Kendall Schmidt poses with a giant bowl of spaghetti and meatballs during his visit to Buca di Beppo at Planet Hollywood Times Square on Monday (December 2) in New York City.
The 23-year-old singer took the stage to perform too!
“‘Planet Hollywood’ Had a blast in #NYC yesterday..the show was so much fun! Thanks to everyone for coming.. Next up is Hartford CT #HDWinterTour,” Kendall tweeted.
View more photos at the source below!
Source: Just Jared Jr.
According to Deadline, Kendall’s venture with his solo band Heffron Drive is set to be turned into a feature documentary by producer Garret Grant (Hairspray, Rock of Ages, Justin Bieber: Believe). The doc will follow his 20-city debut tour throughout November and December.
“It’s awesome to have Garret along to document this crazy time in my life,” Kendall said. “It’s scary, it’s new, but it’s a really special moment, debuting Heffron Drive, heading out on tour and reuniting with all the amazing fans. It’s all I’ve ever wanted.”
Source: Just Jared
Did you know that Big Time Rush lead singer and actor Kendall Schmidt is also the front-man for the band Heffron Drive? Awesome! What’s even more cool is that starting on November 23rd, Kendall and Heffron Drive are about to embark on their first-ever US tour!
Celebrity Teen Scoop recently chatted with Kendall about Heffron Drive’s upcoming tour, how “life experiences” and “falling in and out of love” inspire his songs, and what it was like growing up with two brothers who are also actors. He also discussed the future of Big Time Rush!
CTS: Tell us about your new project Heffron Drive. What inspired this project?
Kendall: “The Heffron Drive project is a big of a rehashing, because I first started making tracks for it when I had just turned 18. My buddy, Dustin, and I wrote a lot of the songs for it together and I did a lot of the production. Then Big Time Rush came up and I booked the show, because, of course, when an opportunity like that comes up, you take it. During that time, Heffron Drive sort of went to the side. Now it’s been four or five years since and I have a little bit of free time, so I’m using it to continue my music career.”
CTS: Tell us a little about the type of music you play for Heffron Drive.
Kendall: “Yes! It is going to be a good mix of electro-pop and alt. It’s kind of hard to say anything, because I’ve been writing a bunch of new songs and thinking about where I am going to put the old songs and new songs in the set list. I have to make sure all of the songs sound like they can go together, because I am continuing to come up with a lot of different kinds of songs. I think that’s also what makes it fun. I am trying to make it a fun show for the intimate setting we have at the venues.
For more info on Heffron Drive’s winter tour, Heffron Drive Live, please visit http://hdwintertour.com. ”
CTS: You’re a songwriter at heart. How do you come up with material for new songs?
Kendall: “Life experiences, falling in and out of love, all of that kind of stuff. In writing, I think that it is important to write things that are actually happening to you. There are professional songwriters who are really amazing and talented at what they do, but they write songs every day. I am certain that it might be hard to draw from places of emotion every single day. I am also sure that it will be hard for me at some point, because everyone gets a little bit of writer’s block every once in a while. For me, I usually just end up writing about something that happened to me or something that I am dealing with, and the words just kind of show themselves. The music comes naturally, because I’ve always been able to convey to others my ideas in a musical melody. It usually happens pretty quickly.”
CTS: You’re, of course, also the lead singer of Big Time Rush. How do you plan to balance both bands?
Kendall: “Fortunately, I have a little bit of time. There is some talk of things coming up, but, obviously, I can’t really mention it until it is for sure happening. The fortunate thing about being in music is that there are times to do multiple things at once. I am looking forward to doing Big Time Rush if there are opportunities to be had, and I also look forward to carrying on with Heffron Drive at the same time.”
CTS: Your two brothers (Kenneth and Kevin) are both actors as well. What’s it like growing up in a family of actors? How did you get your start in acting? Do you plan to continue acting now that you will be playing in two bands?
