Hot Chelle Rae, the Band Named for a Fan Who Wasn't Real
In 2005, Ryan Follese and Nash Overstreet formed the pop rock band Hot Chelle Rae. In 2011, the band had a hit song called "Tonight Tonight." It sold over 2 million copies. NASH OVERSTREET: "You know, we released 'Tonight Tonight' on Valentine's Day of 2011 and that year just flew for us. You know, we moved into a tour bus. We got our first award from the AMAs, we played 'Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve' in Times Square for, like, a million and a half people right there much less, you know, across the world. So, we have had a really good time for the last year or so." Their fathers wrote country music songs. But Ryan Follese says he and Nash chose a different kind of music. RYAN FOLLESE: "Our parents were definitely huge pop fans and we were, you know, exposed to all of the pop artists of the '90s and earlier. Nash grew up on Prince and Michael Jackson and we both grew up on the Beatles. And I feel like, secretly, our parents want to do pop music so it was never frowned upon, it was very, very much loved and celebrated in our household." Ryan Follese feels a strong connection to the band's fans. RYAN FOLLESE: "Our fans are the most important thing because we didn't have any for so long. And once you have them you don't ever want to let them go." Ryan explains how the band got its unusual name. RYAN FOLLESE: "We named our band after a fan that was pretending to be this entirely different person on MySpace and her handle was Chelle Rae and she was very attractive in her photos. And I know that we're not the only guys in the world who've ever clicked on an attractive photo and been like 'Oh this is definitely her.' She pretended that she was working at this record label and she was gonna help us and blah, blah, blah and it went on for a long time. And the story is much more in-depth but, long story short, we found out she wasn't real." Hot Chelle Rae released their second CD, called "Whatever," in November. RYAN FOLLESE: "I think on our first record it was a learning experience like a lot of peoples' first album is. You learn a lot about yourself, and your songwriting, and who you are, and who you want to be. And this second album, 'Whatever,' is us not taking life quite so seriously and just really, like having a good time and writing about real experiences that we went through versus kind of premeditated stories that might be not as real to who we are." Hot Chelle Rae released the song "I Like It Like That" earlier this year. It reached the top 20 Billboard magazine chart. I'm Christopher Cruise.