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Social media drives Boyce Avenue to new heights

Trio reach out to millions of fans worldwide through YouTube, Facebook and Twitter
Boyce Avenue
Boyce Avenue (Alejandro Manzano, Daniel Manzano and Fabian Manzano) perform at the Vogue Theatre tonight with special guests Megan Nicole and Madilyn Bailey. Doors at 6:30 p.m., show at 7:30 p.m.

The moment brothers Alejandro, Daniel and Fabian Manzano walked out on stage they knew.

“I’ll never forget the feeling,” bassist Daniel Manzano says. “It was just insane.”

It was 2009 and thousands of screaming fans in a mall in the Philippines greeted the Manzano brothers.

“We did these four mall shows and we would play in an atrium and thousands and thousands of people were just going crazy.”

After four days in the Philippines, the Manzano brothers, collectively known as Boyce Avenue, had performed to over 25,000 fans in one of their very first performances.

“It was a very eye-opening thing for three boys from Florida to go halfway across the world and be received so warmly and in such great numbers,” Daniel says. “That’s when we knew.”

Tonight Boyce Avenue will be making their return to British Columbia for the first time in over a year.

“We love it in Vancouver,” he says. “It’s one of our favourite cities in North American and we’re excited to be back.”

Boyce Avenue began in 2004 after the eldest brother, Daniel, graduated from Harvard Law School and moved back Florida to be with his brothers.

“Once I graduated we all knew we needed to enter this phase in our lives where could make a little money to invest in being able to recording our songs,” he says. “I actually practiced law for about four years before we were really able to do what we loved.”

In 2006, the boys created their own record label called 3 Peace Records.

“We all had random odd jobs and we would scrape up pennies and take whatever time off we could from our jobs to go and record some of our first songs,” Manzano says.

A year later, Boyce Avenue began posting covers and original music on YouTube. At the time, the video sharing website had only been operational for two years. Daniel says that their individual skills and continued efforts to reach out to fans on YouTube led to their early success.

“What’s really unique about us as a band and one of the ingredients for our success as a band is that all three of us, other than loving and playing music, have diverse talents,” Daniel says. “I had the legal background that sort of entitled us to be pioneers when it came to selling music as independent music, whether it was covers or originals.”  

All three brothers previously attended the University of Florida. Fabian has a background in architecture and art, while Alejandro has skills in music mixing and editing.

“Fabian still to this day designs a lot of our T-shirts and our album covers,” Daniel says. “Alejandro had this knack for talent for all the music stuff doing all the early edits and mixed for all of our stuff. We were a very DIY band.”   

All of those talents combined to create the perfect recipe for success. The band now has over four million subscribers on YouTube, millions of likes on Facebook and 442,806 followers on Twitter.

“That’s how we were as independent artists able to do this as a living and be a part of model that was unique in 2007 and is now standard practice,” he says.

Boyce Avenue have collaborated with a handful of other popular artists on YouTube including Savannah Outen, Beatrice Miller, Fifth Harmony, Tiffany Alvord, Megan and Liz, Tyler Ward and Alex Goot. Daniel says that YouTube and shows like Glee have changed people’s perception of cover songs.

“There was much more a stigma doing covers back then on doing cover songs,” Daniel says. “On YouTube it’s taken off with more and more people doing. There has been more of an understanding that you can write your own music and be a talented artist in the true sense of being an artist but still pay tribute to other people’s songs and have fun with it. Back in the day it was sort of a dirty word.”

In 2010, Boyce Avenue signed to Universal Republic Records. Daniel says that while it seemed like the right fit at the time they began to regret the decision shortly after.  

“We had a lot of people who had seen and heard our name but we needed somebody who could bring all that together,” he says. “It was a very unfortunate and terrible marriage. Within six months of signing up with the label we were trying to find a way to get off.”

The Harvard Law graduate explains that under Universal they were no longer allowed to post as many videos to their YouTube page, one of their biggest avenues for international success. By 2011, they had managed to work their way out of a contract with Universal and continue to operating under 3 Peace Records.

“When we went back to the fans and went back to the basics everything flourished,” Manzano explains. “Ever since then we’ve never looked back. We are very happy as an independent band and we really believe in social media and the power of the people.”

The Florida-based band have played to crowds throughout North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East, but there is still one major Asian market they want to play in.

“We’ve actually never played Japan,” Manzano says. “It is kind of one of those right of passage for a lot of bands. It is such a different culture. It is kind of the final frontier for us.”

While touring around the globe, Boyce Avenue ensure that they remain respectful of different countries cultures and customs.

“We try to stay true to ourselves and our music and we don’t’ deviate that much from market to market but we feel like it is always respectful to try and learn the language,” Manzano says. “If you’re in a territory where people are going to have a hard time understanding you speaking English, then we keep the talking to a little bit less to be respectful.”

Manzano says that lately the band has been trying to stay fit while on the road.

“I don’t think it actually shows but we have been trying to work out a lot,” he laughs. “We are trying to be more health conscious.”

For more information on Boyce Avenue visit or follow @BoyceAvenue on Twitter.


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