El Modena High School

All Smiles with The Grinns

Local Orange County band tells all on their future in music, desert island bands, and their recent album.

The Grinns are a local five piece band made up of members Joey Kolk (vocals), Jackson Jarret (guitar), Ramtin Khoee (bass), Frank Jorquiera (guitar), and Fred Hadyka (drums).

The band originated in Mission Viejo, Calif. in their high school when Kolk, Jarret, and Khoee met in history class. Then, with the addition of Jourquiera and Hadyka, the original members realized that they could take their small garage band and make it a more serious project.  

The band released their most recent album, “Golden Hour” on January 2. “Golden Hour” includes singles, “Love is not an Enterprise” and “Don’t Look Back.” This album brings forth a balmy indie vibe, with simple yet intriguing lyricism.

Their other singles and EPs include “Why do you Lie?” and “Rituals,” both released in 2016.

The Grinns’ music can be found on Spotify, SoundCloud, Apple Music, and YouTube. They can be found on all social media platforms under the handle @TheGrinns.

Describing their music style as “flexy soul rock n’ roll,” The Grinns look up to musical artists such as The Beatles, The Smiths, Tupac Shakur, and Jacob Collier for their own sound of “indie rock and synth.” If they were allowed to perform with any other artist, they all agreed on Tame Impala, Brockhampton, Kendrick Lamar, and Drake.

The Grinns hope as their career evolves that their sound will evolve too, which they’ve been doing by adding keyboards, drum samples, and synthesizers to create a more complex sound.

Reflecting on if they weren’t in a band, The Grinns expressed interest in many different occupations. “I would like to be a crew member on a cargo ship and see the oceans and see the world and work every day…I’d love to see the oceans,” Kolk remarks.

Despite the many different places the members saw themselves in, Jarret remained consistent when he declared, “I would totally make another band called ‘The Grinns.’”

When asked about where they see the band in five years, Jarret humbly shares “I expect us to have around four or five albums, hopefully we’ve left California, and I might have a nicer guitar,” while all the other members nodded in agreement.

After being asked on any certain milestones or accomplishments they want to achieve together as a band, their response was not something one would usually expect. “Having a nice estate, if we all pay rent on it and can do whatever we want on it. (We would call it) The Grinns’ Ranch.” The Grinns felt like it would be an homage to Caribou Ranch, a recording studio built on a farm in Colorado, where many well known artists recorded their music.

When it comes to songwriting Kolk describes the process as, “Nothing like crazy or deep, we have no magical superstition, we’re just five dudes doing our thing. All five of us will come up with a song, we’ll elaborate on it and then we’ll string it out. It’s a very organic process.”

The Grinns’ first gig was at Chain Reaction, a venue located in Anaheim, Calif. They claim to have played a song called “Waiting for the Game”, which will be released within the next ten years, according to the band members.

The Grinns find their uniqueness in their simplicity. When asked what made them different from other local bands, the universal answer was “Nothing.” They expressed that music is a common ground for many people, and that it is okay to share similarities to other bands. Their one claim of being different resides in the fact that their lead singer is a “ginger”.

When it comes to their desert island band, they all put a lot of effort and thought into which artist to choose, with many factors such as discography size and how they would access the music through the deserted island. In the end of the long debate, Jarret, Khoee, and Kolk chose the Beatles, Jorquiera chose Bob Marley, and Hadyka chose Tame Impala.

When proposed the question of the best part of being in the band, they explained how their band connected them as a brotherhood. They all enjoy being with each other, making music, and that’s just the way the band works.“We go through so much (together)… When you make music with your friends, that’s way better than making music with people you don’t like.”

Looking back on their favorite memories of the band so far, Khoee reflects on one of their shows in Los Angeles.

“We were getting ready to play a really good show, and it was great, we were all ready, and I’m like ‘Hey guys where’s my bass?’ and they’re like, ‘You didn’t bring it?’ and I look at them and they’re like ‘What, were we supposed to bring it?’ That was probably my favorite memory.”

The Grinns had a lot of advice for those looking to start a band or get into music, such as starting now, and going to college. “If you want to go far, we’re not going far yet, but we’re moving if we can, you got to realize it’s not all romanticism, it’s a lot of business too, which sucks, but if you get over that and you do whatever you want and get a good headspace going, then you’re good to go.”

The Grinns are a local band, looking to have fun with their best friends through making music, and are getting well deserved recognition by recently signing with Postmark Records.

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