For Fans Of: All Time Low / Mayday Parade / The Wonder Years

If you spent 2007 getting emotional over Mayday Parade’s ‘Miserable at Best’ and putting ‘Dear Maria, Count Me In’ on repeat, then you’re likely to fall in love with joyful. Carrying a torch for bands like Jimmy Eat World and All Time Low, the Chicagoans are combining touching lyrics with swelling melodies. We chat to drummer, Jake Newling, about their recent single, ‘Pilot Light’, how the band started out and what the future holds.

Photos: Rob Haberman



Tell us a little about yourself. Where the name came from, how long you’ve been going for and anything else new fans would want to know.

Absolutely! So we’ve been a band for about a year now. Andy (vocals / guitar) and myself (Jake, drums) have been playing music on and off together since high school. Last summer we thought it would be cool to get together and write a couple songs. No real expectations, we just wanted to have some fun. After a couple weeks of jamming, we were becoming really excited by the material we were writing, so we decided to ask Will (bass) to come jam with us to round everything out. After one practice together everything just clicked! As for the name, joyful. came up as a term that we thought was a bit ironic when compared to some of the subject matter we write about, which tends to be a bit sad and melancholy, which we all thought made it a bit interesting.

Going way back to the beginning, can you recall your very first memory of music?

My parents used to play all sorts of records in our house when I was growing up. I remember being probably three or four and hearing stuff like The Offspring, Tori Amos, and U2 around the house all the time. My earliest memory is hearing all sorts of music when I very young. I feel very fortunate to have been brought up in an environment where I was exposed to a wide variety of different artists and genres.

Who’s on your wishlist of artists that you’d love to collaborate with and/or open for on tour?

Oh this is a tough one. All of us love Biffy Clyro, Taking Back Sunday, The Killers, Jimmy Eat World, and Into It, Over It. Touring or collaborating with any of those bands would be an absolute dream come true. There’s also a ton of other bands we would love to share a stage with as well. Homesafe, Hot Mulligan, Kayak Jones, and Action / Adventure to name a few. Hopefully we can play some shows soon!

You recently released ‘Pilot Light’. What were some of the most challenging and also the most fun aspects of recording it?

‘Pilot Light’ was actually the first song we started working on last year. It was a bit of a challenge from an instrumental standpoint. We must have rewritten the song about ten times or so just to get it exactly right. By the time we got to the studio, it was a real breeze to record since we had been rehearsing it for months at that point.

You’re in the studio, right? What’s next for joyful.?

We just finished up in the studio the other week! We’re looking to release a new single this fall, and then we’re hoping to get back into the studio to track a couple more songs before the end of the year.

Settle an argument for us (and the rest of the world) pineapple on pizza?

Haha not gonna lie, I really dig Hawaiian style pizza with ham and pineapple so I guess I’m gonna be a little controversial here and say yes, pineapple is good on pizza!



Rising to the challenge, joyful. have put together an electrifying collection of songs that best encapsulates the artists and music that inspire them as a band.


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