find success together
by Brittnie Curtis
Texas State student Taylor Monroe recently joined forces with his friend Zach Wilcox to form a new band, Eko Heights. With a record deal already in place, the band is making great strides. We caught up with Taylor to ask him a few questions about his success.
Q. How did the band form?
A. Zach and I met in our high school speech class, but we didn’t really talk much until we both joined rugby. We then found out that not only were we both musicians, but that we were also neighbors. We lived on the same block on the same street. I always wanted to start a band, so when Zach and I found out we were both musicians, we decided to give it a go. We were both refreshed to see how dedicated the other was, because everyone wants to start a band and it’s hard to find people with the dedication to actually see it through.
Q. When did the band form?
A. The summer of 2014.
Q. Where did the name of the band come from?
A. We wanted the name of our band to represent us as well as it could, so we decided that since we both lived in Alamo Heights and went to Alamo Heights High School that we wanted to incorporate “heights” into the name. Then one night I came up with “Echo Heights.” I liked the way it sounded. I then did some more research and found that “Eko” in Japanese means “the transfer of merit,” which I felt fit the band really well. That’s what we try to do; we don’t want to just write music to write music. We want to write music that can inspire people and have deeper meanings. Music has been a major inspiration in both my and Zach’s life, so were really trying to return the favor with ours.
Q. What’s your role within Eko Heights?
A. Zach and I both sing and play ukelele, guitar, piano, bass, among other various instruments. But primarily I sing and play guitar.
Q. Are you both Texas State students?
A. I go to Texas State. Zach goes to Marquette in Milwaukee, which is interesting, because that is where I lived for seven years before I moved to Texas in high school. Zach lived in Chicago before moving to Texas in high school.
Q. Do you remember your very first performance with the band?
A. Our first performance was a graduation party. It wasn’t necessarily the biggest crowd, but I know I will remember it for the rest of my life. That short set we did was the first time I had performed live and had it feel comfortable.
Q. You recently got a record deal. Tell us about it.
A. It took a lot of e-mails and a lot of “no’s” to get to where we are now. Years of building connections through my own music endeavors lead us to greater opportunities. We got signed in August by a major independent label called Concore Entertainment, which works under Universal Music Group. Right now, we’re working on the next few releases and trying to lock down a tour.
Q. Your music can be purchased on iTunes. How did that come about?
A. Concore Entertainment got the song onto iTunes and Amazon as well as other sites like that.
Q. Eko Heights has a music video on VEVO. That’s a pretty big deal!
A. Ever since I first became interested in music as a young child, my depiction of success was to have a VEVO. All the big name artists have a VEVO, so it was always a big dream of mine to have one for my music. Having one now is truly a dream come true for me. Zach and I were both really stoked to see our video thumbnail with the little iconic VEVO banner in the corner.
Q. Anything else you’d like to say about the accomplishments of the band?
A. We peaked out at #35 on the beat100’s top 100 new original songs, worldwide chart. We also won two “Silver A&R awards” from the beat100. Along with that, we topped out at #12 on the national charts on Global Rockstar.
Q. What does the band hope to accomplish in the future?
A. We have our second single finished, so we’re working on a release date for that. And we are looking to get back into the studio with our producer to record an EP. There is a possibility of us touring this year, but all of that is still being discussed.
Q. Do you see Eko Heights playing a significant role/making an impact on the Texas State campus?
A. I certainly hope so! We’ve gotten some requests to play at some events, and we’re hoping that Zach will be back down in time for those. We both hope to play shows more frequently around the area.