AyOH
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AyOH

Chicago, Illinois, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2011 | SELF

Chicago, Illinois, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2011
Band Pop Rock

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Dec
11
AyOH @ Lincoln Hall

Chicago, Illinois, United States

Chicago, Illinois, United States

Oct
16
AyOH @ Brillobox

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States

Oct
15
AyOH @ Seamstress

New York, New York, United States

New York, New York, United States

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


As soon as the lights hit the stage and lead singer Avi Dell grabbed the mic and began to sing “Say it Anyway”, every single body in the venue was officially tuned in for the next hour. Infectious tracks, unbelievable stage presence and electric energy went into the band’s set that stole the attention of the entire venue. This level of show is only possible from a group that puts their all into their music and is happy to simply be sharing it with the world. The first time listening to AyOH and seeing them live are similar in the sense that their spot on your play list and summer concert schedule are set on repeat.

Although they’ve been labeled the next big thing to come out of Chicago, the guys of AyOH have a humble, hardworking demeanor that's organic for the group of talented, honest and inspired musicians. This is a band that wants the fans to experience their music with them in the form of a killer live show. With countless local festivals in their rearview, as well as four performances at various SXSW showcases this year, AyOH is soon to be on the stereos and minds of the industry’s top tastemakers.

Avi Dell, vocals and guitar, John Arrotti, drums and vocals, Lin Takrudtong, bass and vocals and Austin Russell, guitar, are the talented musicians that make up the band. It’s no surprise the group has two successful E.P.s, the latest, Dangerous Questions, considering the incredible catalogue of melodic ideas and soulful inspiration they all had coming into the band years ago and that they continue to create in anticipation of recording an album. Like any critical thinker and dedicated musician, they’re not afraid to make tough decisions when it comes to art.

“We kind of decided that the best idea wins and even if somebody has a ton of ideas it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re all going to be the best. So I think the challenge is keeping everybody happy. As long as we talk about it and just be honest, we all agree that what’s best for everyone is what’s best for the band. Which is something we’ve never had to say out loud, “said Dell.

Along with having an open-minded outlook on creating music and sharing ideas, the band functions with honest and direct communication under a simple ideology.

“I would say that the thing that we have said is a rule is the word “no” and it’s taken a really long time to make this happen but for me the word “no” just really isn’t an option. I hate the word “no”, I hate when people tell me “no”, I hate when I hear “no”, because for me, there’s always a way to make something possible or make something happen and so when you start with no, you can’t go anywhere,” said Dell.

That standard of creation plays into every aspect of the band’s existence, as well as the true Chicago disposition of mixing Midwest nice with big city hunger. When confronted with the idea of being “the next big thing”, the members of AyOH are likely to respond with a heartfelt thanks, genuine smile and mention other amazing artists coming out of Chicago aside from themselves.

Having shared the stage with acts like Grouplove and Childish Gambino, another impressive name the band works with is producer, Steve Gillis. Gillis has created amazing success in the industry not only as a drummer, working with acts like Filter, Chuck Berry and Rusty Anderson, but now as a studio producer and co-owner of Transient Sound. The group places their absolute trust in his experience and expertise and know they’re in good hands. Not only when it comes to instrumentals and lyrics, but in finding success in the industry.

“We just don’t have time in life to mess around with people who can’t do what they say they’re going to do. That’s my biggest rule. If you’re going to hang out with me, if you’re going work with me, so help me God you better do what you say you’re going to do,” said Dell.

AyOH is constantly working toward the future and currently has a lot of opportunities in the works. Fans can keep up with AyOH by tweeting them, liking them and most importantly listening to them. - AXS


It’s Alternative First, weeknights at 9pm, in THE BEATDOWN w/Pauly on X107.5. We play 2 NEW songs back-to-back and you get to vote for the song you like more. Winner moves on to the next night against another NEW song with hopes of making it 10 nights in a row, to enter The Beatdown Hall of Fame! Loser hopes for another shot during the “Redemption Weekend,” starting on Friday.
TONIGHT: Champion AyOH “Lion To The Lamb” (9 wins, 1 more & they enter the HOF) vs Challenger Vampire Weekend “Taxi Cab”

WINNER & NEWEST BEATDOWN HOF INDUCTEE: AyOH “Lion To The Lamb”

FRIDAY 9PM, it will be a 1st for the “Redemption Weekend” …A 3-WAY DANCE…FOR THE CHAMPIONSHIP! Midnight Divide “Torn” vs Stellar Young “Amity” vs Orgy “Spells” (all 3 bands were able to bring in well over 1,000 votes, when they faced the Champion. So ALL 3 deserve another shot. WHO WILL GET YOUR VOTE???) - X107.5 Las Vegas


Chicago band AyOH (pronounced “A-O” just like the letters) doesn’t just play pop-rock. On the quartet’s upcoming sophomore EP Dangerous Questions (out Feb. 24), the quartet, made up of Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar) pop, crackle and rock through made-for-radio anthems such as the eponymous single “Dangerous Questions” and “Shakedown.” Today, we've got the exclusive premiere of "Shout Shout"—listen above. Dell answers our burning—and dangerous—questions.

Hometown: We come from Bangkok, Seattle, Pittsburgh, and Chicago.

Current Residence: We all live in Chicago.

Where did your name come from?

Before we were a band, we were just dudes playing music, writing songs, sharing ideas. One song I brought to the group had this great refrain at the end that went "Ay-OH, Ay-OH." We really clicked with that song and it started feeling like we had a clear direction. We were like, 'Okay, we can build a band around this sound and this song'.

The song is now called "Out Alive" and was the first single off our first EP Take it to the People. It charted nationally on CMJ. You can stream it here.

What’s your biggest musical influence?

I used to work at a venue in Pittsburgh called Mr. Smalls. I did everything from hospitality to sound engineering to bartending, and I got to see and work with so many awesome acts like My Morning Jacket, Ryan Adams, Fallout Boy, My Chemical Romance, and Appleseed Cast. Every time a band came through—no matter how established or new—I would sit with them and chat, get to know where they came from and what brought them to this point. Every bit of those experiences inspired me.

If you could write music for a TV show which one would it be?

True Detective. The music is so dark and gripping. I love it.

What’s your dream gig?

Every gig is a dream gig. We just want to to play in front of people who care. We don't care where or how many of them are there, but if they're into it and emotionally available to receive what we're putting out, we’re happy.

Who would you love to collaborate with?

