Copper Chief! An Inside Look & Interview With The Band.

Copper Chief has recently debuted their self titled project with the emphasis that this is only the beginning to what is shaping up to be a healthy career. Along with the album they have also chosen their first single, Jericho, which is being pushed to radio stations across the Texas and Red Dirt Music territory since February 27th of this year.

The band consists of Mike Valliere (rhythm guitar/vocals), Rio Tripiano (lead guitar, vocals) Justin Lusk (Bass/Vocals) and John Joseph Jamal II (drums/percussion).

Here is a video interview that was done in the heart of Austin, TX on 6th street at San Jack's Saloon that goes over the album and the single.

As pictured above from left to right; John Joseph Jamal II, Mike Valliere, Rio Tripiano and Justin Lusk.

Aaron Lee Bentley, a producer for TXRDR also had the opportunity to do a Q/A with the band about their single Jericho and the self titled album.

Q: Your first album as a group is highly diverse in both lyrical approach and melodic taste, what fuels this diversity?

A: For this album we had two main songwriters, Mike and Rio, but the key to the diversity only starts with that fact. There is undoubtedly a difference in both of their writing styles. Being a group essentially fronted by two separate people drives this diversity on a base level.

Mike: We come from similar musical backgrounds and tastes, which is why we blend and complement each other well, but with enough differences within those tastes to individualize our approaches. One way I kind of look at it is we have the same undergraduate major but with different minor degrees.

With this album being songs that both brought to the table and played together for a while, we both have also had a hand in affecting the other’s songs, whether it be a lick added, melodic arrangement, or a vocal/harmony emphasis on a part. Adding Justin and John and their styles to the songs in the studio had a hand in it as well. Going into the studio so immediately after forming meant we had to work through them now as a third entity. That collective approach lent another level of diversity to the final recordings. Mike and Rio separate. Mike and Rio together. Copper Chief all together. These songs are definitely an amalgamation of all of our styles and tastes. Artistically, I feel it’s safe to say that no one in the band is really a one-trick pony. We make the music that comes from us and it doesn’t always fit into the same box as the song before or after. We try not to limit ourselves in our songwriting and production. There’s no single driving force for us stylistically. All of these songs are individual yet somehow there’s an overarching spirit that ties them together as an album. What comes out is just Copper Chief.

Q: Are you guys a rock band, a jam band or a band on the run?

A: This band tries really hard not to run at all, unless being chased by a bear. We have a really hard time when people ask us this question. The answer, not trying to use an easy out here, is that we’re just really a little bit of everything. Roots Rock N’ Roll, Country, Swamp Blues, Soul, Texas Grit Groove, Boogie music. We’re organic. We draw a lot on the musical landscape, especially the typically Southern canon of music. We’re a band that wants to share music with as many people as we can. Country boys who like to play Rock N’ Roll and everything in between.

Q: Music is a strange mistress, always has been, where do you guys fit into the fold?

A: Where ever people have a hunger for something new and fresh, yet with an air of familiarity, and aren’t afraid to be open to something that might be a little weird. We do this because it’s what we wake up every day and think about. We didn’t choose to do it. We have to do it. We want to make this music how it comes from us for anyone who wants to listen. Our artistic goal is to make a connection or impart emotion, whatever emotion that may be, with and upon anyone who will hear us. It’s a sharing of a feeling, a moment, and an energy deep down that binds all of us together. Music is a powerful thing, and I know all of us in Copper Chief have felt that power.

Q: Tell me where you recorded and who produced the record?

A: We recorded this album at Boyd Street Studios in Stephenville, TX (which has since become Melody Mountain Studios relocated onto LJT’s property) with Josh Serrato and Ben Hussey. We were the last band to record in the double-wide trailer that was Boyd Street Studios and then did some of the mixing out at the new place. We co-produced this album ourselves along with both Josh and Ben. We can’t say enough about those guys. They were amazing to work with and really helped us get the most out of this collection of songs. They did everything they could to make sure we captured the essence of this band. There’s some great things coming out of that studio with these two guys right now in the scene.

Q: What means of measure will you use to gage this albums success?

A: Ideally, we’d like to reach as many people as possible and share our craft with as wide an audience that we can. However, speaking on an album level, this project is already a success to us because we feel it is an accurate representation of this band at this moment in time. That’s a successful album to us and hopefully some other people dig it too. We just want it to kick the door in and say, “Hello world, we’re Copper Chief.” Success is a hard thing to measure in this industry so we just try to stay grounded and humble and hope to keep making music for people. With the single “Jericho” just released we hope to reach some people through radio that we might not have otherwise, which is a win in our book. We want to keep expanding our live touring and reaching to new markets with this album. If we can do that and still make a living, that’s how we measure success.

Copper Chief has also been invited to be apart of the Texas Regional Radio Awards ceremony in Arlington, TX this Saturday. The will also be Headlining the Texas Independence Day Bash at Lola's Tailer Park in Fort Worth, TX Saturday night.

for more information on the band and how to contact them follow this link...

You can also order the album on iTunes and amazon music.

And That's That!

Houston Hall


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