Scarlet Grey
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Scarlet Grey

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF
Band Rock Pop


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Scarlet Grey @ Monto Water Rats

London, None, United Kingdom

London, None, United Kingdom

Scarlet Grey @ Monto Water Rats

London, None, United Kingdom

London, None, United Kingdom

Scarlet Grey @ The Green Door Store

Brighton, England, United Kingdom

Brighton, England, United Kingdom

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



Los Angeles band Scarlet Grey has gone from practical obscurity to being a well-known name here at the KROQ studios since we started playing the song “The Sky And I” this month on Locals Only. And after only three weeks it’s already shot up to #1 thanks to the band’s dedicated fans calling in with requests!

Now everyone can find out what all the hype is about on Friday, January 7th at the KROQ Locals Only Showcase at the Roxy. Scarlet Grey will be playing, along with Assemble the Skyline, Red Light Sky, Goodnight Sunrise, 5606 and Justin Tyler. It should be a fun night jam-packed with great music from SoCal bands!

Scarlet Grey released its first album, Black, only in 2008, but the band has attracted a ton of fans and become a strong online presence since then. 2010 has been a good year for Scarlet Grey – its newest album, Fancy Blood, came out this past summer, plus the band toured with AFI from March to June. -

Printed in Digital Format - Please See URL - Music Connection Magazine

Scarlet Grey is a hard working band who are really beginning to become noticed outside of the cynical City Of Angels music scene. They’ve been touring as a support band to AFI, gaining fans well beyond the confines of their hometown. Two AFI members participated with the making of Scarlet Grey’s latest EP, which is entitled Fancy Blood. In addtion to playing a local date on the Warped Tour, Scarlet Grey was the subject of a filmed documentary. One of the most underrated bands in our local LA scene today, we decided to send some questions to lead vocalist Ben Grey to find out more about their spirited dark pop rock and roll…
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Scarlet Grey, and how long the band has been together.
My name is Ben Grey and I’m the singer of Scarlet Grey. The band had been together for about 4 years or so.
What do you think of the state of the local Los Angeles music scene, and how does Scarlet Grey fit into the scheme of things.
L.A. is really paradoxical because it’s the place every band wants to end up, but the last place you want to be from. Things are so spread out here, it’s almost impossible to create any sort of scene. Not only are you competing with every other band but there’s also the club world, movies, bars etc… There are a million options for people and it’s extremely difficult to try and get people to a rock show. It feels almost like an ancient practice. Having said that, I think Scarlet Grey fits in because we absolutely don’t. We’ve had a successful fan-base with kids choosing us over those other things for a while now because I think they identify with not fitting in. Truly loving live music in Los Angeles has actually become a real niche thing and that’s really scary. So we play for those people because we are those people.
Is there any story or concept behind the title of the EP Fancy Blood.
‘Fancy Blood’ is a term our family used to use to describe somebody who was different… ‘that kid has fancy blood.’ It started to resonate with me recently in regards to our band. We have never felt more different from other bands in the scene then we do right now. We feel like our sound, even though it’s overtly pop, is the outsider. So this record is an embracing of that feeling and a love letter to the underground.
No Boys In The Ballroom sounds like a hit you’ll be playing for years to come. Where did you get the idea for the lyrics for that song?
Thanks man… No Boys in the Ballroom was a knee-jerk reaction to our own frustrations within the scene and essentially our place in the music landscape. At the time, we were crafting a record which we still have never released called “No Boys in the Ballroom.” The idea was that we had been creating this real music for people for so many years and we still had not had our quote on quote, big dance. We were frustrated that nobody let us in to the places where we felt our music belonged. So we decided to craft an anthem in protest of buzz art. The song is pretty raucous and basically a big ‘fuck you’ to the people who wouldn’t book us, our friends who stopped supporting us, the bands who we thought disrespected the craft etc… I still harbor a lot of these feelings and every time we play it, I get pretty worked up.
Who is Mr. Sinister?
Mr. Sinister is the fictional manifestation of everyone I hate and everything I hate about myself. Of course I couldn’t fit everything into a single song, so I’m sure at some point there will be a part Mr. Sinister part two. It’s pretty funny that the lyrics for the song are so dark and foreboding and the song is so upbeat and melodic. That’s always been a writing dynamic I’ve fallen into… so dark and so major and melody heavy… I guess it has something to do with listening to a lot of Misfits.
How did AFI become involved with the recording of Fancy Blood and where did you meet them?
I kinda just asked them. I met Davey about two years ago and we became fast friends. About a year after that, he asked me to sing vocals on ‘Crash Love,’ which was a huge honor for me… And as big of a deal as that was, it should have been expected that while we were making ‘Fancy Blood’ that I would ask him to return the favor haha. So I wrote a part for him on “The Sky and I.” He came in, sang it and it’s really special. I can’t imagine the song without him on it now.
