In honor of the 10-year anniversary of the Jonas Brothers' breakout self-titled album (their first with Hollywood Records), we're celebrating with a week full of JoBros features for our readers. This exclusive interview originally ran in its entirety in a 2007 issue of Life Story.
Although they have warm things to say about their experience with Columbia Records on their first CD, the Jonas Brothers admit that they feel much more at home at Hollywood Records, where they have released their self-titled follow-up. As Kevin explains it, the entire process itself was different between discs one and two.
"The first record took us, like, a year and a half to make,” Kevin says. “The second one took 21 days, including weekends. It was one of the best experiences. We were there recording and were involved from the first beat of the drum and the first time something was put on tape, right through to the end. From start to finish it was an awesome experience.”
Kevin and his brothers Joe and Nick reflect on The Jonas Brothers, going through the disc with J-14 track-by-track.
Nick Jonas: A song that I wrote out of some personal experiences; things that I went through that were kind of tough, but everything worked out. It was really cool that I was able to write the song, came back from what happened and it was finished very quickly. I always write better songs when I have a strong inspiration for them, and for this song I really had a strong inspiration.
Kevin Jonas: My favorite song on the record. Nicholas wrote this one by himself. He had gone through a bad night and had a hard time, and he ended up putting it into this song. It’s very dancey, has a fun beat to it and it’s a good time.
Joe Jonas: We love dance music and we were glad we could put it into a song. It’s a song about kind of being dissed by a girl — say she doesn’t show up for dinner or doesn’t call you — and it hurts more than she knows. Sounds heavy, but it’s upbeat.
NJ: That was one of the first songs that we wrote for the new record. It’s just a really good song, people really like it and it’s a good arena rock song that people go crazy for when they hear it.
KJ: This was the first single off the record, and I think it was the first song that really captured the transition from the first album to this one. First there was “Kids Of The Future” — that was the really evolutionary song — but this was our song that we wrote, and people heard what we wanted to say.
JJ: You could be in any situation, but you’re holding on because you don’t want to give up on love. Say you’re in a terrible situation, you can always find the light if you look hard enough.
KJ: An amazing song. It’s a break-up song that we definitely wanted to put out there. Actually, Nick said it best when he said when he wants to break up a girl, he just wants to say, “Peace. I’m out of here.” So the song captures that moment when you’re done with a crazy relationship.
JJ: An awesome, fun song. Definitely the most musical song we have on the album with a lot going on. We wrote it so fast and had a great time. It was a crazy experience in the studio writing it because there was a lot of drumming and guitaring.
NJ: I think that’s a good song. It’s something that everybody goes through that when they’re going through a breakup and you’re just saying goodbye and getting ready to move on.
NJ: Just a cool song about hanging out with your friends and having a good time. It’s pretty much the theme song to our life. I think everybody has some times when they need to go a little crazy, and that’s what this one’s about.
KJ: A very fun, outgoing and weird song with strange lyrics. I mean, “There’s a whale in the pool with my mother?” We were, like, “What is that?” Definitely a summertime, going crazy song.
JJ: Another kind of “Year 3000”-ish song that we wrote. Everyone has dreams and things like that, and it’s just funny. This song allowed us to just go crazy.
NJ: A song that we wrote while we were on the road. It’s also from personal experiences, and I think we turned it into a really good song.
KJ: When we wrote this, we knew that it would stay acoustic. It just needs to be that way, and the girls really seem to like it.
JJ: Similar to “Please Be Mine.” It’s an acoustic song and it’s one where we played it live, simply. We wrote it on tour and it’s about missing a girl while you’re on tour and all you want is to get on a plane and fly to her.
JJ: This one’s about a breakup, but you still have feelings for that person. Even when they might have moved on, you’re still stuck in that situation remembering when everything was fun.
