Moon Taxi Talk New Single “Light Up”, Charity Initiatives & Career Milestones

Kat Harlton

Nashville-based alt-rock band Moon Taxi recently released their second new song of the year “Light Up.” The forward-looking anthem is equal parts uplifting and catchy, and is currently featured in the Jeep End of Summer campaign across North America.

The new track follows the release of their Top 20 Triple A radio hit “Hometown Heroes,” released earlier this year. While Moon Taxi has undoubtedly earned its place as hometown heroes in Nashville – selling out two consecutive nights at famed Ryman Auditorium and earning praise from the Tennessean (“Moon Taxi evolves from ‘college project’ to rock stars”) – the band has also built an enormous following.

The five-piece has released five studio albums, including 2018’s Let The Record Play. “Two High,” the first single from Let The Record Play, catapulted Moon Taxi to new heights, amassing over 130 million streams on Spotify to date, topping the AAA radio airplay chart and becoming a Top 10 hit at the Alternative format.

We recently has the opportunity to chat with Moon Taxi about their new single, their charity initiatives, and how they’ve been staying connected.

Kat: You recently released your second new song of the year “Light Up. Can you share with us your thought process and inspiration behind the track?

Moon Taxi: We wanted to write a song that was relatable to someone who’s ready to get out and get up after having a difficult spell. In retrospect, it’s incredibly applicable to that sentiment this crazy year despite being written last summer.

Kat: During the pandemic, you’ve performed for over six different charity livestreams, and have helped raise well over ten million dollars for charities for small businesses, MusiCares, and Black Lives Matter causes. As an band with a large social media presence, do you feel any responsibility to address these types of issues affecting our communities? What do you hope others take away from your example?

MoonTaxi: These are charities that we care about. While it would be great if all our fans supported the same charities we do, we would also like to encourage them to seek out what matters to them and support what they feel is important. We’re five members of a band and there’s a variety of notable needs in the world that need attention. The three you mentioned are not the only ones we’ve supported and we intend to work with others as well.

Kat: You’ve sold out two consecutive nights at famed Ryman Auditorium, built an enormous following, and “Two High,” the first single from Let The Record Play amassed over 130 million streams on Spotify to date. What has a been a career highlight for you so far? What have you learned along the way?

Moon Taxi: Bonnaroo 2012 was the milestone for me. We had been playing tons of shows around the southeast and were building a solid following here. We’d toured the entire country, but in the south we would expect a few hundred people a night. We got a great slot on thursday night at bonnaroo and I expected a few thousand fans, but it was more like 15,000. By far the biggest show we’d ever played, maybe 10 fold. It was our shot and we didn’t miss.

Kat: Do you have any advice for emerging artists? or have you been given any advice that really made an impact?

Moon Taxi: Tons, but I’ll only share some here and basically what I was told by a friend a very long time ago. I asked him how do I get from having just my friends at shows to selling 1000 tickets. He said there are so many steps between where you are and where you want to be I can’t even tell you the first one. It’s incredibly true. No one will start your career for you. You have to wear all the hats in the beginning and as you grow, you’ll find a manager or agent to start helping out. Even then it’s not overnight. It’s all baby steps, but just keep walking. Each step gets bigger and more important, but you will have come so far it’ll still feel like another baby step.

Kat: Other than the charity performance, how have you been staying connected during Covid-19? What’s next?

Moon Taxi: Mostly by my phone. As to the second question. We have a new record called Silver Dream coming out January 22nd and I think it’s our best record yet.

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