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The Hot Toddies

Article written by Anna C - Jul 24, 2008

Hot Toddies
Hot Toddies
The Hot Toddies formed in 2004 and grew in popularity around the California area. They write upbeat, fun songs which are a perfect soundtrack to a fun day at the beach. Our writer exchanged words with Erin Skidmore of the Oakland-based girl group.

SoundsXP:How did the four of you meet?

Erin:We actually all met each other through boyfriends and ex-boyfriends. When it came to playing music, though, we decided to ditch the boys and have all the fun to ourselves. Heidi and Erin went to UC Berkeley but met in Santa Cruz. Sylvia went to UC Santa Cruz but moved to Oakland. Jessica went to University of Madison, Wisconsin but moved to California. Bottom line, we all ended up in Oakland, living in the same houses or warehouses and started playing music together. Our first show was a backyard BBQ party. People seemed to really like our music so we recorded songs, borrowed a van and went on tour! And we’ve been doing that ever since.

SoundsXP:Can you tell the story of how you guys got signed to Asian Man Records?

Erin:We have a friend that works with Mike Park and Asian Man and he actually suggested that they might be interested in putting out our next record. We thought it was a great idea! We love the bands they’ve worked with and admire Mike’s commitment to Plea for Peace and for getting music around the world in a very down-to-earth way. Asian Man does record deals on a handshake and encourages the artists to move on to other bigger labels if they choose. They are so supportive, it’s great!

SoundsXP:What kind of mood are you guys in when you write songs? It seems from your myspace like alcohol may play a bit of a role there.

Erin:We like to write songs while we're really happy, which usually involves sunshine, booze, and an acoustic guitar. Heidi and Erin had both played in more traditional “serious” bands prior to The Hot Toddies and knew from the beginning that this band was going to be FUN more than anything else. We write songs that make us laugh and make people dance and giggle and that's exactly how we want it. When we write songs, we crack ourselves up and that’s when we usually know it’s gonna be a good one!

SoundsXP:Your songs are very fun and cheerful. Do you have another creative outlet through which you express darker feelings like anger, frustration, jealousy, anxiety?

Erin:When we get pissed we throw marshmallows at our enemies! Beware the Toddies!

SoundsXP:You recently released Smell The Mitten. What are you most proud of about this album?

Erin:As our debut album, we’re just proud that we made it! Seriously as a new band even getting that far seems like a major accomplishment. We worked hard on it but had fun making it as well. Now we’re almost ready for the second, which seems crazy. “HTML” came out especially awesome and “Rocker Girl” was really funny because Heidi and Erin had to cram into a closet (uh, vocal booth) to record it together. Oh and the xylophone on “Wet Dream” was perfect. It’s a trip to build on songs like that and watch them develop into something musically rich and layered. Yum!

SoundsXP:What do you guys do when you’re not playing music? Describe your day jobs.

Erin:We dabble in things like art framing, photography, painting, party planning, professional horseshoe playing, biking, wine tasting… all kinds of fun stuff! Our day jobs involve a mostly those things and a little bit of what people like to call “work”.

SoundsXP:Do drooling teenage boys profess their love to you on a regular basis?

Erin:They’re all too shy! Where are you drooling boys at? Where?!

SoundsXP:What is the most played song on your iPods?

Erin:Jessica loves Broken Social Scene, Heidi and Erin are huge Beatles fans, Erin also loves old school Rilo Kiley albums, and Sylvia is the classic rock chick of the band.

SoundsXP:What are future goals for the band? Do you want to tour extensively in the future?

Erin:Yes! World domination! Just kidding. We bought a van and we want to get on the road more for shows. In August/September we’ll be playing up in the Pacific Northwest and we’re planning to get out on a national tour next spring. A tour in Europe and Japan would be great as well! We're working on some new songs and will be recording again this fall. We’d love to put something out on vinyl soon too.


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