Blog | interviews

  • TeenNick Top 10: An Interview With Fifth Harmony

    Posted on 08/22/2013 by Rachel1016




    You might remember Fifth Harmony from their early days as individual contestants on the X Factor, but nowadays this girl group is taking the pop world by storm as TeenNick Top 10's Fresh Artist! Their equal parts high-octane and totally sweet girl-power sound have won over millions, and it's still only the beginning. We caught up with Normani, Ally, Lauren, Dinah, and Camila to talk about their forthcoming album, their loyal Harmonizers, and their surreal journey to stardom! 

    Congratulations on being named TeenNick Top 10's Fresh Artist! What is going on in your busy lives this month?   

    Normani: Thank you so much! I love me some TeenNick. This month has most definitely been our busiest thus far. We recently finished our first tour called "Harmonize America!" It was such a blast getting to meet the Harmonizers in person. We also attended the Teen Choice Awards & will be attending the VMAs. We're very excited to walk on the same carpet as our idols that we've looked up to since we were little girls. 

    Ally: Thank you! This month we are performing, attending the VMAs, and getting prepped for the Cher Lloyd tour!

    Lauren: Well we're actually wrapping up our "Harmonize America" tour which was an incredible experience. We had so much traveling around the country together and meeting so many of our Harmonizers! We also have a lot of performances set up in the time between the end of this tour and the beginning of the "I Wish" tour with Cher Lloyd.

    Camila: We just finished our "Harmonize America" tour which was incredible!!!! This week we'll be going to the VMAs so we're preparing ourselves for the cardiac arrest that'll come when we see all those people we look up to standing in front of us. Also we're about to start the "I Wish" tour with Cher Lloyd which is reeeeally exciting!


    At the beginning of the year, you were named the "Next Pop Superstar of 2013" by Popdust Magazine. How do you begin to process such a huge honor?  

    Normani: It's such an honor to be named "Next Pop Superstar of 2013!" I've always voted for these kinds of things and bought magazines, but to actually be in it is amazing. I totally would not be able to say that a year ago. I love that our Harmonizers pushed and voted for us. Super dedicated!

    Ally: It's disbelief honesty! We were up against some pretty talented acts, and for us to be named the Next "Pop Superstar of 2013" is pretty awesome!! We hope to take this year by storm :) 

    Lauren: It's not really something that ever sinks in but it is one of the coolest things that has happened to us considering that when we were named, we didn't have a single piece of original music out. It was amazing to see how much people believed in our project and how much our Harmonizers supported us even then.
    Camila: When you're honored with such a title as the next "Pop Superstar" by Popdust, it's one of those things where it sinks in a little that this is actually happening. As clich� as it sounds everything that's happening to us doesn't really seem like reality, it seems like we're all living in this dreamland where everything we never thought could happen, but wanted to happen, is happening. Getting such an honor was such a surreal thing, but it also makes it click for us that we have to work our butts off to make it happen.

    Dinah: To be honest I never thought that any of this would or could ever happen to me, so it's hard to process a huge honor when it feels so surreal. Although I'm living my dream it still hasn't processed completely! It's an amazing feeling.


    Many of your YouTube covers have been praised by the original artists themselves, namely Ed Sheeran. What is it like having someone like Ed Sheeran applaud your work?    

    Normani: It was absolutely amazing and felt unreal. We were actually in the recording studio when he tweeted us and we stopped, dropped & rolled haha. I replied and called him Mr. Ed Sheeran sir. It makes me happy to see humble people that are on his level of success.  It really inspired us. 

    Ally: It's phenomenal. We look up to Ed so much. Personally, he has inspired me and blessed me with his music. I'm a huge fan. For him to compliment us is just insane and such a huge honor. We cried and screamed when we saw his tweet!!

    Lauren: It's one of the best feelings in the world when someone you look up to so much applauds you for what you love to do. Ed Sheeran is one of my favorite artists so for him to compliment our arrangement and execution of his song Lego House was a surreal moment. I'll never forget.

    Camila: I am not even joking when I say that (and all the girls can testify) I burst into tears when Ed saw our cover and said it was incredible. He is my favorite artist and for somebody that I look up to so much and is one of my biggest musical influences to say he liked the cover meant the world to the girls and me.

