Moon Taxi's Trevor Terndrup talks jock jams, music festivals, the NHL's All-Star Weekend and more

Last spring, Moon Taxi got its first taste of Gasparilla season in Tampa, performing at the Gasparilla Music Festival in Curtis Hixon Park.

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Jay Cridlin
, Tampa Bay Times Pop Music/Culture Critic, Tampa Bay Times

Last spring, Moon Taxi got its first taste of Gasparilla season in Tampa, performing at the Gasparilla Music Festival in Curtis Hixon Park.

This year the Nashville dance-rock band is coming back for the main event, and singer Trevor Terndrup is totally on board.

"That absolutely sounds right up my alley," Turndrup said. "I'm into it 100 percent."

Moon Taxi's other reason for being in Tampa this weekend: the NHL All-Star Game.

On Friday, Moon Taxi will perform alongside Fitz and the Tantrums at a free concert in Curtis Hixon Park. Then Sunday, it will set up shop inside Amalie Arena, where it will serve as the house band for the All-Star Game.

Hailing as it does from Music City, Moon Taxi is made up of Predators fans, though Terndrup will be the first to admit it didn't really hop on the bandwagon until Nashville's run to the Stanley Cup final last season.

Before coming to Tampa, Terndrup talked a bit about the Preds and jock jams:

Are you guys big hockey fans?

If I ever got free tickets to a hockey game, I would never pass it up. Last season, everybody in Nashville had Preds fever, from the huge country stars to Moon Taxi and everyone in between. There was a great sense of pride, a great sense of, "Wow, where did this come from?" It's fun to be swept up in that. That's the textbook definition of a fair-weather fan, but now I'm generally more aware of the Preds.

This free concert that you guys are playing, Predators defenseman P.K. Subban is co-hosting. You ever spend any time around him?

I haven't. I look forward to maybe meeting him this weekend. I think he has a great presence and seems like a real cool guy from the vibes he puts off. I'd love to hand him a CD of our music and tell him, "Hey, man, we're big fans of yours." Maybe we can turn him into a Moon Taxi fan.

You've said your song Good as Gold was written during the Preds' run to the Stanley Cup final. Can you elaborate on that?

At Preds games, they play the Black Keys song Gold on the Ceiling whenever we score a goal. I think it was during the time of the playoffs and Preds fever (that we wrote Good as Gold), so those sentiments definitely seeped into our subconscious, and I guess it came out through the writing. Our keys player, he was the musical inspiration on that, and I was like, "Oh, yeah, it would be awesome if they played that at Preds games because of the gold."

It would be cool to have a jock jam. Like at Lightning games, they play Thunderstruck by AC/DC. I'm sure it would rule to have a sports anthem in your catalog, right?

When you pick up a guitar, it's in your soul that you want to write a rock anthem. Any time a 10-year-old picks up a guitar, that's generally his dream. If you're able to write something that has that lasting power of that AC/DC song, then you're doing something right. The biggest rock anthem I can think of is the White Stripes' Seven Nation Army. That transcends all sporting events. You can hear that at a World Cup game, you can hear that at a football game, you can hear that anywhere. We're all just striving for that.

I don't think of Moon Taxi as a big arena band, but you are the house band for the All-Star Game on Sunday. What does that entail?

You know, I'm not really sure. I think we're going to try to bring as much energy into the 30-second bumpers that we have. That's really all I'm focused on, is trying to hype people up. Of course, people are already going to be at 100 percent because it's the All-Star Game. I'm just hoping we can turn Good as Gold into an arena rock anthem. Maybe someone will hear it and it'll catch on.

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