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The Fray: how to save a song

The members of the Denver-based band the Fray have plenty of reasons to feel successful.

Since the release of the piano-driven pop-rock group's first album, "How To Save a Life," in 2005, they have had nine singles in the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The debut album's title song has been featured in TV series such as "Grey's Anatomy" and "Scrubs." The song even reached No. 1 in other countries, such as Ireland and Spain.

In February, the Fray released its fourth album, "Helios," songs from which the band will perform Tuesday at Hard Rock Love in Hollywood.

Drummer Ben Wysocki says he still finds the band's success hard to believe.

"In some ways, I don't really feel like we've made it yet," he says in a phone interview. "But in other ways, I feel like so much has happened that it's kind of hard to have any perspective of it. We feel like we still have a lot of work to do, which is exciting."

As the band's drummer, Wysocki says he has a distinct perspective on the Fray's performances. Sitting behind his bandmates, singer and pianist Isaac Slade, guitarist-vocalist Joe King and guitarist Dave Welsh, Wysocki feels as if he's playing a private show.

"There's something about that that I really like," he explains. "I end up sort of being able to step back, on studio or onstage, and watch what the other three guys are doing, and be able to sort of speak to them."

Slade and King usually write the quartet's songs. But Wysocki says he's able to tell a story through his drumming.

"You can't sing along to a drumbeat, but the rhythm is what people feel," he says. "I'm pretty proud of being contributing to the part of the music that people feel in their guts."

Slade originally composed "How To Save a Life" on the piano as a slow song. When Wysocki heard the recording, he heard the sound of a lamp rattling atop the piano, which gave him the idea to speed up the melody.

"Instead of this being a slow, drowning thing, we put some kind of a quicker beat that has a little bit more of a trot in it," Wysocki says. "That's kind of the yin and yang that works with us."

The Fray will perform 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 22, at Hard Rock Live, 1 Seminole Way, in Hollywood. Tickets cost $34-$59. Barcelona and Oh Honey will open the show. Call 954-797-5531 or go to, @babicorb or 954-356-4710

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