Music News & Reviews

Michael Deeds: Q&A with Halestorm’s hard-rocking frontwoman, Lzzy Hale

Lzzy Hale is Official Female Rocker of the Moment. Whether she’s unleashing lead vocals on violinist Lindsey Stirling’s “Shatter Me,” singing the Ozzy Osbourne/Lita Ford duet “Close My Eyes Forever” with David Draiman of Disturbed, or opening for country titan Eric Church with her own hard-rock band, Halestorm, she knows what’s up. “I’m a rock chick, and for whatever reason, people have been reaching out to me to just kind of be that rock ambassador,” the 30-year-old says. “And I feel very honored to be that for all these different genres.” Supporting a new album, “Into the Wild Life,” Pennsylvania-bred Halestorm headlines June 10 at the Revolution Center in Garden City. We caught up with Hale during a tour stop in Albany, N.Y.:

Q: Who decided it was a good idea to go out on tour with Eric Church last year?

A: In all honesty, it started with his bandmates. Their guitar player has, like, all of our records. It’s hilarious. But basically, he wanted to shake things up on his tour, they contacted us — and we’ll tour with anybody! (Laughs) And considering how huge he is, it was just a great opportunity to (perform for) a lot of people who have no idea who we are. Now I have to admit that on some of the dates, we probably seemed like Slayer to these people.

... So you have to prove yourself within, like, two or three songs, or you’re going to lose them. And we did, and we sold a s--- ton of CDs and really realized that no matter who you are, whatever you’re into — rap, country, pop — everybody wants to rock.

Q: So can we expect to see Halestorm out with Garth Brooks later this summer?

A: (Laughs) I don’t know! If he says go, we’ll definitely consider it. But right now, I think that was enough for a little while.

Q: Is it OK to compare you to a modern-day Lita Ford? Or does that make you want to “Kiss Me Deadly” with a baseball bat?

A: (Laughs) It’s all good. You know it’s funny, I got to meet Lita, and she’s a sweetheart.

Q: Did you ever consider going solo, Lita-style, rather than being the frontwoman of a band?

A:My guys in my band have kind of seriously but not so seriously joked about it for the past five or six years. They’ve come up with a bunch of album titles for me. What the tour can be called. I haven’t necessarily decided whether I want to or not, because in all honesty this band has always been my outlet, anyway. Although it would be fun. I have a lot of songs that, um — I’m kind of a cheeseball, you know? So I have a lot of ballads and just crazy piano songs that I don’t necessarily want to have for Halestorm. They’re just kind of tucked away in the ol’ Lzzy vault.

Q: Your commitment to band democracy is admirable. It’s like the saying, “There’s no ‘me’ in team.” There’s no ‘I’ in Lzzy.

A: It’s very true. That’s so clever.

(Editor’s note: The saying is “There’s no ‘I’ in team,” so in reality, “I” am an idiot.)

Q: What’s the best thing about having your brother Arejay (Halestorm’s drummer) in the band?

A: I think it’s the closeness that ends up kind of radiating off. The rest of the bandmates might as well be adopted. It’s funny, we just talked about this like three days ago, the guys. I think that the reason that we still like each other — like we fight and everything — but I think the reason that we’re still a band probably has a lot to do with the fact that he and I are brother and sister, because that mentality just kind of bleeds through.

Besides that whole sentimental thing, he is a pain in my ass. But he and I have been very close.

Q: Does he ever defend his sister if fans get obnoxious or people don’t treat you correctly?

A: Oh yeah! The funniest thing, though, is the people that don’t know that he’s my brother. So they’ll come up to him like all the time and be like, “Hey man, so what’s it like looking at Lzzy’s sweet ass the whole time since you’re the drummer?” He just literally, like, deadpans, “That’s my sister, bro.”

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Halestorm, 7:30 p.m. June 10, Revolution Center, Garden City. $25 general, $30 door, $55 VIP, Ticketfly . Opening: Royal Thunder, Rival Sons

‘SMALL TOWN’ BOISE MAKES BIG IMPRESSION

When veteran progressive trance trio Above & Beyond made its Idaho debut March 19 at the Revolution Center, nobody was quite sure just how big the concert would be.

Sure, the British EDM group sold out Madison Square Garden last year. But this was Garden City.

Not only did the two-hour show sell out the 2,200-capacity RevCenter, it made a powerful impression on the band members.

Above & Beyond recently released a professionally shot and edited video on YouTube about their Idaho experience. Watch it on my Words & Deeds blog at idahostatesman.com/wordsanddeeds.

If you’re not a part of — or even vaguely attracted to — the electronic dance music scene, it’s difficult to grasp the joy and euphoria that flows at some of these events.

The video about the Garden City concert is an excellent snapshot into the inspirational, human side of a culture that often feels mechanized and sterile to outsiders.

Plus, it’s just pretty cool.

Tonight in ‘The Other Studio’

Join Tim Johnstone and me as we talk music news and highlight outdoor summer concerts this year in Boise, The Gorge and Salt Lake City. We’ll also play a bunch of tunes you probably wouldn’t otherwise hear on terrestrial radio. (As usual.)

“The Other Studio” airs from 9 to 10 p.m. Sundays on 94.9 FM The River.

In Scene magazine June 5

•  A preview of Art & Roses, which is coming to Julia Davis Park on June 7.



•  A look at this year’s sold-out Savor Idaho, happening June 14 at the Idaho Botanical Garden.



Michael Deeds’ entertainment column runs Fridays in Scene and alternating Sundays in Explore. Twitter: @michaeldeeds. Email: mdeeds@idahostatesman.com.

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