Rather than tackiling the task of writing the entire body of this bio in third person, and without pretending we had someone write this for us, I shall first introduce myself as Charley Arents, lead singer and guitarist for Hopeless Heroes. Hopefully now all the pressure to make these next few paragraphs sound snazzy and pizazzy is completely lifted from my shoulders. My only objective is to tell the story of how our band came to be...and how it continues to be what it is today.
It all started when I was about 14 years old and I got my first guitar. One of my best friends Alex Vetter got a guitar as well and we found it fun to look up tabs to our favorite songs and learn to play them together. This lasted for quite a while until one day we though, 'hey, why don't we start a real band...like a REAL band'. If I remember correctly, I was the original bassist and Alex was on guitar. We went through bunches of other people, playing with tons of kids from our high school and around the neighborhood. Anyone who possessed any interest in playing rock music with us we totally jammed with at least once. Among these children where Andy Carbone (drums) and Nathan 'Bigelow' Fortier (Guitar & Vocals) but for some reason they must have had bad breath or something because the four of us didn't stick together until a little later. Actually, I don't think Nate and Alex knew each other until the summer of 2003...man I'll have to come back and rewrite this sometime. But anyway...
After about two years of going from small unsuccessful band to small unsuccessful band that went no where, Alex was forced to go off to military school. This put a huge damper on the band, as he lived in Wisconsin...as anyone may assume. But anyhow, I don't really remember what happened during that time, I know that Nate and Andy and I started jamming together quite regularly, and then broke off for a while. And then, once Alex returned to Kentwood for good, late in the summer of 2003, we formed Hopeless Heroes. Hopeless Heroes consisted of me (Charley Arents) on Vocals & Guitar, Alex Vetter on bass, Nate Fortier on Guitar & Vocals and Andy Carbone on drums.
Since none of us really ever talked about what music we wanted to play, we all began writing songs with all our favorite punk bands in mind...a genre of music we all held in common, and as of now, pretty much the only thing we would ever think about listening to. Taking influences from such bands as Rufio, Blink 182, Punchline, Fall Out Boy, The Early November, The Starting Line and pretty much the entire line up of Drive-Thru Records bands, we began to create music that even we enjoyed listening to.
After writing about 6-7 songs, we played our first show at a friend's house party. I'd say the debut went great, but just as the 18-29 people in attendance. After our great intro to the world, we began playing as many shows as we could, which at this time was only about once a month. We played local churches, coffee houses and anyones house who would have us over. In December of 2003 we released and recorded our first demo, Only Words EP and burned nearly 500 copies ourselves that would eventually all sell out to friends, fans and anyone at our shows. Since we ended up selling so many, we found something new and interesting about being in a band...that we could actually make a little money doing something that we loved doing.
Later in the month of December we teamed up with another band, The DeMull Trio, and organized a charity event at a local church in Kentwood, MI - KCC (Ground Zero). There we held a concert and raised nearly $600 ($588.60 to be exact) to donate to God's Kitchen, a charity in downtown Grand Rapids. This was probably the first exposure we ever got as it spawned an interview with the Grand Rapids Press...so that was pretty sweet.
As we became a little older and more mature as musicians and as a band as a whole...so did our stage show. Aftter attending many concerts around GR we realized that it's important to get the audience as into the music as we are...when playing shows. After keeping this in mind and booking and playing way more shows, we became stronger and tighter as a band...we felt we were finally giving people a 'show' rather than just a few people on stage playing guitars.
We continued the song writing process throughout 2004 and during this time played gigs at The Intersection, The Liquid Room, GR Festival 2004, The Essential Bean, Sessions and many other venues around the West Michigan Area. We were blessed enough to be able to play with such bands as Rufio (NITRO RECORDS), Over it, The Honorary Title, Halifax (DRIVE-THRU RECORDS), Emery, Alexisonfire, The Higher, Silverstein (VICTORY RECORDS), Jim Crawford Band and many other local acts.
In July 2004, we headed back into the studio to record our first full length album, [Your Name] Fits the Frame. Asw we move on with our lives with work and school, we plan to keep the band together and take it a lot more seriously than in the past. We are booking as many shows and meeting as many cool people as we can...we'd love to play for you as we just want to take this as far as we can.
(Taken from HopelessHeroes.com, and written by Charley Arents)