Simple things first – where are you guys from?
We are Jake Cook and David Jerusik of The Backseaters from Denver, CO
How did you meet?
We actually met at our first job, Yogurtland! We knew that the other was into music, but it wasn’t until early 2015 that I (Jake) hit up David on Facebook and asked him to be in the band! I had been writing, recording, and performing the music for years, but I was really looking for someone that I could share it with, and David was that person!
How long have you been playing together as a band?
We’ve been playing together (the two of us) for about a year and a half now! We’ve already progressed so much, and we can’t wait to see what the future brings!
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
The band name actually derives from The Gaslight Anthem’s son “The Backseat.” The whole song has a sense of nostalgia about it, and at the time that I (Jake) was starting to write music for the band, that’s a lot of what I was writing about (still do). That and we love The Gaslight Anthem; so it all just kind of made sense!
What are your influences – individually or as a band?
Jake – My influences are really all over the place! A lot of my inspiration comes from Brian Fallon and The Gaslight Anthem, just because I have always been a fan of strasight up Rock and Roll. I love the stories they tell and just everything they have to say. It wasn’t until later in life that I found “indie” music and that wrapped my head around the fact that I don’t have to write music exactly like everybody who is on the radio! I write music for me and bands like The Gaslight Anthem, The Front Bottoms, The Hold Steady, and Death Cab For Cutie really taught me that!
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
We get asked this question a lot, and if we’re being completely honest, we don’t even know how to describe it (laughs). If we had to take a stab at it, we would have to say that it is music that encompasses positive messages and just makes you feel good. We know that’s so generic, but if you listen to our song Limbo, you can hear the happy, upbeat, and bright melodies that carry the lyrics saying “I don’t want to wait no more, I’ve been dying on this floor, I don’t wanna wait.” Though it may sound not so positive, the theme around the song is about making things hsappen for yourself and not just waiting in “Limbo”. What makes us unique is the fact that we have never tried to fit any sort of genre. We might be an indie band, but we don’t only write “indie” songs. Some people say we have some pop/punk in our sound, but we’re not trying to only write “pop/punk” songs. We write, record, and perform the music that gets us excited, and somehow it all comes out sounding like The Backseaters!
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
I (Jake) write all of the lyrics for the songs! I write a lot about the lessons I’ve learned in life and things I have been through. I try not to write about relationships too much because sometimes I feel like it’s all been said and done before. Based on how my influences write, I try to speak more in metaphors and stories so that people might be able to relate my songs to their situations. See, if you make a song too personal, or situations too specific to your own life, then when people hear the song, they have a hard time relating to it because it didn’t happen to them.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
A lot of bands say this, but one word to describe our shows is, energy! David could be described as a “technical maniac” on the drums! He goes hard for every show, but as he’s rocking out, he hits everything perfectly! When Jake isn’t on the microphone singing, he’s running and jumping all over the stage!
And you can always expect us to offer our sincere gratitude for everybody who makes it out to the shows! Every time we play live, it is a blessing and we want everyone to know how appreciative we are! We don’t hang out backstage or act like we’re better than anyone else. We are always walking around the venue thanking people and asking them what they thought of the set!
Honestly, we have no idea how many shows we’ve played (laughs). We’ll play anywhere, for anybody and because we have stuck to this mind set, we have played too many shows to count! All of them have been important to us growing as a band!
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
Thankfully nothing too crazy has happened to us at a show! We’ve seen some people hit the floor because they were beyond intoxicated, but nothing that really affected us or our performance!
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
Jake: I play Fender Telecasters! I love the way they sound and I’ve always been obsessed with them! I use a VOX AC30 amp because it works perfect for what we do! When we want to rock, it rocks; when we want to be melodic, its melodic! I’m not a big pedal guy but I do use a few of them. I have a BOSS Chromatic Tuner Pedal, a T-Rex Super Comp Nova for compression, an OCD for distortion, and a Hall Of Fame reverb pedal. I love using reverb; always have, always will
What are your plans for the rest of 2016?
Our plans for the rest of 2016 are to keep playing as many shows as we can, including our headline show at the Marquis Theater in Denver, CO on September 10th! And we also want to get back in to the studio to start putting together our next release!! We have big plans for how we want to put that one together, which will be revealed shortly!
If you could be part of any 3-band line-up (as support or headlining) who else would you have on the bill?
The tops bands I would love to share the stage with as a 3-band line-up would have to be The Gaslight Anthem and Death Cab For Cutie. Hands down, two of my all time favorite bands!