We type slower than a first grader in computer class, so we are doing a Live Stream video Reddit AMA so we can keep up with all the questions and connect with everyone as best we can! Also per our luck with the media, this way with our class sarcasm, nothing gets taken out of context.

We'll be going live, and answering questions here at 9pm EST!

We're live here! https://www.facebook.com/thechainsmokers/videos/1620538617978522/

EDIT: PROOF: https://www.facebook.com/thechainsmokers/posts/1620535191312198 https://twitter.com/TheChainsmokers/status/903377911448612864

EDIT 2: Hey guys, sorry to cut this off but we gotta go eat dinner now. Thank you guys so much for participating in our 2nd AMA and for all your questions and for paying attention to our dumbasses. Hope to see you all at one of our shows!

Comments: 734 • Responses: 34  • Date: 

bangbangariana4201194 karma

How do you feel about being called the Nickelback of EDM?

The_Chainsmokers974 karma

That was an interesting moment. I don't know the guy that wrote that article and it was a pretty aggressive article. We were in the studio when we read it and were like 'what do we do?' We just decided to poke fun at ourselves and did a mashup with Paris. Horrible mashup but we're self-deprecating and Nickelback rocks

DWells55526 karma

Y'all are chill as fuck. Your music isn't really my taste, but you guys seem real despite all the shit that gets thrown your way. Props for that.

The_Chainsmokers356 karma

Thanks man

poppinmmolly854 karma

Hi guys! I went to your show in Des Moines and I loved it. There was a guy next to me with his young sons. He told me (before you came on) that he liked you guys because your lyrics were clean and you guys weren't crass and he felt comfortable letting his sons listen to your music...and then you came out and said "WHAT THE FUCK IS UP DES MOINES!!??" and his face just kinda fell. It was hilarious.

My question is kind of related. Do you have any stories/instances about parents getting mad at you that you're not as squeaky clean in your shows as the radio edits to your songs?

Thank you for your time.

The_Chainsmokers544 karma

hahaha that's really funny. Our parents have been relatively cool about all the F bombs.

I think a lot of it is my fault. I curse the most. My energy is best conveyed through the F word. My sister got her mouth cleaned with a bar of soap once. - ALEX

I had to pay a fee like 50 cents when I cursed growing up - DREW

fisherguiding587 karma

Do you guys like to fish?

The_Chainsmokers390 karma

hahaha this is amazing. Holy crap. Whoever posted this, thank you.

Frajer526 karma

What Blink 182 song did you beat to death in Tuscon? Also did Halsey's roommate ever realize that their mattress was stolen?

The_Chainsmokers641 karma

Initially it was Feeling This. It's my favorite blink 182 song because of the harmonies at the end.

Technically it's my friend from college's roommate no Halsey's ;)

ImTrulyAwesome268 karma

Any chance of EDM songs being released instead of generic pop? I really miss that older sound you guys had in songs such as Split, and your old remixes.

The_Chainsmokers493 karma

How we've developed over the past 5 years - we started being really enthusiastic about dance music and really wanted to be involved in it. At the time Avicii, Swedish House Mafia, etc all had their own unique sound. A lot of producers start off by making music that sounds like other people's sounds and that's how we started. We worked every day to try to find a sound that was inherently ours and not anybody's elses. That's where our remixes came from. The first time we really found our sound was with a remix we did of Anna the North's "Sway". That one did really well. After that we were really burnt out on making 128 music and we slowed it down and that's when we made "Roses" and I think that paved the way for Artist's to make slower music.

At the time Kygo, Diplo, Major Lazer, and we were the only ones really doing the slower songs I think. Flume's always been amazing. The music we now make is typically heard on the radio but at the time it wasn't.

Going forward we're going to take some chances and hopefully can steer away from sounding like generic pop to you guys.

HalfAlienRobot214 karma

If you could pick any vocalist to work with (that you haven't already worked with) for a collab, who would it be?

also, Roses is the most beautiful song in the world and #SELFIE was a masterpiece.

