Capital Cities Trade Jingle Writing For Andre 3000 Collaboration

"He’s a very cool guy."

The guys of Capital Cities know how to write a catchy song, thanks to their years working as jingle writers.

The band comprised of Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian, who are playing KROQ’s Weenie Roast this weekend, told that writing music for commercials allowed them to work in a wide variety of genres and styles. They were also required to turn things around very quickly, which helped them hone their production skills.

Their latest single, “Safe and Sound,” was the first song the guys, who met through Craigslist, worked on together. They weren’t even a band yet, Simonian said, they were just playing around.

“The initial gut response for that song from our friends was that it was a hit,” he said. “We had all this confidence with the song, but we weren’t sure if we had dialed in the right production for it so we literally recorded eight or nine versions of that song.”

Thanks to a layer of horns and a bevy of synths, the song became a lot more dance-oriented and helped the guys hone their electro-pop sound.

“The goal at the end of the day,” Simonian said, “was to write a song about joy and optimism and just a feel-good happy song.”


Read how they got together with Andre 3000 on


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