Tag Archives: Arizona

Bear Down

I can only imagine how much you all have missed me! I know you just hang on every word of this blog, so I must apologize for my extended absence. But I am here to assure you that I am back! So fear not and rest assured and any other cliches you see fit.

I took a trip home to my beloved Phoenix for a friend’s wedding and for a few shows with the Cousins. The weather was immaculate (of course), and it made it difficult to come back to Chicago. On Friday, October 19, we played a show in Tucson on the mall at the University of Arizona. Having gone to school there, this was a special experience for me. I’ve always had a special place in my heart for that city, and it’s really where I cultivated this dream that is now Cousin Affect. To go back and jam there felt quite full circle. These are just a few pictures from the show at U of A.

After the show, I ended up watching a close friend play with his band at the Hotel Congress. They are on tour and just happened to be in Tucson the same night. I ate at the Subway I must have eaten at a million times during college. I drove by the places I used to live. It was really cool being back in that city. I loved going to school down there. I will be posting some video from the show this week or next so stay tuned. We also have lots to update you on regarding the music video we are getting ready to shoot. The first of many shoots is this coming Saturday. It has morphed into quite the production so wish us luck. This is our first go around with this grand of an idea for a video. We have that feeling you get when you are slowly going up to the highest peak of the roller coaster…weeee!!

Happy Halloweeeeen!

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Embry Riddle – Prescott, AZ

I am back in Chicago, and I already miss the group. I can’t wait to get back in October.

The time leading up to showtime is often hectic and hurried. Lots of times there is a band in front of you frantically (or as is the case with lots of bands…taking their sweet a** time!) trying to clear their gear off the stage. More often than not, you set up your stuff, you plug in, you do a quick sound check, and you’re off and running. Most audio engineers (apparently they don’t like when you call them “sound guys.” found that out the hard way) use the first song or two as their sound check. I always adjust my set lists accordingly. I’m certainly looking forward to the days when our sound checks are more like this one. Once we got set up, we were able to jam for a solid 30 minutes to make sure everything sounded perfect. It is such an advantage when schools allow us to do this, and I feel like the show experience is exponentially better when we’re given this opportunity. Most bands will agree, but I think it’s especially important for the Cousins to have perfect sound. This is a video I put together using the “sound check jam session” as the backing audio. It’s nothing special, but I feel it gives a little insight into how much the 7 of us love being around each other and how honored we feel to be able to play music for people who want to listen. Check the video out in HD 1080p (HD settings are under the video, on the wheel icon closest to the center). Make sure to watch all the way to the end for “Timo’s Final Thought.” See you again in October, Arizona.

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Extended Family

The Cousins are playing tonight in Prescott, AZ for the first time since the IndieFest in Vegas on April 28th. I have been in Chicago working on new music and other creative ideas to further the Cousin Affect project since the beginning of May, and I never could have been prepared for how much I would miss playing with these six people. Over the years, we have had some different lineups come and go, but these people you see here…this is Cousin Affect. I can’t begin to describe in words how much I enjoy playing music in the live setting. On top of that, to be able to share that experience with the unbelievably talented people in my group is almost unreal.

Scotty C. is one of the most talented kids I know. His energy and charisma on stage make it impossible for our fans to not have a good time watching us play. He’s my longest friend in the group and it’s been incredible building so much musical chemistry over the years. When I first started producing music on my own, I was always jumping at the opportunity to get Scotty C. on a track. The kid always kills it.

I’m not sure I would do her singing ability justice by trying to contain it with the English language. Jessica is soul. She’s an unbelievable talent, and I’m lucky enough to now call her one of my best friends. She has an awesome husband and two wonderful kids, and their family has been so much a part of Cousin Affect. There’s nothing better than writing lyrics knowing that Jess is going to be the one singing them in the final product.

Sax man is one of the best people I know. He has been an extremely positive role model to me and to the rest of the Cousins. Dan and his wife Denise have done so much for this project and my appreciation for that is endless. He puts in long hours for the success of this project and doesn’t get nearly the credit he deserves. Aside from that, he is the most talented musician in our group. Sax man can take over a show. I feel so lucky to be able to play shows with that level of talent and call him one of my closest friends.

Timo. We’ve been playing shows for about 4 years now, and I’m not sure any of us could find a time when Timo messed up. He just doesn’t ever mess up. He’s such a rock on the low end for us. I always feel like his talent isn’t recognized enough. Timo on the bass is a huge part of why Cousin Affect sounds like Cousin Affect. I knew from the second I saw him pick up the bass that he was perfect for our sound.

D believed in this project when no one else did. He was there in the beginning. He was the one up on stage with me embarrassing ourselves at our first few shows. He has always believed. That’s given me so much confidence and strength spearheading this project forward. He’s an ill emcee and a fantastic writer. He’s a great story of perseverance. When this project gains the success I know it will, D will be there.

The first experience I have of Meche is him dunking all over my face on a fast break in a men’s recreational basketball league. And to make it worse, he was so nice about it. So I couldn’t even secretly hate him inside. Tragedy. He’s also an incredible talent on the drums, a good man, husband, and a solid father to his kids. He may play it cool back there on the drums but trust me, he’s having the time of his life. Don’t be fooled.

As this project moves forward, I’m not sure if the lineup will always stay exactly the same. That’s something I’ve learned about the business. It’s a tough industry. Unfortunately, it forces you to make a lot of poor life decisions in order to even have a chance for success. I know because I’ve made them. Not everyone has the opportunity to put themselves out there like that. I understand that. I have so much appreciation for these six people for embodying this project and believing in it. In a perfect world, the seven of us will play to sold out arenas all over the world. I have hope because sometimes things work out perfectly. But even if the lineup changes in the coming years, I will never forget these six people. We share something indescribable. If you’ve been to a show, I hope you’ve felt it. I’ve been in the music business for a long time, and I’ve seen countless bands play live music. I’ve never seen a group have more fun on stage than us. At the end of the day, as cliche as it sounds, that’s what it’s all about.

We’re playing a few shows in Arizona in October. I will keep everyone posted. And I’m going to try and post some video from the Prescott show in my next blog entry. Show day.

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Welcome!

Hey Folks! Mike Woods here from Cousin Affect. I’m excited to finally have my blog finally off the ground. It’s been something in the works in my head for quite some time. I feel like I was waiting for it to be perfect before launching. I’m changing gears and launching now because if I know anything at all about the entertainment business, I know that nothing is perfect.

I am hoping to connect more personally with all the CA fans through this blog. Most all of you have experienced a live show. Perhaps this is what attracted you to our group. A great live energy has always been something dear to me. I have more fun performing music than I could accurately describe with words. A performance is a mere blip on the timeline of life in the entertainment business, and it happens to be the most enjoyable part. I will give you a look into what goes on behind the scenes. I plan to be all over the place in the beginning. If a theme seems to be working as time goes on, maybe I’ll move in that direction. I plan to make my entries short and sweet. I will include behind the scenes videos, poems, pieces of developing songs, pictures, videos or songs that are inspiring the writing of this next record, as well as some lighthearted anecdotes that we experience over the next few months and beyond. I am excited at the prospect of our virtual relationship! Please leave comments and interact. I will do my best to respond. Please share this blog with anyone you know if you like what you see/read. All the support helps the Cousin Affect project move forward. Check back every Wednesday and Sunday for new posts! Keep it fresh.

Woods

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