Editor’s Note: What a tremendous night of music it was at Spicoli’s Rockade in Waterloo, Iowa as Dash Cooper and his band CO-OP destroyed the stage with their brand of desert rock in the cold winter night(yes we still have winter during the month of April in Iowa). In this, Dash Cooper, who is the son of legendary rocker Alice Cooper, discusses music, his upbringing of having a famous father, and he also discusses his performance as King Herod on the NBC special “Jesus Christ Superstar”. This June, CO-OP will releasing their debut album via EMP Label Group, and have released their single entitled “N.O.W.” on radio and it’s currently making waves as it has hit the Top 40! Fans can find CO-OP at the following locations:
Dash: I’m so cold I’m feeling like a little girl! *laughs*
Madness To Creation: We can start off the interview that way, what makes you feel like a little girl?
Dash: The weather! This is actually weather, we don’t get weather in Arizona, we don’t have seasons.
Madness To Creation: Is this CO-OP’s first time touring nationwide?
Dash: Not nationwide, but this is the first time for us touring the Midwest.
Madness To Creation: How has the response been so far?
Dash: It’s been great with Flaw and The Crowned, that’s who we are touring with right now, crowd’s have been great, people coming out, tonight was different because the snowstorm kept people away, tell you what, the people that did show up were having a great time.
Madness To Creation: Speaking of your live set, what causes your band to have a great time?
Dash: We just enjoy the music, we’re a mixture of classic rock, hard rock music, with a little more of the modern guitar tones, we mix that and blend that together, and we think that’s the perfect blend of music to have fun and rock out on stage.
Madness To Creation: Well we can talk about your famous influence later, but what are some influences that you have in your vocal stylings?
Dash: I have a ton of influences. I would say Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters obviously, I would say the heavier guys, like the guys from Godsmack, Sully Erna is a killer singer, I just like that gravelly, rough tone, Rob Zombie obviously, I’m a big fan of him.
Madness To Creation: I noticed it was a mix of Rob Zombie and Sully from Godsmack, when you hit the higher notes there were elements of Rob Zombie in your vocals, as a vocalist what do you do to train yourself as a vocalist?
Dash: I used to sing a lot in the choir when I was little kid, I was in church choir and everything, and I did talent shows when I was a little boy, now I really don’t do anything, I just sing gravelly, it seems to work out so far! *laughs*
Madness To Creation: If CO-OP could pick one church choir song to cover, what would your band pick?
Dash: There are so many that are so great. I would probably say “Your Grace Is Enough”, I love that song.
Madness To Creation: You grew up in the church, is that still a big part of your life?
Dash: It is a big part of my life. A bunch of guys in the band are actually a bunch of faith-based guys, we enjoy doing that, we don’t keep it out of our music necessarily, but we don’t necessarily push it, we’re just a couple of Christian guys in a band.
Madness To Creation: I noticed during CO-OP’s set tonight the song “Secret Stars” really stood out to me, can you take us into that song?
Dash: “Secret Stars” was actually about a friend of ours that took her life, it really came out of nowhere and we never saw any signs whatsoever, it was just one day she was there, the next day she was gone, we were just kind of thinking about what happened and that you never know, that’s why the lyrics are “no need to search for a meaning/no need to to find clues left behind” because it just hurts, and we’re going to have to deal with that, and time is going to heal the wounds.
Madness To Creation: I was just messaging a friend and she was battling anxiety and depression, if she was sitting here with us, what would you say to her?
Dash: I would say to her that you can go get help, everyone is here to listen, don’t keep it locked up, find somebody to talk to, anybody to talk to. That’s what I would say.
Madness To Creation: At the show tonight, I heard you tell the audience that you’re releasing some new music this summer, can you share with us what is going on with that?
Dash: We are releasing a brand new album June 15th, it’s going to be under EMP Label Group with Dave Ellefson of Megadeth, who is the owner of the group and he signed us, it’s going to be a really rocking modern classic rock album.
Madness To Creation: What is the partnership like with EMP Label Group?
Dash: It’s really great because I tell people that it’s really hard to find a label these days where everyone is so respectful of each other, with Dave and EMP, they’re a younger label, and we’re a younger band for how long we’ve been together, and I think it’s one of those things where it’s a beautiful match, and we’re growing together and we’re complementing each other, and helping each other out and building a relationship with their brand. I really think that it’s a great partnership and they have really treated us really awesome.