    Dinah: I am speechless because to have people you look up to compliment us is the greatest feeling ever. I remember reading Ed Sheeran's tweet and immediately ran to Camila and Ally and screamed OMG HE TWEETED US!! He tweeted us! Even when I think back at that very moment the adrenaline and rush was so VELA! (Hot)


    Your debut single, "Miss Movin' On" is such a soulful, powerful girl-power pop anthem. What can your fans expect from your upcoming album?  

    Normani: Our album comes out this fall and we can't wait until you guys are able to hear it. We worked super hard and we also co-wrote a lot of the songs and put in our input. The sound is fun, pop with hints of r&b vibes and a ton of vocals! We have a few girl anthem songs on the album as well #GirlPower. 

    Ally: They can expect a pop sound. Lots of fun and craziness, but also a range of vocals from all of us. We also co-wrote many of the songs, so our fans will have a piece of us.

    Lauren: Well the album is a collection of fun, pop songs with soulful girl-power vocals on it haha. We also got the opportunity to co-write on a lot of the songs that make up our album, so that was a great learning and growing experience as artists.

    Camila: We co-wrote a lot of the songs from the album which was an incredible experience for us. People will get a little piece of us when they listen, which is something we all admire in our favorite artists. 

    Dinah: I think the supporters should expect something fun, retro, relatable, girl power, energy and lots of LOVE.



    What is the most surreal thing you have experienced as a group since the X Factor?

    Normani: Looking out into the audience and seeing how our music reflects on the people that support us to the fullest. Our fans go above and beyond for us. Also, getting to meet some of our idols. I nearly passed out when I saw Shay Mitchell haha.

    Ally: The overwhelming amount of support from the Harmonizers. It's absolutely insane!!

    Lauren: I think thus far, presenting at the Teen Choice Awards was one of the most surreal things. To have Demi introduce us on stage and then to present the Acuvue Inspire Award to Nick Jonas, who is a childhood icon of mine, was one of the craziest things that's ever happened to us.

    Camila: It is a tad cruel for me to be able to narrow it down to one surreal moment. THIS WHOLE EXPERIENCE HAS BEEN ONE CONTINUOUS SURREAL MOMENT! Haha. I think the Teen Choice Awards was so surreal. Seeing literally everyone I'm obsessed with on the carpet and being a couple feet away from them and acting  as if I weren't having heart palpitations was just insane. 

    Dinah: I think the most surreal thing is working with the best producers the best song writers and meeting all kinds of celebrities. And we are blessed with the BEST team of people it's definitely a blessing.  


    You have an incredibly loyal fan base. What is the craziest thing you've seen, heard, or received from a Harmonizer?  

    Normani: Well one time these girls ran like 5 minutes trying to keep up with our van haha and once I received a cut out picture of my face! Kinda scary�

    Ally: Quite a few people have said that they have stopped self-harming because of us. It's astounding that we could have that kind of impact on people. That is why we do this, to help and inspire people. It's the best feeling in the world to know that we could help somebody like that.

    Lauren: I don't think we've experienced anything too crazy, but one time a person ran after our bus for a good five blocks and like actually kept up with the car.

    Camila: I think one of the craziest things I hear from harmonizers is when they tell us they've traveled thousands of miles just for a performance.  We've met some people that have come from other countries just for us. It always shocks me. 

    Dinah: Well just recently a Harmonizer gave me a dinosaur suit! I thought that was so clever because my name is Dinah and they brought me a dinosaur suit lol.

      
    With all of the boy bands in the music scene right now, we're stoked you are making a name for girl groups out there!   Which female artists have or continue to inspire you? 

    Normani: It's such an amazing and beautiful opportunity to represent as inspire girls. We're all about girl power and strive to inspire and makes a difference. We're blessed to have this platform to allow us to do that YAAAY GIRL GROUPS. Beyonc�, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Jessie J, Rihanna, Janet Jackson, Brandy, Selena, Jennifer Lopez & Selena! 

    Ally: I love Selena Quintanilla, Beyonce, JLO and Adele!! They're all so talented in their own way and each has made a huge impact on the industry.

