Interviewed by Brian Rademacher
Date: March 2009
Brian Rademacher: Hey guys Eric letís start with you. You went to NYU?
Eric Jayk: Yeah, I was a jazz guitar performance major at NYU. Let it be known! I was the only person ever to do such an eclectic mix of music for their recitals. I shredded "Flight of the Bumblebee", sang and played piano (despite being a guitar major), played a nylon-string and did one of J.S Bach's "Brandenburg Concertos". And, besides playing Chick Corea and Pat Martino songs, I did modern re-harmonizationís of BON JOVIís "Living on a Prayer" and "More Than a Feeling" by BOSTON.
Brian Rademacher: Yeah I saw you doing a guitar solo on YouTube and also another with you playing with a cast on your right wrist.
Eric Jayk: That's hilarious, right? I had wrist surgery and did a video to show the guys in wildstreet and our fans that I can play through the recovery! I do also play guitar for Sandra Bernhard.
Brian Rademacher: How was that?
Eric Jayk: Itís amazing; I played guitar in her Off-Broadway show "Everything Bad, & Beautiful" in NYC's Union Square for nearly 6 months in 2006 -six nights/seven shows a week. Since the show closed, weíve toured a bit. I can honestly say that I've learned so much from her, as a performer and a bandleader. It also pushed me to become more musical and "tasty" with my guitar playing. Being able to play in front of people that much was amazing. Sandra is such a star.
Brian Rademacher: You worked with Alex Craven?
Eric Jayk: How did you know that?
Brian Rademacher: Research
Brian Beck: Ah digginí the dirt oh no. Dude Iím done!
Brian Rademacher: You started playing guitar at eight years old?
Eric Jayk: Yeah, I really had to convince my parents I was serious!! They wanted to buy me a toy!! Twenty years later, we get signed (laughing).
Brian Rademacher: You remember that first guitar?
Eric Jayk: of course... In the late-80s early 90s Martin began to make electric guitars. It was called a "Stinger" Ėa bright red stratocaster copy. Yeah, it was terrible.
Brian Rademacher: So you got signed to Retrospect
Ali Hassan: I actually was just researching Rocklahoma trying to book us on there and I came across Retrospect and they were involved in it last year and again this year. I went to their website and contacted him (Sam) and let him know we were interested and told them to check out our music, this was this past Christmas day and later that night he wrote back and it went from there. We met at Mohegan Sun Casino and signed on the dotted line, it was a great Christmas present for us.
Eric Jayk: Sam is an awesome dude who believes in us 100%.
Ali Hassan: Itís rare to meet someone so genuine in the industry like Sam, you can tell that his heart is in the music and itís refreshing and it makes us work that much harder for the dude.
Brian Rademacher: Eric tell me a little about your past from your school days?
Eric Jayk: I was really good in school it was really easy. I played guitar, piano, saxophone and drums and studied outside. I was in a lot of original and cover bands. When I met Jimmie Marlowe I knew WILD STREET was gonna be the best band I've ever been in. We hit it off immediately we both love ELVIS COSTELLO & DEF LEPPARD.
Brian Rademacher: Tell me a little about your past?
Brian Beck: I started playing music when I was five. My parents just wanted me to play an instrument and they told me to "pick anyone I wanted and learn itÖ" so I chose drums. I had private lessons all through high school. I was in a jazz band, never in the Marching band. (laughing). Played in a lot of different bands outside of school. One of them won a radio contest and we opened for BON JOVI. After that it dissolved. Then I started playing with a band called LOLA RAY out of California. I moved back to the east coast and met Eric through Craigís list. I wrestled in school; hope you donít find a picture on the web of that. I was terrible in school.
Brian Rademacher: How about you Ali, Tell me a little about your past?
Ali Hassan: I grew up in Western PA. My Mom took me to my first concert when I was five it was SKID ROW and BON JOVI, yeah so I grew up with all that SKID ROW, BON JOVI, QUEEN, and Bruce Springsteen. I got good grades in school, always was the rebel though, getting in trouble and got suspended. I played soccer up until high school and dove into music. I went to college and then went to engineering school and met Eric and Jimmie and been rocking out since then.
Brian Rademacher: Are there new bands you like?
Eric Jayk: To be honest there isn't too much out there that excites me right now. All the bands who are trying to play "80s rock" have these modern sounds which is exactly what Jimmie has made it a point to avoid in WILD STREET. The bottom line is that the reason why DEF LEPPARD is great because the songs are great. Just having the spirit of Glam rock isnít enough you have to have good songs.
Brian Rademacher: Brian you like any bands coming up?
Brian Beck: I really canít say I do, I donít listen to that much 80s rock. I have a different taste but I canít find a band that people will be listening to in thirty years from now.
Brian Rademacher: Ali, how about you anyone excites you?
Ali Hassan: As far as glam rock DIRTY PENNY guys are cool, theyíre a hard working band with great songs. Iíve been listening to Vanity XO a good bit too lately. Iím really looking forward to doing some dates with them this summer. I end up listening to my friendís bands more than anything to be honest. Bands like THE BOUNCING SOULS, THE LOVED ONES and THE GASLIGHT ANTHEM, a lot of punk and rock bands.
