Astatine Music caught up with Alabama rockers, Shallow Side, while out on tour supporting their recent release of “One”. We were able to talk to Cody before the group’s performance in Colorado Springs. We touched on a few subjects that night, including the band’s recent issues out on the road. One thing we have to remember about our favorite bands is that they probably do not live the crazy, glamorous, rock-and-roll lifestyle we sometimes presume. These guys leave love ones and comfort behind to bring us their rock and roll circus. Cody shared some of the hardships they have encountered below. Click below for our recent review of Shallow Side’s album “One”.
AM: Alright, Ladies and Gentlemen, we’ve got Cody Hampton, bass player for Shallow Side. How are you doing tonight, Cody?
CH: I am well. I’m hangin’ in there, we took the horse and buggy here tonight, so. No tour bus, no anything, just straigh-up horse and buggy, and a lot of horse poo.
AM: Down to basics, man!
CH: We’re down to the basics, yes! We even started wearing the same color socks. It’s weird.
AM: Well, first of all, I want to congratulate you guys on the new EP. You got some great endorsements from Tommy Shaw and John Fred Young, man!
CH: John Fred, yeah. Well, we’re kind of impartial with him because we, first off, we’re friends with him. I don’t know how it happened, but we became friends with him. It was definitely a good endorsement, but then again, it’s like ‘hey, that’s their buddy’! It’s like getting an endorsement from your mom, you know? It may be the best stuff in the world, but nobody’s gonna look at it the same because your mom said it was cool. It’s just one of those things. But, yeah, we love those guys.
AM: Things have been kinda tough for you. Your tour bus breaking down; was there a double-booking one night and you missed a show?
CH: You what I think, the way that the weather has been, in the South, the Midwest and everywhere else, like, I think the venue actually didn’t have heat. I think that’s what it was, and it was somewhere in Kansas and we were on our way there and they call us up and were like, ‘hey, the heat’s not working. It’s gonna be cold and it’s gonna take, like, 50 grand to get the heat fixed. So you guys just, you know, fend for yourself.’ And we were just like, ‘man, not another cancellation’! And then the tour bus is breaking down all the time. So, yeah, we’ve been in a heap ‘a mess. A heap ‘a mess.
AM: But, you’re still rollin’, you’re still rockin’. What pulls you through all the bullshit and keeps you moving?
CH: I honestly don’t even know, man. I think we’ve been asking ourselves that this whole week. We’re crammed, five deep, in an F-250 and a trailer. So, I’ve honestly asked myself that, you know, and I think it’s the hope that this is our test. Like, this whole year, we’ve looked back and we’ve talked about it and there’s been a lot of great things happen to us. If you look on social media, you look at the growth we’ve had with our fans and with the community, it’s just boomin’. And then you look at the amount of shit that we went through, it’s just like, what? (laughs) How do we keep doin’ this? A lot of people have asked us that same question, but a little more brutal, like ‘how the hell do you keep doin’ this?’ For us, man, we don’t look back. We don’t spend a lot of time at home, which is a good thing for us because the more time you spend at home, the more you want to stay at home. So, I think that’s one of the things. You know, management and the label, they’re keeping us busy, so it’s one of those things. You wake up, you’ve got your week planned out for you and you keep on going. If you miss a day, they yell at you. And you just don’t stop.
AM: For some people who maybe don’t know you too well, how long have you been together and how did you get together as a band?
CH: We’ve been bookin’ it for about six, seven years now. I don’t know exactly. I think it’s seven, going on seven. The other guys, Eric, Heath, and Seth, they had been playing together. They all graduated high school together. So they started playing songs that they liked and that their friends liked and stuff like that. Then they pretty much had to move where they was playin’ in this little shed. About the time that I joined, we were doing the same things, just playing songs for friends and it got too packed. We would pick up and move to a venue in Alabama, and that place got too packed, too many people. Then we would move to the bigger stages, we would outsource to Birmingham and Huntsville. We really started noticing that if we spread out, we would honestly do one of those gyroscope things and we’d just hit towns. This was kind of in the same set up that we’re in now, with a truck and a trailer. You borrow your friend’s truck and throw your stuff in the back, everybody throws in gas money. That’s what we would do, just sit out and play shows. It didn’t matter about the money, it didn’t matter about anything. We’d still work full-time jobs. At one point, the schedule got too hectic and there were so many shows and so many things to do and so many towns to hit that we quit our jobs and, honestly, never looked back. That goes back to the other question, once you commit to it, you’ve gotta keep going. If you sit back one day, and waste one day, you’re taking weeks off of your life on the road. And it literally does. It’s crazy.
AM: Let’s talk a little bit about “One”, here, the new album. It’s got a great rock-and-roll vibe to it. Who is the band’s biggest inspiration?
CH: Oooooh! I had a fan ask us about that earlier today. Growing up, we was all fortunate enough that we grew up with our dads. We was always in our dad’s pocket, riding with him in the truck, and it was what they listened to on the radio. That was the thing that really got us started, listening to the classic rock, the old outlaw country, Willie, Waylon, Hank Williams, Jr, going into Lynyrd Skynyrd, even the Allman Brothers, stuff like that. From there, it was like, ‘what is like that but what is everyone else kinda listening to?’ It was Tool, Breaking Benjamin, Shinedown. Once we started getting a little age on us, those were the bands that kind of said, ‘hey, you can make a living doing this. You can do it, you can reach people, you can sit back and have fun with it, you can express yourself in front of other people’. So, that’s where we kind of took off.
Check out the latest video from Shallowside, “Renegade”