Kendall: “I had the most normal childhood you could have while being in that situation, even though it wasn’t a very normal childhood in the sense that I was constantly running around and going to auditions and my parents were flying back and forth sharing time with us. My childhood was not ‘normal’ in that sense, but I did also play AYSO soccer and Pop Warner Football in Kansas. I grew up there and have my roots there. Growing up out here was sort of the same thing, except that I was meeting a lot of interesting people, some better than others. You grow up, work hard, and hopefully something good happens. After 14 years, something really great happened with Big Time Rush! You just have to work hard and put the time in.
My interest in acting was sparked because my older brother started acting, then my middle brother started acting, and I followed suit. It seemed like the only thing to do and it’s the best way to have fun and be creative. In regard to whether I still plan on acting while playing in two bands, I do plan to. I am twenty three years old, so I feel like I have a lot of time left to do all sorts of things.”
CTS: Tell us what’s going on with Big Time Rush. Any shows or new albums coming up?
Kendall: “There has been a lot of talk about projects going on, and it’s been an interesting time. We’ve been going balls out for like four and a half years, so I think that it is appropriate for us all to take a second to breathe and figure out what we’re going to do. Of course, the fans will be the first people to know our next plans. I think they should be happy though, because everyone is trying to achieve some dreams on their own, and I think that is important. The fans should appreciate the fact that they are going to have four times the fun stuff to look forward to! Carlos is doing a movie and everybody is doing all kinds of projects. I am excited for the future and I think Big Time Rush has a lot of potential to keep doing stuff, and I would love to be a part of it.”
CTS: What do you like to do for fun? Do you have any hobbies? Do you like to spend time with family and friends? Are you close with your brothers?
Kendall: “I love collecting equipment. I don’t know how many artists build their own rigs and stuff, but I’ve been building all my equipment that I take on tour, and I’ve also been assembling it myself. I also went and got a new recording microphone the other day, because when the thing is 30 years old it is going to be so cool it will sound so great. I love collecting vintage gear and stuff like that. In addition, I like horses, horseback riding, going to the range, and doing all the activities that come along with growing up in Kansas. I spend most of my time hanging out with family and friends. I live with my family still, so I spend a lot of time with them. I also like cars, but I don’t collect them.”
CTS: When you were 9 years old and on the set of A.I. (Artificial Intelligence), Steven Spielberg and the cast surprised you with a birthday cake decorated with Star Wars figures. What a cool memory! What was that like?
Kendall: “I don’t remember the last time I saw the video, but someone had filmed a video of it happening. A few years ago, I looked back on the video and I looked so calm and collected. I know it is because I was nine years old and didn’t understand the significance of what was happening. Fortunately, I have very vivid memories that I can look back on without having to watch the video. It was a very cool experience, and I often wonder if he still remembers me. I haven’t tried to make an effort to meet him again. He didn’t do that for everybody and it was so cool. I think he remembers it too, because that was a pretty significant thing to do for someone’s tenth birthday.”
CTS: Do you have any new and exciting projects to tell us about? Where will we see you next?
Kendall: “I am working on music all the time and I’ve been writing a lot. I am excited about having new music for me to listen to in general. I know that sounds funny, but I don’t think anyone hears my songs as much as I do, because I play them a million times to make sure they are perfect. My brother is still working on his major film and I am excited to be a part of it when that comes into fruition. I am busy, busy, busy! There are so many projects. The tour is the next thing I’m thinking about, because it entails a lot of planning in a very short period of time. my mind is pretty focused that.”
Since the end of the popular Nickelodeon TV show “Big Time Rush,” the front man of the teenage boy band with the same name, Kendall Schmidt, has been touring as a member of Heffron Drive with his friend Dustin Belt.
Heffron Drive is about to embark on a winter tour consisting of 21 stops including one at The Orpheum in Ybor City on Nov. 28.
The Oracle spoke with Schmidt to talk about leaving the show, his solo career and life on tour.