As for Jade… I sent him the song “Fancy Blood” while AFI was in Japan. We had messed around with some electronic stuff before, so I knew how prolific he was and what an electronic master he was. He sent it back four days later with some flat out brilliant arrangements. It really took that track to another level. It’s completely surreal that these guys would want to be a part of our little record. It’s blowing my mind even writing this.
Your been on tour with AFI and are about to go out again with them. How did the shows go and how did AFI’s fans take to your music?
The shows were really great. I mean we were nervous, because you never know how a fan-base as devout as The Despair Faction is going to react to something new. It’s always a ‘guilty until proven innocent’ thing with new bands, I mean I remember how I used to be when my favorite band would bring along a band I’d never heard of. Luckily for us, the DF was really supportive and embracing of us. It was a privilege to play for them. And I guess it was successful, because AFI asked us out again and moved us up to direct support. I don’t think the high school version of myself would’ve ever believed that was going to happen haha.
What could one expect from a live Scarlet Grey show?
I’m actually having a hard time answering this… I’ve never seen Scarlet Grey live so I don’t know what it’s really like, ya know? I can tell you for us it’s extremely cathardic and if the audience feels, to any degree what we’re feeling at that moment, then justice has been served. We’re trying very hard to create an atmosphere and give people the full realization of the songs we’ve recorded. So I guess if you’ve never seen us before, prepare to be in our world.
What was it like playing the Warped Tour and how did you get on the show?
Playing The Warped Tour was on my bucket list. To be honest, I never really saw Scarlet Grey as a Warped Tour band, not that I even know what that means anymore… but when our friends Sarah and Dean asked us to play a few weeks before the first date, the 15 year-old kid in all of us kicked in and we started losing our minds. We didn’t have a new record and we weren’t touring, so we felt a little strange about simply promoting ourselves and our last record “BLACK” which had been out for a while. But I credit the Warped Tour with kinda putting us back on track… Being a part of that tradition and seeing that response brought back a sense of fun in the band that had been missing for a while. We had just been through some rough stuff and Warped was exactly what the band needed… I also got sunburned.
With so many bands here in Los Angeles, what does one do to stand out above the pack?
I think the reason we’ve been successful is we push for catharsis. It’s very Darwinian out here and to survive you have to create something different. What we’ve done is created family. The Grey Family has taken on a life of it’s own. We’re extremely lucky that we’ve been able to connect with people in a way that transcends normal band/audience relationships. If we didn’t have that, I think we would be finished… no matter how good our songs are.
Who are some other local Los Angeles bands you could recommend?
I think I’ll take this opportunity to celebrate our dear friends’ bands… The music may not be your thing necessarily but we love them all… Junebug. New Years Day. Assemble The Skyline. Seaspin. Oh No Not Stereo. Bullfight. The Photo Atlas. Sequins and Skeletons. Vogue in the Movement. Jail Weddings. Combat!
Tell me about the Scarlet Grey documentary and how that came about. What did you think of the completed movie?
It’s kind of an epic tale haha… These two british filmmakers discovered our band while they were in London, emailed us pitching some ideas about filming us in the spirit of a black and white, late seventies music movie and we were completely into it. SG was right about to go into the studio to do our first full length record and we thought it would be a great time in our careers to have documented. So they flew out and filmed us for about 5 months. We thought it was going to turn out to be a puff piece but it ended up becoming this real movie, which is the last thing we were expecting. It’s really funny and it’s really painful… I mean it’s a real narrative. Looking back, the camera may have been the catalyst for a lot of deep seeded issues within the band, but it also really cleansed us… without it I don’t think we would’ve have ever been able to make something like Fancy Blood.’
However we did finish that full length album, but we still haven’t released it… It’s called “No Boys in the Ballroom.” Maybe one day if the movie ever comes out we will… but there’s a lot of pain associated with that time for me. I’m still not over it. So when Keith and Cole joined the band we decided to make something new immediately. We rewrote a few of the songs from those sessions, added some brand new material and immediately jumped into the studio to make “Fancy Blood” on our own.
So in closing, I will say that the movie is great… I’m biased because I’m so close to it, but it really is something very cool and very special… I’m anxious for people to see us at our most vulnerable.
Do you have any messages for your fans in the Los Angeles area?
I do indeed… I want to say thank you for creating a community and support system for us in a place that typically disapproves of it. You’re rewriting this city and it’s remarkable. - Highwire Daze

