Why Don’t We…Discuss Music, Mental Health and ‘The Good Times And The Bad Ones’

Why Don’t We X FAULT Magazine

Why don't we

Photographer: Pamela Littky

Stylist: Christian Stroble

Hair: Florido Basallo

Words: Miles Holder

It seems there will always be two constants of pop music. 1) There will always be Boybands and 2) they will always struggle to out rid themselves of the negative connotations that come from merely being a Boyband. Whether the same applies to Why Don’t We is debatable, however not up for debate is how hard they worked the last three years to prove themselves as more than the industry’s boyband of the month.

From spending a solid three years on tour to releasing a new single every month, Why Don’t We proved they’re ready to make the sacrifices needed for their creativity to blossom. Tomorrow Why Don’t We will release their sophomore album ‘The Good Times And The Bad Ones’,

We caught up with Why Don’t We to discuss their process, the mental toll of being a modern-day Boyband, and of course, their FAULTs.

The music industry moves so fast but early 2020 you decided to take time and focus on your new album – was it daunting to refocus your energy while the band’s momentum was so high?

Daniel: That was honestly the scariest part of it all, but I think it was a decision we wanted to make for a while, but we didn’t have the right level of confidence or time. We toured for three years straight, so we made many songs on the bus, so it’s been gratifying to see people fall in love with the first two singles that are out.

Have you all taken the time to sit down and reflect on all you’ve achieved along the way?

Jack: I feel like once a month we get a reality check where it’s like “holy crap, we’re still doing this!”

What was the hardest song to write on the album?

Jonah: Stay took the longest, we started it two years ago, and it went through many different versions and titles.

Corbyn: Which is funny because I liked every version.

Daniel: The whole time we were writing on the bus and no one really knew about it because we were playing the role of the industry made “boyband” so it’s really special to be in this position where we’ve been producing in hiding, and now everyone gets to hear it.

It’s been difficult for boybands to be taken seriously throughout history, gave you struggled with this also?

Daniel: It’s an interesting world because we all create music, but we have to prove to everybody that we can do it. Now that we’re putting it out it’s shown us that if you have the gift for making music, it’s dumb of you not to use that gift. Previously we came out with a song a month, and we were moving so fast that we couldn’t make the music we knew we could make. We loved doing it, but we’ve seen with this album that we can do so much more.

Why Don't We

How hard is it to handle everything going on with your career, personal lives and the world around you?

Corbyn: Harder than people think. Being in quarantine has weighed on us, and we’re not even at the point of a lot of stars are. I can’t imagine what Justin Beiber or Billie Eilish is feeling. For me, it’s been overwhelming at times, but any artist can relate, and it’s a very interesting world to live in, and the mental labour is so high.

Zach: It’s something that I don’t think a lot of people see, but it’s real.

What’s something you’ve done to protect your mental health?

Jonah: Writing has been an enormous help to get stuff off my mind. Whether it’s writing music or poetry or journaling, is a good way to go about it. I got a therapist this year, and I’ve been talking to her a lot.

Jack: Also surrounding yourselves with good people, we have a great team, and we have each other, and that’s played a big role. Having people around us who support and understand us has been very supportive. Find the people you love and be open with them because everybody’s going through something.

Zach: I take occasional days of social media, even if we aren’t working I think it really helps me.

Why Don't We

What’s something you wish journalists would stop asking you?

Jack: Where we got the name “Why Don’t We” from! It’s on the internet, google it!

Jonah: Also, about girlfriends and really personal stuff.

What’s been the most challenging aspect of your musical journey?

Jack: I used to think it was touring! After being on the road for three years straight it was like “man, when do we get to go home” and now we’ve been at home for all of the year, we can’t wait to go back on the road.

Jonah: I think music industry politics was a big one! When other people control our lives which isn’t all the time, but there have been times when it felt like we didn’t have full control.

What’s something new you learned about yourself last year?

Jack: That I can handle a lot, and that maybe I don’t understand the severity of the things that are happening. So I’ve learned to take a step back and really analyse situations and form opinions on them.

Daniel: I realised how human I am. When you’re on tour, you get an inflated sense of validation and purpose and that you’re the man but then Covid hits and the rug is pulled from under your feet, and you wonder what you are outside of the hype.

Why Don't We

What is your FAULT?

Daniel: I overthink about everything!

Zach: I do the same.

Jack: Sometimes, I think I overthink so much I ruin the conversation.

Corbyn: I suck at conflict and speaking my mind when I disagree with something.

Jonah: I feel like I’m so focused on the negative sometimes, and I need to recognise the positive more, which goes with overthinking.