'Amen For Women' Duo Endless Summer Praise Their Pop Past
In one three-minute song, country duo Endless Summer sums up the way many men feel about the opposite sex.
“Sometimes it’s hard living with ‘em / When they’re gone it’s easy to miss ‘em / They make this crazy life worth livin’ / Amen for women.”
The songwriters and voices behind “Amen For Women” are Bob and Clint Moffatt, identical twin brothers (and two-thirds of a set of triplets) born 32 years ago in B.C. but currently based in Nashville.
If their names and faces are familiar, you were probably a teenaged girl in the late ‘90s. Bob and Clint, with Dave and older brother Scott, were The Moffatts.
Their pop success came after a childhood spent performing country music at home in Canada and south of the border in places like Branson and Nashville.
“Nobody wanted to hear country music from 10- and 11-year-olds,” Bob told iHeartRadio.ca in Toronto. “So as we grew up our music style changed and we entered the pop world and it worked for us and we had a lot of success.”
Their aptly titled 1998 release of Chapter I: A New Beginning spawned hits like “I’ll Be There For You,” “Girl Of My Dreams” and “Misery” and the group won several Juno Awards, including Best Pop Album and Best Group.
Their follow-up album, 2000’s Submodalities, was a more modest success but pictures of The Moffatts still adorned the bedroom walls of many young girls (and some boys).
The wild ride, though, didn’t last.
As the story goes, The Moffatts disbanded when Dave said he wanted out. There were reports of conflict between Dave and his father, who was also the band’s manager. (“The Moffatts broke up because of a multitude of reasons,” Frank Moffatt said. “None being a dispute between Dave and myself.”)
Dave stepped out of the spotlight shortly after competing on Canadian Idol in 2005 and currently lives in Toronto, where he teaches yoga. His Twitter is set to private and he’s not on Facebook (although there are fake accounts).
“He’s completely out of the business and he’s doing fantastic,” said Bob. “We saw him the last time we were in Toronto and it’s usually very brief but it’s usually very good.”
Scott, who lives in Montreal, is still active in the music industry.
“We definitely see Scott more than we see Dave,” Bob added. “He comes to Nashville and he’s actually produced a couple of country records and he’s written with a lot of writers in Nashville.
“The three of us like hockey so when the Flames are playing, we get on Skype and talk to each other.”
The brothers — minus Dave — will be reuniting for a concert on Feb. 18 at Smart Araneta Coliseum in Manila.
“We asked Dave if he wanted to be a part of it,” Clint explained, “and he said, ‘I’m just not there right now in my life. I have other things I want to do.’”
Clint said the show, which will include Endless Summer material and “some Moffatts songs,” is an opportunity to thank their fans in the Philippines, where the group remains popular.
Bob looks back at The Moffatts as “invaluable” experience.
“When you’re that young and you’re thrusted into that position… I mean, we had our parents. Our dad and our stepmom toured with us so they definitely helped guide us and steer us in the right direction at that age because if we were by ourselves, who knows what we would have been doing,” he said.
“It’s also extremely humbling.”
Bob and Clint moved to Nashville and lived in their mother’s basement.
“We ended up just falling in love with the city and the people,” Clint recalled. “One thing led to the other. We were just kind of singing songs together, not really looking to do anything with it, and all of a sudden we were introduced to a couple of people that really guided us in the direction of some great things.”
The pair have written songs for a long list of other artists and for the TV series Nashville. Last year, they released a single of their own, “Goodbye Baby.”
Bob said it was inevitable they would perform again. “I feel like we’ve gone through the whole gamut as I think most people in the creative genre have,” he explained. “There’s so many things you can do.
“The artist thing has always been a thread in our choices and I would say in the last year or two we’ve started to get super behind it and working towards that goal. But everything has played a role. Everything we’ve done has definitely been for a reason.”
WATCH THE LYRIC VIDEO FOR "AMEN FOR WOMEN"
As Endless Summer — they took the name from the 1974 hits collection from the Beach Boys — the singers released a self-titled EP last month.
Not everyone in the growing Endless Summer fanbase is necessarily aware of the duo’s pop past.
“There’s a lot of people that knew The Moffatts who didn’t like The Moffatts that are receptive to what we’re doing now,” said Clint. “And there are probably some people who liked The Moffatts who don’t like what we’re doing now.
“But there’s also people who have never heard of us before and they are finding our new music and that’s exciting.”
Looking back at The Moffatts years, is there anything they would do over?
“There are definitely some wardrobe choices that I’d probably like to take back and some haircut choices that at the time seemed like a good idea,” said Clint.
“For the most part, every decision is an important decision because it defines who you are. I’m grateful for my life and what I’m doing.”