    Lauren: I think one of my main inspirations artist-wise has been Lana Del Rey, because I love how original her sound is and I think her melodies are really cool. I also have developed this deep respect for an artist named Lorde because she's only 16 and writes all of her music and they're just so dope for lack of a better term. I think she's gonna take over the music scene soon. She's amazing.

    Camila: Demi Lovato definitely inspires me in every sense of the word. I love how she's shared her story with the world to help other teen girls going through the same issues and how she gives people a piece of her through her music. In songs like, "For The Love of a Daughter" or "Warrior," she's completely honest with her fans. She's an incredible role model for girls and she's inspired me as a person and as an artist. She rocks.

    Dinah: I am always inspired by Patty Labelle, One Direction, Cher Lloyd, Leona Lewis, Beyonce, Carrie Underwood and many more because they continue to reinvent themselves and I learn from them and hope one day to be like them one day...

    _______________________

    Well there you have it, Harmonizers! If you want to catch more of these lovely ladies, head over to the TeenNick Top 10 voting page and you might see "Miss Movin' On" on the TeenNick Top 10 countdown! And, of course, don't forget to tune in this Friday at 10PM ET

  • TeenNick Top 10: Olivia Somerlyn on Songwriting

    Posted on 05/17/2013 by Lisa

    18-year-old singer/songwriter Olivia Somerlyn, the TeenNick Top 10 Fresh Artist of the Month, talks about her writing process in part two of our interview. (Read part one, in which she talks about opening up for Big Time Rush and Victoria Justice on tour this summer, here.)

    Olivia SomerlynWhat's your writing process like?
    First of all, I could really write a song anywhere, because inspiration comes at the weirdest times. Somebody says a word, and I think "Oh, that'd be great in a song." I have to write it down. I have to always be ready for that. I've even written songs on a plane, with my headphones, my notebook, and the piano app on my phone, trying to play chords and not being able to do it. The flight attendants were cracking up at me -- that's not the ideal place to write a song.

    Usually I get inspired right when I'm about to fall asleep, and I end up staying up way too late working on a song. Sometimes I think that's when the best inspiration comes, when you're winding down. You have time to think.

    It's so funny. I'm in bed, the lights are off, and my eyes are closed. I think of either a concept or a melody, but I have to wake up really early the next day... so do I work on this, or do I fall asleep? Should I record it really quick? It's hard to decide sometimes.

    Do you have a favorite place to write?
    I used to live in the Bay Area, and I had a great view from my room. I had a little keyboard set up there, and I always used to love when it rained. I wrote one of my songs, "Only in the Movies," while looking at that view in the rain. I always go back to that place in my mind. I love writing songs in the rain, there's just something about it.

    What advice would you give to someone who wants to start writing their own songs?
    I'd just say, get started as soon as you can. Just write, and don't worry about making it perfect right off the bat. I have notebooks full of songs that I wrote, I mean, complete songs -- they have lyrics, melody, everything -- that I never really recorded for real or released. But it was worth it, because I learned so much writing all those songs.

    Also, one thing that really helps me as I write songs is to amplify the emotion that I'm feeling. I think in order for a song to really move people, for it to come across as poetry, as art, because that's really what songwriting is, there needs to be an amplification of reality, rather than just conversational words as lyrics.

    What's the best advice anyone has ever given you about songwriting?
    I love this question because it makes me think about all the amazing people that I've worked with, and all the writers that I've met. When I first started co-writing, I started typing my words on a laptop, rather than writing by hand in a notebook, like I used to, when I was writing by myself. Then I worked with this really great co-writer who told me that she always uses paper and a pen -- not even pencil -- so she wouldn't be able to delete or erase the lyrics that she didn't end up using. Then she could refer back and use those words to create other songs -- flip back and see if there are other lyrics that would work for it. That really changed the way I wrote, because I ended up looking back at my old notebooks and finding little pieces that I can use in other songs.

    And this is less technical, but another piece of advice that somebody gave me that really stuck with me is "The more transparent you become, the more universal you become." It has really encouraged me to open up and be more vulnerable in my songwriting. I got that advice pretty recently, and I think it particularly shows in one of the songs on my new album.