I'd love to do a song with Kanye West and Bon Iver. Just because I can imagine them taking my ideas and turning them into such beautiful expressions. Plus they have a lot of Twitter followers ... It would be a good day for AyOH PR! [Laughs.]

Why did you call your EP Dangerous Questions?

We had about 30 [songs] to choose from [when we first started to create this EP]. “Dangerous Questions” was the first tune that our producer Steven Gillis jumped on, [saying], "We gotta record that song." As for the album name, it just felt like the most honest depiction of the kind of songs we were writing at the moment. We were asking questions … dangerous ones.

I looked up a few dangerous questions on the Internet and decided to ask you a few:

Whoa! [Laughs.] Now we're getting serious.

Dangerous Question #1: Do You Believe in Heaven and Hell?

I don’t, I've never been able to believe in an afterlife... not that I belittle the belief, it's just not in me. But I have a ton of respect for people that do.

Dangerous Question #2: Are You Chasing Your Happy?

We're chasing the only thing we know how to chase. We've far surpassed the point of no-return when it comes to our music...we're chasing our happy, our sad, our friends, and our foes. We're on the hunt!

Dangerous Question #3: Whose Value System Do You Live By?

Geez... Sir Paul McCartney said it best when he sang "Live and Let Die."

Dangerous Question #4: Where Do You See Yourselves in 10 Years?

On a stage, all sweaty, surrounded by AyOH, chanting AyOH, living AyOH. - Myspace


Chicago-based indie folk rockers AyOH are gearing up to self-release their sophomore EP, Dangerous Questions, next month and today we're excited to premiere the album's title track. It's easy to get lost in the song's soaring male/female harmonies, fluttering strings and galloping percussion, and what better way to start off a Wednesday than doing just that? Stream the infectious tune above.

"'Dangerous Questions' is the title track on this EP because it seemed to reflect the way we were learning to approach song writing," vocalist Avi Dell reveals. "It's surprisingly simple musically with a linear structure — the message was so palpable we felt that it didn't need anything crazy, just a simple string of declarations in a time of fear and sorrow."

Dangerous Questions is slated for a February 24 release. - Purevolume


Calling Chicago home, indie pop rockers AyOH are gearing up to unveil their second EP, ‘Dangerous Questions,’ in February. Ahead of its release, Diffuser is thrilled to give fans a taste of what to expect with today’s (Jan. 20) premiere of ‘Shakedown’ — stream it in the audio player below.
Aside from the instantly catchy rhythm of ‘Shakedown,’ the song features powerfully relevant lyrics that everyone can relate to. “She’s crying on the telephone / Weighed down by student loans / She says, ‘Now I know why they occupy out on the street,’” frontman Avi Dell sings.

“We’re incredibly excited to finally release this EP to the world,” the band tells us. “It’s been a huge labor of love. The process has seen us through some tough times and every bit of the music is a testament to the brotherhood we’ve built.”
‘Shakedown’ will no doubt turn into an AyOH’s 2015 anthem, along with the six other tracks featured on ‘Dangerous Questions.’ The EP is set for release on Feb. 24 — to get more information the disc, and stay up-to-date with everything happening in the band’s world, check out their official website here. - Diffuser


Happy Monday, I hope y’all had a great weekend and a great Easter!

To make your Monday even more awesome (if it isn’t already), ERocks presents the return of… #ArtistSpotlight. We’re on our computers and phones 24/7…usually looking at Grumpy Cat memes (she’s adorable), but we’re also always looking for great artist/bands that are under the music scene radar.

It’s an honor to say that we’ve found a great band that we fell in love almost instantly, they have a really cool alt/pop/rock sound. Take a pinch of Train and a pinch of The Killers mix them together and you get Pop-rock foursome AyOH.

AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music.

The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The People in 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with their new EP Dangerous Questions available on iTunes.

Avi Dell took some time out of his busy schedule to answer a couple of questions. We talk about working with producer Steven Gillis, tour plans, possibly recording a duet with an artist (hint: she’s a “California Gurl”) and of course…what kind of reporter would I be if I didn’t put them in a bit of hot water. - Entertainment Rocks


Pop-rock foursome AyOH is set to release their upcoming sophomore EP Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. Dangerous Questions was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos) for Transient Sound Productions in the band’s hometown of Chicago. Reminiscent of The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Coldplay, AyOH has developed their own unique blend of harmony and sound. For more information on their upcoming EP, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com.

AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music.

The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The People in 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with Dangerous Questions.

With anthemic singles like “Shakedown,” “Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt),” and “Shout Shout,” AyOH’s upcoming EP is a 7-track force to be reckoned with. Looking forward to the highly anticipated new EP, Dell explains, ‘We can’t wait to share all of this hard work with the world. The sky is the limit for this band, and we’re so excited.”

AyOH is set to release their upcoming album Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. For more information, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com. - Vents


Pop-rock foursome AyOH is set to release their upcoming sophomore EP Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. Dangerous Questions was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos) for Transient Sound Productions in the band’s hometown of Chicago. Reminiscent of The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Coldplay, AyOH has developed their own unique blend of harmony and sound. For more information on their upcoming EP, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com.



AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music.



The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The People in 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with Dangerous Questions.



With anthemic singles like “Shakedown,” “Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt),” and “Shout Shout,” AyOH’s upcoming EP is a 7-track force to be reckoned with. Looking forward to the highly anticipated new EP, Dell explains, ‘We can’t wait to share all of this hard work with the world. The sky is the limit for this band, and we’re so excited.”



AyOH is set to release their upcoming album Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. For more information, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com. - Hellhound Music


Be sure to keep an eye out for @AyOhmusic releasing their new EP “Dangerous Questions” February 24th.

Check out more on AyOH, here:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/AyOHmusic

Twitter: www.twitter.com/AyOHmusic

Instagram: www.instagram.com/AyOHmusic

Bandcamp: www.AyOH.bandcamp.com

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/AyOHmusic

Track Listing:

01. Lion to the Lamb

02. Say It Anyway

03. Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)

04. Shakedown

05. Help Me

06. Shout Shout

07. Save You - Don't Look Back Look Forward Promotions


"AyOH is poised to be the next big thing coming out of Chicago."

- The Deli Chicago


Chicago, IL - January 7, 2015 - Pop-rock foursome AyOH is set to release their upcoming sophomore EP Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. Dangerous Questions was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos) for Transient Sound Productions in the band’s hometown of Chicago. Reminiscent of The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Coldplay, AyOH has developed their own unique blend of harmony and sound. For more information on their upcoming EP, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com.



AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music.



The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The People in 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with Dangerous Questions.