The_Chainsmokers525 karma

Imogen Heap!

HalfAlienRobot209 karma

were you guys really 'hacked' that time you called Halsey a bald bitch on twitter?

The_Chainsmokers471 karma

I was hacked. I don't even use Twitter that much. We were at a dinner at Sexy Fish in London with our agent and I got a notification or a text and noticed people were freaking out and then I saw a screenshot. I didn't know if I got hacked or if someone used a fake tweet generator but then I realized what had happened. My manager took my phone and deleted everything and got twitter to freeze my account. What sucked about it is that idk if they genuinely believed that I said all of that or if people just wanted to be nasty to someone but it fucked me up for a while. The comments didn't stop for months. Lady Gaga saw the tweet and she wasn't mad at us cuz she knew that we had been hacked but the things the hacker posted were still hurtful. It sucks that my account was involved in making someone feel that way. I get angry sometimes but I definitely don't go on the internet when I do - DREW

asmasher123136 karma

Hey guys! How was collabing with Coldplay? Chris Martin seems to do the best Collabs!

The_Chainsmokers380 karma

Hey! We grew up listening to Coldplay. They've been great at writing great songs and never thought working with Coldplay would even be a possibility. Their manager told Adam, our manager, that the band listens to our songs before they go on stage. We reached out and one day we heard back that Chris was available and we of course dropped everything and went to hang out at his studio. He's such a cool guy. We ended up playing a couple chords not knowing if he'd like them and he was like "this is the song" and we plugged in a mic and he started dancing around the studio and mumbled out the song. It was a rad moment to watch his process in the studio. Chris is like a spiritual being sent down from the Heavens to bring people good music.

floorboard80 karma

Hi guys! I got a few questions

  1. Matoma collab?

  2. Became a fan through a lot of your remixes. Any plans on dropping any new remixes? cough blink 182 cough

  3. I notice you heavily repost a lot of songs from lesser known producers on Soundcloud which is great exposure for them. Who do you think the best producers are right now that aren't very well known?

The_Chainsmokers119 karma

  1. Matoma is one of our best buddies. They should publish a book on him. He's a fascinating man. He came on tour with us as our opener and we became great friends and he happens to be a nationally ranked swimmer in Norway. He was also a snipper in the army and got pneumonia and he decided he wanted to become a musician. He was a classically trained pianist before that. So he's a pretty interesting guy. We worked on a song together while on the Friendzone tour but I dont think we'll be putting it out.

  2. We've actually been talking to blink 182 about doing a song which would be rad since they've been big influences on our lives since we were little. Travis Barker played with us at the AMA's last year which was dope. As far as doing any remixes - we're currently more focused on producing original music. We could do a remix but I feel like you have to be able to add something to the song when you do a remix.

  3. We answered this on a reddit post a couple weeks ago. To name a few: Boombox Cartel Louis the Child K?d illenium Lido (he's well known but doesn't get enough credit) We got known on hypemachine and back then the biggest producers on there were us, kygo, and RAC and now there's such good music coming from so many kids and it's awesome to see.

jillcm0475 karma

Hey guys!!! I’m a huge fan!!

Do you think fame has changed you guys personally or your music style?

The_Chainsmokers152 karma

Fame has changed us personally but not in the way you'd think. It's a weird thing to deal with. When you have people talking about the things you do, what you wear, what you say, etc you lose control of how you present your life. Everyone has something to say about one side of you and it may be right or it may not be right but it's out of your control. Our families have to deal with it. We learn to deal with it and we're lucky to have each other and we have a really dope team that help.

bob_swag60 karma

What do you think of Rezz's music? Alison Wonderland's music?

The_Chainsmokers72 karma

I think they're both incredible producers. Both awesome chicks. Rezz just does her own thing and has fun and the stuff she makes is super creative and out there. Alison Wonderland and Rezz are two of the most exciting dance artists. They both have a sound that's specific to each of them.

alphatexmex59 karma

What do you hate the most about each others ?