    Have you ever heard a song and thought "I wish I'd written that"? What song was it?
    I think this all the time. My music taste is very eclectic. I listen to so many different artists. I'm always Shazamming songs on my iPhone when I go to stores and restaurants. I find a song and then I'm obsessed with it for a while. Right now it's "Just Give Me a Reason" by Pink and Nate Ruess. It reminds me of my music style -- it's piano based with a really cool beat behind it. I just wish I'd written it!

    What else do you think you'll have on your summer 2013 playlist?
    I've heard whispers that Katy Perry's new album is coming out this summer, and I don't know if that's true, but I really hope it is, because I'm really excited about it. Also, the new Big Time Rush album, which I'll get to hear all the time on tour this summer.

    The Summer Break Tour sounds like so much fun, but it also sounds like you'll be crazy busy. When you get overwhelmed, what's your favorite way to relax?
    I've never been on a tour before, so in the days leading up to the tour, I can't sleep because I'm nervous, or I can't sleep because I'm excited. I really like getting lost in a book right before bed. I read as much as I possibly can right before I fall asleep, so the last thing in my mind is what's going on in the book, with the story and the characters. I think it's even better when it's something that's very different from my life, from a different time period especially, so I can just sort of be transported.

    Since you love historical fiction, I have to ask: If you could go back in time and play a few songs for ANY historical figure, which one would you pick?
    I love this question. I read a lot of historical novels, especially about European history. I took AP European History and I just loved it so much. I wrote a research paper about Marie Antoinette for that class, so I'd probably choose her. Everyone thinks she's so frivolous, but I think she's very misunderstood.

    What's on your summer reading list?
    I'm in the middle of reading The Great Gatsby, and I really like it so far. I don't know what I'm going to read next, so I'd love suggestions from people.

    Thanks, Olivia. I hope you have a wonderful summer on tour!
    Thank you so much!


    If you see Olivia on the Summer Break Tour, say hi. She says, "It'll make my day." Catch her on TeenNick Top 10 all month long (Fridays at 10pm et, 7pm pt), and follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. See her live on the Summer Break Tour, beginning June 21 in Los Angeles.

  • TeenNick Top 10: Interview with Olivia Somerlyn

    Posted on 05/10/2013 by Lisa

    18-year-old singer/songwriter Olivia Somerlyn is the TeenNick Top 10 Fresh Artist of the Month for May. I talked to her about her summer plans, which include opening up for Big Time Rush and Victoria Justice on the Summer Break Tour.

    Olivia SomerlynCongratulations on being named Fresh Artist of the Month!
    Thank you! My TeenNick Top 10 interview was my first TV interview ever, and this is my first phone interview.

    Yay! What's one thing you want everyone who reads this interview to know about you?
    For the past few years that I've been working on my music, it's been all pretty much behind the scenes work. I've been writing a lot, recording a lot, and just being a perfectionist. This is going to be my first tour, and I can't even explain how excited I am to share my music with everybody.

    What are you looking forward to most about the tour?
    I'm mostly excited about meeting everybody before and after the show. I'll try to always be outside saying hi to everyone, kind of like I am on Twitter and online. I try to respond to everyone who tweets me, because it's just so much fun talking to everyone and responding to all the questions. I also can't wait to meet Big Time Rush and Victoria Justice, because I haven't met them yet! Everyone keeps asking if I've met them, but not yet! Hopefully soon!

    What's your favorite Big Time Rush song?
    I have two. One is one of their more recent songs, called "Windows Down." I listen to it when I'm working out, and it's just so energizing and fun. It's always stuck in my head.

    I went to the kick-off party for the tour at House of Blues a few weeks ago, and Big Time Rush and Victoria Justice did a little show. Big Time Rush played an acoustic set, and they played one of their older songs, "Nothing Even Matters," and it sounded so cool acoustically. That made it one of my favorites.

    What was it like at the kick-off party?
    I was just in the audience, thinking, "I can't believe I'm going on tour with these guys!" There were people handing out flyers on the way in, and my name was on the flyer: "Big Time Rush and Victoria Justice and ME?" It was so crazy.