With anthemic singles like "Shakedown," "Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)," and "Shout Shout," AyOH’s upcoming EP is a 7-track force to be reckoned with. Looking forward to the highly anticipated new EP, Dell explains, 'We can’t wait to share all of this hard work with the world. The sky is the limit for this band, and we’re so excited.”



AyOH is set to release their upcoming album Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. For more information, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com. - 360 Magazine


“AyOH is poised to be the next big thing coming out of Chicago.”

– The Deli Chicago



Chicago, IL – January 28, 2015 – Pop-rock foursome AyOH have teamed up with PureVolume to premiere their new song “Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)” today! “Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)” is set to release off of their upcoming sophomore EP of the same title on February 24th, 2015. Dangerous Questions was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos) for Transient Sound Productions in the band’s hometown of Chicago. Reminiscent of The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Coldplay, AyOH has developed their own unique blend of harmony and sound. Listen to “Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)” on PureVolume, here:

http://bit.ly/1EqpBrv.

AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music.

The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The People in 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with Dangerous Questions.

AyOH is set to release their upcoming album Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. For more information, please visit: www.AyOHmusic.com. - Don't Look Back Look Forward Promotions


"AyOH is poised to be the next big thing coming out of Chicago."
- The Deli Chicago
Chicago, IL - January 28, 2015 - Pop-rock foursome AyOH have teamed up with PureVolume to premiere their new song "Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)" today! "Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)" is set to release off of their upcoming sophomore EP of the same title on February 24th, 2015. Dangerous Questions was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos) for Transient Sound Productions in the band's hometown of Chicago. Reminiscent of The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Coldplay, AyOH has developed their own unique blend of harmony and sound. Listen to "Dangerous Questions (Feat. Lilly Hiatt)" on PureVolume, here: bit.ly/1EqpBrv.


AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music.

The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The Peoplein 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with Dangerous Questions.

AyOH is set to release their upcoming album Dangerous Questions on February 24th, 2015. For more information, please visit: AyOHmusic.com. - This Funktional


For someone who hasn’t had the chance to listen to you before, can you tell us a little bit about AyOH and yourselves?

AyOH is a Chicago formed band arriving from all over the globe. AyOH first came to life when singer Avi Dell met with drummer, John Arrotti, to work on some original tunes. Avi gave John some recordings that he had been working on including demos and simple lyrical themes and the two quickly formed a strong collaboration. Within a few months they had over a dozen original tunes and today constitute the bulk of writing, but Lin (bass) and Austin (guitar) contribute creatively as well.

AyOH delivers a powerful stage performance rooted in Rock’n'Roll and soaked in the age of Dance Pop. A Chicago blogger appropriately coined the description of us as, "Sweaty Blue-Eyed Soul".

Our shows are an experience, a party, and a sing-along. We dance our asses off and so do our fans.



What is the music scene in Chicago like? How has it been starting out and growing there?

The scene in Chicago is pretty awesome. Tons of music venues with shows 7 days a week and a seemingly endless number of bands popping up all the time. We've worked hard to build a bit of a community with other bands. We always try to help each other out. We're always amazed at how many other local bands come out to see us. I think that's been the most flattering thing. When a local band I love is into us enough to show up and sing along. That's a unique feeling and it's kind of the most validating thing we can point to.

I guess if other artists making music dig what we're doing, we must be doing something right, you know?

I remember when we released our first EP "Take it to the People" we were booking gigs like crazy because other Chicago artists somehow found us on Facebook and extended their own connections to help us. I remember getting so many messages from other bands saying stuff like "where did you guys come from?"

It was indicative of the supportive community. Chicago in general is just an awesome place to be new because so many people are "new". It's a melting pot of the mid-west. You can't beat mid-western hospitality.


When you started working on your new EP, Dangerous Questions, did you have any specific goals or plans in mind? Was there anything you wanted to be able to accomplish with this EP?

As far as goals for the new EP, we wanted to challenge ourselves a little bit more. We also had the full line-up this time around and were armed with so much more creative power and we actually had a fan base that wanted new material. It's a very strange thing that happens when you go from a band no one knows to a band people expect something from. Those pressures are definitely things we considered while writing the new songs.

This EP was also going to be our response to everyone in the industry that heard our first EP and said "This is great, you guys are clearly going somewhere, but I'm waiting to see what you do next" That seems to be a pretty common industry response these days. There is so much risk involved in breaking a new band we really needed to prove ourselves as a force to be acknowledged and a team that had staying power.



When you’re working on new music, do you ever feel pressure to perform better than your last release?

I don't really think in terms of "better". I want to make music that I want to listen to, and most importantly music that I can imagine myself playing for years to come. We've barely broken out of Chicago and we've played the old EP at least a thousand times...every time I discover something new about the material. I think that's a big part of why our shows are so much fun. I come from a musical theater background and I've learned that every performance should involve a process of discovery. Every time I sing a song in front of people there is something new to discover about that moment and it's my job to convey that discovery and that creates a certain kind of vulnerability that I think people connect with.


How do you keep pushing yourselves forward musically?

That seems to be easy for us...There are many challenges this band faces, but musical creativity is not one of them. I'm surrounded by the best fucking musicians in Chicago, maybe even the country. Everyone from our producer Steven Gillis to the four of us in the band, we all live and breathe music. Music is a journey and we're constantly influenced by what other people are doing. I personally get competitive. When I hear an awesome song it pushes me to go out and create something. I know the other guys feel the same way.


On top of that, how do you stay motivated?

To be completely honest, I don't really understand this question. I'm motivated by everything around me. Just like I explained, every performance is a process of discovery so too is every time I walk down the street or eat a meal. I love to travel because it inspires me to look at the world a little bit differently. From style, to language, to the arts, I'm constantly motivated by other people's creations and other people's perspectives. We certainly have creative slumps, but with this band we're all so completely committed that when one of us slips the other 3 pick up the slack.


What would you like people to be able to take away from Dangerous Questions?

I'd like people to take away a sense of possibility. Everything is possible, if you can only put your mind to it. We started just like anyone else. Practicing our instruments and wanting to create something beautiful. I think, if nothing else, we've achieved that.

I'm so proud of the music on Dangerous Questions. It's a landscape of sound and harmony. It's the "listener's" music. We made it for people that want to be nourished by their ears.


Do you have a favorite song on the EP?

I don't think I have a favorite, but I'm really proud of "Lion to the Lamb". When I was writing, lyrically it started out pretty heavy and I was worried we wouldn't find the musical weight for balance. But Gillis (producer) recognized our ambition for the song and fearlessly guided us through that process. John Arrotti (drums) came through with the amazing piano arrangements that supported the entire piece.