The_Chainsmokers164 karma

We both pick our noses

drock355948 karma

Do you haze Lucas from time to time? -An old fraternity friend of his

The_Chainsmokers67 karma

Lol he's here with me right now. Yeah Lucas gets hazed from time to time lol but he's got a good life.

G-strong8947 karma

What do you think of the criticism that your album got from reviewers (i loved it tho 4real) Also, do you have new music soon!! Is there any collab you can tell us about?

The_Chainsmokers191 karma

I think some of the criticism is fair and some of it is not fair. We look to criticism to improve ourselves. It's hard to read the more negative comments. I really liked the New York Times Review which wasn't a necessarily positive review but there were a lot of things I agreed with which is sometimes the hardest review to read where you're like "yeah I could've done that better".

A lot of the criticism sits with you and you have to figure out how to deal with it in your own way. We thought our album was honest and says a lot about who we are and we got to play it for 10,000 people every night on tour. Seeing those people jumping up and down is what made it worth it.

Tyler from 21 pilots sent us a really nice email congratulating us on the new album and said you should really focus on what's right in front of you and the internet isn't real. (ignore the fact that we're doing an AMA on the internet right now lol)

Camsy3443 karma

Hi Drew and Alex,

If you can include the following links in your post as proof of who you are, that would be greatly appreciated!

In the meantime I'll leave this comment stickied for visitors so they can see you're legitimate.



The_Chainsmokers41 karma

Done :)

FahnFahn941 karma

New album in 2018?

The_Chainsmokers120 karma

I would like to do another album. I really respect artists like Kendrick Lamar and Halsey that have a good overarching concept for an album. Maybe we'll do EPs again or singles. We just want to be able to put out music consistently. We haven't put anything out in like 6 months now which feels weird. We want our music to be a present reflection of who we are.

Thank you to all of you who helped get our album to platinum btw!

wontletmesignin19 karma

Hey guys, thanks for doing this AMA!! I firstly wanted to say how proud I am of both of you. I went to high school just a year behind Drew, and have been watching his career since his senior project, what a fucking way you've come man! I remember you being the only drummer in the elementary school band and thinking how cool that was. It's been a joy to watch you conquer the world and I still jam to Elodie today!!

I've got a million and one questions for you guys, but I'll settle with one.

What's the best "fuck the haters" story you have? I can only the imagine the shitstorm you guys have gotten. People thought you were done after the American Idol shit but you guys pulled it out!

Thanks again for the AMA and keep fucking doing you!

The_Chainsmokers81 karma

Haha I don't think it's ever like "FUCK THE HATERS"

You wake up to a beautiful day, nice cup of coffee, then you go to twitter and read "Eat shit" "Alex, your the ugly one" lol and all these billion comments. Initially it sucks but you just have to brush it off and remember that there's so much more positivity out there from great fans and focus on that. You're never going to be able to please everybody.

Most of those people want to be noticed. When people started shitting on us we used to respond to them to explain ourselves or ask why they feel a certain way. They would DM us and be like "yo dude I'm so sorry". That's very telling of our generation and their misconception of anonymity.

dmcgarrity199317 karma

What does your studio setup look like from a software/synth/midi controller standpoint? Any must-have sample packs? What do you use to isolate vocals for remixes?

The_Chainsmokers35 karma

We work out of Abelton. We have pretty much every plug in known to man and midi controllers. We use a prophet 6 on tour because it sounds better than a lot of the soft synths. I've been plugging it into a guitar or vox amp and record with a vocal mic. We ask artists for their vocals and they send it thinking we might do a remix sometimes lol

_bongiovanni16 karma

I was at your show in Miami! How does a show design as complicated as yours come together? Do shows have a director like movies do?

The_Chainsmokers25 karma

Yes, we had a musical director and production director... we had so many awesome people working on our show (shout out to production club). Miami was a really scary moment. We spent like 6 months planning this tour and our album had come out 3 days before the tour started and weren't show how people would even react to our music to begin with. We had been toying with the band idea and weren't sure if it would work. We had a crazy concept for a moving stage. It became one of our favorites moments of the year though. I wouldn't say it was our best show of the tour in terms of our performance (the first show can never really be the best) because there was so much going on but after that show it was like holy shit this thing can work and it all clicked. There were months of planning and meetings and discussions and storylines. We created a show around an album that wasn't even created yet which was pretty insane.

kyrgyzzephyr11 karma

What pop newcomers are you interested in?

