The Rocketboys is an indie rock band from Austin, Texas. The band was previously known as Homer Hiccolm & the Rocketboys. Since their formation, they have gained popularity from playing such festivals as Austin City Limits Music Festival, Next Big Nashville, CMJ, and South by Southwest.
Formerly known as Homer Hiccolm & the Rocketboys, the band formed late 2005 in Abilene, Texas. The original line-up met while they were attending Abilene Christian University. Singer Brandon Kinder entered the (at that time) informal group in a college battle-of-the-bands and needed a name. Homer Hiccolm & the Rocketboys, an idea inspired by the movie October Sky he had randomly had in mind for a while, was the first name to come to mind.
In 2009, the band shortened their name to simply The Rocketboys after relocating to Austin, Texas where the band's members currently reside.
In early 2009, drummer (and creator of P. Ellis Drums) Philip Ellis left the band and joined Aaron Ivey's worship band in Austin, TX. Replacing Ellis was Alex Bhore, former drummer of The New Frontiers. Bhore left the band, however, in Fall 2010 to join This Will Destroy You full-time. Guitarists and original members Dan Wheeler and Mitch Holt decided to part ways with the group in late 2010 to allocate more of their time to be home with their families and to pursue their other endeavors outside of the band.
The rest of the group released "Build Anyway", its sophomore full-length, in June 2012. The band is also playing a handful of shows throughout the rest of the year and those dates are posted on the band's official Facebook page."5 Questions with The Rocketboys". "Official Facebook Page".
Sing, Bird, Sing EP
In May 2007, The Rocketboys spent several months recording their first studio EP, Sing, Bird, Sing. Once released, the EP was an immediate success and garnered impressive reviews from such media outlets as The Onion, The Austin American-Statesman and HM Magazine. Songs like "Heartbeat" and "Do I Wake or Sleep?" became favorites and quickly pushed The Rocketboys into the regional spotlight. In January 2008, "Do I Wake or Sleep?", a song from the EP, appeared on the Paste Magazine sampler CD, and in 2010 several songs from the EP appeared on TV shows including Keeping Up with the Kardashians and The Real World."Rocketing out of Abilene, one vote at a time". Retrieved 2009-08-30.
In 2009 the band recorded its first full-length album, 20,000 Ghosts, which was engineered and produced by Louie Lino (Nada Surf, Matt Pond PA), mastered by Alan Douches (Sufjan Stevens, Animal Collective) and features artwork from Dark Was The Night artist, Ryan Feerer. In 2010, songs from the album were heard on The Real World, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, and The Buried Life."Artist Spotlight: The Rocketboys". Retrieved 2009-08-30.
In 2010, The Rocketboys garnered both musical and financial support from friends and fans to create its latest EP "Wellwisher". "Wellwisher" was recorded while on tour with Lydia in July and Death on Two Wheels in August 2010 by friend and touring FOH engineer Will Krienke (who was later assisted by Joey Benjamin). The band utilized many talented friends (such as BMI rep/violinist David Claassen, harpist/artist Timbre Cierpke, England in 1819, the Paste (magazine)\PASTE Magazine staff, and a church choir in Memphis) along the way in locations ranging from the van to living rooms to professional studios.
Financially the project was backed by fans using Kickstarter where fans were encouraged to donate money to fund in the album in exchange for creative incentives ranging from tickets to shows to having the band cover a song of the backer's choosing.
Singer Brandon Kinder described "Wellwisher" not as a concept album but a concept experience. The musical collaboration, nomadic recording process, and communal funding of the project combined with the lyrical themes of unity, brotherhood and relationships, all contributed to and exuded from the final product.Cite error: The named reference Official_Facebook_Page was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
Following the departure of two founding members of the group (Dan Wheeler & Mitch Holt) the band debated continuing. Kinder focused on a side project, "The Wealthy West" and wrote several tracks for TV & movies but eventually the three remaining members began testing out new material throughout the fall of 2011. Recording in their own studio and enlisting mixer CJ Eiriksson (U2, Phish), the band completed "Build Anyway" in April 2012.
Over the past several years, The Rocketboys have toured nationally and have played shows both locally and nationally with many acclaimed bands/artists such as Eisley, Bob Schneider, Grizzly Bear, The Octopus Project, This Will Destroy You, The Appleseed Cast, Lydia, Balmorhea, The Winter Sounds, and St. Vincent, to name a few. In addition, The Rocketboys have appeared at festivals nation-wide such as Austin City Limits, Next Big Nashville, South By Southwest, CMJ, Wild Frontier Fest, and Cornerstone Festival.
In early 2010, The Rocketboys began to see success on the licensing front, having songs on TV shows such as ABC's "Private Practice" and MTV's, The Real World Washington, D.C., and The Buried Life. The group's songs "I Saw a Stone", "Endings", "Heartbeat", "Do I Wake or Sleep?", and "All the Western Winds" were played on these shows."The Real World DC: Love Hits a Sour Note". "Private Practice: ...To Change Things I Can".