It might not be the most poppy song and it might not ever find radio acceptance, but if people listen, really listen to the track, there is no way to not connect with some aspect of it's message. The solemn knowledge that we were able to create something that fulfilled my creative vision is incredibly satisfying.



When you’re performing on stage, what is your favorite thing to see when you look out into the crowd?

Smiles... When we get on stage people just seem to be happy.



With Dangerous Questions dropping soon, do you guys have any big plans coming up? Anything you can share?

We'll be traveling quite a bit but those details are still in the works. In the nearest future, we're going down to Austin, TX in March for SXSW and will be releasing the EP to a home town crowd Feb 24th in Chicago.


Thanks for taking the time to chat with us! Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Thank you so much for the time and recognition. We hope you've enjoyed the songs and really appreciate you helping us to get the word out. - The Prelude Press


AyOH is Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals), and Austin Russell (guitar). Since 2011, the band has crafted a romantically charged style that naturally accompanies their polished lyrics. Combining elements of blues and rock with the accomplished musicianship of each band member, AyOH contains a soulful edge that shines through their music. Their new album was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis for Transient Sound Productions in their hometown of Chicago.

The band emerged onto the scene with their debut release Take It To The Peoplein 2012, an EP that displays a sonic kaleidoscope of soaring guitars, breathtaking orchestration, and propulsive backbeats. After successfully captivating listeners with their first release, AyOH is ready to embark on the next phase of their career with Dangerous Questions.

Make sure to visit the social media sites and stay up to date on their latest news. - Music Junkie Press


The guys of AyOH have announced the release of their sophomore EP, Dangerous Questions, to be released on February 24th. The 7-track EP was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos). - Lucy Out Loud


We’re AyOH (Pronounced A-O like the letters) from Chicago, IL. featuring Avi Dell on vocals, John Arrotti on drums, Lin Takrudtong on bass, and Austin Russell on guitar. We’re heavily influenced by song writers that perfected their craft over years of touring and collaboration. Paul Simon and Bruce Springsteen are two names that come to mind. Our music is dance/pop infused soul inspired by artists like the Killers and The 1975.

Our shows are sweaty fun. We bring an immense amount of energy to our stage and people always seem to connect with the raw joy that we emote. People always leave our shows happy and that makes us happy. A blogger appropriately dubbed us “Sweaty Blue-Eyed Soul”.

We are releasing our album “Dangerous Questions” on February 24th. This collection of songs is the love child of a long relationship with producer and mentor Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Raygun, Los Lobos) in collaboration with Transient Sound Studios in Chicago. We are extremely excited to release this music into the world and share it with all of our friends and supporters.

We are hard at work putting together tour dates in North America and heading down to SXSW in Austin, Texas in March.

Very nice to meet you, and we would love to get to Canada and play for you guys real soon! Always feel free to shoot us a message on Facebook or Twitter. We’ll try to get back to you as soon as possible. - A Music Blog, Yea?


It's Monday Funday!

Ay! Oh! Let's go!

ARTISTdirect has teamed up with AyOH to stream their Dangerous Questions EP, out tomorrow, February 24.

AyOH are Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals) and Austin Russell (guitar), and Dangerous Questions was recorded in collaboration with producer Steven Gillis (Filter, Naked Ray Gun, Los Lobos) for Transient Sound Productions in the band's hometown of Chicago. Reminiscent of The Killers, Imagine Dragons and Coldplay, AyOH have developed their own unique blend of harmony and sound.

Don't take our word for it or their word for it. Why not have a listen to the EP here and now? It's try-before-you-buy period. - Artist Direct


Do you enjoy bands like The Killers, Coldplay, and Imagine Dragons? Well, what if I told you there was a band out there who embodies all three of those bands in their own creative way? I know… we’re excited too! Check out our interview with your new favorite band… AyOH.
I have to ask… where did AyOH come from?
AyOH is a Chicago formed band arriving from all over the globe. AyOH first came to life when singer Avi Dell (from Pittsburgh) met with drummer, John Arrotti (from Chicago), to work on some original tunes. Avi gave John some recordings that he had been working on including demos and simple lyrical themes and the two quickly formed a strong collaboration. Within a few months they had over a dozen original tunes. Our bassist Lin (from Thailand) and guitarist Austin (from Seattle) contribute creatively in an ever increasing way.

So, explain your sound to someone who has never heard your music before.
AyOH delivers a powerful stage performance rooted in Rock’n’Roll soaked in the age of Dance Pop. A Chicago blogger appropriately coined the description of us as, “Sweaty Blue-Eyed Soul”. Our shows are an experience, a party, and a sing-along. We dance our asses off and so do our fans.

With all of you being from different parts of the world, how does this effect the band’s chemistry?
We all get along extremely well. At the beginning we would argue about stupid some things, but once we realized that even through we might have a different approach we all want the same thing, which is to create awesome music and share it with the world. Once you can recognize that for what it is the arguing stopped. It’s been nothing but love…

What has been your favorite show you’ve ever played so far and why?
We had the opportunity to open for Childish Gambino and GroupLove. There is nothing like 5 thousand people screaming your songs back to you.

You’re getting ready to play some dates during SXSW, what was your initial reaction when you found out your band was going to play such a huge event?
We’ve kind of had to take everything in stride. We’ve always known that a trip to Austin for SXSW was on the road map, but we’ve been so honored and surprised to be invited to plan on so many stages. it’s like once the word got out that we’d be down there opportunities just kept presenting themselves.

Where do you draw inspiration from lyrically?
Lyrics can be a tricking thing. When I sit down with pen and paper Inspiration comes from everywhere. From my nieces and nephews to my experience in the Israeli army. but we’re fortunate enough to play so much that when we’re in the writing stage often lyric come to me while playing the songs live.

What’s the fan reaction been like to your new album, ‘Dangerous Questions’?
It’s been really great! What’s been so cool about this collection of songs is that there’s something in there for everyone. So our fans have been really happy with what we’ve delivered. Plus the cool thing about new songs is that we’re gaining all sorts of new fans, it’s almost like we’re becoming a new band.

If you could create YOUR perfect tour, whom would you pick as openers and the headliner?
It would be pretty sick to see the Future Islands open for the Killers

As a band, what is the one thing you would like to accomplish in the next five or ten years?
We just want to tour and bring out music and message to the world. We’re a live band and we’re hungry to get out on the road. I’d love to spend the next 10 years on the road.