The Oracle: How do you want this tour to differ from the ones you’ve done with Big Time Rush?
Kendall Schmidt: I want it to be more intimate where I can make my fans feel like a part of the band and get them more involved. It’s more about a good performance this time instead of all the production.
O: How is the music different?
KS: The music is a little older, and it’s more about what I’ve been going through and my real life experiences; also it’s more relatable.
O: Is it weird performing without the guys from Big Time Rush?
KS: While performing for the last four years, Dustin was playing with them, so it’s not as drastic as it would be. But it is a bit nerve wracking.
O: Do you feel more vulnerable performing your own music?
KS: I’m nervous just talking about it. I just really want people to like it.
O: What inspired your solo career?
KS: My influence in music and the evolution of my song writing. Also, just bringing Heffron Drive back from the past.
O: Where do you see your solo career taking you?
KS:: I’d like to play a lot more shows in bigger venues. This time I’m in small venues with no production, so it’s relying on my music just being good.
O: Are you afraid that your Big Time Rush fans may not follow you or approve of your split?
KS: I’m still with Big Time Rush; it’s not over just because the TV show had a time limit. We couldn’t be 40 and on Nick. Now we just have the time to be our creative selves, and our music should carry us on. Our fans got us where we are now, I’m hoping they’ll support me and I’ll gain some new ones along the way.
O: What are you looking forward to on your tour?
KS: I love to travel, so I’m excited to be on the road again. Plus, I get to play my new songs and meet new people.
O: Besides the songs you’ve already released as Heffron Drive, can fans look forward to new music during the tour?
KS: I’m playing some new stuff, and I’m even playing things that I’m writing at the moment.
O: For those who may not know, can you describe what your Heffron Drive tour will entail?
KS: It’s going to be high-energy electro-pop. But the show is also going to be really intimate. I’m going to get to talk to people in the crowd, point at them and sing to them. It’s going to be really interactive.
Kendall’s live chat from Huffington Post!
Originally aired on November 6, 2013
Hello lovlies! Yesterday, I had the chance to interview the one and only Kendall Schmidt of Big Time Rush and Heffron Drive over the phone (figures my first interview in nearly two years WOULD be with my celebrity crush. Do you see why I was so nervous now?). On November 23rd, Heffron Drive is kicking off their FIRST EVER United States tour with opening acts Ariana & The Rose and Eric Dash! To get a feel of what this tour would be about, this interview happened:
How would you describe Heffron Drive’s music to those who have never listened to it before?
Kendall: “I’d say it’s a mix of electro and pop. It all depends on the song, the formula of it and how it comes out. I really just love making music and genre wise, it’s definitely electro/pop, but I guess we’ll find out! The best way to determine that is when the new music comes out, because the stuff we have for Heffron Drive was made a few years ago and the new music is definitely going to be an evolution of that.”
So when are you releasing new stuff?
Kendall: “Hopefully coming up early next year! It’s really just depends, because I’ve got a pretty crazy schedule.”
Are we going to hear any of this on the tour?
Kendall: “Absolutely! I can’t release any music right now, but I can play it live, so that’s what I’m going to do. Hopefully, the songs stream well through live performance and people can actually really enjoy the songs before hearing it on the actual CD.”
You were in Germany earlier this year. Was that your first time performing these songs live?
Kendall: “Yes, absolutely! The Germany trip was the first time that I had played those songs for anybody besides maybe playing at home. It was an amazing experience and I think I was shocked by how much the all the German fans knew the lyrics.”
I know a girl who went to one of the shows!
Kendall: “……. Did she like it? …………”
(HE’S SO CUTE! You don’t need the reassurance, Kendall! You know we love you!)
Oh yeah, definitely! She said she loved it and when she found out that I was seeing you guys, she said that I would definitely enjoy it.
Kendall: “It’s different from that, though, because we did it all acoustic. On this tour, we have a four piece band including me and Dustin. It’s going to be me and DBelt, and a synth player and a drummer. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”
Are these going to be all jumpy, dance-y songs?
