A GoPride Interview


Karmin set to raise the pulse at Northalsted Market Days

Wed. July 30, 2014  by Jerry Nunn

When we had an opportunity to come back we decided to do it.
Pop duo Karmin made up of Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan have topped the charts with tracks like "Acapella", "Hello", and "Brokenhearted." Their "Hate to Love You" single is featured on a ShoeDazzle commercial and "Try Me On" was on a Dasani Drops commercial. Rolling Stone named Amy as the winner of a Women Who Rock contest in 2012.

The two met while attending Berklee's College of Music in Boston and have been inseparable ever since.

Their Pulses Tour brought them to Chicago's House of Blues earlier this year and now they return once again perform at Northalsted Market Days on Aug. 10.

JN: (Jerry Nunn) Hey, guys! Long time no talk to...

AH: (Amy Heidemann) Hey, Jerry. I know.

NN: (Nick Noonan) What's going on?

JN: I just saw you perform at House of Blues.

AH: Thanks for coming.

JN: It was a really good show. I'm glad I did.

NN: I think I collapsed at the end of that show. That was the end of like six in a row.

AH: Yeah, then I got really sick. My immune system crashed when that show was over.

JN: So that Japanese drink to help with sickness that you were drinking on the tour bus did not hold out. It was called Kombucha I believe.

NN: Have you had it?

JN: No. I hadn't heard of it until I watched your video online.

NN: No way. You should check it out. It is pretty hippy but it works.

AH: It's super hippy!

NN: It's amazing.

JN: Amy, do blondes have more fun?

AH: So far yes is the answer!

JN: Looks like it seeing you onstage. Nick, you are doing all of this color coordinating with your trombone and outfits.

NN:: I am glad somebody noticed that. There is a company in London that hit me up when I played on Good Morning America. They offered trombones in all different colors that I could take on the road.

AH: We told them to send us the whole rainbow...

NN: So they did. Now I can color coordinate with nine different colors.

JN: I'm expecting some costume changes at Market Days this year.

NN: Some people have costume changes, I have trombone changes.

JN: I always appreciate fashion sense onstage. Let's talk about new music. We need more rollerskating videos like "I Want It All."

AH: I agree.

NN: It's time to bring it back.

JN: I noticed gay boys kissing in the video.

AH: Yes they were. They are so cute! We put them in a freezer together and they were playing with ice. I don't think that's what made it but they were associates. They are a real life couple.

JN: Pulses is your first album since the last one was an EP right?

AH: The last one was a shorty. It was called an EP and this is an LP I guess. It is the first full length from Karmin three years after signing a record deal!

JN: How was it putting the album together?

NN: Honestly, it was great, terrible, exhausting, rewarding, and everything in between. We were recording for little over a year. We had some creative differences with the label.

AH: We finally has to call it Pulses because of those highs and lows. It was like, "Man, what did we get ourselves into?" At the end of the day we decided to fight for the music so I think we carved out our sound a little bit better on this than we did on the EP. Hello the EP to me felt like a bunch of singles. This album has a duo appeal so Nick is singing constantly. It still has the rapping and all of that but Nick did the production so this really feels like Karmin. This is our roots.

JN: It seems to flow better. It sounds cohesive.

AH: Yeah.

NN: Good. That was what we were trying to focus on.

JN: "A Night Like This" sounds like a big party song.

NN: That one we wrote because we were stressed out and had problems buying a house. We decided to have a bunch of drinks and wrote it in about fifteen minutes.

AH: That was a really fun one.

JN: Where did you buy a house at?

NN: Los Angeles.

AH: North Hollywood.

JN: You are living the life now!

AH: [laughs] We bought a fixer upper. We are always gone. I feel bad for anyone buying a house. It was really difficult.

JN: The track "Gasoline" has a reggae sound to it.

AH: Heyyy, that's my jam and my favorite song on the whole album.

NN: That's one of my favorites.

JN: "Puppet" is screaming for a video.

AH: Alright!

NN: If you remember from the show that was the one that was crazy.

AH: Shit hits the fan on that one. People hear that one and ask, "What were you thinking about?"

JN: You are heading to Market Days again. What made you want to return?

NN: We had never been there before last time. We had heard from a lot of people that we would love it. We played before and got to hang out with Olivia Newton-John. She was a sweetheart and super nice. The experience was awesome. The crowd was amazing. We have done gay shows prior and we just honestly had a blast. When we had an opportunity to come back we decided to do it.

JN: This year will have Belinda Carlisle performing so maybe you can hang out with her.

AH: Fierce!

NN: Oh nice.

JN: Finally we should have some warm weather for it.

NN: It was definitely warm last time.

JN: Are you possibly picking someone out of the audience so rap "Look At Me Now" as you have in the past?

AH: Are you practicing? [laughs]

NN: You are trying to rig it, dude. I accept checks!

AH: I think we still do that depending on the vibe. The vibe at Market Days is always high so chances are we will do that.

JN: I will tell the gays to start practicing.

AH: Perfect, thank you.

JN: I met you both at Macy's Glamorama event and you are so nice.

NN: You had the frames on right?

JN: Yep, that was me! I was wearing glasses and you asked me to take a picture not the other way around. It was genuinely great.

NN: That's awesome.

JN: Look how well Robin Thicke has done since you performed with him at that event.

NN: We were just talking about that. He's done okay for himself. He split with his wife but beyond that he's doing great.

JN: What are your future plans?

NN: After the album coming out we are going to tour most of the South and Midwest. We want to play live for every single person on the planet!

JN: So you will be on that tour bus a lot more.

AH: Oh yeah.

NN: More than likely...

JN: With all of that junk food on the bus be careful.

AH: I know but the fans bring chocolate!

JN: See you in Chicago again soon and the new album is great.

NN: Thanks for listening, man!

Karmin headlines Northalsted Market Days on Sunday, Aug. 10 at 8:00 p.m.


Interviewed by Jerry Nunn. Jerry Nunn is a contributing writer to the GoPride Network. His work is also featured in Windy City Times, Nightspots Magazine and syndicated nationally.