Do you have any TV shows you absolutely HAVE to watch every week, if so, what are they?
I don’t watch much TV (Avi Dell), but I’m pretty sure John (drummer) has spent the last few months watching all of the old Wonder Years episodes on netflix. You can’t argue with a classic like that.

Thank you so much for taking the time to do this :) We appreciate it!
Thank you so much for all of the support! It’s been a pleasure chatting.

To learn more about the band, go check out their social media!
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ayohmusic
Twitter: www.twitter.com/ayohmusic
Instagram: @ayohmusic
check out their website as well! ayohmusic.com - Stage Right Secrets


Who are you and what are you doing here? (what is your name, what is the band and what is your role in the band?)
My name is Avi Dell, I’m the lead singer and lyricist for the Alt/Dance/Pop band AyOH out of Chicago, Illinois. I also play guitar and keys.

How did the band start?

AyOH is a Chicago formed band arriving from all over the globe. AyOH first came to life when singer Avi Dell (from Pittsburgh) met with drummer, John Arrotti (from Chicago), to work on some original tunes. Avi gave John some recordings that he had been working on including demos and simple lyrical themes and the two quickly formed a strong collaboration. Within a few months they had over a dozen original tunes and today constitute the bulk of writing, but our bassist Lin (from Thailand) and guitarist Austin (from Seattle) contribute creatively in an ever increasing way.

How would you describe your band?

AyOH delivers a powerful stage performance rooted in Rock’n’Roll soaked in the age of Dance Pop. A Chicago blogger appropriately coined the description of us as, “Sweaty Blue-Eyed Soul”.



Our shows are an experience, a party, and a sing-along. We dance our asses off and so do our fans.

If you had to choose one song you’ve written that best defines your band which one would it be?
Before we were a band, we were just dudes playing music, writing songs, sharing ideas. and this one song I brought to the group had this great refrain at the end that went “Ay-OH, Ay-OH” we really clicked with this song and it started feeling like we had a clear direction. “We were like, okay, we can build a band around this sound and this song”

the song is now called “Out Alive” and was the first single off our first EP “Take it to the People”. It charted nationally on CMJ and has received regular play time on a few local radio stations and college radio across north America. (stream it here – http://ayoh.bandcamp.com/track/ay-oh-out-alive)
In this day and age where anyone is pretty much able to pick up an instrument, what would you say sets your band apart from the rest?

That it seems to be easy for us… There are many challenges this band faces, but musical creativity is not one of them. I’m surrounded by the best fucking musicians in Chicago, maybe even the country. Everyone from our producer Steven Gillis to the four of us in the band, we all live and breath music. Music is a journey and we’re constantly influenced by what other people/bands/musicians are doing. I personally get competitive. When I hear an awesome song, it pushes me to go out and create something. I know the other guys feel the same way.

Where are people able to hear your songs?
www.soundcloud.com/AyOH

www.AyOH.bandcamp.com

Are you playing any shows anytime soon (if you live outside of Australia, do you have any plans for a trip down under)?
We have a slew of shows coming up, including a visit to SXSW in Austin TX this March. Touring is definitely in the near future. Australia is on our bucket list for sure. Having the fan-base to support a visit would be amazing, which is why we’re so stoked to be here talking to you!

What is your proudest moment/greatest achievement as a band?
The fact that we all still like each other. We’ve already been through so much and it’s 4 years in and we just keep taking this up a notch. I’m proud of everything we do.

Tell us 3 bands that we should be listening to/be keeping an eye out for?

Empires – http://weareempires.com/

Mighty Fox – http://www.mightyfoxmusic.com/ (good friends of ours that we’ve played around town with.)

Friday Pilots Club – https://www.facebook.com/FridayPilotsClub (good friends of ours that we’ve played around town with.)
Anything Else you’d like to add?

Thank you so much for having us and for helping us spread the word of our music. - Cool Try (Bro)


AyOH is an up-and-coming band from Chicago, Illinois that works to combine the pop, rock and soul genres. The band is comprised of Avi Dell (vocals/guitar), John Arrotti (drums/vocals), Lin Takrudtong (bass/vocals) and Austin Russell (guitar). AyOH released its new EP Dangerous Questions on February 24 and you can listen to the EP and purchase it on AyOH’s Bandcamp.

Music Without A Cause got the chance to chat with lead singer Avi Dell about how the band got started, recording Dangerous Questions, and what’s next for AyOH.

How’d the band get started?

DELL: AyOH is a Chicago formed band arriving from all over the globe. AyOH first came to life when I met with our drummer John Arrotti to work on some original tunes. I gave [Arrotti] some recordings that he had been working on including demos and simple lyrical themes and the two quickly formed a strong collaboration. Within a few months we had over a dozen original tunes and today constitute the bulk of writing, but our bassist [Takrudtong] and guitarist [Russell] contribute creatively in an ever increasing way.

How would you describe AyOH’s music?

AD: We deliver a powerful stage performance rooted in Rock’n’Roll, soaked in the age of dance pop. A Chicago blogger appropriately coined the description of us as, “Sweaty Blue-Eyed Soul”. Our shows are an experience, a party, and a sing-along. We dance our asses off and so do our fans.

What was the recording process like for your new EP, Dangerous Questions?

AD: We took this project to the next level. It was an extremely long process, but every rock was turned. We didn’t leave any detail untouched. Steve Gillis, our producer, was our fearless leader.

How is your new EP different from your debut EP Take It to The People?

AD: The first EP was mostly straight forward rock’n’roll, but the new EP is much more pop/dance infused rock.

What’s the response to your new EP been like so far?

AD: It’s been.. WOW. Everyone that hears it seems to appreciate what we’ve created. We’re all exceedingly proud of this work and the confidence we have when sharing it with the world seems to be helping us build what momentum we’ve created.

You played for a sold-out crowd at Schubas for the Dangerous Questions EP release show. How’d that feel?

AD: Selling out Schuba’s was a dream come true, it still feels like a dream. It was a crazy experience to have so many people there just to support us. It was no longer us performing but a parallel experience, one that both the audience and the band created together.

What’s next for AyOH?

AD: We’ve got a ton of shows coming up this summer that include a handful of Chicago festivals. There is much, much more to come from AyOH, but for now we’re keeping details close to our chest. - Music Without A Cause


Fish caught up with AyOH at SXSW in Austin, Texas. The band talked about their debut full length ‘Dangerous Questions’ that dropped last month and their first trip down to SXSW. - Idobi Radio


AyOH, a Chicago-based band, visited Austin for the first time at South by Southwest. The four-person band was one member short for their conversation with The University Star. Avi Dell, vocals and guitar; John Arrotti, drums and vocals and Austin Russell, guitar, discussed their first time at SXSW and the name of the band.

