OneRepublic’s new album, Native, is a hit with the general public so far–landing in the top 5 on this week’s Billboard 200 chart–but the band was actually going for a very specific demographic with this record.
Ryan Tedder admitted to Radio.com that they picked “If I Lose Myself” as their first single because of the reaction it got from a bunch of dudes in their early twenties. Their engineer, without the band knowing, had played the song for his friends who thought the song was really good.
“That’s kind of a good test for bands,” Tedder explained. “If you can get guys in their early twenties to believe in something, and to be like, ‘Yeah, I’d get that or I’d go to see that’…it’s not lame.”
Some bands say they just want fans and don’t care who they are, but Tedder said when he looks out into the crowd he wants to see men and women. The singer said male fans tend to stick around if you hook them in when they’re young. “If a guy likes a band at 15 or 18 or 21, when he’s 31 he’ll go see them again,” he said.
For Tedder it was important that OneRepublic expand their sound with their third album and try to earn new fans. To him, it’s the bands that keep pushing the boundaries that have long, prosperous careers.