“No Boys In The Ballroom” wastes no time in getting this album off to catchy start. In fact, that’s the best way to characterize Fancy Blood; this EP is groove after memorable chorus after groove. The title track is more reserved, but still funky, and “Naomi” has a unique ska/electronica grasp to it that sounds great. Each song offers up something fun and enjoyable, so don’t expect to hear this one without bobbing your head at the very least. Scarlet Grey play smooth, lighthearted rock you’ll easily fall in love with. - Lexington Music Press

We want to introduce you to Scarlet Grey, an unsigned band described as “Pop…with dirt under its nails” who our blogger Michelle – aka Your Music Source, recently conducted an interview with. All questions in the interview were answered by Benjamin Grey. After you learn a little about the band and its influences, check out some of the guys’ music in the HitPredictor jukebox as well and let us know what you think!

Band members:

Benjamin Grey – Lead Vocals/Guitar
Danny Duran – Lead Guitar/Vocals
Pete Emperador – Bass/Vocals
Keith Cooper – Drums
Twitter: @benjamingrey

How did you get started?
Well, I first picked up the guitar in the 6th grade to be able to play in my Dad’s band “Midlife Crisis” to be honest. He wore leather pants, it was crazy. I kicked around in a number of punk bands and it was never really serious until Scarlet Grey started in 2006… It was almost immediate that I knew it was the only band I ever wanted to be in.

Who do you look up to musically?
The Beatles – it’s unbelievable what they did with melody – the staggering creativity and daringness while still maintaining an incredible pop sensibility. They blow my mind… I’m also super into bands from my raucous roots… The Misfits, Green Day, Minor Threat, AFI, Operation Ivy, NOFX etc. And then of course I can’t forget Elvis Costello, Buddy Guy, Joy Division, Metric, Michael Jackson, Bloc Party, Stiff Little Fingers, Rilo Kiley and hundreds of others. Really people who value and push song writing. And I’m big on melody if that hasn’t come across yet haha.

What is your dream venue to play at?
I’ve always dreamed about playing at Shea Stadium, but that’s a pretty tall order. I’ve romanticized playing at the Astoria in London… I basically arbitrarily decided it was the place to play… and until informed otherwise, I’m sticking with it.

What is your favorite song(s) right now?
Favorite song right now is ‘Dominoes’ by The Big Pink.

Any hidden talents?
I’m a chef. I studied in Paris so obviously I specialize in French cuisine/technique, but Cajun/Creole is something I’m also very big on. I was going to be a chef if I wasn’t doing music. I can also hula-hoop really well.

What do your fans mean to you?
Everything. I think we’ve got something pretty cool on our hands. The Grey Family is unlike any other fan base – extremely devoted and close-knit. Most bands have ‘fans,’ but we have family.

Who is your favorite artist(s)?
I’m going to say currently my favorite artist is Bloc Party. Most people think they’re just this dance rock band, but there is real beauty and tragedy in their music. “A Weekend in the City” is an unbelievable album. I also have a lot of love for AFI, but I’m a little biased.

If you could have lunch with anyone dead or alive who would you choose?
Johnny Carson. That guy was brilliant.

How did you feel when you performed your first show?
I was terrified. It was the most uncool show imaginable. We’d had to play a rock and roll version of “Here Comes Santa Claus” for this thing at my Junior High. I was 12. I had a solo. It was intense. Needless to say I nailed it haha. But it funny, the nerves never go away. I’d be worried if they did.

