple months before the Olympics and we were excited that they responded. Fast forward to the night of the opening ceremony and we assumed they weren’t going to use it because we hadn’t heard back. I got a text at 11 pm from a friend in Hawaii who had congratulated us on the Olympic commercial/ceremony. I had no idea what she was talking about but after checking to make sure it was our song, we realized we had got the song to the Olympics.
hMAG: How did you become involved in the Hoboken Catholic Academy talent show, and what can attendees expect at that event?
Doug: We are friends with Rosalyn Musker and her son Aiden Fernicola. She had brought up that they were having a talent/charity show at HCA and asked if we would be interested in performing. We of course said “yes” and were excited to be a part of these amazingly talented kids special night.
hMAG: What are the latest projects for Council, and where can we see you next?
Pat: We are actually releasing the official “Rust to Gold” video on the day of the show. It will be on our YouTube page.
We are opening for The Strumbellas in Syracuse, NY in June and doing a special busking pop up tour in NYC that will be sponsored by BOSE. It’s a unique idea of showing up to different subway stations and parks and playing a stripped down show. So keep an eye out for us if you’re in the city.
Lastly, we are releasing new music in June and very excited about.
hMAG: Finally, what’s your favorite meal at the B’ville Diner?
Doug: Ha, great question. I’d say chicken and biscuits.
Pat: I’d say Roast Turkey. It’s a Thanksgiving dish available year round and it’s amazing.
Andy: Chicken Parmesan. Although I love what they chose, this is my go to.
***EDITOR’S NOTE: They’re all wrong—it’s the Burger Blue, French Fries w/ Gravy***
*hMAG Publisher/Editor Christopher Halleron is also from Baldwinsville, New York