Home Bensalem Times Andy Grammer bringing fall tour to Parx Casino Oct. 14

Andy Grammer bringing fall tour to Parx Casino Oct. 14

The artist shares details on his positive music, which includes a new single with Pentatonix

Hitting the road: Multi-platinum artist Andy Grammer is coming to Parx Casino’s Xcite Center on Oct. 14. Submitted Photo

If you’re looking to add some positivity to your playlist, look no further than Andy Grammer.

From radio-played hits like “Keep Your Head Up,” “Honey, I’m Good” and “Good To Be Alive (Hallelujah)” to new releases like “Expensive” featuring Pentatonix, Grammer has made a name for himself over the past decade thanks to his knack for penning feel-good tunes.

Now, this multi-platinum artist is bringing that positivity on the road for a fall tour, which makes a stop at Parx Casino’s Xcite Center, 2999 Street Road in Bensalem, on Saturday, Oct. 14, at 8 p.m.

Ahead of the tour, which fittingly kicks off on Global Mental Health Day (Oct. 10), The Times caught up with Grammer to discuss the uplifting nature of his music, friendship with the a capella powerhouses of Pentatonix and his favorite food to get when in the Philly area.

Lower Bucks Times: Your fall tour starts in a couple of days. How are you feeling leading up to it? Is there anything you do to prepare before hitting the road?

Andy Grammer: Mostly it’s just a big scramble at home to make sure that I have everything I need to leave, and then make sure I get enough time with my little girls. I’m actually parked outside of my daughter’s elementary school, we’re gonna go do something fun. It’s kind of like a mad dad dash before I head out at that point.

LBT: I could imagine! So the show I’m covering is in Bensalem, just outside of Philadelphia. Have you been to this area or Philly in the past?

AG: Plenty! Pennsylvania feels like where I grew up, in upstate New York. Pennsylvania feels like home.

LBT: And artists tend to love the food when they come to town.

AG: It’s very good, we’ve done a cheesesteak many times.

LBT: I saw that on this tour, you’re partnering with different organizations, like To Write Love On Her Arms and Feeding America. Can you discuss that a little bit?

AG: I think that as someone that is known for being overly positive and trying to be uplifting, I think mental health is really important and sometimes, hearing it from me might pack more of a punch because everybody sees me as a smiley guy. And so whenever I can raise awareness and provide any help that I can to make other people feel less stigmatized around mental health, sign me up.

LBT: Especially now, our world is so crazy, so it’s definitely something that we could use more of.

AG: Life is hard. So to not look at it doesn’t help.

LBT: Now I understand that you have a new song out with Pentatonix, who I absolutely love. They’re just so good. I’d love to hear about your friendship with them and how this song came to be. 

AG: I have a song on my second record where Kevin Olusola plays cello. He might be my favorite cellist in the world, honestly. Nobody plays the cello like him, he’s unbelievable, especially when he beat boxes and plays. So I’ve been friends and a fan of his for a really long time and we became closer, and I also got closer with Scott [Hoying] through just seeing each other out at things. And so, when I wrote that song, it seemed like it was perfect for them to be a part of it.

Perfect partnership: Andy Grammer teamed up with his friends in Pentatonix for the new song “Expensive.” Submitted Photo

LBT: Sometimes with collaboration songs, everything is recorded separately. Was that the case, or was everyone in the studio together?

AG: We all went into the studio together and hashed it out and got all the parts exactly right. They were super collaborative on it, it was great. They’re so talented. What they’ve done with a cappella is really impressive, to create such a huge following around it. I loved a cappella in college. It was fun to go see the shows and stuff, but to watch them turn it into this whole thing… I actually spoke at their Hollywood star ceremony and wrote them a poem and was just really, really impressed with what they’ve done.

LBT: As far as your music, this song, and really everything going back to the beginning, it’s all so positive, happy and just feel-good. You were even named the No. 1 “happy” streaming artist globally. Can you talk about your decision to stick with that all these years?

AG: I think it’s just my desire for depth and meaning. And I think that when things are hard in life, to have a sense that they are hard because you’re growing into something bigger is genuinely how I feel. So it’s hard to write or make art that is just about, life just sucks for no reason. I don’t really believe that. I think there’s days that just suck, maybe for no reason. But there’s always a way that you can turn it. It’s been such a sweet thing to make music like this and then go out on tour and hear how it’s affected people, or how they use it. I like to say, sometimes I write songs like aspirin that you can take and hopefully it’ll help your day a little bit, help you get through a tough situation. Not all music has to be that way, it just seems to be my favorite kind to make.

LBT: For any of my readers who haven’t seen you before, can you talk about what a typical Andy Grammer show is like? 

AG: It’s kind of like a journey. A lot of energy, a lot of jumping around, a lot of group singing where everybody all sings the same thing together. That makes me so happy. And then little moments where everybody feels deeply emotional. That’s kind of like all interactions that I strive for. Even if you were just in a car right now, just kicking it, I’m pretty quick to go, “What’s your relationship like with your father? Have you lost anyone recently? How are you doing with that?” And I think some sort of balance between laughing, exuberant joy, and then holding some space for the deeper emotional parts of life and concerts are just the best for that. My favorite concerts are the ones that feel like spiritual chiropractic sessions. When you leave, you feel more connected to something bigger or deeper or beautiful.

LBT: In addition to these shows, is there anything else upcoming for you that fans can look forward to?

AG: We have a lot of songs from this most recent album that are out, but there’s a couple more that I’m closing out and then we’ll be releasing the rest of the album pretty soon.

LBT: What does it mean to still be making music that resonates with people after so many years?

AG: It is so lucky and amazing to get to do music for this long. I know that’s kind of rare, you know, I started as a street performer and I did that for four years where no one cared, and I was just trying to get people to stop on their way to buy jeans to care for a second. And so to be backstage and hear a crowd ready to sing the music that I love to sing is one of the greatest gifts in my whole life.

LBT: Was there anything else that you wanted our readers to know?

AG: I had a really interesting conversation with the Surgeon General of the United States, which is wild. His name is Vivek Murthy and he wrote a whole book about how the biggest issue in America is loneliness, which I thought was fascinating. And so then you think about, “OK, how do you become less lonely?” And it’s a lot of relationship stuff. It also brought up for me what I try to do when I go out and play a show is get thousands of people on the same page to feel something together. So in my own way, my little pickaxe that’s going after it, these shows are trying to build connections with people. If you do come to my show, don’t just come and freak out. Come and make friends.

Visit parxcasino.com/bensalem/xcitecenter for tickets and more information.

Samantha Bambino can be reached at sbambino@newspapermediagroup.com

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