New Duo HEYYO Taking the Central PA Music Scene by Storm
When you mix rap lyrics with different song tracks; traditional instruments, like guitar and piano; computer generated sounds; and background vocals, “Anything Could Happen.” That’s the name of the hit single from new musical duo HEYYO, the collaboration between Bucknell student Danny Gevirtz ’16 and Penn State student Matt Fell ’16.
I recently talked with Gevirtz about his latest musical endeavor and his plans for the future of HEYYO. As Gevirtz walked into 7th St. Café on the day of our interview, he was beaming from ear to ear. The huge smile on his face told me everything I needed to know right then and there: this is something that he absolutely loves to do.
I then learned how Gevirtz and Fell have serious intentions to make HEYYO bigger than just a hobby; but the two happened to meet by sheer coincidence. “The first time I met Matt, he was playing piano in the common room at Penn State. We were just throwing out songs at him to play. He would make them up on the spot…just kill it on the piano. And it just blew my mind. He then showed me a couple of the beats he made, and it was all really good.”
When Gevirtz told Fell about his rap skills, the wheels began turning. “I told him, ‘I can kind of rap…I don’t know how good I am.’ But one day, when I was back here at Bucknell and he was back at Penn State, I was listening to a song by Hoodie Allen called ‘No Faith in Brooklyn.’ So I texted Matt and said, ‘What do you think about me and you making a song? I’ll rap, you sing.’ So I sent him the link to the song; at first, he thought I was joking. But then he sent me one of the beats he made, and I wrote to it. The next time I went to Penn State, we recorded it in his dorm room. It’s actually on our EP now…it’s called ‘Fly With Me.’”
From there, Gevirtz and Fell started recording more and more tracks. Their first self-titled album, HEYYO, hit iTunes on September 9. “When it comes to describing our recording process, we always give this analogy: [Matt] is sitting in the driver’s seat…we’re in uncharted territory. And I’m sitting in the passenger seat with a map. I’m kind of telling him where to go, and he’s making it happen.”
The name HEYYO describes the duo perfectly…and interestingly enough, it all started with a phone call. “We didn’t have a name for a while...we just couldn’t think of anything. One day, I call [Matt] and I say, ‘Hey, yo…did you get that thing?’ And he was like, ‘Heyyo…that’s it!’ Matt’s the smooth ‘hey’…he’s the singer. And I’m the ‘yo,’ the rapper.”
Gevirtz talked more about the yin-yang relationship that he and Fell share. “We always collaborate on an idea we want to do. [Matt] will put together a simple beat, and send it to me…maybe add some vocals. I’ll take the song and set the genre for it, then make a rap for it and backfire with some vocals; or sometimes, he’ll backfire with a genre and vocals, and I’ll lay down the rap for it. With everything we do, we’re always on the same page.”
Gevirtz and Fell are already making moves in the Bucknell and Penn State music scenes. “We have a couple of house party venues coming up at Penn State. We want to branch out to the fraternity scene, and play at other small shows. We eventually want to open for artists.”
While HEYYO isn’t wasting any time looking for performance opportunities, they aren’t wasting time recording their next album, either. “We’re already started on making new music. We didn’t even finish the other [album] and we already had ideas for the second one! With the first album, we didn’t really know where we were going, so we were just kind of experimenting. It leaves so much more room for improvement.”
The duo finds inspiration for their music from personal experiences and current pop culture. “We’ve got a couple of dance songs on our EP…songs with a Justin Timberlake vibe. A couple of songs are influenced by girls: some old girls, and some new girls.”
HEYYO plans to release their second album sometime next semester. Even though this dynamic duo is on the road to success, they’re making sure to enjoy every second of the ride. “We don’t want to look too far ahead into the future because we have no idea what’s gonna happen with this. We want people to appreciate our music, and we want to be able to bring it to people. We want to make people happy.”
Check out HEYYO on various social media platforms and music sites: