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New Friends<\/h1> <\/div>\n <\/div>\n <\/div>\n
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Canadian indie-pop act New Friends went viral with the very first song they ever recorded, \u201cPurple Candy,\u201d when they were practically strangers \u2014 now at 5.5 million streams and counting \u2014 scattered to their respective homes during covid, recorded and released more songs, then won Slaight Music\u2019s life-changing It\u2019s Your Shot contest. The resulting EP, Camaro<\/em>, was recorded with the $100,000 studio and promotion prize.
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\n\u201cOur superpower is that all four of us are different and our influences so different that going into a recording session, everyone\u2019s coming into it with a completely different musical background. Our thing is to bring that nostalgia for bands we loved growing up into our sound,\u201d says bassist Conrad Galecki, \u201cciting such varied sources as Coldplay, Snow Patrol, The Fray, Arctic Monkeys, and COIN.
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\nThe seven-song EP includes the first single, \u201cDoomed,\u201d New Friends\u2019 \u201ctake on the varied MuchMusic Dance Mix compilations from the 2000s,\u201d says Conrad; la-la-loaded \u201cRicochet,\u201d which he calls \u201cour alternative rock-pop love child,\u201d and the simple \u201cno interpretation\u201d pop song \u201cWaste My Time.\u201d All three singles are part of the band\u2019s self-discovery to a distinct sound after such instant, unexpected success.
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\n\u201c\u2019Purple Candy\u2019 was our first song and was doing big numbers, we didn\u2019t really have much time to soul-search musically and lyrically,\u201d says Conrad of the 2018 single. \u201cThat\u2019s the old us, still green and adolescent, soft and gentle, but the new songs have a lot of attitude we didn\u2019t get to express earlier.\u201d
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\nNew Friends \u2014 comprised of players from all over Southern Ontario, lead singer Stefan Boulineau (Windsor), guitarist Cole Wilson (St. Thomas), keyboardist\/lead writer Ayden Miller (Orillia), and Conrad (Waterloo) \u2014 have experienced success at breakneck speed, landing L.A. management and a top booking agent. They played their first show in November, 2021.
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\n\u201cAyden wrote \u2018Purple Candy\u2019 in his dorm room our first year at Fanshaw College for music industry arts,\u201d recounts Conrad, \u201cbut he\u2019s not a singer or producer. He knew that Cole was interested in producing so he asked him to produce a demo of the song. The only person that performed thus far in the program was Stefan, so he sang it, and then we released it, and shortly after that we started working on more and more music.
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\n\u201cThe first eight months it hit 100,000 streams very slowly, and the one day it got 7000 and it didn\u2019t stop during the pandemic. It just kept going up and up. So between the very beginning of the pandemic to now it got 5.5 million streams and that was all organic. We made music in our dorm rooms and then moved out and made music in our living rooms instead.\u201d
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\nAfter graduating in 2020, with a degree and a band, their instructor Mike Roth, a former A&R exec, suggested New Friends enter 2021\u2019s It\u2019s Your Shot<\/em> contest operated by his music industry colleague Derrick Ross at Slaight Music. They filled in the form, submitted a new song, \u201cComing Back For You,\u201d and forgot about it, says Conrad. \u00a0\u201cEight months passed and nothing, and then we got a phone call, \u2018Remember that thing you submitted for?\u2019\u00a0 \u2018No, sorry we submitted for so many.\u2019 Well, you won $100,000 in prizes.\u201d
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\nNew Friends had already recorded with producer Brad Delson, Grammy-winning guitarist of Linkin Park, and after the It\u2019s Your Shot win, they were able to work with even more outside producers including Finger Eleven drummer and Arnold Lanni prot\u00e9g\u00e9 Steve Molella (Stuck On Planet Earth, Gus, Kayla Diamond), and TV\/film composer Brian Rivlin. They also self-produced a couple of the songs, and co-wrote for the first time with a handful of outside writers. But mostly, it\u2019s the four of them.
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\n\u201cWhen we\u2019re in a room together and someone brings up a topic all of us have experienced in some way, we try and make it so that all our voices are heard in the lyrics,\u201d says Conrad. \u201cWe all go through the same things, especially growing up. We want to tell our honest stories of really good moments and tough moments and put them in our songs.\u201d
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\nEven though it\u2019s been a few years now since Stefan, Ayden, Cole and Conrad really were new friends, the discovery has not ended.
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\n\u201cThe name New Friends was very simple at the beginning because none of us knew each other very well, but we kind of fell in love with learning about each other, with one thing holding us together, which was the band. Because of that one thing, we got locked down and we were forced to reveal our truths and our secrets.\u201d<\/p>\n<\/div><\/div><\/div> <\/div>\n