Crash Carter was formed in North County in late 2004 and pairs drummer John Mears and bassist Jeff Bowman (both formerly of surf rockers Tower 7) with singer/keyboardist Casey Gee. "We're just three groove-oriented guys trying to sound like Stevie Wonder meets the Police meets the Greyboy Allstars," says Gee. "The name comes from this mythical train conductor who supposedly got in a lot of accidents, but they couldn't fire him because he was in the union."
Last year's Red Buttons Blink featured guest appearances by local players Michael Tiernan and Sven-Erik Seaholm (who coproduced). Switchfoot front man Jon Foreman was supposed to contribute but ended up being out of the country during recording. The Switchfoot connection goes back to Gee's childhood friendship with Foreman, with whom Gee cowrote the Switchfoot song "Underwater" (heard on Dawson's Creek). Gee and John Mears also played together in a turn-of-the-century band called Phobicman alongside Switchfoot touring keyboardist Ryan Fisher.
The band is finishing up a new album to be released this fall. Crash Carter will perform some of their new music Sunday night at 8 p.m. on 94.9 FM.
WHAT'S IN YOUR CD PLAYER OR iPOD?
1. Black Eyed Peas, Monkey Business ("Funky, fun, danceable, not afraid to be silly.")
2. A Tribe Called Quest, The Low End Theory ("Quality hip-hop with old-skool groove.")
3. The Brand New Heavies, Brother Sister ("'70s-style funk with excellent vocals and melodies.")
1. Stevie Wonder, Original Musiquarium 1 ("This never leaves rotation. Timeless and genius.")
2. Ben Folds, Songs for Silverman ("How is this album not getting airplay?")
3. The Roots, Phrenology ("You better be a damn good band with a name like that.")
4. Lou Rawls Live ("The classic '70s soul/pop sound.")
1. Robert Walter, Super Heavy Organ ("This guy's name should have been 'Oh-My-God-I'm-Funky' -- he plays the keys so good it's criminal.")
2. Stevie Wonder, Innervisions ("Stevie plays all the instruments, and the songwriting is just crazy good.")
3. The Greyboy Allstars, A Town Called Earth ("Basically, an instant good time.")
4. Switchfoot, Nothing Is Sound ("Great musicians, fantastic songwriting.")
5. Oscar Peterson, Night Train ("Just beautiful stuff.")
1. House of 1000 Corpses ("I'm a big horror fan, and this flick has it all.")
2. Saving Private Ryan ("One of the best war flicks.")
1. Almost Famous ("Captures it all so well, should be required viewing for any aspiring musician, writer, or groupie.")
2. That Thing You Do ("Really great.")
3. The Who's The Kids Are Alright ("So much good music and footage, with plenty of Keith Moon's wackiness.")
4. Steve Smith's Drumset Technique/History of the U.S. Beat ("If you play drums, this instructional video is a must.")
5. Office Space ("I think we've all been there, in one way or another.")
1. The Empire Strikes Back ("I've met people that have never seen this movie, and those people scare me.")
2. Rushmore ("Bill Murray is pee-your-pants funny.")
3. Three Amigos ("I can recite way too many scenes from this one.")
4. Bubba Ho-tep ("Bruce Campbell as a senior-citizen Elvis fighting soul-sucking mummies.")
5. Blade Runner ("I love sci-fi movies, and this one changed everything.")
Bowman:"Spongebob Squarepants. It's humor for kids and adults."
Mears: "Pee-Wee's Playhouse. Yeah, not a cartoon but totally animated. I have a friend who believes Paul Reubens intentionally let himself get caught with his pants down in that movie house, to rid himself of the Pee-Wee character."
Gee: "Spongebob Squarepants. I like Patrick."
BEST CELEBRITY ENCOUNTER?
Bowman: "Hanging out with Dave Wakeling of the English Beat, backstage at the Belly Up after we opened for him."
Mears: "Performing and hanging out with Eddie Vedder in summer 2004. Crash Carter performed a couple tunes at the wedding of Vedder's brother Jason, who was a member of the band under our short-lived first name Prydamadera."
Gee: "Playing a Ramones song, 'I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend,' with Eddie Vedder on guitar and vocals, at his brother's wedding. Cool, nice, and gracious guy."
FAVORITE TWILIGHT ZONE?
Bowman: "Impossible to answer. I like them all."
Mears: "The one with the astronaut who lands on a planet inhabited by tiny people that treat him like a god ["The Little People"]. He has the ability to leave but stays to rule over the people as he's now drunk with power, only to have another space traveler land moments later. Of course, the new visitor is thousands of feet larger than him."
Gee: "I love the one with the little gremlin guy who lands on the plane wing, but only one passenger can see him ['Nightmare at 20,000 Feet']. Probably because whenever I catch an episode, that's the one that comes on."
SOMETHING ABOUT YOU FEW WOULD KNOW OR GUESS?
Bowman: "I'm an avid gun collector and enjoy shooting."
Mears: "I experience random and frequent brushes with clairvoyance and telepathy."
Gee: "I'm horribly allergic to horses. I went to Medieval Times a few years back and thought my nose was going to explode. If I'd been a knight, I would have had to ride a big pig or something."