02 Feb Triple Rainbow: Jared Mees and Daughters Unveil Whimsical New Album
by Marisa Torrieri Bloom
For Portland, Ore., musician Jared Mees, music has always been a family affair. His brother played drums for his punk band in high school, and his wife Brianne and he formed a band in college called Julai “which we named after the kid we thought we might one day have,” he recalls.
It isn’t such a far stretch from how life turned out. Over 2020 and 2021, Jared and his daughters July (9) and Piper (4) got creative, co-writing songs and melodies for what would become Triple Rainbow, an acoustic-pop act with cute, harmonious, sing-along songs like “You are Magic,” a tribute to the power of your imagination:
We recently caught up with Jared and July to find out more about the inspiration for their record of the same title.
Rockmommy: Jared, it’s so cool to start a band with your kids. What was your creative life like before you had your daughters?
Jared Mees: I’ve been playing in bands since I was 15 but most of my touring intensity was with my own project — Jared Mees & The Grown Children. I’ve released several records under that project. I have lots of other creative projects like painting, drawing, silkscreening, creative writing, etc. I try to do something creative every day. Some days that’s just a doodle on a napkin and some days it’s directing a music video, but it’s important for me to keep the creativity moving.
Rockmommy: How did the idea to form Triple Rainbow come about?
Jared Mees: Essentially I just wanted to make tunes with July (9) and Piper (4), but then, because I run a record label, I couldn’t resist the idea of having it be a little more dialed-up with visuals and good recordings and costumes and music videos and whatnot. The goal is to keep it 100% fun but also to try our best!
Rockmommy: How do you write the songs? For example, do you talk about the themes first, and brainstorm lyrics?
Jared Mees: Some songs just come in a flash, and they’re written before we know it. About half the songs happen that way. When we’re just hanging around the house at night or the weekend and the kids are doing something (like playing with slime, or making a scavenger hunt, etc.), and I just kinda follow them around playing guitar and singing. Whenever the kids start singing along or laughing I know it’s worth keeping. I hit record on the phone, and we have the general idea for the song. I come back to it later and write it all down and make it a little more refined. Then, we sing it again. The other half of the songs I just make up and then play for the kids, and then they give me feedback, and we change each song from there.
Rockmommy: I’m kind of jealous because my two sons who are 7 and 9 have to be cajoled to perform with me. Have your kids always been into your music?
Jared Mees: Yeah, they love it. They don’t really love formal “practicing,” but they love performance and they love to sing and dance and sing songs that they think are funny or witty or difficult to sing.
Rockmommy: July, what is your favorite song on the album?
July Mees: My favorite song is “Slime” because I love slime, and the song is funny.
Rockmommy: What was the best part about making a record with your dad?
July Mees: I like goofing around while we’re recording the songs. There’s a lot of things on the record that we made up on the spot, like Dad and my whole skit in “The Lake”, and the Andrew (the engineer) saying a bunch of crazy stuff in “Dance Party”.
Rockmommy: What was the hardest part (and how did you get through that)?
July Mees: Recording late in the afternoon and evening and getting tired. I got through it by eating one slice of orange after every vocal take. I ate a lot of oranges. 🙂