Editor’s Note: Ouray, Colarado(by way of Nashville and Clear Lake, Iowa)’s own You Knew Me When has been making some noise in the indie underground scene with their pure sense of melody in their contrasting vocal styles, their sense of meticulous arrangements, and their love for each other. You Knew Me When is composed of Karisa Hoover(mandolin, ukelele, glockenspiel, piano, xylophone, and vocals) and her husband Cie Hoover(percussion, acoustic guitars, and vocals). They released their album entitled “Into The Looking Glass” in 2017 and have been playing shows in support of that album. They uprooted from Nashville and moved to Ouray, Colorado to pursue a new life, in which they described Ouray as the “Switzerland of Colorado”. Fans can find You Knew Me When at the following locations:
Madness To Creation: Thank you for taking the time to interview with me for Madness To Creation. It’s been great catching up with you all for a bit, but we’ll make this quick as I know that you’re about to go on in a little bit. How were the holidays?
Karisa: The holidays were great! Spending time with the family was awesome and we celebrated our niece’s fifth birthday. It’s nice to be home and get to see people that we haven’t got to see in awhile.
Madness To Creation: Tell me about the transition to Colorado from Nashville.
Karisa: Big transition!
Cie: In multiple ways, it’s been a great change on a lot of levels, it’s just a place that we feel inspired and we love being there, and obviously we miss our family and friends that are still back in Nashville, but we still get to see them from time to time, but Colorado has very much embraced us, and making it a new home in the community, it’s been really great.
Madness To Creation: Tell us about the Colorado music scene, I’ve heard nothing but great things about it.
Karisa: It is pretty awesome! There is an eclectic range of music. Nashville is a great home for our type of music, but the Colorado scene has embraced our style a little bit more than the Nashville scene, it’s a little bit more of an indie/folksy vibe in Colorado and that’s our little niche, so it works well for us.
Madness To Creation: Why should people check out your band or the indie folk scene.
Cie: I think that it’s the type of music that speaks to a wide audience, there’s a lot of stories to be told, and for us its a way to express our travels and our relationship, and things like that a lot of people can relate to, even if it may not be your go-to musical vibe, it is something that is listenable on a lot of levels.
Karisa: There are also a lot of harder rock groups that are going towards this vibe of music as a side project.
Cie: It’s fun to branch out and to still listen to a wide range of music, but the folk rock genre definitely caters to a wider audience, and it has created that special niche between the two of us, where it blends our two backgrounds together very nicely.
Madness To Creation: In 2017, you all released “Into The Looking Glass”, what is one thing that you accomplished as a musician that you didn’t accomplish before?
Karisa: I think that it was really more US, it was the most US that we could create with just US, which was something exciting for us because we didn’t bring in a whole bunch of extra people and it’s something that really reflects on what we do on the live stage.
Cie: I think we got a lot more familiar and comfortable with the way that we do percussion with just the two of us as well and that is something that is very much reflected in the album, cause when you listen to the album, you might think that certain tracks are recorded with a drummer, but obviously what you hear on the recording is what you hear live, it’s just two people.
Madness To Creation: Now it’s the time where I ask you all a couple of questions based on song titles. You Knew Me When has a song called “Only You”. What is something your spouse does that makes you say “Only You”?
Cie(as he looks to Karisa): Only you can make me smile when I’m feeling cruddy.
Karisa: Only you would know exactly what I wanted for Christmas.
Madness To Creation: As you peer “Into The Looking Glass” of 2018, what is one thing that you could take back or change?
Karisa: I probably would’ve traded in the van before the tour was coming up.
Madness To Creation: Did you all trade in the vehicle?
Karisa: No, we had a big one, it’s just had a lot of issues after the warranty was up.
Cie: When you rely on a vehicle so heavily, it can certainly have its setbacks as well. When you rely on something and it doesn’t work, it definitely makes for a big hurdle.
Madness To Creation: What is something that people do that is a “Waste of Time”?
Cie: People spend too much time on their phones and not getting out into nature.
Karisa: Forgetting that there are so many wonderful things that you can do instead when you could be outside.
Madness To Creation: What do you all like to do outside?
Karisa: Hiking! There are so many amazing hiking trails where we live now, and it’s super awesome to be able to walk outside our doors and just be outside!
Madness To Creation: You all recently released the music video for “My Home Is You”, how lovey-dovey is that song?
Karisa: I was going to say 10 and a half but 11!
Cie: We kind of knew that was the theme going in, so we kind of went for it!
Madness To Creation: Take us into the song, is it about each other or is it more universally relatable?
Cie: It is universally relatable, but obviously it is the story of the two of us spending so much time on the road and often getting asked if we ever miss being back home, so that’s where the phrase came from. It was finding home in that other person instead of a physical space.
Madness To Creation: What do you want to accomplish in 2019?
Karisa: We just received the “Mish Grant” to help us record a new acoustic album, we plan on doing a new acoustic release! We’re very excited about that, the Mishakawa Amphitheatre has a cool foundation where they give grants to Colorado musicians. They’re interesting because they prefer that you send them something funny or interesting and what makes us a little bit different, so we sent in a ridiculous video that we made of each other kind of nagging on each other for making too much noise and how the grant would be used to make an acoustic album, so that’s our plan for 2019!
Madness To Creation: Will this new album be originals or covers, combination of both? I mean I know that you all make original music but your live show has a few covers in there as well.
Karisa: It will be originals. We have a couple of new ones and we are working on more, we may bring stuff back from the first album that is no longer available anywhere!
Madness To Creation: I usually ask the question if Donald Trump was in a mosh pit how would you react, but say Donald Trump was in a drunken stupor, how would you react?
Cie: I tell him to get out!
Karisa: I would tell the bartender to put everyone’s drinks on his tab.
Madness To Creation: I know that you all go on in a few minutes, so is there anything else you would like to add?
Karisa: We are glad to be back in North Iowa to get to see you, family and friends!
Cie: We definitely pull back on the extent that we are traveling, we don’t travel quite as much cause Karisa is teaching, but I think it’s been great finding that balance and rediscovering who we are!
And there you have it! You Knew Me When has some shows coming up in the Midwest and Mountain Time Zone area of the United States. Check out show dates below.
Thu. 1/10- The New Sheridan Bar in Telluride, Colorado
Fri. 1/11- Healthy Rhythm Art Gallery in Montrose, Colorado
Fri. 1/18- Bonfire Brewing in Eagle, Colorado
Sat. 1/19- Woods Boss Brewing in Denver, Colorado
Fri. 1/25- The Silver Eagle in Ouray, Colorado
Fri. 2/1- Native Son in Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Sat. 2/2- Free Range Kitchen & Bar in Basalt, Colorado
Thu. 2/14- 550 Brewing in Aztec, New Mexico
Fri. 2/15- Wildedge Brewing in Cortez, Colorado
Thu. 2/28- The New Sheridan Bar in Telluride, Colorado
Sat. 3/9- Outlier Cellars in Mancos, Colorado
Fri. 3/22- Crestone Brewing in Crestone, Colorado
Sat. 3/23- Woods in Salida, Colorado
Fri. 6/14- Midwest Travel Network Conference in Medora, North Dakota
Sat. 8/3- Brookside Yard in Big Fork, Montana
Fri. 9/6- Fox Fire Farms in Ignacio, Colorado
For tickets and further information on any of the shows listed above, click here.
- Photo Credit: Lizzie Tilles