Jeff Davidson of Catch 22 recently sat down with The United Front and had a heart to heart talk about the band and other big issues in music today. Their new album, “Alone In The Crowd”, has already won them countless new fans across the country. These guys are primed to explode.
The United Front: Ok start off by introducing yourself to everyone.
Jeff: I’m Jeff Davidson, I sing vocals.
The United Front: So I heard you talking about how great Chicago is.
Jeff: Yah, its seriously our home away from home. Everyone is so good when we come here. Its always been very receptive.
The United Front: You ever gotten the chance to play anywhere else in Chicago?
Jeff: We’ve played at the Fireside a bunch of times, that was fun. We also played at House of Blues once.
The United Front: What bands did you like the best that you’ve toured with so far?
Jeff: Theres always different levels with that-theres the nicest people, theres the people who have helped us out a lot, and then there is the overall people like The Suicide Machines. Regardless of what people are saying like how they’ve sold out, whatever, The Suicide Machines are the nicest people, it doesn’t matter who your are, if you’re some local band, or for any other band they’ll take care of you. Their tour manager acts like your tour manger.
The United Front: With your new release “Alone In A Crowd”, do you feel anything stands out about it that makes it different from past releases?
Jeff: I think that if anything it evolved and morphed into something different and we finally figured out what we were going to do with song writing, and who was ganna do what and the whole process. I think that its something that people were not expecting, the way it came out, either people were expecting us to be completely different or a step in the direction of the “Washed Up” EP.
The United Front: So how were you able to sign on to Victory Records? Are they treating you good?
Jeff: Excellent. No complaints whatsoever. The band (before I was in it) sent a demo to a label called Toy Box Records and the guy who owns Toy Box Records used to work at Victory and he played the tape, and the guy who owns Victory basically heard it through a wall. The next day they got in touch with Catch 22 and they were signed.
The United Front: Do you feel different or somewhat intimidated being on a mostly hardcore label?
Jeff: Not at all. The people at Victory and even the bands are all open minded. Nobody has ever had a problem with our style of music being on Victory. All the bands who we’ve been on tour with who are signed to Victory are all very nice and support us. At this point right now we’re very comfortable with our situation. I don’t think anyone is ignorant and hates us because of our style of music. When you sign to Victory everyone treats you like family.
The United Front: In the band you have a wide variety of ages. How do you get it to work? Do you usually get along well?
Jeff: Yah, we all get along great. The reason why we get all along is because we all have the same common goal in mind, we all love what we do and we love music. I don’t think age has anything to do with ANYTHING, EVER, as long as there is a common interest in the music. When it comes down to it, we’re all little kids. We’re all 13 year olds at heart, you know? If you ever were to hang out with us, you could never tell we were all different ages.
The United Front: Are there any bands in particular who has influenced you the most?
Jeff: No because we all listen to different music and we’re open to everything. In a way, we listen to all the same things, and we also listen to all different things. My personally, I’m very personally influenced by reggae music. When it comes to punk, I’d have to say Rancid. It just all depends because again theres always different ways to look at it. Bands influence you in different ways by song writing, bands can influence you by ethics, and their stories. I’m a very inspirational guy. I mean every time I hear the Kurt Kobain story, that’s just amazing to me, hes in my heart. Tim Armstrong and his story and songwriting as well, I think that’s what does it more for me. Theres so many different sides of music. Theres the music, and then theres the life of people involved with the music. That’s me, personally, I mean everyone in the band is different. When it all comes down to it though, we all come together, but we all listen to different things, and I think that’s what makes it so great, that we can come together.
The United Front: What do you think of Napster and what that brings to the table? Is it a good thing or bad thing to you?
Jeff: I’m very indifferent about it. I think it’s a good thing for a lot of reasons. The only bad thing that I think of Napster is that it takes away from the hype and excitement of a new album. That’s the only thing that really bothers me about it. I mean people have new albums coming out, and everybody’s getting all excited about it and waiting for it to come out and then someone comes up to you and is like “I got the new album by….” and its like “You do, already?” It gives people something to call their own when it comes down to it saying how they have it first, but when you are in a band, and you have something coming up, and you’re building the hype, and then you find out people have it before it came out it takes the excitement out of it. I’m down with people getting music for free, I don’t have a problem with it at all, I think it’s a great thing for bands who are singed. I mean we were luckier than anything. Its all luck, its all who you know, With people getting new exposure of bands by just having a computer, and converting files, that’s just all amazing to me. I still don’t know if it’ll change everything, but I think it will.
The United Front: Any last comments you want to say?
Jeff: Of course please check our our website at http://www.njcatch22.com If anything though, I want to say that everyone whos stood behind us regardless of anything, and kept an open mind, and hasn’t been doubtful, we appreciate that, COMPLETELY. It hasn’t gone unnoticed. I mean anyone whos came up and said “Great show!” we appreciate that, and don’t feel intimidated to say that, because it keeps us going.
Interview by : United Front Webzine