This one jumped out at me as someone who has used couchsurfing as a means of exploring the world for an extended period some time ago (and more recently on my way to Sabaton Open Air with my son)…
Simple things first – where are you from?
I’m originally from Atlanta, Georgia, but now reside in the upper west side of New York City.
How did you meet your producer?
In 2015, I started hearing some quality recordings coming from several bands in the Atlanta area. I found out they were all coming from Aaron Pace and decided to immediately set up a meeting with him. We vibed and decided to set dates in stone for recording. History wrote itself from there and we’ve both grown exponentially since.
How long have you been performing?
I’ve been performing as a musician for over 10 years, but I started releasing music under the name COUCHSURF a year ago. The first release Shook dropped in July 2019.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the name come from?
In 2018, I decided to stop paying rent and pour every penny I had into my music career. I set up my van to be a home and decided to travel the country and perform. This led me to perform on Vans Warped Tour and many colleges along the way. During this time, I slept on a lot of couches and met lots of amazing people that admitted they thought I was crazy for doing what I was doing. I took on the name COUCHSURF as a way to express my determination to succeed in what I love doing. Plus its a great way to spark conversation!
What are your influences?
The influences for my current music definitely spawn from early funk legends, 80’s rock gods, and new school heavy hitters. Don Broco, The Wrecks, and Cage The Elephant are all groups that I keep my eyes on persistently.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
I’m definitely a story based writer and so my songs come out very visual like a movie. I see what’s happening in my head and turn the plot into something fun. The music itself tends to vary. I don’t ever want any two songs to sound the exact same. It pulls influence in all different areas but everything is pop structured to be radio accessible.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
I’m very big on motivating people. I try not to write anything that puts the listener in a place of being the victim. You’re never going to hear me sing about a broken heart, self doubt, depression etc. There is enough of that out there. I want to lift people up and make them feel good.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
I’ve played hundreds of shows of all sizes over the years, but as COUCHSURF I’ve honestly only played 3 official sets and several pop up shows for parties/bonfires. I want to do a tour immediately after this COVID 19 insanity and have everything in place for an amazing live show. I’m talking about visuals, stage effects, outfit changes…the whole 9 yards.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
One time in Buffalo, NY, I played with a band called Yellow Sauce and they had a guy dressed up as a banana dancing on stage with them for every show. It was so dope that I asked him to come on stage and dance with us during our set. I’ll never forget it.
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
For my acoustic sets, I use an Alvarez acoustic/electric guitar. For full band sets, I used a Epiphone Les Paul Gold Top and a VOX AC-30 amp along with an assortment of fuzz and distortion pedals. My favorite is the Plasma Pedal. Definitely look it up and give it a shot.
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
I just released my new single, “Hundreds & Tree”, worldwide on all streaming platforms. Please go check out the Quarantine Music Video as well as the Lyric Video on my YouTube channel and share it around.
What are your plans for 2020?
I’m working on releasing a collaboration with the amazing Lexis Yelis and dropping my EP in Fall of this year. I know the collab is going to blow people’s minds because it is so different than anything either of us have done up to this point. I think it’ll define a turning point in both of our careers.
If you were second on a three-band bill, which band would you love to be supporting and which band would you choose to open for you? A chance to plug someone you’ve toured with, or a mate’s band we’ve not heard of before!
I would love to support The Wrecks on a tour with the current tunes I have released. As an opener, I’d love nothing more than to share the stage with Nick Lutsko. Dude is an amazing songwriter and performer.