Kendall: “Well, yeah. For me, it’ll be easier to play the old songs the way people know them rather than stripping it down acoustically.”
So it’ll be dance-y, but I can’t crowd surf to it.
Kendall: “I mean, hey, I’m not going to say no to crowd surfing! The only thing is there’s a couple small ones in the audience. Other than that though, I may just jump in and start it.”
Well okay then, guess we’re starting a little crowd surfing thing in Philly!
Kendall: “Oh yeah.”
Are you nervous to be performing these songs in the States for the first time?
Kendall: “Absolutely. I don’t think I’m nervous for the actual performing, I think I’m nervous about the assembling of it, just to make sure the show is really great, enjoyable and I hope everybody likes it. That’s probably my main concern. I wouldn’t say I’m a perfectionist, but I don’t want to perform something that I don’t think is amazing. Performing on stage and releasing a song– I wouldn’t want to release a song when it isn’t as great as it could be. I usually have two weeks to rehearse before a tour, but with Big Time Rush, I had to learn choreography, spotting and all of that. With Heffron Drive, I can spend two weeks just playing, rehearsing and figuring out how I want the songs to be structured, what parts I want to present. I guess you can say I’m nervous, actually, about how people are going to take it, how they’re going to like it…”
Aw, so no dance moves?
Kendall: “Well, I mean, I’m going to be shaking my hips! But it’s not like I’m going to bust into any choreography, but I know I’ll be groovin’– that’s for sure.”
(Yes, I did hear Kendall say he’s going to shake his hips. I’m not sure if I’m still alive or not, to be honest.)
Are you more passionate about Heffron Drive’s music or Big Time Rush’s?
Kendall: “That’s tough. I mean, because there’s songs from Big Time Rush that I didn’t write. It’s not that I’m not passionate about it, I just didn’t write them, so there are songs that I had to get into to feel the emotion, but there are some Big Time Rush songs that I wrote like Cover Girl, We Are and Crazy For U, just to name a few, that I absolutely adore and it wouldn’t matter if they were for Big Time Rush or Heffron Drive or another band, or even if I wrote the song for somebody else. I would be just equality as proud, but I will say for Heffron Drive’s music, I don’t really have any restraints as far as how I need to make the song, how it has to sound, lyric content. The music can be more mature. I don’t have to worry about somebody telling me otherwise.”
What can fans expect on this tour?
Kendall: “They can expect it to be more intimate than any Big Time Rush show, and people are definitely going to enjoy that. And I’m going to be playing everything. I really want to try to play guitar for the majority of it. I’m excited to interact with the crowd and talk to everyone– and that’s probably the biggest advantage of playing small venues like these.”
Small venues are definitely better, in my opinion.
Kendall: “Believe me, there’s definitely something exhilarating about playing three sold out shows at Jones Beach, but there’s also something very cool about playing for a few hundred people.”
I never really go to concerts outside of small venues except for a few, including Big Time Rush, so I’m excited to see you play them!
Kendall: “Well I’m excited that you’re excited!”
What I got out of this interview was this: Kendall Schmidt is very passionate about everything he does, especially Heffron Drive. From the way he sounded and responded, it seemed like this was something he is extremely excited for and super proud of! It’s obvious that this is so special and means a lot to him. He wants it to be great, and I know he’ll be able to deliver that and more. I’m excited to see the show myself. I’ll be attending the show on November 30th in Philadelphia, PA. I hope to see some of you there, and Kendall hopes to see A LOT of you on this tour! Check out the tour poster at the beginning of this post to see if Heffron Drive is hitting a city near you! You can also look at the dates directly below if you’re too lazy to scroll up (ah, yes, I have made it convenient for you. You’re welcome).
Hey, Rushers! We have the best news EVER for you! We’ve teamed up with Big Time Rush and Heffron Drive member Kendall Schmidt to give away a pair of tickets to one of the dates on Heffron Drive’s upcoming tour, starting Nov. 23. That’s something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving season.