    So, what are you bringing with you on tour? Tell me five things you can't live without.
    Olivia and Lukie#1. I want to bring my dog, Luke, but I don't know if he'll be able to handle all that traveling. That's making me really nervous, because how am I going to get through seven weeks without my puppy?

    #2. This is my first time on tour, and my first time sleeping on a tour bus. I'll probably have to bring a really good pillow so I can get comfortable anywhere. #3. A notebook, so I can write lyrics.

    #4. I want to figure out some sort of small keyboard situation for the tour bus, because I'm always writing songs, and it'd be really hard not to have that.

    #5. Definitely my phone, because I am always taking pictures. I'm a Big Time Rush fan and a Victoria Justice fan, so I want to be able to share my backstage access. I know what it's like to be a fan, and wonder what goes on behind the scenes, so I want to be the eyes and ears of everyone who wants to follow me on Instagram and Twitter.

    You're very active on Twitter. When you communicate directly with your fans, how do you stay focused on the good stuff and avoid the haters?
    Most people have been so nice and so positive, and even when they aren't, I just focus on the positive. I either ignore it or respond with something nice. I don't believe in fighting fire with fire, not just on social media, but in my personal life. I have a song on my upcoming EP about that, about standing up for yourself without having to sink to that level.

    What's your favorite thing about performing live?
    I've performed live a little bit around Los Angeles, but since this is my first tour, I'm looking forward to figuring out what it's really like. I've been going to concerts my whole life, thinking "I really can't wait... I just wanna be on stage!" I can already kind of tell what my favorite thing is going to be -- connecting with the audience.

    What's the best show you've been to lately?
    The most recent show I went to was Imagine Dragons, and it was just so cool. I love their songs, and the stage design was amazing. I've never been to a Big Time Rush or a Victoria Justice show, so I'm excited about getting to see them like 38 times this summer!

    When is your EP coming out? Can you give us any hints about what it's going to be like?
    I'm hoping to release my EP in August -- right after the tour! It will have a few more upbeat, summer, catchy, fun songs than my first EP, so I hope people will want to sing along.

    In honor of the summer tour and your last name, let's do some summer questions.

    Favorite summer food?
    Seasonal summer fruit. All year, I wait for peaches and nectarines.

    Favorite summer memory?
    My mom and I used to drive to Lake Tahoe every summer, and we'd listen to Coldplay's album Parachutes the whole way there, the whole way back, and the whole time we were there. Now, when I hear those songs it reminds me of my favorite summer days.

    Favorite summer activity?
    Probably after this summer, it's gonna be touring! But I hope that at the end of the summer I'll get to drive up to Lake Tahoe and go swimming, or even just jump in the ocean and swim.

    In part two of this interview, Olivia talks about her writing process and shares songwriting tips. Read it here!

    Catch Olivia Somerlyn on TeenNick Top 10 all month long (Fridays at 10pm et, 7pm pt), and keep in touch with her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. You can also see her live on the Summer Break Tour, beginning June 21 in Los Angeles.

  • That one time Jake fed Eli a pear.

    Posted on 09/01/2011 by Mary

    So, in this video, Munro Chambers tells us all about his real-life Now or Never moment -- a moment that decided whether or not we would ever see him on Degrassi! -- and then Justin Kelly feeds him a pear.

    You should probably definitely watch it.

    And don't forget! After tonight's Degrassi: Now or Never finale, you only have a few days to catch up on all of the full episodes in HD right here. Because after Labor Day (which, by the way, will also be a 9a to midnight et Degrassi: Now or Never marathon), the full archive comes down.

    So do your eye stretches, get settled, and hit play.

  • Jordan Todosey's Now or Never Moment!

    Posted on 08/31/2011 by Mary

    Just a few more days left to watch ALL of Degrassi: Now or Never in HD right here on TeenNick.com!

    And now... Jordy Todosey regales us with the tale of a diem totally carpe'd

    Enjoy!

  • Justin Kelly's Now or Never Moment!

    Posted on 08/30/2011 by Mary

    Remember: starting next Tuesday, we'll only have six Degrassi episodes on the site. So now is a good time to watch any Degrassi: Now or Never episodes you've missed in HD!

