Los Angeles-based psychedelic dream pop band Amo Amo was founded on a premonition. Yep, you read that right.
Formally established in June 2017 when five friends—Love Femme, Omar Velasco, Justin Flint, Shane Mckillop and Alex Siegel—came together for an impromptu session with Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Amo Amo has been unstoppable ever since, garnering nearly 1 million Spotify streams to date.
The quintet is now fresh off the release of their self-titled debut album, which dropped on April 26. Produced by Jim James of My Morning Jacket, the album is a sparkling, fantastical collection that will make the perfect companion for the upcoming summer months.
Musical Notes Global sat down with guitarist and vocalist Omar Velasco to talk all about the album, what Amo Amo wants their fans to know, and more. Check out the full interview below.
MNGBlog: For those who may not be familiar with you, who is Amo Amo?
Omar Velasco-Amo Amo: Amo Amo is a 5 member band from California. We play our own brand of soulful psychedelic pop music.
MNGBlog: How did you develop your unique sound?
OV: We spent a lot of time playing...just playing and exploring. We all have a similar mindset which is, play until something feels good and then hone in on that. Feeling has a lot to do with it.
MNGBlog: Are there any specific artists who have inspired you?
OV: Bob Marley is a central figure for this band. Also, many of our friends and peers who are making great music and art. It's inspiring and motivating to be amongst creative people.
MNGBlog: Congratulations on the release of your debut album! What does the album represent for you?
OV: Thank you! This album is the result of love for music and the dedication to make something we're all proud of. It was a labor of joy and love. It also represents the closing of one chapter and the beginning of a new one, which is very exciting for us.
MNGBlog: Did you learn anything new while working on it?
OV: Definitely! We learned what the identity of the band is...spontaneity is central to the way we write, and it was also the case in the recording process. Most of the versions on this record were first or second takes. We also learned the value of working with a producer who we all trust and respect.
MNGBlog: What is one message you hope fans take away after listening?
OV: There are many messages within the music we hope people can discover and interpret for themselves. Overall, we hope people are lifted and inspired by the music and the lyrics - we hope they have a joyful experience listening to this record, as it was for us making it.
MNGBlog: What are you most looking forward to on your upcoming tour with Jim James?
OV: There's a momentum and a synchronicity that starts to build when you play several shows in a row...the band gets really tight and the music gets to a new level. We're looking forward to that happening and the chance to play in front of new people and new cities.
MNGBlog: Are there any cities/venues you are most excited to play?
OV: New Orleans, Stubbs in Austin is great, Chicago...Some of us have not been to many of the cities on this tour so I think the whole experience will be great.
MNGBlog: What is one thing that you want your fans to know?
OV: That our music is the result of a collaboration in the truest sense. I really feel that this band's sound is a product of these five specific people putting their energy, love, and focus into making something together. This is a band where the whole really is greater than the sum of its parts.
Amo Amo is currently on tour with Jim James. Full dates below.
05/11: Austin, TX @ Stubbs Waller Creek Amphitheater **
05/12: Oklahoma City, OK @ Tower Theatre **
05/14: Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue **
05/15: St Louis, MO @ Delmar Hall **
05/17: Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club **
05/18: Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club **
05/19: Philadelphia, PA @ The Fillmore **
05/20: Portland, ME @ State Theatre **
05/22: Royal Oak, MI @ Royal Oak Music Theatre **
05/23: Chicago, IL @ Riviera Theater **
05/23-26: Chillicothe, IL @ Summer Camp Fest
06/29: San Francisco, CA @ Fillmore **
06/30: San Francisco, CA @ Fillmore **
07/04-07: Quincy, CA @ High Sierra Music Festival
08/03: Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Ampitheatre ***
08/09-11: San Francisco, CA @ Outside Lands
**with Jim James
***with My Morning Jacket
Stream Amo Amo now on Spotify or on your favorite music platform.