Fight the Fade
Bands can claim that they write about real-life experiences, but it has never been truer than with FTF, whose raw emotion lies open to the listeners in every song. They still can bring it with a driving bass line and equally fierce drumming, but they aren’t afraid to expose themselves in their music.
Lead singer Zene Smith gave an example in their gorgeous song “Tomorrow.”
“I had somebody who was very close to me who passed away,” began Smith. “She had had gastric bypass surgery… The night that she was discharged, ready to send back home, she got home and she called me to get her VCR programmed, or something. I was tired, so I decided to ignore the call. I thought, ‘I’ll talk to her tomorrow. It’s not a big deal.’ And she passed away in her sleep that night. I never had the chance to tell her how much she meant to me.”
This event weighed heavily on Smith’s heart, and inspired the song “Tomorrow,” which stresses the importance of living each moment and not letting opportunities slide by.
“Life’s too short. We’re not guaranteed a tomorrow,” said Smith. “You need to make the most of the time you have on this earth because it’s short.”
For all of the members of FTF, inspiring or supporting or helping someone through their music is an uplifting experience, and something they strive for. Guitarist Tyler Simpson spoke of one time when a fan related deeply with “Tomorrow,” and he was touched by her own identification with the song.
“In our career choice, sometimes you need those uplifting emails or messages,” explained Simpson.
Smith adds, “Sometimes it’s hard to respond to, because…it’s such a personal song for me, that I don’t know how to communicate when it resounds so personally with somebody else, [but] it’s always such a huge blessing to know that our music has changed somebody’s perspective on life.”
Simpson runs a graphic design studio and his talents are on display in the fantastic lyric video for “Tomorrow.”
“When I was a teenager, I went to so many rock shows,” recalled Smith. “It’s just a blur, because it seemed like every weekend I was going to see a band. My first concert was actually a Relient K show. I think that was kind of a turning point for me, just seeing how much fun they were having on stage.” After seeing that show, he realized it was possible for him to make a career out of music as well.
Simpson remembers when he was first introduced to rock music after a sheltered childhood. “What’s funny is Linkin Park is here tonight, and they are one of the first bands that I had ever heard that was in the rock genre.”
Of course, with Linkin Park playing at the same festival as them, Simpson was more that psyched to be there. “They asked if we wanted to do it after they had already announced the lineup for the main stage, and so I was like, ‘Yes! Yes!’ It was definitely a bucket list thing,” exclaimed Simpson.
Smith continued, saying, “We played a date on Warped Tour last year, and that was another bucket list thing for a lot of us, so we’re just crossing things off left and right. Our next thing is to play a rock show as we’re diving out of a plane. It would just be an intro, it would be a very short set. I just feel worried for our drummer.”
Here is the video for another fantastic song called “Rise.”
Zoe Adler is a music journalist from Long Beach, California. Besides her website, which is her pride and joy, she works with the GRAMMY Foundation and the Long Beach Independent. Additionally, Ms. Adler is a musician, spending half of her time playing the flute, piccolo, trombone, and marching baritone. She has been with TeenView Music since the very start and hopes to make something of it in the future.