AMERICAN PRINCES formed when Little Rock, Arkansas welcomed three New York City transplants with open arms in early 2003. “It was the worst trip of my life,” says David Slade, the band’s rhythm guitarist and vocalist. “We decided to try and live cheaply so we could focus on writing music, so we packed up my truck and headed south. The only problem was that the engine blew up 45 minutes into our move, leaving us stranded at a TGI Friday’s in New Jersey. We were stuck there for three weeks.” Slade, then-bassist John Beachboard and drummer Matt Quin finally made their way to “the Rock,” where they holed up in an unheated country shack, spending their days writing songs.
Enter guitarist Collins Kilgore, a local whose tasteful guitar leads, songwriting savvy and tolerance for liquor quickly made him an indispensable part of the equation. Now a foursome, the band released We Are the People in August of 2003 on Max Recordings and gamely immediately hit the road for a nationwide tour that carried on through a bleak January swing through the Midwest. Undaunted, they headed back into the studio. By summer 2004, the Princes released a second full-length, Little Spaces (also on Max Recordings) and once again hit the road.
By early 2005, the band had completed 3 tours in support of the album and found itself with a new bassist, the dashing and chain-smoking Luke Hunsicker. It also found itself pursued by Yep Roc Records. At the end of January ’05, the American Princes played a gig in Memphis and ran into their friends in Lucero. “We handed Ben Nichols, Lucero’s front man, a copy of our CD at our show and a week or two later, Glenn Dicker, head Yep Roc honcho was hanging out with those guys. The way we heard it, Lucero put on Little Spaces in the car one day and he heard it and was interested enough to track us down,” says Collins Kilgore, lead guitarist and co-vocalist.
Signed to Yep Roc Records in 2005, the band went into Richmond’s Sound of Music studio with producer Alan Weatherhead (Sparklehorse, Denali) to record their Yep Roc sophomore release. The resulting album, Less and Less, shows a band hitting its stride, taking advantage of higher production values and honing in on a layered, more mature songwriting style. After recording, the Princes hit the road in support of Yep Roc’s re-release of Little Spaces and undertook a grueling tour schedule. They performed multiple festival gigs (including dates with Soul Asylum & the Roots), a stellar 2005 CMJ set, and ended the year on a two-week tour with Lucero. After a year of pushing the limits and beating the odds, 2006 brings the release of Less and Less and finds the American Princes confident and road ready, with their live show perfected and their best material before them.
David Slade (Rhythm Guitar, Vocals),
Collins Kilgore (Lead Guitar, Keyboards and Vocals),
Matt Quin (drums),
Luke Hunsicker (bass)