The Aquadolls were founded in January 2012 by Melissa Brooks, the lead singer and songwriter for the band in La Mirada, California. What began as a solo project has grown into a three piece band consisting of Melissa Brooks (Vocals, Guitar), Jackie Proctor (drums), and Keilah Nina (bass). We recently had the opportunity to talk to the band about music, future plans, and my family disowning me. The Aquadolls kick off their tour with White Reaper next month. (tour dates down below)
1. What band or album have you been into lately?
Jackie: I have really been into Ozzy Osbourne (I was him for Halloween) and Heathers the musical.
Melissa: I’m way too obsessed with 100 gecs.
2. If I make a tiktok account will my family disown me?
Jackie: No, I might lol
Melissa: I’ll adopt you if they do! Just don’t keep posting stuff that gets taken down like I do cuz that’s annoying and I keep getting banned!
3. I recently became obsessed with the theme song of the show ‘Cheers’. Can you guys record a cover of it?
4. Who would win in a fight? A cat sized President Garfield, or a President sized Garfield (the cat)?
Melissa: My vote is with human sized Garfield the cat. Weapon of choice? Throwing human-sized lasagna patties!
Jackie: Hmmm I think they would both go down either way or not honestly I shall remain neutral on this topic.
5. In what ways has Ray Romano helped mold you into the person that you are today?
Jackie: Ray Romano has basically done everything to mold me into who I am today, Ray Romano is life.
Melissa: God bless him for voicing Manny in Ice Age. Legend!
6. Garfield 2020?
Melissa: I’m starting to think you really like Garfield. Sorry, Pikachu 2020!
7. Do you regret doing this interview yet?
Jackie: 100% Worst interview ever, jk this is the best, I want it to be the last interview I ever do so I can go down a legend, The only reason I’m in the band is for this interview.
Melissa: I agree with Jackie. Literally started this band just to be interviewed by you! It’s been a long wait for this day.
8. What is the worst advice that you can give me?
Melissa: If you stop drinking water, then you won’t have to worry about transforming into a mermaid like H20 Just Add Water and will have less anxiety!
Jackie: Wear running shoes with jeans.
9. First concert you ever went to?
Melissa: Gwen Stefani in 2004!
Jackie: Hillary Duff
10. What would you be doing if you weren’t pursuing music?
Jackie: I would be struggling, sad and depressed or just doing music I don’t know what else to do.
Melissa: Is it morbid to say dead? Music is my everything!
Isaac Gutierrez For Born Loser: To start things off, can you introduce yourselves for those who may not be familiar with The Aquadolls?
Melissa: Howdy, I’m Melissa and I sing and play guitar.
Jackie: My name is Jackie and I play drums!
BL: Was there a specific moment where you realized that you wanted to pursue music?
Melissa: All my life I’ve been writing music and singing and playing piano and stuff but it was the moment after my high school band played a local band showcase when I was 15 and I got home and was jumping on my bed listening to Paramore on my iPod. Her voice and energy is so raw and badass and it was then I knew I had to front my own band and be my own badass.
Jackie: Yes. I was watching the Foo Fighters perform on MTV, probably the awards show, and when Dave Grohl came out and just freaking shredded that’s the exact moment I said, “Forget everything else, I will never give up on music. I want to do that!”
BL: What is a cliche or most asked question that you’re tired of being asked in interviews?
Melissa: "wHat’S iT liKe bEiNg a GirL iN a BaNd!?!?" Like, what’s it like being a girl? Making music? It’s like what’s it like being a male journalist depicting my music to be something that only comes down to gender?
BL: You started your own label (Aquababe), how did that come about?
Melissa: I started my own label so I could drop music whenever I wanted! It’s all self-funded by me so it’s kind of hard, but it’s more of a platform to upload music online, as well as some physical releases. The Dream and The Deception remastered album came out on CD on Aquababe Records, and I hope to do cassettes and vinyl in the future, as well as future Aquadolls releases and my upcoming solo stuff.
BL: The very first Aquadolls song I heard was ‘Communicationissexy/idkhow2communicate’ and I instantly fell in love with the song. Can you give us some background on the song?
Melissa: I wrote that song in a Panera Bread thinking about this guy I dated for three weeks and after we went on a date to see this band play, we sort of hooked up and it was awkward for me and then he totally went ghost on me after. Like, we spent all this time and effort to get to know each other, then as soon as we get somewhat intimate, it’s all over like poof? The song is basically describing that situation and concluding that all I really want is someone to talk to me and be there for me. It’s about craving an emotional connection.
BL: Your sound has consistently changed throughout the years. Has that been a conscious effort to change with each release, or has it just happened naturally?
Melissa: I feel like it has been a natural progression and reflects the kind of music I listen to at the time of writing, as well as the experiences I face. When I’m happy I write happy music, when I’m bummed out I get a lot more emo. It’s a combination of all my influences and emotions.
BL: You were recently at ACL! What was that experience like?