KB: Why did y’all want to come play at SXSW?
AD: This is the place to be. This is where music happens. This has always been on my personal roadmap. It’s kind of overwhelming.

KB: What other artists are you guys excited to see here?
AD: Future Islands is playing tonight.
JA: Lonely Island would be cool, though.

KB: How has the food been?
AR: We had some tacos. They were really spicy.
JA: I burned my tongue just now.
AR: I had a hot dog last night at The Mohawk.
AD: I’ve been just housing pizza.

KB: What do you want your fans to take away from your concerts while you’re here?
AD: Joy. We’re a really happy band.

KB: You guys are a part of the RedGorilla showcase. What exactly does that mean?
AD: It’s an unofficial—as SXSW was gaining momentum, other people in Austin were kind of like, ‘How can we piggyback on, sort of, the shininess of the moment?’ I think RedGorilla, a while ago, was like, ‘Let’s create our own festival that is sort of in the shadow of South By.’

KB: Have you guys made a bunch of friends from hanging out with the other bands that are part of the RedGorilla showcase?
AD: Oh, totally!

KB: Who are your music influences?

JA: As a band, we kind of look up to the alternative rock, fun pop-y, The Killers, Coldplay, U2.

KB: Who would you guys say you’re most like?
AD: I think a lot of people compare us to The Killers, which is sort of like an obnoxious thing to say because that’s so not our choice. Yesterday, in fact, two people came up and were like, ‘You guys are so much like Imagine Dragons’—and The Killers.
JA: Someone said Coldplay.
AD: We want to be a band that plays big rooms and big ourselves. It’s sort of silly to say that we’re like The Killers.

KB: What sets AyOH apart from other bands at SXSW?
AD: I mean, we’re really, really, really good looking.
JA: True fact.
AD: I think that what sets us aside is that we’re a family.
AR: We had some pretty nice heart-to-hearts on the drive down here.
AD: The things that men learn on the road.

KB: What the heck do men learn on the road?
JA: We can’t talk about that.

KB: How did you come up with the name for your band?
AD: When we were first just writing songs, we were kind of messing around. There was one song that we really loved that had this refrain of ‘ay oh, ay oh, oooh,’ and we just felt like we could build a band around this song. Then we couldn’t decide on a name, and were just like, ‘We love this song.’

KB: Have y’all been using social media while you have been here?
AD: A lot. We’ve been using it a lot.
AR: Twitter shut down during our showcase yesterday for like three hours. - The University Star


Slick, streamlined and sexy, AyOH‘s Dangerous Questions is best described as the sound of traveling the length of Chicago – by cab, by train or by foot – on a drizzly, desperate evening. Shiny guitars, hovering keys, propulsive rhythms and impassioned vocals that recall the best parts of 80’s new-wave and modern-day electronic-fueled pop hug tightly against references to the Blue Line, and pleas for connection and communication. Citing groups like the 1975, Coldplay and the Killers as immediate influences, the band’s finest hour thus far takes us through a whirlwind of emotions, delivered with such significant precision, that AyOH will soon surely be shoulder-to-shoulder with those same musical greats.
It’s quite remarkable too, how the core members of the band came together from all corners of the world, and what they each bring to the table, to create a sound that can be described as above. A native of Pittsburgh, vocalist/guitarist Avi Dell credits his stint in the Israeli army as a touchstone for songwriting inspiration. Thailand native and bassist Lin Takrudtong headed up the production of the group’s stark, moving music video for “Help Me,” one of several radio-ready gems from the EP. Drummer John Paul Arrotti’s Nashville session work allowed him to connect with rising talent Lilly Hiatt (daughter of American Music Award winner and world-famous songwriter John), who guests here on the sweet, folk-tinged title track. And with the recent addition of guitarist Austin Russell, the group is more powerful than ever. “The first EP was mostly just solo work that we adapted to the band,” says Dell. “The new collection of work is much more of a reflection of us as a unit, both musically and lyrically. Everyone had played a much larger roll in bringing these songs to life. We actually made every step of the way pretty democratic.”
Working again at Transient Sound Studio in Lakeview with Steven Gillis of Filter fame, the group started the framework for Dangerous Questions almost two years ago. Though pulsing with human experiences – be they joyous as on the celebratory “Shout Shout” or regretful like with the break-up epic “Lion to the Lamb” – much of the strength of Questions lies in spotless programming choices and how they interact with live instrumentation and goosebump-creating vocals. Dell cites this method as being “a very deliberate move for us,” putting all of Transient Sound’s abilities to the test. Using “dozens of microphones and hundreds of takes, we then matched all of those takes with MIDI programming and tracks to create a natural and technological hybrid. We wanted to bridge the organic and synthetic seamlessly, and it was a huge undertaking.”
The EP is all the better for the immense effort Dell mentions, with driving rockers like “Say It Anyway” coming across as both sprawling and tense, and closing cut “Save You” aiming for the rafters while still creating a type of gorgeous intimacy that’s nearly unheard from a group that has yet to become a household name. With such a dynamic palette, it’ll be thrilling to watch AyOH grow into the studio and touring giant that they’re destined to become. Releases such as Dangerous Questions don’t come along often, locally or otherwise, so those unfamiliar currently are best suited to get in on the ground floor.
The band will celebrate the new EP with a performance at Chicago’s renowned Metro. Details here. - Radio One Chicago


AyOH recently announced that they will be performing at Metro on November 8th with Out For Hours, Meagan Hickman, North of Eight and MG Bailey. The band is releasing their latest EP, Dangerous Questions, which features the new track "Help Me".

They entire EP is radio ready and AyOH is poised to be the next big thing coming out of Chicago. - The Deli


Their sound is reminiscent of Coldplay and The Killers… In this podcast, Nick Digilio welcomes the guys from Ayoh. They’ll be performing songs from their new EP this Saturday, November 8th at the Metro. - WGN Radio


Kristen from A Beer with the Band: Your EP, Dangerous Questions, came out February 24. Previous to the record, you released an EP Take it to the People, which you mentioned was mostly solo stuff. How did you navigate that creative process — moving from solo material to a full-band sound?

Avi from AyOH: It happened naturally. It was what we wanted it to be. I know I said in a few interviews that Take it to the People was solo material, but it really was a collaborative thing. It was just composed of original ideas that predated the band.



