It was likely one of the best days of their lives.  Appearing on Live with Kelly and Michael on Monday, American Authors, whose song "Best Day of My Life" is one of this year's first breakout hits, were surprised with a special plaque commemorating the fact that the song has been certified platinum for more than one million downloads. It's a satisfying accomplishment for the band, who've been struggling to make it for many years.

American Authors' debut album Oh, What A Life just hit stores last week, and lead singer Zac Barnett say's that the title really sums up all the group's experiences on their way to the top. "We've known each other for the past seven years. We met in college, we've been through everything," he says. "We've done tours where we played for no one. We've had so many great, amazing moments, and we've had so many struggling moments, and I think really, what that title, is how we look back on it and go, 'Oh, what a life!'"

"We didn't get into this thinking it was going to be easy," adds Zac, noting that all the band members first met at Berklee College of Music in Boston, but then collectively dropped out, moved to Brooklyn, NY and tried to get their career off the ground while working an assortment of unusual jobs.

"Matt, our drummer, he's a vegetarian and he was a butcher when he first moved here," Zac laughs. "Our guitarist, James worked for Chinese television. I was working at a restaurant...which closed down, unfortunately, due to Hurricane Sandy. So, it's like, we've been through so many roller coasters to pursue this dream of ours, and now it's really amazing to see what's happening!"

American Authors will be spending a good chunk of this week performing multiple times at the South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, before jetting over to London for a one-off gig, and then back to the U.S. to resume their headlining tour.  In May, they'll be opening for OneRepublic and The Script on that band's joint tour.  Meanwhile, their new single "Believer" is also doing well. Given how far they've come, it does seem like the album's title is quite apropos.

"It entraps all the emotions that we've had and that we still have," Zac says of the album. "And it has really fantastic things, and it talks about the struggles as well....Oh,What A Life right there!"