The Fandino twins (Nolan & Jacob) announced their decision earlier this week to re-audition for the popular television program, America’s Got Talent this coming November. This duo of 11-year-old brothers, who go by “The Fandinos” have been busy performing other artists’ material at local venues within their hometown of Elon, North Carolina. The Fandinos have prior experience with America’s Got Talent (auditioning previously in 2013) and have taken the past year to prepare and grow musically. We spent time with Nolan and Jacob earlier this week and discussed their early start in music, the upcoming audition with AGT, and how they spend their time when not playing music together!
Entertwine: Hello Jacob and Nolan! You are twin brothers who play instruments and have a band together…super awesome, especially at such a young age! What inspired you both to begin creating music and performing together? Who are your favorite bands or artists, and why?
Nolan: Our Dad inspired us as he is a musician as well. He would play the guitar and sings to us. We always listened to music.
Jacob: yes that is true but when we won 2nd place in the 3rd grade in our Schools Talent Show for performing Twist & Shout by The Beatles we were hooked.
Nolan : Some of my favorite bands are The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Green Day and favorite artists are Buddy Rich, Steve Gadd & Dave Weckl. They are all great artists and I learn something different from each artist that I like.
Jacob: My favorite bands are The Beatles for their Melodies and their song writing ability. Guns & Roses for their unforgettable songs and stage presence. Also Muse for their cool guitar licks. Really there are so many great artists I could go on & on. Oh yeah I love The Foo Fighters & Blink 182.
ET: Can you tell us about the instruments you both play? How long have you both been playing? What do you like most about each particular instrument?
N & J: we both can play Drums, Piano, Guitar & do Vocals.
N&J We have been playing the piano for 5 years and vocals for 3 1/2 years. We have been playing Drums & Guitar for 3 1/2 years.
N: yeah but I’m the drummer. I love the drums because they are loud & rhythmic and the cymbals add tone & texture. Drums are my escape into my own world. My freedom. I love the piano because it comes very easy to me. Theory is my thing.
J: I am the guitarist. For the guitar I love the rhythmic and melodic sound. It makes me feel at home. For Piano I like being creative with different songs. I get lost in the notes.
ET: What instruments (guitars, drums, etc) and amplifiers do you use live?
N: I use PDP drums. I use 16″meinl dark crash, zildjian ZBT rock crash & paiste 22″ rock ride & 14″ zildjian medium thin crash. 17″ swish ride meinl ride. I use Vic Firth 5A sticks.
J: I use cherry sunburst ash Fender Stratocaster with hum bucker in the bridge. Our amps are a TopHat & Emplexador 50 Watt head with a 2×12 cabinet.
ET: Do you write original music, or are you strictly performing other artist’s material at this time?
N&J: We cover other artists a lot.
J: I actually wrote my first song when I was 7. It was called Imagination. We will record it at some time. We are actually working on a original song now called She Feels Lost. It’s got a great hook!
N: …it does have a great hook.
ET: What was the experience of auditioning for America’s Got Talent like? Do you think you will do something like that again?
J: It was a great experience. They have a great team of people working for them. It inspired me to keep trying.
N: It was fun & exciting. We didn’t make it through, but I am never giving up!
N&J: Absolutely! We will keep trying. We loved auditioning. It was so much fun! A lot of people at the auditions found us on social media sites which was really cool.
(The brothers spend their time performing various covers and a few original songs at local venues in Elon, NC)
ET: You all have performed in school and at coffee houses and bars, correct? What have been a few of your most exciting or impressive live performances to this date?
N: We performed at a place in Elon, NC called The Fat Frogg. It was a benefit for The Relay for Life. We helped raise $7000.00 for Cancer. It was the first time we had a sound check. It was loud that night.
J: Yeah, there was lights flashing everywhere and people wanted their pictures taken with us. It was a bit overwhelming but so much fun. Also winning our 5th grade Talent show. We performed for the whole school. There was a lot of excitement as this was the third year in a row we won the Talent Show. We also played in our city’s Summer Concert series this past summer. It was in the high 90’s and I decided to wear jeans. I have never been so hot. The crowd was signing along with our songs.
N: The last Benefit we did was for the Humane Society and we brought home a kitten. We were doing the benefit so others would adopt the animals and somehow Jacob talked my parents into adopting a kitten. So now we have a kitten from the benefit.
ET: Outside of music, what are the activities that consume the majority of your time? Do you have any favorite activities or hobbies?
N: School! We do not even get home everyday until 4:30pm. We both love soccer! I love watching videos of drummers and of course playing the drums and playing minecraft.
J: I like to draw and play mindcraft and mess around with my Guitar. I am the creative one and Nolan has a incredible ear for music. He can hear notes in everything. He is really good on the piano. I will take a piece and change it and he plays it with perfect timing.
ET: What do the remaining months of 2014 hold in store for The Fandinos?
N & J: Well we will be performing at a few places locally and working on our original music. We are trying to talk our parents into letting us audition for Americas Got Talent Season 10. Hopefully we will be auditioning in November.
ET: Best of luck to you both, all of us here at Entertwine will DEFINITELY be rooting you on!