The_Chainsmokers20 karma

I love Jessie Reyez, SZA, Khalid, Dua Lipa... all incredible.

Preocdm11 karma

Hey guys! Been a fan for years now, congratulations on all the recent success! I have a couple of questions for ya:

  1. Drew, what sort of big changes have you made to your production process/workflow over the years that have contributed to The Chainsmoker's success?

  2. What production skills did you focus on early in your careers that you think were crucial to you guys feeling "ready" about the sound/quality of your first releases?

  3. Earlier on in your careers, what sort of roles did more experienced producers play in your development as artists?

Thanks guys, you rock!

The_Chainsmokers37 karma

We used to stack the productions with a million sounds. A lot of producers have asked us about simplicity. "Oh your songs are so simple" is a comment we get a lot. Simplicity is something we've worked on for SO long. Go listen to "Teenage Dream" by Katy Perry. It's an interesting production because every sound in that production has a purpose. It starts very narrow and as different sections of the song come in they add one really quality sound in the right key. Once you get to the hook it's everything and it gets bigger and we studied guys like Max Martin and Dr Luke to try to nail down that idea.

Sound quality is a funny thing... some of the people that have the greatest mixes think their stuff sounds like shit. It's self-deprecating in that way. If you listen to our earlier mixes some of it sounds like we had no idea what we were doing. You eventually find your way. I think it's really important to put your music on Soundcloud or wherever before it's ready because you get so much feedback and can really grow

CaliforniaAshes9 karma

  1. What's your favorite lyric you've ever written for a song?

  2. When are we going to hear Sick Boy?

  3. Who's the person or artist who has inspired you the most in your lives?

The_Chainsmokers48 karma

"Tell your friends it was nice to meet them but I hope I never see them again". That line and "blink 182 song" and all those lyrics start as one liner thoughts on the plane

How do you know about Sick Boy??

Dr Dre, Skrillex, LINKIN PARK. Go listen to Hybrid Theory. It's insane how it's withstood the test of time... Justice... Daft Punk was super influential

coatstain10 karma

Hey guys! So glad you're doing this- I love your music!

If you could be in any job besides music production, what would it be and why?

The_Chainsmokers14 karma

Thanks, appreciate it!

I wanted to be an architect - DREW

I would probably be an art dealer - ALEX

TheMattyIce8 karma

Suhhh. thanks for taking the time to do this.

Couple of questions feel free to pick and choose.

  1. What was the first song you listened to this morning

  2. Now that you have had a successful new album, any thoughts on producing for another artist or back to remixs

  3. How often are you not together

  4. In this past week/year what have to tried to improve on.

  5. Festival or Small 200 person show?

  6. What do you look for/how do you pick the intro drop for your shows?

  7. Have you ever seen a Chevy with the butterfly doors?

  8. Do you miss Eastern Standard Time

Ps. Go Rags!.........Jk the stink letttss gooo B'sss -> can either of you skate?

The_Chainsmokers17 karma

SZA's Supermodel - ALEX Bomba Estereo's Fiesta - DREW Sidenote: XXXtentacion's album is sick.

We've always wanted to produce with other artists but we just have no time right now. We have so much we want to do for our own project that we're dedicated to. Producers who have been in the game longer than us are able to do that now like Mark Ronson and Diplo are really good at that.

Unfortunately we're together every day haha... altho if we don't see each other for 5 days we actually miss each other

Trying to drink less... except it's hard. Trying to eat less meat this past week. We travel a lot and are worn down a lot. We go to the gym and stay healthy. Surround yourself with people who are good.