    In keeping with this week's Now or Never theme... here's Justin Kelly (aka Jake Martin) sharing his real life make-or-break moment.

    Enjoy!

  • Samantha Munro's Now or Never Moment!

    Posted on 08/29/2011 by Mary

    Only four episodes of Degrassi: Now or Never left! It's been a rollercoaster summer, and there's still some loop-de-loops to come.

    And as it happens: Right now is also your Now or Never chance to watch ALL of this summer's episodes online via the Degrassi video page. Because after Labor Day weekend, we'll be back to only having six episodes at a time available on the site. SO DO IT NOW! WATCH 'EM UP! NOW OR NEVER!

    Speaking of real life Now or Never moments... we asked some of the cast members to tell you about theirs! Here's #1: Samantha Munro, on her second-to-last day on the Degrassi set.

    Enjoy!

  • New Interview: Aislinn Paul (Clare)!

    Posted on 08/04/2011 by Mary

    Aislinn Paul aka Clare from Degrassi: Now or Never So. Clare this season.
    Clare has gone boy crazy, I would say. Back in season 8 when she said to Darcy "I'm going to school for education, not boys..." Nope! Not really, anymore. It's good though, because she's definitely growing up and going through quintessential teenage experiences.

    Were you surprised at people's anger at Clare for breaking up with Eli?
    I don't want to label any audience members who were upset, but I think some of them were maybe... distracted? By Munro, and the "damaged character" -- that's always been a magnet for young girls. So I understand how that may have skewed their opinion, but I think Clare made the right choice, personally. And I don't know if I would have been strong enough to make that choice if I were in her place, so I'm really proud of her.

    Even though Clare's the type of person that wants to help, she had given so much already that it was taking a huge toll on her, and it was important to take a new direction.

    With the casual relationship that Clare and Jake are trying to have, I think no one's sure if Clare is really built for casual. But do you think it's good for her to try?
    Clare tries to do that because she doesn't want to get hurt, and I think the experience overall is good for her. She's trying a lot of new things this season, and I think it's all good for her. As teenagers, even the bad choice is a good choice because you get the experience. And Clare's losing her naivete, I suppose.

    What does the world need to know about Justin Kelly?
    There's too much to say! He's awesomeness in a really tall package! He's a really good artist, he draws the greatest cartoons. And real sketches, too. He's hilarious. And he's really tall.

    So, with Ray and Charlotte and everybody graduating, you're kind of one of the seniors now, in terms of being a show veteran. How does that feel?
    In all honesty, I'm petrified. I'm so, so scared. I was talking about this with my friend Krista; how once Jajube leaves, I will be the longest-running cast member still on the show. And it makes me... not a leader, because we don't have that around here. But it feels almost like a burden, a responsibility. Like -- I love all the people who are leaving, but Charlotte was an idol. And a friend. And every great thing someone can be to you. I was always looking up to her and trying to emulate her, and I'm not ready for her to leave! She's always that awesome, put-together person. She did great on the show, she did great in interviews, she had great style, she listened to great music, and we just got along so well. And with her leaving... she's impossible to replace, but I do want to give that kind of attitude to the new young'uns coming in.

  • New Interview: Justin Kelly (Jake)!

    Posted on 08/04/2011 by Mary

    Justin Kelly aka Jake from Degrassi: Now or Never So! Your first season of Degrassi! What do you think so far?
    I love it! I think it's great. I've always been a fan of the show and I've always loved the work that everyone put into it, and it's great to be a part of it -- especially this season. It's like I'm watching it from a different angle.

    What did Munro tell you before you got here; did he give you any pointers or warnings?
    No... I mean, I was really fortunate to meet most of the cast when Munro signed on last year. We'd hang out and by the time I came along, it was kind of an automatic welcome. I felt welcome right away.

    What do you like about Jake? What do you have in common with him, and not?
    There's definitely an element of myself in him. I think he's very easygoing; I'm an easygoing person as well. And he doesn't like to deal with confrontation -- we kind of share that.

    He's such a breath of drama-less-ness...
    That's one thing I loved about him when I read him, 'cause we all know that Degrassi does have a little bit of drama attached to it. But he was one guy that was just like "I don't want to be a part of this drama."

