Last week, Hey Monday sent their fanbase into a panic when they announced that they were parting ways with beloved bassist Jersey Moriarty. They went to great lengths to assure fans that the split was amicable, writing on their blog, “this is in no way, shape or form a bitter break between us,” a sentiment Moriarty echoed on his own blog. Still, both bandmates and departing bassist seemed to admit that a change was needed.
On the surface, there was nothing particularly new about this news. Bands part ways with bassists on a fairly regular basis, after all, but word of Jersey’s departure came exactly one month after HM frontwoman Cassadee Pope took to the band’s blog to announce — somewhat dejectedly — that their much-anticipated sophomore album, Beneath It All, was being pared down to just an EP.
“I wish we had known that the full-length would be coming a little later before telling everyone about it, but there’s nothing we can do about it now,” Pope wrote.
So, within the span of one month, the band lost an album and a bass player … which sort of raises a bigger question: What, exactly, is going on with Hey Monday? On Monday, Pope sat down with MTV News to give us an answer.
“It’s really, really hectic, but it’s a good hectic,” she said of where things are right now. “With the whole Jersey thing, that really sucked and we were upset about it, but we were more upset about losing a friend, and we never really sat down and were worried about ‘Oh my God, is this the end of the band?’ Because the three of us [Pope, Mike Gentile and Alex Lipshaw] are so passionate about it, and we’ve talked about it a million times, about how this is our dream come true, and not to say any of us could quit tomorrow — you never know. But no one has to worry, the show must go on, and we’re really excited and nothing’s going to stop us.
“The album thing, that’s just a case of me loving to write,” she continued. “And since we have some months to spare, [we thought], ‘Why not go and try to write songs that are better than the songs we have right now?’ We love the album, but if I can go in and write some ones that are better, why not? We want it to be the best album possible.”
Pope said that Hey Monday are now aiming to have their second full-length in stores by March, and in the meantime, they’ve recruited Gentile’s brother to fill in for Moriarty on bass for the upcoming tour. Things are very much full-steam ahead, even if, over the last month, the band has learned to take things one day at a time. Especially since, when Moriarty decided to leave the band, they were already well into the promo cycle for their EP.
“It was a little bit of a surprise, just because the record was about to come out, and we had done all the promo shots, we had finished everything. The timing was definitely the worst timing in the entire world, but something like quitting a band that you’re not happy being a part of can’t really wait,” Pope said. “You have to do it when you need to, and, you know, he made it very clear that this isn’t what he wants to do and, although we think this lifestyle is extremely easy and fun, to him maybe it was different, and he just wanted to go home and live a normal life.”
In keeping with the tone of her earlier announcement, Pope maintained that Hey Monday have no ill will toward Moriarty … quite the opposite, in fact.
“He’s probably going to continue writing his own music, and maybe that was another thing too, because I do most of the writing and he’s also a writer and maybe that wasn’t sitting well with him,” she said. “There’s a lot of reasons that we all talked about that we think had a lot to do with him leaving, but it’s not a bitter thing at all, we keep in touch and we’ll make sure that he’s doing OK.”
Are you glad Hey Monday are forging ahead despite their setbacks? Let us know in the comments below!