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The Band That’s a Family Business

The surf-rock trio *repeat repeat opens up about keeping each other in check and their most dedicated fans

The trio that make up the surf-rock band *repeat repeat are dragging chairs over to form what feels like a friendship circle. The band’s vibe is silly and effervescent but also professional and emotional. It’s a tough juxtaposition to pull off, but Jared, Kristyn and Andy do it flawlessly.

Frontman and lyricist Jared Corder is married to vocalist Kristyn Corder, and drummer Andy Herrin is the obvious best friend. The trio has been performing and touring together since 2014. “When I was first introduced to Jared I knew I had to impress him,” says Andy. “A friend told him that I play the drums and since he plays the guitar we should hang out. He literally looked at me with sunglasses on and said, ‘right on, man’ and walked away.” Some first impression. 

“The story is so ridiculous because he’s cool but he’s also the sweetest and least intimidating person ever,” Kristyn says candidly of her husband. 

When the band first got together it was comprised of just the two guys, and they were on a search for a female vocalist. “I sat in on their auditions for a female singer since I have a background in public relations. I was really trying to help them figure out what they were making from a visual and stylistic perspective,” Kristyn reveals.

“All of the girls we had auditioned either weren’t available or just weren’t a perfect fit. Our producer had heard Kristyn sing on one of our demos as a stand-in vocal and suggested she be our third member,” Jared says. “We were really aware of the challenges we’d face being a married couple on the road,” he adds.

Kristyn chimes in saying, “We immediately became a family business. It was weird at first for me, being in a band when I hadn’t come to Nashville for music. Now, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.” 

*repeat repeat

The band starts to reminisce on some of their most memorable interactions with fans, saying how dedicated and truly creative they are.

“One of our fans got our logo tattooed onto his arm. We were totally shocked,” Andy says.

“It was super cool for me because I designed our logo! I was like, ‘I love this on so many levels,’” Kristyn adds in a burst of excitement, as if the tattooed arm was right in front of her.

“There’s a trend we’ve seen twice now. We play a show around Halloween in New Orleans annually. This group dressed up as us three and one of them dressed up as Kristyn’s horse, Lincoln. It was amazing,” Jared says through a fit of laughter. 

I wonder how fans knew about Kristyn’s horse. The band reveals that they have an uncensored podcast called “The *repeat repeat Podcast” that they record twice a month and where Kristyn has mentioned her horse several times. “We really wanted a way to connect with people on a more in depth level than just a static Facebook post or Tweet,” Kristyn explains.

Jared adds to his wife’s sentiment. “We hope fans can come to our show and see that we are family,” he says. “We’re all in this together. We’ve put our heart and souls into this band. When we’re on stage, we are laying everything out there. Whether it’s in our lyrics, performance or our personalities; we’re genuine.”

The band’s second album is due out later this year and fans can expect the same genuine attitude. “It touches on stuff about my father, growing up in a religious household, failed relationships, meeting celebrities while working at a diner; there’s nothing we don’t touch on,” Jared admits.

As far as their surf-rock candy sound, the band knows it’s a unique genre. “Our music is not middle-of-the-road. You’re either going to really like it or really not. It can be polarizing, but that makes it even better when fans truly appreciate and understand our music. If we just farted out some catchy Chainsmokers song, it would be really easy to get clicks and likes. But we’re trying to make something new,” Jared says.

The band’s comfortableness and familiarity with each other helps during the creative process, especially when trying to make something new. “Sometimes my 90s alternative roots come out. I’ll write a song that would be awesome for Dashboard Confessional but not for *repeat repeat,” Jared says. 

“It’s easy to bruise someone’s ego when they’re being creative and personal at the same time. But, it’s super important for Andy and I to be honest with Jared when a song doesn’t sound right for us,” Kristyn shares.

As far as music that the band listens to that might not be right up *repeat repeat’s alley, the band jumps at the chance to share their guilty pleasures. The artists thrown out vary from the Beach Boys and Air Supply to Trick Daddy and Selena Gomez. Jared concludes the litany of artists with a special moment he had alone in the car listening to NPR.

“They were interviewing Kirk Franklin, an edgy gospel singer who sang on that Kanye track? He was listening his song “Come Pray for Me.” I’m a total atheist but I was sitting in my car seriously contemplating everything. The song was just so beautiful. Thankfully my mom wasn’t there, she’d have thought I was a changed man!” The threesome laugh and buzz on about how they all want to listen to the song now.