Kristen: In terms of songwriting?

Avi: In terms of song writing, yeah. And then once we were in the band, in the thick of it playing shows and recording demos, we were constantly writing. It’s crazy. Every rehearsal we’ve got a new song to work on, and there’s so much to do. We needed a record that could keep up with that, and recording Dangerous Questions was a result of all of that team work.



Kristen: Do you still serve as the primary songwriter/lyricist or has it become a more collaborative process?

Avi: I still think of myself as the main lyricist of the band, but even that is beginning to get grey because we’re all together so much. We’re playing so much that we’re constantly influencing and changing ideas. John has really stepped up in his writing capacity, so on a lot of the new album, John really came to the forefront in terms of writing great musical movements.

John from AyOH: Yeah, that being said, I do not write lyrics. When I met Avi, it was like a godsend. I thought, “Finally. Someone that I can show a song to, and he’s going to accept it, not be egotistical about it, get excited, and write lyrics to it.” Lyric writing is one of those things where that talent just blows my mind. I don’t know how people do it. Songwriting, on the other hand, comes easy to me. I sit down at a piano and mess around and if something sounds cool, I keep working on it. Musicians, and especially songwriters, can be very egotistical people. There’s this mindset of, “No, this is my song. Don’t touch it,” or “I don’t want to work on a song you wrote. Avi —and the rest of the band — are the complete opposite. I’m by far the hardest to work with and the most stubborn. It’s just so much easier to write great songs when it’s so easy to work with these guys.

Avi: When it’s collaborative, yeah.



Kristen: I think a lot of times, too, there’s a personal attachment to creative work. And that’s when ego gets in the way. People are too proud of what they’ve done to let it go.

John: Well, you get super attached to these things. You write something, you’re so excited about it, and then you show it to these people who are like brothers to you and they’re like, “Eh, it’s all right.” And you think, “What the fuck! This is amazing. What are you talking about?” It’s really hard, but we get around it. Something Avi emphasized early on was that if we don’t like something, instead of simply saying “no,” we say, “Okay, well how can we change it? How can we make it so that the four of us do love it? We never just throw a song out.



Kristen: Were there any particular tracks on the record that you stuck with and worked through and they ended up surprising you?

Lin from AyOH: I think the track that surprised me the most was “Shake Down.” It ended up wholly different from when we started the writing process and performed it in the early days. We worked with Steve Gillis in the studio, and he really helped shape and mold that song into what it is right now. I have to admit that I love this new version we have on the record so much. Originally, I hated that song…

Avi: You were so against it.

Lin: I was because I loved the original version of “Shake Down” the way we originally did it. It was one of my favorite songs that we played. But as it turns out, with the recording process and how Steve shaped it and turned it into a song with a more electronic feel to it, and it turned out amazing. I think that’s my song that surprised me really in a really positive way.

John: “Lion to the Lamb” also went through a lot of changes. The original version of the song had a completely different chorus, and it was one of those things where we showed Steve, our producer, and he said, “This song is amazing. That chorus is not happening.” Which, when that happens, you’re kind of like, “Okay, now what?” When we scrapped the chorus, I sat down at the piano, and the guys stood around it and we literally wrote a chorus together. It was the first time that ever happened, which was awesome. It ended up being this amazing chorus, so for me, that song really, really transformed and really took its shape through the recording process. What’s on Dangerous Questions is nowhere near what I heard when I wrote that song.



Kristen: How did you find Steve to begin with, and what led you to work with him?

John: I had just moved back from Nashville and had interned at a studio there and loved it. I got up here and decided I wanted to keep doing that. One of my buddies was in the middle of talking with Steve about possibly doing a record with him, and Steve had just finished building Transient Sound, which is this gorgeous studio up north. My buddy said, “You should give this guy Steve a call. You guys will totally get along. He’s an amazing drummer. He used to be the drummer for Filter. You guys would totally hit it off.” So I called him. He was such a nice guy and was so receiving. So I interned there for over a year, and Steve and I became very good friends. I eventually moved on and I stopped working there, and that’s about when I met Avi. A number of months later, I reached out to Steve, letting him know that Avi and I were getting a band together and wanting to get a few songs recorded. And Avi, tell me if you think differently, but I feel like he was pretty skeptical about it.



Kristen: He was probably sizing you up.

John: He was like, “Uh, why don’t you guys come on in some night and show me…” And of course, the night we went in, Avi was so sick, he had no voice. Do you remember that? We were like, “Fuck, what should we do?” And somehow the genius of Steve came through. He said to Avi, “Listen, dude, you sound like shit, but I can tell just by watching you sing that you’re an amazing singer.” That’s the genius of Steve Gillis, you know what I mean? He was like, “I love these songs. Let’s do it.”

Avi: I’m glad you reminded me of that story. In the arts, people are creative so they’re often flaky. So many times there are excuses. Everyone’s got an excuse: “I don’t feel well. This isn’t good for me. I can’t do this.” At that point, John and I were still very young in our relationship, and so much about a band is trusting each other in the moment, right? Steve had cancelled on us once, and we had rescheduled. This time, Steve was going to make 30 minutes for us. This guy: he was a hero of mine, the drummer of Filter, and the idea that I was going to meet him and play him a song…And here I am, I wake up the next morning, and my throat is gone. No voice. And I’m sitting there thinking, “Should I call John right now and cancel? Or should I just fucking bite the bullet, go in there and just sing?”



Kristen: Because you knew maybe the next time, he might flake out again.

Avi: Exactly. And I think the fact that I showed up and that we took the song as far as it was able to go…Steve saw that in us.



Kristen: Yeah, I interviewed a band earlier this month who said that the two most important things in music are number one — show up — and number two — say “yes” to opportunities, which makes a lot of sense. What are your general thoughts on the Chicago music scene?

John: I don’t have anything bad to say about Chicago. I’m not trying to rip on Nashville at all — Nashville is an amazing city and it’s a very cool place to be a musician — but having recently moved back from there, I really don’t like how things have evolved down there.



Kristen: How has it evolved?

John: Everyone’s a musician, so it’s just a huge battlefield. Everyone is fighting each other, you know what I mean? Because of that, everything is pay to play. You pay to play shows down there. You don’t get asked to play shows down there, because everyone is fighting to get in every venue down there. So when I got up here, I thought, “This is amazing.” There are so many venues, so many music fans and so many opportunities. And up here, if you play, you’re a good band, and you bring people out, you get paid for that. That being said, Chicago is a big city and there’s so much going on that it’s hard to get people to give you a chance.
Kristen: It’s hard enough for me to get my friends to meet me for a drink on Friday night, you know what I mean? Everyone’s got so much shit going on, so I feel like in any major market, that’s the case for live music.

