2Cents is a metal band from Los Angeles, California, known for their energetic live performances and extensive touring history. They’ve toured with big name acts such as Buckcherry, Killswitch Engage, Rise Against and are currently on tour with Korn. They have slowly worked their way from simply going to punk rock shows, to performing shows of their very own, and are now on their way to making it big, thanks to their determination and dedication to the art of music. Read on to find out more about singer Adam O’Rourke’s past, how he got into music, and how he feels about the importance of touring and making a name for yourself in this industry.
Jade: How did you choose the name 2Cents?
Adam: It was something me and my brother played under when we were young aspiring musicians, probably like 15 or 17. We picked the name because it’s like speaking your mind and letting people know how you feel. But when we actually formed the band as it is now, our sound got a lot harder and more aggressive, and we just thought it was funny. It was just really corny and out of place, out of the ordinary. It kind of spoke to our sense of humor, our attitude, and how we approach playing and performing music, so we decided just to keep it.
Jade: For those who haven’t heard your band yet, how would you describe it, in your own words?
Adam: I’d say our sound is aggressive and melodic. We have a strong focus and concentration on writing songs, and trying to write a song that stays with the listener after the CD stops spinning.
Jade: You said you started when you were 15, how did you get interested in music?
Adam: I had always loved music, ever since I was a little kid, I was just obsessed. I was always obsessed with one band or another. What actually got me interested in playing music was punk rock. I went out and saw a couple of punk rock shows, and the energy and vibe and everything in there was absolutely electric. It was something that, growing up, I just felt immediately connected to. It’s just kind of that scene. And I never really necessarily in my life, we never listened to, let’s say, a Pantera record or a Nine Inch Nails record and said, “Oh wow, I can do that! That sounds like I can do that.” The first time I heard The Minor Thread or a couple other of these punk bands I used to just worship, and go out to check out, the more and more I just realized that punk rock is about just expressing what you have, not about how good you are, or how expensive your recording was. It was more than that. It was about putting what you have out there for the world to see, and not being apologetic for just going for it. So when I really got into punk rock, that’s when I started believing myself, that I could actually play songs, learn an instrument, and write my own songs.
Jade: What bands have inspired you throughout your musical career?
Adam: Well yeah, everything from old school, like The Ramones, Minor Thread, Rat Brains, to some more new school bands like NOFX, Strung Out, Pennywise, Guttermouth. All bands like that from that time, in my early teen years. Growing up, I’d just be constantly going out to punk rock shows, just stage diving, moshing, you know. And that was the cool thing about the punk rocker show, it was all about freedom, you know? You could get up on the stage with the band, you could jump off, you could do this, and you could do that, and there was really no rules. It was just about getting out there, freaking out and howling at the moon. Which I could definitely relate to.
Jade: What’s it like being in a band with your brother? Does it ever make things difficult?
Adam: Actually no, my brother’s on of my dearest, best friends in the whole world. Nine times out of ten we get along amazingly. But we definitely have the capability to have a full-blown fight. But the cool thing about us being brothers is we can have the narliest fight you’ve ever heard, where we’re like “Well, I never loved you, and I wish Dad would have worn a condom!” and then literally 5 minutes later we’re like, “You wanna go get a sandwich or something?” It’s immediately dropped and gotten over.
Jade: What is your most cherished experience so far since being in this band?
Adam: Wow, there’s a lot of them. Most recently I’d say it was being able to get our own tour bus. That was a thing we had been working on, that was a status level we had been aiming to achieve for a long time, to be able to have our own bus, and be self-sufficiant and self-contained out on the road. Going out on this Korn tour is the first time in our lives we have our own tour bus. Literally, when it pulled up, we got to load our own trailer and put all our stuff in it, it was a moment that caught up with me of a time I was super, super young, and I was like, “Man, maybe one day, if I do this long enough and if I work hard enough, I can get to a place where I’m traveling around the country with my best friends in a tour bus, playing for a band I love.” And I got on this bus and we were about to be direct support for Korn, who’s been one of my favorite bands since I was 14, 15 years old, with all my friends in the bus, it was kind of like a full circle moment where I realized all this hard work and dedication and sacrifice we put in for this had actually gotten me to a place I want to be. It was a pretty awesome feeling.
