Cooter

How pleased are you with the success of Looking Up? From my point of view, on the net I’m seeing it gets loads of publicity. How well are you doing with the “unwired” audiences?
We are very happy with how the record is doing, it exciting. It’s great that there is a lot of publicity on the net. I think the folks at Fastmusic are doing a good job at getting publicity out there in other media as well. They’ve had our record pushed to college and independent radio, as well as sent it out for review by quite a few zines, and they’ve also taken out ads in some big publications like Thrasher. We are happy with the publicity, especially since it’s also our first record, we’re trying to earn credibility.

Is there a story behind the name “Cooter”?
The name comes directly from the T.V. series “Dukes of Hazard”. Most of our audience is just old enough to remember the show, but not so well that they remember all the characters’ names. Chris Hughes, on the other hand, is old enough that he could have been a writer on the show. Anyway, Chris Hughes was fond of the series and thought that “Cooter” would be a great name for the band. I thought it was a terrible idea but couldn’t think of a better name on the spot, so “Cooter” it’s been ever since. It’s probably better off, because even though people often confuse the meaning for something X-rated, people don’t forget it easily either.

Would you be interested in joining the Warped Tour for a year if the opportunity arose?
That would be excellent. The Warped Tour is a chance to play with all the best punk bands in the business, play to crowds much larger than you usually get to play for, get a bunch of free stuff, hang out, meet tons of kids, see this and other countries etc. etc. etc. What’s not to like?

I’ve been fascinated by the lyrics on “Looking Up”, especially the poetic nature of songs like Full House and Friday Mourning. What are the lyrical inspirations? What about the band’s musical influences?
That is really cool. I thank you for being interested in the lyrics and asking about them. Friday relates to a situation in which someone close to me lost a sibling in an accident. It’s mainly about coming to terms and acceptance with the loss. The answer could be 100 pages long but that’s it in a nutshell. Fullhouse describes the attitudes of some that I’ve known who are capable of so much, but for whatever reason (fear, guilt, laziness, complacency) seldom put their energy in to much other than complaining.

Our strongest influences as a band are: Face to Face, Lagwagon , Green Day, Foo Fighters, Bad Religion, Social D., and Strung Out. We’re in to music that rocks.

What’s your favorite cover song to play?
Mine is “Disconnected” by Face to Face, but I know for a fact that the rest of the guys hate to do that one. We used to play it all the time and I guess it just got played out for them. I love singing that song though. We don’t really do many covers. We try to play American Jesus (Bad Religion), Authority Song (John Cougar Mellencamp), and The Dodo (Bad Religion). Rob and Chris Hughes are always trying to play Social Distortion songs at practice but that doesn’t count. I also dabble in Marilyn Manson songs at practice, but mainly to annoy everyone else. I guess that doesn’t count either.

What are the long term touring plans for the band? One friend of mine wanted to know if you plan on coming to Europe in the foreseeable future. I wonder the same about Canada.
We want to tour as much as possible. We will be coming to Canada in the Spring, I believe March or April with the band Pollen (Fueled By Ramen rec. Check them out). We’ll also be doing some dates with Less than Jake immediately following that, and also some northeastern dates with H20 this spring. In August we’ll be doing a full U.S. tour with Slick Shoes. That tour may also make its way to parts of Canada . As far as Europe goes we’ll have to wait and see. That’s expensive! Hopefully we will make it there soon, we would love to go. To get concrete tour dates check our website at www.fastmusic.com/Cooter.

What would it take for you personally to want to change labels? It could be one of the big punk labels like Fat or Epitaph, or even a major mainstream label?
I don’t know. Fastmusic is a perfect fit for us right now because both entities are growing. Our relationship works because we work our hardest to get good shows and write good songs, and they do their best to support us with advertising, tour support, Internet capabilities and tons of other ‘behind the scenes’ sort of things. They’re pretty good to us. I guess if the relationship went terribly wrong we’d probably want to leave or they would get rid of us, but there is no foreseeable reason why that would happen. I don’t think that a band’s label is important anyway, the music is what’s important. For instance; a crappy major label band on an independent label is still crappy, while a great independent band on a major label is still great (Green Day).

Do you and the other guys have other jobs on the side? Where do you see the band a few years down the road? Is it something you want to keep up permanently, or do you have other career goals?
We all still have day jobs but hopefully not for much longer. We would all like to do the band for a living. I think we have a legitimate shot at that very soon, if everything keep progressing as it has been.

Thanks for the interview. I think that about covers it. Anything else you’d like to inform your fans of before we sign off? Everyone always wants to know what the deal is going to be with the next CD.
We haven’t made plans to record another full length yet because we are still writing new songs and we work kind of slow. However, look for a split EP featuring Slick Shoes and us in the late spring. That will be on Fueled by Ramen records. Also, look for a new compilation from Fastmusic featuring a ton of great bands all doing unreleased material, we’ll have a track on that. Finally, we are going to contribute to a Bad Religion tribute record, so that is exciting for us. We would like to thank you for the interview. Hopefully we’ll talk again soon.



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