You will win tickets to the tour date of your choice. You have to provide your own transportation to the show; but we’ll make sure you get in. The dates are posted below for your perusal. A surprise autograph package will be included with the ticket giveaway, too!
The contest runs from now through Monday, Nov. 11 at 11:59 PM ET.
If you’ve entered PopCrush contests before, you know how we roll. Enter via the widget above and if you share the contest on multiple social media platforms, you earn more chances and thus increase your chances of winning. So start sharing… as soon as you read the fine print. Good luck.
Hello there lovely PopWrappers and Rushers alike!! Earlier this week we got to sit down and chat with Kendall Schmidt about his upcoming tour with Heffron Drive, his work on the movie “The Great Migration”, rumors, love and what the future may bring.
Sitting down with Kendall on the phone for our interview, we exchanged introductions and the ice was broken with a simple happy birthday wish for birthday boy. Kendall told me that he actually hadn’t been thinking about his birthday and that he had almost forgotten that it was coming up. “I remember a few years ago I told some people it was birthday a few weeks before it actually was.”
Before discussing Heffron Drive and the upcoming tour, the conversation started with Big Time Rush and the rumors that since the band has stopped touring and Carlos is engaged to Alexa Vega that they are breaking up. He assured us that people are only trying to find reasons for why they aren’t constantly working on BTR. “We haven’t broken up as a band. Just because nothing has happened since the tour doesn’t mean nothing ever will again. Alexa has nothing to do with it.”
Speaking of rumors, we discussed how he handles rumors spreading about himself or negative comments about himself and the others because of what they do. “My parents taught me that people hate because they are insecure within themselves. I ignore haters because I know that they are just insecure.”
Addressing his love life and whether he is still single was the next topic of conversation. He stated that calling a girl his girlfriend would be unfair because his schedule doesn’t allow for him to commit to someone. “I don’t have the time for the committed relationship that I would like to have. I mean I go on dates, I don’t just sit around and do nothing but I don’t have a serious relationship.”
Finally we began chatting about Heffron Drive, and anybody could hear the excitement in his voice talking about it. He never thought it would get as successful as it had, and he said that the exposure from Big Time Rush definitely helped.
He also said that the reason his Twitter handle stayed “@HeffronDrive” is because he never wanted to give up on his band. He also said that Heffron Drive grew out of dedication to the music, the growth of their fan base and that he and Dustin will perform for anybody willing to listen.
Kendall also said that in the future of Heffron Drive he hopes to produce more music, maybe put out an album, play larger venues and even do features on songs with other artists. He said that the key to success is going to be hard work and dedication to the music and the fans.
Speaking of touring, we talked about what he needs to bring on tour this winter. “A rolling closet. It’s basically a box that has wheels and holds your entire tour wardrobe. You roll it off the truck before a show and then when you finish it locks and gets rolled right back onto the truck.” He also said that he was bringing his own showerhead. “You should also bring your own showerhead. If the venue has a shower, bring your own head to shower with.” Fitness while touring is important, and Kendall said that he plays a lot of basketball in addition to eating organics and avoiding unhealthy foods.
Talk then moved to the future and his work on the movie “The Great Migration” along with some information on how that’s going. He told us that the animated movie has been a work-in-progress for a few years and that he and the other cast members have become really close. We also discussed vocal acting versus live-action acting. “You don’t have to dress up, that’s one thing. People might be surprised to know that voice-over acting for animation isn’t just sitting in a booth talking into a microphone. We have to act out our emotions and our lines as if we were being filmed because it adds believability.”
If you know Kendall, you know that he is a man of many tattoos and that every single one has a meaning behind it that is unique to Kendall. However, one tattoo that he has, a belt and a pair of cowboy boots on his left shoulder, had a meaning that not many people knew. Kendall told us that the boots are for his grandmother. “We call her Grandma Boots. The belt above it is for my Grandpa Bill.” He also told us about his tattoo of his French bulldog, Sissy. “I got her face tattooed because I can’t really walk around with the word ‘Sissy’ permanently inked into my back.”