John: For sure.

Avi: I also feel like a lot of the industry that was here in the ‘90s has kind of been driven out. A lot of the record labels and the opportunities that could’ve existed would have been really nice at this point… But the truth of the matter is: we’ve made it happen. We’ve made everything happen, and we’re doing fine. It’s been good and I’m happy about it.



Kristen: That’s risky business. Final question for you guys: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

John: This is super cliché, but I was a music major in college, and I had an amazing drum professor. He taught me so much and really shaped the way I look at music and the way I see being a musician as a profession. I’ve known since middle school that I wanted to play music for a living and I needed to figure out some way to make money doing it. So I asked him all the time for advice on that, and I remember him telling me this: “The second that playing music feels like a job, you need to change something.” Not change your profession, but change what you’re doing musically. The best musicians in the world are the ones that would rather be playing music than anything else. That’s how fun it is to them. The second it becomes like a job, you need to change the music you’re playing, start doing some other things on the side. You need to make it fun again, or else you’re going to go straight downhill real quick, you know? Luckily, I have not hit that point.



Kristen: I was going to ask: have you hit that point yet?

John: No, no, it doesn’t feel anywhere near like a job to me, but I’m sure it’s eventually going to hit me. I’m going to wake up one day and think, “I really don’t want to go play this show.” And then I’m going to be like, “Fuck! I need to change something!” I always try and remember that, because when it does happen, there’s not a chance I’m going to stop playing music, so I’m going to have to figure something out.

Avi: When I was in fourth or fifth grade, I was in the car with my mom and we were driving home from school. I was complaining about some girl in my class who kept telling the same story and it was annoying. I feel like a lot of people would’ve said, “Well, then stay away from her,” or “That’s the kind of person you shouldn’t be friends with.” But instead, she said, “Listen, Avi, I’m going to teach you something that’s going to shake your world.” She was like, “I love you more than anyone on this earth. I put you on this earth. No one will ever love you as much as I love you in the way that I love you. And I don’t care about what you have to say as much as you do. That little girl in school wants to share this information because it’s important to her, and she can do that, and other people in the world will continue to do that. But I want you to remember this: no one on earth cares about what you have to say as much as you do.” She wasn’t trying to make me feel like what I had to say was unimportant, but it was sort of the lesson of: “Figure out how to make people care. Unless you do that, no one will care what you have to say, or what you think, or what you have to share.” And it’s true. It’s totally true. Nobody cares what you have to say.



Kristen: Do you think making music was a way for you to get people to care?

Avi: That’s a really good question. Probably. I was the youngest of four, and all three of my older sisters — one just outshined the next. They’re incredibly wonderful and successful people. They set the bar really high, but it was all for good, because it caused me to choose a path that they hadn’t chosen. For me, music became an outlet of just wanting to tell stories.

Lin: I think one of the best things my dad taught me was to never cut corners. You need to work through it, even if you take the longer path, and it’ll be more satisfying. It’ll be more rewarding at the end.

Austin: What comes straight to mind for me is: don’t have a plan B. If music is something you want to do, you have to invest in that 110 percent. And if you try to set yourself up to say that, “If I fail, I can just do this instead,” ultimately, you’re a lot more likely to fail, because you’re essentially expecting that. If you want to do music as a career, which is something I’m really striving for, that’s what you have to put everything into.
Kristen: Let’s do a series of “Who in the band would be most likely to…” questions. Who in the band would most likely get into a fight at a bar?

John: Avi.



Kristen: Avi?

John: Probably Avi.

Lin: I’d say me, for sure.

Austin: Depends on how many drinks Lin’s had. I’ve been with Lin before when he’s had a few too many and says, “Should I go fight that guy? That guy keeps looking at me. Do I have to go fight that guy?”

Lin: I’m like, “You got my back, right?”

Austin: Oh, yeah. He comes to me like, “If I go push that guy, you got my back, right?”



Kristen: So only if you have back up support would you enter into a fight. How about this: who in the band would be most likely to strike up a conversation with a random person at the bar?

Lin: Austin.

John: Well, that’s Avi’s profession.

Austin: Yeah, that’s Avi’s main role in this band. “Go talk to people. Go make something happen.”



Kristen: Who in the band would be most likely to fix your van if it broke down?

Avi: Probably John.

Austin: Definitely John.

John: No, I’d look it up online. I’d be like, “No, this cost three hundred dollars, I’ll go get it for fifteen.” I won’t pay for anything that I can pay for myself. I refuse.



Kristen: That’s a good thing. Who in the band would be most likely to…

John: I feel like I’m in middle school right now.



[Everyone laughs]



Kristen: Who is most likely to work out the next morning after having a heavy night of drinking?

John: Avi. Avi would do seven hours of yoga.

Avi: I do love yoga. I do about three to four hours a day.

John: His main goal down at SXSW is to organize a yoga class.

Lin: The problem is this, he wears these super short shorts. Can’t do downward dog in those things. - A Beer With The Band


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

"AyOH is poised to be the next big thing coming out of Chicago."

- The Deli Chicago

"Could be as big as Train or even The Killers"

-Entertainment Rocks

"AyOH has that likability that makes you wonder why they're not constantly on the radio yet."

-Up To Tempo

Slick, streamlined and sexy, AyOH is best described as the sound of traveling the length of Chicago – by cab, by train or by foot – on a drizzly, desperate evening.  With shining guitars, hovering keys, propulsive rhythms and impassioned vocals, AyOH's sound recalls the best parts of 80’s new-wave and modern-day electronic-fueled pop rock. Citing groups like Coldplay, Kings of Leon and the Killers as immediate influences, the band is always looking for new ways to develop their craft.

It’s quite remarkable how the core members of the band came together from all corners of the world, and what they each bring to the table. With singer Avi Dell, originating from Pittsburgh, bassist and Thailand native Lin Takrudtong, and local Chicago drummer John Arrotti, the band quickly got off its feet during the early stages. With the addition of Seattle guitarist Austin S. Russell, the group is more powerful than ever.

After debuting singles from their new EP Dangerous Questions on news outlets such as Myspace, PureVolume and Diffuser.fm, AyOH set off to play shows across the country. This included Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Texas, Pennsylvania and recently New York for CMJ 2015. With many exciting plans in the works, AyOH is on a massive upswing that won't be slowing down anytime soon.

Band Members