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Just Another Motorcityblog Band Interview with Cold English

I got acquainted with Cold English through seeing David Allie brilliantly MC live events and figuring he must be one hell of a front person for a band. Turns out he is the vocalist for Cold English, one of the finest hip hop jam collaborations around town. Besides David Allie, the rest of Cold English are accomplished musicians that understand how to combine melody and spontaneity to create original songs that resonate with folks from all walks of life. They have a new release out, One Band, One Room, One Take on Bandcamp which unlike the title holds up to repeated listens. You can also check out Cold English playing 2 special sets this Friday at the Magic Bag along with Eddie Logix, RacecarracecaR, and Of Mice and Musicians. Here's a Q&A with David Allie filling in the details behind the band.

MCB: Who is in the band?

Alan Gadzinski - Keys

Andy Hines - Guitar

Colton Henrickson - Guitar

Ryan Brukwinski - Drums

Mo Grier - Bass

David Allie - Vocals

MCB: When did you form and why?
CE: I  believe it was Andy that put out a craigslist ad with Ryan looking for some people to jam, this was around the winter of 2010.  Anyways, Mo answered the request and started jamming with them. Mo is also an MC and we are also in the hip hop collective United States of Mind together. He really believed in what they were doing in Andy’s basement so he invited me to come check it out.
 The vibe was right and in no time we started writing songs. Andy soon after invited Al to come in on keys as they were childhood friends.  The way Colt came into the band is rather unique.  I believe Andy goes to a barbershop that Colt’s girlfriend Cat works at.  He was telling her about the band and Cat brought Colt out to a show.  He showed me some production work he was doing at that show and I dug it. However, I had no idea he played guitar. Andy and him started talking and Andy eventually suggested he come to a practice. The vibe was immediately there and that took us in a whole new direction.  I think we wrote as many songs in the first month Colt was there as we did in the year prior.
All praise is due to Andy for having a great eye for talent and to Mo for keeping me employed.

MCB: Describe your sound in ten words or less and what band would not offend you to be compared to?
CE: We are a hip hop jam band.  Our description usually depends on what the observer is listening to.  We speak to all genres in some shape or form.  If we were ever to be considered a poor mans version of The Roots I would be happy with that. lol.

MCB: What’s your latest release and how can people get it?
CE: Our newest release is "One Band. One Room. One Take" and will be available at  Eventually, it will be available on iTunes, Spotify, and all that good stuff.
"One Room. One Band. One Take" is Cold English live and uncut, prominently featuring the band's signature grooves and smooth lyrics. The album was funded by fans via a crowd-funding campaign and recorded live, in one take. That means no studio smoke and mirrors, no over-dubs, no re-do's and no auto-tuned vocals.

MCB: Favorite local venue and why?
CE: Ironically, I think it would have to be The Magic Bag where we're having our album release.  We don't get to play there often so it's often a special treat when we do play there.  It has really great sound and is set up for people to be able to enjoy the performance.  I also think The Loving Touch has made great strides in sound and set up.

MCB: What’s one another local band you think people should see?
CE: I really am a big fan of Flint Eastwood right now.  I've been listening to hip hop primarily for so long it's nice to get into something different.  They also have some hip hop elements to what they do and are very high energy.  I love a project with a great lead and Jax controls a crowd well.  I also think people should check out Sleepless Inn which is a new project by Eddie Logix and Laura Finlay.  It's downtempo and something different that people aren't used to hearing around here.

MCB: What do you like most about Detroit?
CE: I love too many things about Detroit. I'd say the people would have to be the number one thing.  The artistic community has really been making it happen as of late and I think people will look back on this time very favorably.  All the negative talk about Detroit doesn't affect us.  We weren't rocking 9 to 5s before and I don't see it happening anytime soon.

MCB: What’s the furthest you have travelled for a gig?
CE: Personally, I've been all over the country in my car rocking gigs.  I think the furthest by car would be Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Me, my buddies Dante and Chief all toured down to SXSW once and that is one of the greatest experiences I've had thus far musically.

MCB: Where’s the best place for people to go hear more from you?
CE: will get you to everything Cold English.

MCB: What makes being in a band worth it for you?
CE: I like the variability of a band. No song or show is the same.  The creativity of 6 different elements coming together to form something makes whatever the finished product will be better.  We all push each other in a positive way.  I think this is the best work I've been a part of thus far.

MCB: You will know the band is successful when…..
CE: I'll leave that for the people to decide.  That's such a subjective thing. I'm happy what I'm doing at the moment and that's my definition of success. The bill collectors might have other ideas about that.

MCB: Most embarrassing moment so far…
CE: I embarrass myself at every show in some way shape or form.  In between the songs I go off on tangents about what I was thinking about when I wrote the song or shit that just happened during the week. People usually laugh but sometimes there's that AWKWARD moment.  The songs save me as they're a quick way to change the topic.

Post by Mikel O.D. of MPAD Media