As our time together neared the end, I was sure to ask him one final question: if you could go back and tell your 5-year old self any piece of advice what would you say? He had to think about it a moment before telling me that he would tell his five-year old self to remember as much as possible and to take as many pictures as possible.
With that, we said our farewells, and I wished him luck on his tour. I also told him that I was excited to see the concert on December 2nd. The Heffron Drive Winter Tour kicks off November 23 in Houston, TX, with openers Ariana and the Rose and Eric Dash.
Kendall Schmidt is a busy man right now! As Big Time Rush takes a bit of a break and the guys do their own things for awhile, Kendall is getting ready to tour the United States this November and December as Heffron Drive hits the road and premieres some brand new music. Hit Zone’s Gabi caught up with Kendall on Halloween (before he dressed up as a zombie) and talked to him all about what we can expect from Heffron Drive, what exactly is up with Big Time Rush, and more. Check out the full interview below.
For people that don’t know Heffron Drive how would you describe yourself?
I try and make it as current and relatable as possible, but it’s very electro based and I have a lot of my favorite bands that are in the alternative world, and music that I grew up listening to in the pop world, and like I said I love EDM. All of these influences meld together, and I try and create something that’s understandable and hopefully some of the new songs I’m going to be playing on tour, people will really like them. It’s very different, I was talking the other day about how I was going to put all the songs together in a single performance, because the music is very dynamic and interesting, but the thing that ties it together I guess is my vocals on it, and the beats and the synths and the level of electronics which are in all of my songs. And it’s going to be a lot of fun, it’s going to be fun to come up with how I’m going to do everything.
So will we be hearing new music soon then?
Well I’ll definitely be performing it, but I don’t know when I’ll be able to release it, as soon as I can I’ll let everyone know when it will be coming out. But as of right now I can’t, but I will be playing the music on tour, so hopefully people can take videos of it and show their friends.
And so the tour is a lot smaller than the stuff you’ve been doing, but it’s more intimate, and also more electronic?
Yeah well I have a synth player, he does synth and keyboards, and he’s going to be helping us out, and I have a drummer. And Dustin will be right next to me so, like I said it’s going to be different and I’m excited to hear how, for my own sake, how it comes together. And yeah the music is very electronic. I have one song, a song that I did that’s very dub-step, and I love it, and hopefully the drop is acceptable for people who love that kind of music.
And we have some questions from some fans on Twitter, so, how has your music matured, compared to your early writing style, for both Heffron Drive and Big Time Rush?
I think I’ve grown a lot as a songwriter just in general, as far as always trying to further myself, and create better lyrics and lyrics that are more poetic, and have a story to them. Something I try and do on all of my, is that I like to have my songs have cool stories in them, rather than just have a whole bunch of words put together. I like them to have a meaning, and most of the time, like 90% of the time, have a meaning that is positive or affirmative for people, and I think that people like that kind of music. And that’s just the kind of person I am, I wouldn’t want to project any negativity in general. I hope people hear the music in a really positive way, and I hope that they keep the same way about it that I do.
What city are you most excited to play on tour?
I’m really excited about Webster Hall, just because of the history and a lot of my favorite bands have played there and still play there and also The Roxy because growing up in LA I’ve been to The Roxy quite a few times and seen quite a few of my favorite bands. I saw Fall Out Boy there recently they did like two shows when they toured and it was incredible. And all of my friends live in Los Angeles, so I think it’s going to be a packed house, regardless of if people buy tickets, I’m going to have so many friends there that it’s going to be shoulder to shoulder.
If you had get a song lyric as a tattoo what would it be?
Probably, because I wrote “We Are” for Big Time Rush, it would be that song with the lyrics “Young and dumb, always chasing something”. I think that would be an interesting tattoo.