Madness To Creation: Do you think that is what is lacking in the music industry, is that there isn’t that unified front so to speak?
Dash: I think there is an issue there, I think there is a lot of people trying to take advantage of each other, there’s a lot of bands that have really have not seen the fine print and have signed some really hard deals that they are really trying to get out of and they really can’t do it, and kind of wish that they hadn’t. Some labels are really cool, but some labels are really cutthroat, I won’t say anything bad about them, it’s just if you’re a young band, read the fine print.
Madness To Creation: Growing up with Alice Cooper as your father, what is the biggest thing that your father has taught you?
Dash: Work ethic for sure! I mean, he’s 70 and he’s out there probably doing a show somewhere, in the Midwest and East Coast he’s probably doing 60 to 70 shows this year. He’s 70 and I’m in my mid-30’s and I can’t keep it together! *laughs* He’s a real big inspiration to me, just to see how hard he works every night and he can still bring it every night, and he’s just really inspiring, and he is to a lot of musicians.
Madness To Creation: Did you happen to see his performance on “Jesus Christ Superstar”?
Dash: I did! I only saw the part that he did because we were traveling from Michigan to Iowa, so we missed the live broadcast, but I got to see it on YouTube and watch the four to five minute clip that he was in, it was really cool!
Madness To Creation: Sounds like you have a close relationship with him!
Dash: Yeah we do!
Madness To Creation: What are your three favorite Alice Cooper songs?
Dash: I would say “Windup Toy” off of “Hey Stupid”, I would say “Feed My Frankenstein”, I’m only going to do two because I can’t decide between the others! *laughs*
Madness To Creation: Craziest moment on this tour with Flaw?
Dash: Well, today we woke up and there was like two feet of snow, and we didn’t know what we were doing. Justin, our bass player, was like, “who has driven in snow before”, and someone was like, “I’ve driven in snow through Flagstaff once”, and he drove and that was scary and we didn’t know what we were doing! Almost didn’t make it here, but we’re here. We played, and everything happened! *laughs*
Madness To Creation: Flaw recently got mentioned on the Stephen Colbert Show, what was your reaction?
Dash: Even if he meant it to be negative, it was promotion for this show, it was great and people came out because of that, and I don’t think that there’s any bad press when it comes to that, I don’t think you should be making fun of other bands who are looking for tour support because independent artists need money, sometimes those labels don’t provide you with that money if you’re on an independent label, you’ve got to do it yourself, and if you have adorning fans willing to help you out, then why not, if they’re willing to help and push you forward as a band, then they really support you and that’s a great thing.
Madness To Creation: You have a video on YouTube opening for Alice Cooper and Motley Crue, what is the one takeaway that you have from there?
Dash: That was pretty surreal, it was kind of cool because I get on stage as the opening act, there usually not using all of the lights obviously, so they have the first couple of rows lit up, and I see a couple of people sitting down and stuff like that, and we get done with our first song and all of the lights come on and everyone stands up and we were like, “oh, okay, there are 25,000 people here”, it was crazy, but that was one of the biggest takeaways with how big that show was, but we didn’t really realize it until we were playing.
Madness To Creation: Let’s talk about the single that CO-OP released entitled “N.O.W.”, what’s the message behind the song and how can people request it?
Dash: What the song stands for is “No One Walks” and basically, I wrote it about the state that the United States is in, what I’m saying in the song is that if you have something to say, say it, don’t complain about it because part of the lyrics are “we’re self-inflicted slaves, digging in our own graves” because we’re willing to complain about things, but we’re not really willing to do anything about it, so that’s what really the message is about, is just the getting up to do something.
Madness To Creation: Does it carry over to the March For Our Lives movement?
Dash: I think the message can carry over for anything, when I wrote the song, I’m not necessarily for or against any political party, it just seemed like when the election happened, a lot of people were depressed, and it seemed like they were upset, but it’s like, this is the way the world is, this is the way the United States is, but take this and move on and work with it instead of complaining about it, and you just have to deal with it.
Madness To Creation: Anything else you would like to add?
Dash: We’re hoping to do an album release show on June 15th!
And there you have it! Check out a single that EMP Label Group released for CO-OP last year entitled “Sleep”
On Saturday, April 21st, CO-OP has a show at The Rock in Tucson, Arizona with Flaw and The Crowned. For tickets and further information in regards to the show, click here!