    But obviously... it happens. The more he fits into the story lines, the more he gets his feet wet with that Degrassi drama.

    OK, time for "Get to know Justin Kelly." Favorite music?
    Mostly rock, '90s rock. But I do listen to everything.

    What do you do for fun?
    I play music. Guitar and bass, that's a big hobby of mine. I like to watch a lot of movies, and just hang out with friends and be social.

    Are you outdoorsy at all like Jake?
    I want to be? When I get outdoors, if I'm at a cottage or something, then I love it. But it depends on the atmosphere -- in the summer I love to be outdoors, in the winter not so much. And in the middle, we'll see.

    What's your family like?
    I have one brother, and then mom, dad, and stepfather. And my brother is actually who I got the music gene from... even though he's a sibling. But yeah, we jam together and he's very talented, so I get a lot from him.

    Do you mind me asking how old you were when your parents got divorced?
    I was 6 years old. It was a while ago. And for sure, that's another thing that Jake and I have in common. It's different because I live with my mom, and he lives with his dad so there's that father-son element. But that's one thing I had to relate to him with at first, getting to know how he felt about it.

    What about the casual relationship thing that Clare and Jake try to have. Do you think those work in real life?
    Mmm... yeah, I think it can work. Of course it depends on the person, and I think it's hard to have just a casual thing without there being almost a paranoia going on. Like, 'What if we decided today? What would happen next?' It's very hard to just have a casual relationship.

  • New Interview! Argiris Karras and Shannon Kook-Chun!

    Posted on 07/25/2011 by Mary

    I caught up with Argiris and Shannon (who are not dating each other in real life, lest you get confused by their jokestery below) on the Degrassi set. The three of us sat down for a little chat in -- true story -- a booth inside Little Miss Steaks. The seats there are kind of uncomfortable, if you've ever wondered.

    Degrassi's Argiris Karras and Shannon Kook-Chun, aka Riley and Zane, 2011 I've heard that you guys knew each other before the show, and that maybe Argy, you suggested that Shannon should audition? Or what's the story there?

    Argiris: It was more of a surprise actually. He told me, "Hey, I've got an audition..." I don't know, do you remember how it went?
    Shannon: I think we were at Jake Epstein's birthday, who played Craig on the show. I came to meet Argy because he and I were together like, every day that summer. We'd bike in the rain back from a night out, we'd double on the bike.

    Oh my God! How did you know each other?

    Shannon: I saw him somewhere before, and I was like "Yo, didn't I see you at...?"
    Argiris: At an audition room actually, yeah.
    Shannon: Yeah, he was doing a self-tape for an audition, so I saw him and stopped him. And then, where did we actually hit it off?
    Argiris: Maybe... I can't remember.
    Shannon: You don't remember our first date! (laughs) There were a lot of nights and days out. So then at Jake's birthday, I just told him. And he was calling me Zane all night trying to get me in character.
    Argiris: Yeah, I do remember that.

    So you were specifically auditioning for Zane, it wasn't one of those things where like, Liberty auditioned for Manny...

    Shannon: No, and they didn't even know that I was friends with him until when I got the role and we came for rehearsal. Our director was like, 'So, you guys are friends? That's a bonus! We never knew that.' And I don't know if it would have affected their decision, in a good way or bad way -- it could be a bad thing. And then she asked, 'Do you think this makes it easier or more difficult for you?' And I wasn't really sure. It is easier in a way because we have a rapport and we're comfortable with each other.

    It's interesting that you weren't just friend but like fast friends, too.

    Argiris and Shannon: Yeah.
    Shannon: And it's not often... you meet a lot of people in the industry but to get to work with someone that you would actually go out and dance with -- Argy and I would be the only two guys really breaking it down on the dance floor.
    Argy: Yeah, a lot of guys wouldn't go out there, they're pretty pathetic, they're just staying against the wall. Though, you know, we were there at some point in our life.
    Shannon: They're scoping out chicks.
    Argy: They just scope and they kind of creep and they kind of try to pull girls' dresses. It's just like, 'No, you've gotta have fun!' You've gotta show the girl that you're having fun and then stuff flows.

    TO BE CONTINUED... too many spoilers in the rest of our conversation!