And so many of your fans love that song.
Yeah I love that song and it turned out great.
Any hints on your tour’s opening act?
Yeah Ariana and the Rose, so far with Erik Dash. So I’m excited for them to be able to show off their music, and I’ll be watching, so I think the fans are really going to like them.
Out of all of your songs out now, new stuff or old stuff, what is something that your fans haven’t heard of? Maybe that they should hear?
Well something that I like that I don’t think anyone has heard of… I like a band called Purity Ring, they’re very interesting, it’s sort of electronic. I like Alt J, but that’s kind of popular now. Capital Cities, who else… I love Krewella, I don’t think everyone knows about them, they’re a great DJ group. That’s just to name a few, I could probably go for days with this one.
A question we kept getting was what is happening with Big Time Rush?
I think people kind of freak out, and the internet is something so easy to discuss your feelings with people. And you can react so quickly to something that I feel like people have blown us into something that, we’re having our own relaxation, and doing our own creative adventures, that they’re like “the band is never ever going to be together again” and I think that people really kind of blew it out of proportions, and to be real, nobody’s really said anything, so I don’t really know where that idea developed. Maybe it’s just because we’ve been going to hard for the last four and half years that the fact that we have nothing out right away is kind of shocking. I mean, it’s good for the band, good for us, because we’ve been playing together for so much of the time, that it’s good to give us some time to express ourselves creatively in our own ventures. And it’s when people start to feel like they’re being smothered, or can’t express themselves, or can’t do what they want to do that they start getting resentful and frustrated with their projects. And I think it’s important to keep the band healthy, you have to let its members explore their own creative avenues in order to fulfill something that might not be being fulfilled in their own band. I’ve gotten this question a lot, and honestly I have nothing to say about it, nobody has said that nothing is happening, so it’s just a matter of figuring out the next scheduling, and we can move along happily and feel fulfilled in our own way and go from there.
People just seemed to be worried that the Big Time Summer Tour would be the last US tour ever. And nobody really confirmed anything.
I mean nobody wants to confirm anything, it’d be kind of stupid to pull the trigger on something that isn’t true, but I think that we have shows to play still and we’re also very young, it’s not like there’s not time. But we have done like 300 shows in the past four years, or some crazy number. So I think it’s appropriate for everyone to be able to express themselves on their own. And I’ll never say it’s the last show because I’ve made it very clear that I’d be happy to continue on doing Big Time Rush as far as concerts, and I would love to make another album, it’s just the unfortunate part of Big Time Rush is it just isn’t up to to me, Heffron Drive is up to me and that’s why I’m able to do the things I want to do with it. There’s a lot of things that we want to do for you guys, and we wanna do those things and have our creative soul.
Sweety High recently sat down with Kendall to talk about the upcoming Heffron Drive Winter Tour…
We spoke with Kendall about how Heffron Drive got together, the anticipation of their first big tour and more! “Technically, the formation of Heffron Drive happened 4 or 5 years ago,” Kendall said. Using the money he had saved up from being a kid actor, including appearances on shows including Gilmore Girls, ER, and Frasier, Kendall bought music equipment and taught himself how to use the music production program, Logic. “I looked at it, and it made sense, so I started making music,” he said. “I realize now that I knew nothing about mixing, but the ideas were there.”
Kendall also had a fateful meeting with future bandmate Dustin Belt. Kendall’s older brother, Kevin Schmidt, is also an actor. When Kevin appeared in the Cheaper By the Dozen films, the local theatre hosted an autograph signing. There, Dustin met Kendall and Kevin’s mom. Later, Dustin also attended a screening for Kevin’s film The Butterfly Effect.
