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Maroon 5
This LA band have had a long, arduous journey. Their success may not have come overnight, but it’s here to stay.

They formed over a decade ago ~ in ’94 actually. Maroon 5’s first incarnation was in Kara’s Flowers, when four boys from Los Angeles got together to make music. Signed by Reprise Records, they released a low-key debut album, The Fourth World. They disbanded, then got back together with a new guitarist to form Maroon 5. This time they had more influencing them. They moved on from their alt-grunge sound to a more soulful, funky sound. Songs About Jane was released in 2002.

But they only began to taste success in 2003, with the release of their single Harder To Breathe. When their next single This Love released, that’s when things really started to pick up. After sticking around for some three-four years, Songs About Jane sold over 8.3 million records worldwide. It hasn’t been soon, it’s been a long five-year wait for their sophomore album as Maroon 5, but the band hasn’t been slacking off. They’ve finished a long, exhaustive tour, and have seen four singles release in that time. Here are Adam Levine and Jesse Carmichael (the duo behind most of the songs), talking about the brand new record:

So the title of the album is It Won’t Be Soon Before Long… when did you first start using that and how, in what context was it?
Adam Levine: The first time I saw it, actually, was when we… a buddy of ours Christopher McCann was with us on the road taking photographs of us, and he tended to write down things that people said in a little quote book, a little, you know, scribble-pad, and he had written this down, and we’re pretty sure Jesse said it…
Jesse Carmichael: I don’t think I said it, we don’t know who said it…
Adam: It sounds like either Jesse or I don’t know who it was, but it was somebody. It was said, I hope. Maybe it was just fabricated out of thin air…
Jesse: Chris is the mastermind behind the mystery of the title.
Adam: Yup. And so this was jotted down in his little book. And we were compiling photographs for this book that we made, Midnight Miles, which is this photo-documentary, basically, of us on the road. This quote came up and I think Chris actually wanted to name the book It Won’t Be Soon Before Long and we thought ‘Wait a minute, that’s way too good to use for the book.’ As much as I love books also, like records, I think that it would be more appropriate for an album. And so, basically, we just held on to it and kinda kicked it around for a bit, tried it out and it stuck. It was one of those totally appropriate, really amazingly accurate things that fell into our lap, so we thought, ‘This has gotta be it.’

When you were writing songs, was that kind of like [a thought] that kept on recurring?
Jesse: It was so perfect; because, our fans were asking ‘when are you going to make your next record?’ and we kept asking ‘when are we going to stop touring?’ and the answer to all these questions was soon, soon, soon, and it would just drag on for months and months.
Adam: When someone says… because the meaning of it is obviously open for interpretation, because it doesn’t actually make sense. So, I just thought about the fact that, you say, it won’t be soon before long, kinda means… it will be long before soon. When you think about it that way, kinda conversely, then maybe you start to understand what it means. (Jesse rolls his eyes) It’s true! (Laughs) You guys aren’t smart enough. Shut up. Next question. (Jesse laughs.)

So you did take some time off after touring for…like…ever. After touring, what did you learn about this kind of plateau, the fame and all that kind of stuff?
Adam: Well I think that I kinda got the, you know, the fame problems… again, these are not problems, these are minor inconveniences, so, I don’t really, none of us have really gotten to the point where it’s been a major factor in our lives and yea, maybe little things did change on this record with the level [of fame], but it was just kinda fun and flattering. And whenever somebody would say hello and ask for an autograph or take a picture, whatever it might’ve been, it never bothered me, or any of us for that matter. So, you know, I think that we’ve stayed relatively under the radar. And that’s the thing, that we’re not really interested in any of that, we’re interested in ~ as clichéd as it sounds ~ we’re just really interested in what we do, and if there is fame to follow and any of that silly stuff, then so be it, it’s great. But it’s certainly not something that we focus on. And we were always able to walk down the street; we live in Los Angeles so, we have a little more competition in the celebrity world, so thank God; we’re small potatoes here. (Laughs)
Jesse: There’s no doubt that it is a weird world, but I think we’re really lucky to have grown up together, so we’ve got all the memories that we had from when we were 12 years old ~ any kind of awkward experience you have growing up ~ we’ve got that in our memories of each other, so nobody can get a big head.

You can read the rest of our exclusive with Maroon 5 in the May 2007 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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