KJ: This is an amazing song. While we were recording another song, we started to write this one. We found our niche and really went to another place with this song. We wanted to talk about how this girl left and she wants to be gone from you’re life, but you’re still in love with her, you can’t get over her and you want her back really back. We’ve all felt that way before and we wanted to write a song about it.
NJ: One of my favorite songs that we’ve recorded. It’s purely about when you break up with someone, you find that you’re still in love with that person and want to get back together with them.
NJ: Kind of a funny song we wanted to write, as the title, says, about Australia. Originally our dad said, “You’re going to have to rewrite that to make it more neutral,” but our A&R guy was more, like, “I love that whole Australia thing. I want to keep that,” which was fine with us because we thought it was pretty awesome.
JJ: We love Australian accents — especially me, and if a girl has an accent (doesn’t matter which kind), I’m probably in love with her.
KJ: We wanted to write something obscure and funny, and this song really found its way into our hearts and we really love it. We all love accents and we always wanted to go to Australia, so it’s a funny song and the beat is amazing. It has a ripping guitar solo.
NJ: This was actually a song that we wrote with three band members, and it’s a really good one. In the studio we were recording it and that whole Reggae-ish type Police-feel was in there. The song was really inspired by [the band] the Police. We wanted to make that song a little different from the rest of the record. We were listening to a few Police songs and we said, “Let’s do it like that.” So we recorded it and added that whole Reggae vibe to it.
KJ: We wrote this on our first tour with Jesse McCartney, like two and a half years ago. We wrote it with our band and it’s a really awesome song. We had a really good time doing it.
JJ: A really fun song to record with a lot of reggae feel put into it.
NJ: That was written a long time ago, originally for my solo record. But since that didn’t happen, we reworked it so that it would better fit with our sound. A really great song and people seem to love it.
KJ: This is one of the songs we wrote very early on. We were working with John Fields and he’s known for big rocked-out power ballads, and it worked out so well that we knew we had to have it on the album no matter what.
JJ: It’s a song about what happens when a girl looks you in the eyes and you just know that everything is going to be okay. It’s an amazing feeling.
NJ: Just a really, really good song. I think that everybody once in a while has those long distance relationships, and that’s really what this song is about: promising to do anything to work it all out.
KJ: An energetic love song and it says that even though I’m far away from you, you should know I really care about you and I want you to be here with me.
JJ: One of the most rocking songs on the record, and it’s a song about being thousands of mile away from that person, whoever it may be, and there’s nothing that can break them. It’s the love conquers distance kind of thing.
NJ: I know that I’ve said this many times, but this is one of my favorite songs as well. It’s a really good song about that group of friends where there’s a guy and a girl who are just good friends, but one of them is actually madly in love with the friend but can never admit it, because it would be awkward. But they always dream of having that life in the future where they’re together and in love. It’s a pretty cool song and I think people really connect with it, because everybody has had that kind of person in their lives.
KJ: We wrote this song about growing up, knowing that you’re in love with someone but also realizing that you’ll never be in a relationship, but then one day it happens and you know it was meant to be.
JJ: You’re carrying a secret love for a friend and you act like everything’s cool, even though it isn’t.
KJ: Truthfully, this song was inspired by the fact that we were going to a new label and it was the beginning of a new chapter in the Jonas Brothers’ life.
NJ: This was a song that we wrote after “Year 3000” started to do well everywhere. We had finally found somewhere we belong here at Hollywood Records, which is a pretty cool thing.
JJ: We wrote it about our new label, and it was about our new situation, transitioning from Columbia Records over to Hollywood Records.
NJ: A song that was originally done by Kim Wildes as “Kids Of America.” We remade it for the Meet The Robinsons soundtrack CD. We reworked it to “Kids Of The Future” to more fit in with the movie, and it was just this really cool, fun song. We open up our show with it now and people really love it.
JJ: It definitely makes us happy that one day you’ll be able to go through the Disney library and find that song there.
KJ: Definitely a huge step for us. We loved it and we felt that the video for the song looked awesome and it made people really connect with us.
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