Size of the show doesn't matter honestly. It's all about the crowd. 2 of my favorite shows this year... Montreal at the Bell Centre. We sold it out and it was one of the biggest chainsmokers shows we’ve ever done and people were RAGING. Also when we played at Rory Kramer’s Friend’s bar in Indiana with his friends and parents and 100 locals and just tore it up. Shout out to The Venue in Clearlake Indiana

We reinvent our intro once every 6-9 months or we do different parts of it. It's hard because an intro sets the tone for the whole show. I think people also expect us to play a softer set based on what they hear from us on the radio. We love harder music - we're not great at making it but love playing it. I love shows that go up and down and have soft and hard moments. I love the juxtaposition of our DJ sets against the softer music.

shahkrutin5 karma

How are you feeling about your concerts in Asia?

The_Chainsmokers12 karma

It's going to be really intense. We're doing 10 Asian shows in 10 days. We're so excited to be coming back. We don't get to come there that often and Asian fans are are always super energetic. I think we were popular there before anywhere else.

iNumbersi4 karma

So what inspired Sick Boy?

The_Chainsmokers3 karma

We're not ready for the Sick Boy conversation yet. Stay tuned!

mattcoys3 karma

How many hot dogs do you guys think you could eat in 30 minutes? (bun included, no condiments allowed)

The_Chainsmokers9 karma

No condiments? That's bullshit. If we're talking standard sized hot dogs probably like 4.

AwesomeMeese1 karma

What's your funniest story about meeting another artist?

The_Chainsmokers3 karma

Stephan Jenkins - We went to a bar in baltimore the Friday before we played Coachella on Sunday. Alex drunkingly was like "my friend oliver's brother is the drummer for third eye blind, should I text him to come out with us at Coachella?" And we texted him and next thing we knew Stephan Jenkins was coming out with us.

burritobattlefield1 karma

Did Matt McGuire join you guys on drums? I heard he did but haven't seen any mention of him anywhere

The_Chainsmokers3 karma

Yeah he's part of our band! He actually lives with Drew at the moment. We're doing a half DJ / half band show now which has been awesome. We've been lucky to have Matt with us on tour he's incredibly talented.

DJ-Jack2Jack1 karma

What's the top production tips you could give to yourself 5 years ago that you know now?

The_Chainsmokers2 karma

Less is more and walk away when you don't feel inspired and come back.

Juliao1231 karma

There is a song called Eyes that is said to be by you guys and shawn mendes but it isn't on any of your albums so I guess my question is... is that really one of your songs and if so where the crap do I buy it so I can listen to a better quality version?

Eyes by the chainsmokers ft. shawn mendes

The_Chainsmokers2 karma

That's cool that we have fake songs out there lol Not that's not ours

_bongiovanni1 karma

There are so many fun skits and coordinated moves in your show! How much rehearsing does it require? Do you have dance coaches? Thank you!!!

The_Chainsmokers3 karma

We actually did have a dance coach lol I think most dance crews would be ashamed of us haha

We're huge fans of Stromae. He has an incredible live show. He does a cool dancing element in his show that inspired us. We in no way can compare to what he does but that's what inspired us.

We thought our skits were really fun. 21 Pilots was another inspiration for the skits. They have such character in their show and we just wanted to give our fans a better sense of our character. It's a fun way to connect with your crowd and take a break from the music. Our show/stage was also very elaborate with a bunch of moving pieces and fixtures and we thought that those skits was a fun way to poke fun at the whole because it was so technologically intense.

sxhsx1 karma

What are y'all's long term goals in terms of music production? Do you ever see a return to making remixes?

The_Chainsmokers2 karma

We're just trying to get better. We've changed a lot in this past year and we have a new set of experiences to pull from when making new songs and sounds. Our sound is a collage and we've been influenced by so many people. We come from the DJ scene and how it used to be was that to make it as a DJ you make a record that you can play at the club. 128 bpm was the way to do that. Once we let that go with Roses and got over that hurdle we found a way to let a wider variety of influences into our sound. Now that we write, produce, and sing our own music now it takes a bit longer but it's liberating because you have control of every step of the song.