Check out King Beez and Matt Groopie and The Bandits
Matt Groopie is a Canadian artist in both King Beez and Matt Groopie and The Bandits. He discusses both bands (click the picture to visit Matt’s site), some tips for touring, and the six albums he would replace first if his music collection were ever wiped out.
King Beez is a metal-influenced, mostly instrumental surf-punk band. We have made a self titled full length album as well as an EP entitled Deathproof Vol. 1 which came out last October and is available on iTunes. We have a new EP coming out at the end of May as well as Deathproof Vol. 2 in September. We have been a band since 2007. We have taken a bit of a break but have the Tour to Conquer Cancer April 19, 20 and 21 in support of our bassists Ride to Conquer cancer. We have lots of dates in June and over the summer all around Ontario and Quebec including festivals in Toronto, Ottawa and Newmarket with more large scale gigs being added daily in support of our upcoming EP. We will hit the road again in October in support of our Deathproof 2 album.
The Bandits are an acoustic country-influenced folk act. Originally we were a full electric band and released an EP and even had a top 20 hit “Wrapped around your finger” in Winnipeg, Manitoba. We are currently working on a new album with the new sound and lineup. We have been playing lots of shows and they’ve been going great and we’ve been getting a fantastic response. We also won a battle of the bands in Newmarket, Ontario a few weeks back. We have some big festival gigs coming up in Schomberg and Richmond Hill as well as club dates all around Canada throughout 2013.
You’ve played more than 2000 shows across Canada. What is the best advice you can give about touring?
The best advice I can give about touring is strategically planning things is important. Also, always make sure your vehicle is working properly before you leave. Another thing to keep in mind is saving money. Bring a cooler and buy groceries as opposed to eating fast food. Another way to save money is having places to stay as opposed to renting a motel. Also, if your gig is more than three hours away, it pays to do more than one gig. Maybe do one on the way, and the way home. Always have backup cash. You never know what’s going to happen out there on the road. Always have someone watching the gear. ALWAYS. Also, touring is tiring so working out a bit plus water and vitamins are important. Most important, always play good and be positive and professional, even if there’s 5 people. Those five people paid to see you. Play like there’s 5000 people. One fan at a time.
What’s your ritual before going on stage?
Before I go on stage I like to get some air and drink a glass of water. Clear my mind and focus 100 percent on my performance and role in the band.
If your music collection gets wiped out, what are the first five albums you replace? Why?
1. Ramones - (self-titled)
They are the best band. Ever. And I learned how to play the guitar playing to this record every day. The Ramones were so pure and exciting. Great riffs and amazing lyrics. Simple, fun and real.
2. Roky Erickson – The Evil One
This album contains some of the greatest guitar riffs ever, as well as some strange lyrics and themes. It’s interesting and entertaining as well as down right scary. A definite nugget worth finding.
3. Flying Burrito Brothers – Anthology
The Burrito Brothers wrote some of the greatest country rock music in history. Featuring some of the greatest harmonies ever recorded, Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman came together to create a band that were totally ahead of their time. I also love the pedal steel played by Sneaky Pete. I am a big fan of Gram Parsons, who also shares a birthday with me. Chris Hillman is also an extremely impressive and versatile musician. He was also great in the Byrds.
4. The Clash – London Calling
Joe Strummer’s finest moment. I love Joe. Great drumming from Topper Headon who proves you can play punk and still have good chops. Jonsey and Simo added lots of layers artistically. It’s really just a perfect album. Great lyrics and variety of styles. No fear.
5. The Doors – (self-titled)
The greatest debut record from a band. They were totally ahead of their time and extremely dark for the times. Ray’s organ is very interesting and menacing but at the same time beautiful. Robby Krieger is also awesome. Lots of surf and foreign influences. John Densmore was an underrated and innovative drummer as well. Not a crappy song on the album.
6. BONUS ALBUM (because I said so)
Frank Zappa – Overnight Sensation
Why? Because Frank Zappa was the MAN! A true genius and extremely smart and entertaining.
What would you be doing if you weren’t making music?
I’m really interested in film and am actually in pre-production for a documentary I’m doing about the Toronto Surf Scene. I run a podcast on indieroundtable.com which is also fun and rewarding as I get to hear lots of great music. I am deeply into environmental and human rights issues and I have a twitter for that at @TomorrowTodayCa . I do a lot of charity events and lately have been working with the Lupus foundation. Also, I always wanted to manage the Toronto Blue Jays.
Follow Matt on Twitter (@mattgroopie)