Culture, Music, Q & A + Profiles

3OH!3 talks guilty pleasures, Jimmy John’s

3OH!3 came on the music scene five years ago with advice that would define a generation through the hit single “Don’t Trust Me.” Since then, they’ve kept listeners dancing with their lively beats and catchy lyrics.

Now they’re back with a new album, “Omens,” which hits stores June 18, just in time for Warped Tour. The music video for their new single, “Back To Life,” features a mock robbery. The band holds up a seafood counter using a fish instead of a gun.

The Miami Hurricane got the chance to sit down with Sean Foreman and Nathaniel Motte about their new single, musical roots and where their passions truly lie.

The Miami Hurricane: What was the idea behind the video for “Back to Life?”

Nathaniel Motte: I actually wrote that scenario a while ago and just had it sitting around. It’s representative of our sense of humor. It’s kind of ironic and weird and funny.

TMH: And what was the inspiration for the song? It has a different vibe from some of your past songs.

Sean Foreman: That was the first song we wrote toward this new album. A lot of people know us because of our singles, which are very dance-driven, but a lot of the songs on our albums are very different. It still has what we like to do with 3OH!3, which is have fun and present energy in a song, but it’s a different tempo … I would describe it as a party ballad.

TMH: How do you think your new album, “Omens,” is different from albums you’ve released in the past?

NM: Most of the songs go back to how we started making music and that’s just me and Sean in my basement in Colorado. We collaborated … with some producers and songwriter friends of ours for a few of the tracks, but really we consciously wanted to pull everything back, use all the knowledge that we’ve learned and apply it to our music.

TMH: Going back to your roots for a second, how did you get started in the music business?

NM: We met on “Man seeking man for boy band.”

SF: We met back in college at CU. We had similar taste in music.

TMH: Do you guys have any musical guilty pleasures?

NM: I don’t believe in guilty pleasures. I only believe in pleasures … We both came from a place where for a while we were in an underground scene in music where it wasn’t cool to like certain kinds of music. That’s some people’s attitude, but I don’t think for me it’s the right one because I think you should like music for the music that you like.

TMH: When did each of you realize music was something you wanted to pursue as a career?

NM: Even in the early phases of our operation, music was kind of a hobby. It only dawned on me that it could become a career later. We were on Warped Tour in 2008 and we had agreed to do the whole tour, but I was actually supposed to go to medical school right as the tour was ending. It was that summer that I faced a pretty big dilemma. I ended up deferring school and doing music and obviously I’m super happy that I did that.

SF: I always thought I would play music. I didn’t know to what capacity or if I’d ever make money doing it … I wrote my first rap song when I was in fifth grade and to this day I still remember it. It’s corny as hell.

TMH: If you hadn’t gone into music, what career would you have wanted to have?

SF: I’d still be working at Jimmy John’s, delivering sandwiches. I had a passion for that. I love the thrill of not knowing if you’re going to get tips and the smell of a frat house in the morning when you’re delivering a sandwich. That’s really nice.

NM: Getting tipped in beer bongs?

SF: Getting tipped in beer bongs. Or not tipped at all. But, you know, it’s the passion.

For more information on 3OH!3, visit

April 14, 2013


Marlee Lisker

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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published in print every Tuesday.