“Dustin was awfully shy,” Kendall said. “My dad asked him if he was with all of us, so I was like ‘Alright, dude. You can hang out with me.” As they became better friends, Kendall and Dustin realized they had a lot of remarkable things in common. They had both lived on a street called Heffron Drive, were from the same city, and were both born in the same hospital. “There are a lot of freaky similarities between us,” Kendall said. “We’ve been friends ever since. We love the same music and appreciate the same kind of stuff. That’s why we work so well together. It’s nice to be around somebody like that.”
Kendall and Dustin started making music together and uploaded their music to MySpace, and from there their popularity grew. “Then I did Big Time Rush, so Heffron Drive had to be put on the side burner,” Kendall said. “But it’s been 4 1/2 years now, and we had a little bit of time to play around and make some music.” Now that the Big Time Rush television show is over, Kendall has some time to focus on his other passions, including Heffron Drive.
Kendall said that the band has some eclectic influences, and that their sound reflects that. “Dustin and I both have eclectic tastes,” Kendall said. “It’s sort of a hobby of mine to make songs from the beginning, and whenever I come up with stuff it tends to be pretty quirky. It as little things in it that are signature Heffron Drive.” He described Heffron Drive’s sound as electro-pop-alt. “I love pop music because it’s what I grew up listening to, and I love alternative because of all of the ideas that are conveyed in it,” Kendall said. “I try to combine everything, and my goal is to make the songs catchy and memorable and hopefully to have a message in it that people can relate to.”
From November 23 to December 22, Heffron Drive will be setting out on their first tour, the Heffron Drive Winter Tour, playing in more intimate venues across the U.S. “I think the thing fans are going to be happy with is that they’re going to be so close,” Kendall said. For the last three years, Big Time Rush has played in massive venues that hold tens of thousands of fans. “It’s been hard for anybody but the people in the first rows to get close,” Kendall explained. Now, Kendall’s fans will finally get the chance to see him make music up close. He expects to see a lot of familiar faces at these new shows. “I’m sure a lot of the fans are the fans I’ll recognize from past shows, and no matter what they want to be there,” Kendall said. “Doing any sort of independent project when you’re still in a band like Big Time Rush is intimidating. I’m just trying to make it happen.”
The end of the Big Time Rush show on Nickelodeon means Kendall now has the freedom to make music not just with Big Time Rush, but also with Heffron Drive. “I don’t want people to think I’m not focusing on Big Time Rush. Fortunately in music it’s easy to do two things at once,” Kendall said. “When we were doing the TV show and we were also touring, there was zero time to explore anything creative outside of Big Time Rush, which we didn’t mind.” 4 years later, the boys of Big Time Rush are all in their early to mid 20s.
“We all want to explore new opportunities,” Kendall said. “I think it’s going to be great, and I think the fans are going to be super happy to actually watch 4 guys who are dedicated to their careers.” Kendall added that he is super grateful for the loyal fans that have stuck with Big Time Rush throughout the years. “We’re lucky to have the fans,” Kendall said. “Without them we wouldn’t be able to go out and do our own stuff. Big Time Rush is always going to be a band. It’s just a matter of time, but it really depends on what everyone wants to do.”
On Heffron Drive’s upcoming tour, Kendall and Dustin will be joined by two additional musicians to assemble a four-piece band.
“The cool part is technically I’m going to be part of the band,” Kendall said. “It’s electro-pop and there’s a lot going on, and I want to make sure it sounds good.” Kendall said he’s a stickler about making his music the best it can be. “You can have a crack in your voice every once in a while, but if it just doesn’t sound good, it’s not worth it,” he said. He’s also excited to be debuting a ton of new Heffron Drive tracks. “There were only 6 Heffron Drive songs that Dustin and I put out,” Kendall explained. “We need to definitely play some new music. I’ve been working my butt off writing it while planning the tour, and out buying the equipment for the tour.” We absolutely can’t wait to see Heffron Drive on tour, and Kendall can’t wait to be playing with the rest of his band onstage! “I’m excited,” Kendall said. “I’m still trying to decide what songs I’m gonna play. We might want to do a cover or two. I’m just trying to make it fun.”