Jackie: It was amazing and one of the weekends we played, we had no sleep but we somehow managed to go hard and it was super fun!
Melissa: No sleep for real. I got less than two hours of sleep the night before we played the second weekend of ACL because we played a late show in Houston the night before, but as soon as we hit the stage I was awake as heck and turned out an unforgettable show. The power of adrenaline and music and the audience kept me going!
BL: Were there any performances that really stood out to you?
Jackie: We saw Lizzo for a a tiny bit but her presence was just incredible, and Childish Gambino was really sick.
Melissa: I loved The Cure and Fisher!
BL: What band has influenced you the least, and could you beat them up in a fight?
Melissa: I will personally fight Nickelback. Let’s do an amp vs. amp battle, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World style.
BL: What do you hope to accomplish with or through your music?
Jackie: I just want to be able to make someone smile if they were having a shitty day or to inspire someone who needs some inspiration in their life.
BL: Ideally, what would you want The Aquadolls to be known for?
Melissa: I want to make people FEEL!
Jackie: For making people laugh on a shitty day. Life is too serious, we should all laugh more.
BL: What is the hardest part about being in a band?
Jackie: Sleep, when touring mostly.
Melissa: My brain works faster than my body and I always end up writing a bunch of songs at once. I do this thing where I’m really great at starting new ideas but lag about getting to finish them.
BL: Do you ever get nervous before performing?
Melissa: I usually get nervous right after!! Not even nervous, just more me analyzing everything I did and hoping it went okay!
Jackie: I do. I think I get more adrenaline and I can get pretty nervous, but it goes away and when I get on stage it always comes before.
BL: What is the most important thing to you when it comes to performing?
Melissa: Be yourself, have fun and go hard!! There’s nothing that bores me more than seeing people perform and them looking like they wanna die on stage, even if that’s just the aesthetic. I want to encourage people to let loose and have fun, and when I’m on stage I am fearless.
Jackie: Perform because you love it, not for anyone else. You have to be confident and show that confidence even if you are messing up no one will no anyways, and the confidence will come if you are happy about what you are doing and that is important.
BL: Do you have any pre show rituals?
Jackie: I like to dance or yell at myself in the mirror just pump the fuck up like I’m about to go on a football field.
Melissa: I do vocal warmups, try to stretch a little, then I dance around in place. It’s cute when we do a group hug before we go on. Sometimes we do a cheesey thing where we put all our hands together and do “Aquadolls on 3! 1, 2, 3, Aquadolls”!
BL: Do you have a craziest concert experience, one you’ve played or one you’ve gone to?
Jackie: I think the craziest experience for me was at a show I went to near my hometown, my dad drove my friends and I and it was at a warehouse, my dad was hanging out with one of the bands backstage idk how and then all of a sudden people must have been drunk or idk but a naked dude climbed on top of an rv and was like dancing around, and then a riot broke out beer bottle were thrown and i see my dad running over to my friends and I and goes “climb the fence let’s go!” That didn’t work so we are running ducking from beers and this guy hits this other guy with his skateboard and then my dad “get in the van get in the van” and then goes “Alright don’t tell your parents” (my friends and I were in high school). Never saw one cop or anything but we got out safe.
BL: What is your go to place to eat at while you’re on tour?
Melissa: I ate so much Burger King on the last leg of tour, but if I could get some sushi I would be so stoked.
BL: Do you have a favorite city or venue?
Jackie: Austin, Texas was actually really great I like that city.
Melissa: I always love playing hometown shows in Orange County and Los Angeles. New York was awesome, San Francisco is always a party. Honestly, I don’t have favorites. Any show that people come out to, whether its 10 people or hundreds of people I am super grateful and stoked!
BL: What do you like to do when you aren’t making music or touring?
Jackie: I like watching the show Shameless for hours and dancing in my room and karaoke.
Melissa: I make beats on garageband (well that’s also music oops) I also love watching reality show re-runs like Rock of Love and The Simple Life.
BL: Who would you consider you musical and nonmusical influences?
Melissa: Gwen Stefani, Charli XCX, The Beach Boys, 100 gecs, Kero Kero Bonito, underground raves and the dirty streets of Los Angeles!
Jackie: Dave Grohl for musical Influence & nonmusical would be Keanu Reeves (hope I spelled that right)
BL: What is something about yourself that most people wouldn’t know about The Aquadolls?
Jackie: All 3 of us can talk at the same time and most of the time understand each other…
Melissa: It’s true.
BL: What are you currently working on?
Melissa: New music, tours, music videos, vlogs, everything and anything! Get ready for a ton of really cool shit.
BL: What can we expect to see from The Aquadolls in the near future?
Jackie: More songs more energy more everything more more more.
BL: And to wrap things up, is there anything that you want our readers to know?
Melissa: Believe in yourself, be yourself, be good to the people in your life and listening to The Aquadolls gives you clear skin!
Jackie: That you rock no matter what and tell people in your life you love them and make sure to laugh I’m telling you laughing can cure it all.