What is your favorite part of the music industry?
The pure parts of it. Luckily we’ve dodged some bullets in regards to falling into the wrong managerial hands or the wrong label. We’ve kept it very DIY for as long as possible. It’s only now that we have to seriously consider outside people for our team. But playing the shows is still pure and amazing. Recording our new record “Fancy Blood” was done completely by us, so that was a totally fresh and great experience. I find whenever we do stuff the results are good. Cross your fingers for us.

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to get into the music industry?
Don’t use live auto-tune. People immediately hate you. Be nice to sound guys, they hold your fate in their hands. Make sure you like the people in your band. Listen to music made before 2008. There’s a lot of great stuff.

Any embarrassing moments on stage?
Not really yet actually haha,I just jinxed myself. The most embarrassing things have actually been some of the places we’ve played. We played a nickel arcade party room last year. It was just like… ‘Coooool. Plug in by the clown?’

What was your most memorable show?
Hmmm, we’ve had some pretty unreal moments, but I’m going to say most memorable one of recent memory is when we played my old high school last December… It was a sense memory situation where I was like ‘Oh my God I’m in front of high school kids just like 2001 when I was a nerd…what am I doing?’ But we did really well and the kids were crazy into it! I felt like I finally conquered my old high school.

Who is your celebrity crush?
Alexa Chung. - Hit Predictor

LA-based rock outfit Scarlet Grey will be joining AFI for a couple tour dates in March. The band will be supporting their new EP Fancy Blood, which will be available exclusively at the shows until its official release in April. Tour dates can be found in the replies. -

Scarlet Grey, a pop rock quartet from Los Angeles just completed their second record titled “Fancy Blood”. Has upcoming tour dates with AFI as well as guest appearances by AFI’s Davey Havokand Jade Puget. Our favorite track is Mr. Sinister. - Kings of A&R

THE STORY SO FAR: Hard-edged L.A. pop act Scarlet Grey stemmed from a blatant lie, according to vocalist/guitarist Ben Grey. “I met [bassist] Pete Emperador when he was a DJ at KXLU 88.9, and he lied to me about playing bass when I asked him to join the band,” says Grey laughing. “I’m still not over it.” After a few short tours, guitarist Cole Martin and drummer Keith Cooper came onboard in 2009, and the quartet immediately began work on their EP, Fancy Blood, which features guest appearances by AFI’s Davey Havok and Jade Puget.
WHY YOU SHOULD KNOW ‘EM: You don’t just fall into collaborations with AFI, and they certainly don’t ask just anyone to tour with them—two things that have come Scarlet Grey’s way thanks to years of paying dues. “We spent years playing extremely small shows, sneaking into recording studios to record and printing our own merch,” says Grey. “The reason we exist now is because we love playing and want to induct as many new members in the Grey family as possible. - Alternative Press


2008 - BLACK (ep)
2010 - FANCY BLOOD ft. the single, "The Sky and I"(ft. Davey Havok)



Assembled from Los Angeles, Long Island, Sacramento, Saint-Jean-de-Luz, France and Frankfurt, Germany, this pop rock quartet consists of Benjamin Grey (lead vocals/guitar), Pete Emperador (bass/vocals), Keith Cooper (drums/vocals), Alix Peters (guitar/vocals) and Richard Shackelford (lead guitar/vocals). 2010 saw the release of their album, “Fancy Blood,” which features vocals from Davey Havok and additional production from Jade Puget of AFI. The record boasts the same signature classic song writing, larger than life melodies and pop resonance that have made Scarlet Grey a Southern California powerhouse and global online presence.

In 2011... Scarlet Grey’s song “The Sky & I” has spent a record 6 weeks at the # 1 spot on KROQ ‘s Locals Only. SG was also named one of Purevolume’s top 10 unsigned bands of 2010 and Ben Grey’s vocals have been featured on AFI’s “Crash Love,” Blaqk Audio’s upcoming release “Bright Black Heaven” and the recently released solo record from Tiger Army’s Nick 13.

The last year has seen Scarlet Grey playing with Weezer, Cold War Kids, The Raveonettes, Rogue Wave, Yellowcard, Cartel, Young the Giant, Rooney, Nico Vega and two back to back US tours with AFI.

Scarlet Grey is currently working on their follow-up to “Fancy Blood” and have just completed production on their new single, “Gone Away Girl” with producer Dave Trumfio (OK GO, Built to Spill, Islands, Wilco, My Morning Jacket) which will be released in the Fall of 2011.

Welcome to the Grey Family.