Featured photo by: @raemystic

Mustard and Mr. Substitute had the pleasure of speaking with Southern California’s Half Past Two. Together we discussed their early memories, the inspiration behind their hit “Scratched CD”, and so much more!

Mustard would like to thank Half Past Two for joining them. How is everyone?

We are good, we are laughing. It’s nice to ketchup.

Half Past Two formed in 2006. Can you recall some early memories as a group? Was “Half Past Two” always the name everyone had in mind or did you have some others you were considering?

Half Past Two evolved from a ska cover band called King Otterpop and the Slushtones that some of us were in in high school, getting to headline the annual talent show a couple of times and play a few other random shows. We decided to become a “real band” in the summer of 2006 and that’s when Tara came in to be our lead singer. We went through a ton of options for band names but the only ones I actually remember us seriously considering were “Great Scott!” and “Greetings From Beyond”. One day I (Max) just blurted out “Half Past Two” because that was the time we used to get out of high school and it stuck.

Was there a scratched CD that inspired the song? Do you remember the track(s) that skipped? Or did you already have the concept in mind?

The CD was a mix CD that a friend of mine made me for my birthday in high school and it was only the last three or four songs that skipped on the CD. I did an Instagram live where I tried to analyze and figure out which songs they were because they were skipping so badly and was actually able to figure a couple of them out.

How did “Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom!” happen? Who reached out to who with the idea and what was it like working with Eichlers and We Are the Union?

Kind of a complicated story lol. Originally Tara started putting it together as a collab cover in the summer of 2021 and had Eichlers supply the beat. There were going to be other bands participating in it but due to various factors it ended up getting delayed and almost shelved. Once we started planning the run of shows with Eichlers and We Are the Union, Brent from WATU brought up the idea of each of us covering one of the other artist’s songs and at that point I suggested we repurpose Boom x4 into the version that exists now. We absolute adore Ike and WATU and they’re amazing to work with.

Your sound can be pretty versatile but it seems to center around Half Past Two being an awesome and staple ska band in today’s ska scene. Did HP2 start out wanting to be a ska band or did it just naturally happen?

Yes, definitely always ska. That’s all we’ve ever wanted to play and that won’t ever change. We do pride ourselves on being able to execute many different styles of ska, thank you for recognizing!

Half Past Two have mastered karate. What does Half Past Two consider their dojo? What rank-belt is everyone in the group?

Our dojo is Pot of Gold Recording beyond a shadow of a doubt. We spend so much time there with our producer David Irish, that’s where all the magic happens! Everyone in the band is amazing at what they do so I couldn’t give anyone less than a black belt.

What’s next for Half Past Two?

Anyone that follows us knows we’re constantly busy cooking up new things. We’ll have a few singles coming out later this year and have much more in the pipeline. We’re also in the midst of planning more out of town shows and short runs, we really want to get out there to play for people who’ve never been able to see us before.

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