Jade: You’ve also played with big acts such as Killswitch Engage, Rise Against, and Buckcherry. What were those experiences like for you to play with such big name bands?
Adam: I love it, it’s just more fans for us to try to steal from them. *laughs* And they’ve all been so good to us. It’s pretty humbling when you go out there, and you’re opening for a band who’s already pushed a million units, or over a million units, and they’re treating you with respect. Basically, you find out most of these guys are just like anybody else you would see working at a bar, or paying the carpenter, or whatever, they just like playing music. And nine times out of ten, none of these people have an ego of attitude or anything. They’re just good people to get to know, and at the end of the day I get to sit down and be by the side of the stage and watch them play. It’s a cool feeling.
Jade: You guys as a band do a lot of touring. How important is this to you and what do you think it does for the band and it’s fanbase?
Adam: Touring, especially right now in the state of the music business, is pretty much everything. It’s how you build the connection to your fans. We had an opportunity, right as we were getting signed, to do a tv show for one of the major networks that bid on a video pilot we had made as a band. They wanted to try it, to make it a tv show, but that would have meant we would have had to stay back in Los Angeles. We would have been able to make a lot of money. Let’s put it this way, I would have had enough to move out of my Mom’s house. *laughs* But we decided, at the end of the day, it was about getting on the road, it was about getting on stage and letting the band and our songs speak for themselves. And really shaking a hand one at a time, and making a fan, one fan at a time. You know, it’s mostly just to take easy money and sit back and make a reality tv show, and it was the hardest decision to make. At the end of the day, you want to be supporting the people that have supported you, and like I said, it was a decent amount of money, but it was really important to us that we stand on our own as a band and get out here and open these shows and play for the kids. So far it’s been nothing but great.
Jade: What do you think is your biggest challenge in this industry?
Adam: The biggest challenge in this industry is selling records. Selling actual hard copies of your CD, because at the end of the day, that’s still how your success is measured, by your sound scans, and it’s hard to get kids to go out to stores and actually buy hard CDs and not illegally download things off the internet. But at the same time, there are bands out there who aren’t pushing that many numbers, but are selling out shows and selling a bunch of T-shirts, and really have a great touring career, but they get passed over, looked over because their sound scan numbers aren’t up. I think it’s potentially something to be measured, but I don’t think it should be the deciding factor anymore, because the music business has been changing so much.
Jade: You play the drums and sing lead vocals for the band. Is this difficult? Does it get tiring at all?
Adam: When I first started it was. I guess just like anything, it was definitely difficult. I had always written lyrics, and I write songs on guitar as well, and every time I would write a song and pass it off to the singer (we had back in the day), and try to get somebody else to sing them. They never where doing it quite the way I had thought of it in my head or how I needed it to be so I was just like, “You know what? Screw this, I’m gonna try it.” I started doing it when I was 15, 16, and it took several years to get it where it was natural. And now, literally, I can be in my rehearsal space, we can be playing Slayer, I can be playing the drums and singing, and I’ll catch myself being like, “Did I pay my car insurance last week? Am I late on my DMV stuff?” My mind won’t even be in the room sometimes, I’ve been doing it so long that it’s just second nature at this point. At the same time, it’s the two best jobs you could have, I get to beat the crap out of the drums and I get to sing into the mic and call kids out of the audience, it’s a pretty good gig to have.
Jade: Lastly, are there any plans for you to be coming around Buffalo in the near future?
Adam: I do believe we’ll be hitting in and around the Buffalo area maybe in the end part of July, early part of August.
Jade: Thank you very much.
We would like to thank Jen from Chipster Entertainment for setting up the interview with Adam. for more information on 2Cents, you can go to:http://www.myspace.com/2cents.