Pennsylvania-grown Halestorm’s hard rock sound is driven by anthemic songs, progressive and defiant, and yet, grounded in the best from the past.
Singer, songwriter and guitarist Lzzy Hale and younger brother and drummer Arejay were weaned on a diet of classic rock music by a father who is a veteran of bands and a singing and piano-playing mother. “She was the one who put the good music in my hands, as in The Beatles and Janis Joplin and Led Zeppelin and all that,” Hale recalls.
Her tastes set the now 24-year-old major-label recording artist apart from her peers. “When I was a teenybopper, instead of Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears like everyone else, I was listening to Van Halen and Alice Cooper and Cinderella. It didn’t go over with my little friends: They’d say, ‘Why are you listening to this? This is old.’ Uh, because it’s good.”
Lzzy’s budding skills as a songwriter emerged not long after she learned to talk and walk. “My Mom has videotapes of me when I was six, playing the piano and writing a little song.” By age 13, she and her brother started gigging. “We had five songs to our name that we’d written, and we started playing coffeehouses, church functions, youth group parties and Friendly’s once for free ice cream. Then a couple of club owners gave us a chance, and it was literally up from there,” she explains.
In 2006, with guitarist Joe Hottinger and bassist Josh Smith, Halestorm landed a show at New York City’s metal music mecca Don Hill’s. Its owner and namesake liked what he heard, offered them a monthly gig, and started inviting his industry and label friends to come see the band. A deal with Atlantic Records soon followed.
A live EP, One and Done, resulted in constant touring. When they hit the studio last year to record their self-titled debut album with producer Howard Benson, Halestorm “had quite the arsenal, around 428 songs to weed through, and then we wrote new songs,” says Hale. “When you’re making the big record you don’t want any gems to slip through the cracks.”
The debut single, “I Get Off,” was a Top 10 Mainstream Rock chart hit.
Now, Halestorm is back on the road, cultivating a mushrooming fanbase. “Right now, home is wherever we’re rolling,” concludes Lzzy. “The goal is to keep doing this for the rest of our lives. We want to make it to the reunion tour.”