With their latest single—Mess With Me ft. Aspects—now on a streaming service near you, local Ottawa act Harea Band proves once again that they are here to bring the groove. The upbeat track, which features hiphop artist Aspects, is the group’s first single in nearly two years, and it doesn’t disappoint. So get up on your feet and dance because it’s about to get funky.
I’ve always loved getting into the mind of a creative, especially when it came to music. What is the creation process like? What is the muse? Being a musician can be a very personal experience— you’re channeling this music-driven emotion into words and feelings and sounds, you’re tapping at heartstrings or getting people on their feet. So I spoke with Alex Harea, lead singer of Harea Band, to get some insight into the writing process, the new single, and the group’s big plans for 2020.
Apt613: What inspired you to write Mess With Me?
Alex Harea: Mess With Me started with the chorus. I wanted to write a simple one- or two-chord chorus that would be super catchy and that we could build the vibe around…When it came to writing lyrics, I wanted it to be simple and relatable.
I feel like most people have been in a situation where they’d rather their partner just be honest about how they feel even if it hurts them. I know I have!
What is your favourite part about writing and creating new music?
With every new song we create, we are getting better and better. Like every song pushes us in a different and better direction. Because of that, there’s an excitement around creating new music as it helps us recognize our growth. Mess With Me was one of those awesome opportunities where a bunch of people got to collaborate on it and build on it over time. Everyone in the band had a chance to contribute their own creativity throughout the process from demo to final product.
As a songwriter, it’s almost amazing to write a song that you think is really good, but then you bring in collaborators and different ideas and it ends up far better than you could have hoped. I’m honestly very lucky to have such a great team to create music with.
What was it like working with Aspects? How did you decide to work together?
I hadn’t really spent that much time with Aspects before writing this song, I had only heard some amazing stuff that he had released. Dean Watson and I were producing Mess With Me together and Dean had been working with Aspects on a few things and thought it made sense to bring him in.
Aspects is basically a lyric machine. This guy freestyles over anything, it’s actually crazy impressive. He came in with the verse already written out and said he really wanted to give it an old school P-Funk type of vibe. It took half an hour, tops, because the verse just fit so well and his delivery was perfect. Definitely will be collaborating again in the future.
What’s your favourite part about releasing new material?
I’m proud of what we create every time we make something new, so I’m just happy to share it. If even just a few people add a song of ours to their playlists, dance to it, use it to cope with something, play it with friends over, or share it with their friends, that’s a huge win for me. To know that our music has made an impact in someone’s life is so important to me, and that’s the main reason I love to share new songs.
Any upcoming shows?
May 9 at House of Targ. (Editors’ note: the status of this event is unclear at this time due to COVID-19)
What’s next for Harea Band after the new single is released?
We’re looking forward to a busy year with a tour in the works in September and two more single releases. The next one will be in the spring and it’s probably my favorite song I’ve written so I’m really excited to be able to share it.
You can listen to the band’s new single release on Spotify below.