Brian Rademacher: You guys have material now?
Ali Hassan: Yeah Retrospect is releasing it and weíll be having a record release party at Webster Hall on April 22. This will be our first release.
Brian Rademacher: When did the band start?
Eric Jayk: Officially in January of 2008, although Jimmie and I started writing and recording in 2006
Brian Rademacher: How about you Brian I just picked up a CD by Mike Monday, I am the kind of person that goes in a store and looks at cover art and picks a CD. Itís different but good.
Ali Hassan: It was a 7inch from a bands record Iím I working on called THE BOUNCING SOULS, theyíre a punk band thatís been an influence of mine since I was 12 years old.
Brian Rademacher: So you guys will be at Rocklahoma this year. What do you hope to accomplish?
Eric Jayk: To let people know who we are and make them think we are the best band there. We hope to play at least thirty minutes.
Ali Hassan: What is good I think we are playing multiple times throughout the weekend, I think three or four times.
Brian Beck: Hopefully by the last show word will spread and more people will come out and see us
Eric Jayk: We are going to work it real hard and met everyone we can!
Brian Rademacher: Who are your influences Eric?
Eric Jayk: I have a lot across the board, my first concert was SLAUGHTER, POISON and BULLET BOYS and I was eleven it was amazing. But I guess biggest was AEROSMITH, DEF LEPPARD and glitter rock like Bowie, SLADE, SWEET, and T.REX. I also got into FACES and CHEAP TRICK when I was eighteen.
As a guitar player, Gary Moore is my favorite.
Brian Rademacher: How about you Brian?
Brian Beck: Mine are a lot like Ericís. My first concert was VAN HALEN I was ten. Well it really wasnít VAN HALEN because Gary Cherone was in the band. Ok three quarters VAN HALEN. I remember Alex playing a fifteen minute solo that blew my tiny mind apart.
Brian Rademacher: Ali how about you?
Ali Hassan: I listened to a ton of eighties rock stuff BON JOVI and POISON was my brothers and my favorite bands. You would always see us in one of their shirts. From age like 6-10 I wore the same jean jacket with patches of GnR, M÷TLEY CR‹E, BON JOVI, and POISON all over it. About middle school I really got into punk.
Brian Rademacher: You did a rendition of "All The Young Dudes", why did you pick that one
Eric Jayk: I wanted to do a Bowie song and I love that song. Iím pretty proud of it.
Brian Rademacher: Who would you like to see play Rocklahoma?
Eric Jayk: POISON and DEF LEPPARD.
Brian Beck: Alice Cooper would be cherry on top for me.
Ali Hassan: DEF LEPPARD, POISON, CHEAP TRICK tour should stop there.
Brian Rademacher: Tell me a little about the upcoming release?
Eric Jayk: There are eight songs and a bonus acoustic version of "Solider of Love". So there are nine songs total. We used three different studios to recordÖincluding, yeah, Eric Jaykís Shredfactory (my room in my east village apartment) some of the songs were written with Jimmie and some songs with two outside producers, Mike Shimshack/Kyle Kelso. "Soldier of Love" Acoustic was done in one night at Aliís studio in Times Square. There was one song left off the EP called, "We Like It Loud".
Brian Rademacher: What is a normal day for you Eric?
Eric Jayk: I get up early, work out really hard and I then I play music, write or work on business stuff all day until very Late at night.
Brian Rademacher: How about you Brian?
Brian Beck: I wake up at 1 oíclock, drink two pots of coffee. Smoke about fifteen cigarettes. I surf the internet looking for dog walking jobs. I try to gather some quarters to get a bowl of Ramen and relive it the next day. I live my life from practice to practice. Tuesday nights is the day we all get together and practice our songs.
Ali Hassan: We had been rehearsing at my studio in midtown Manhattan, itís called Tainted Blue studios. I pretty much work every day at the studio. I try to network our band as much as possible.
Brian Rademacher: What are the plans after Rocklahoma?
Eric Jayk: Hopefully after Rocklahoma we will be gaining a lot of new fans and we will start working on a new record.
Ali Hassan: We want to tour as much as possible, hopefully get on a tour with bands that we look up to.
Eric Jayk: Yeah opening for KIX and TWISTED SISTER helped us a lot!
Brian Beck: If we went out with KIX every night would be great, they blew my mind.
Brian Rademacher: So what can we expect from your live show?
Brian Beck: Itís better than KIX.
Ali Hassan: You put your foot in your mouth, youíre lying.
Eric Jayk: I think we are a much better band live, the production is good but the attitude is cranked up with our live show.
Ali Hassan: High energy, a lot of big choruses to sing along to, fists in the air and a lot of fun.
Brian Rademacher: How was it the first time someone asked for an autograph?
Eric Jayk: It was ok; I wasnít sure what name to sign. (laughing)
Brian Beck: It was cool a long time ago in a VFW hall, it was great.
Ali Hassan: It was awesome, itís humbling. I am such a reserved person believe it or not so itís rad. It sets you back and you appreciate what youíre doing.
Brian Rademacher: I think the people out at Rocklahoma will love you guys, if people like good music ala DEF LEPPARD you will make a big impact. Congrats once again for all your success.
Eric Jayk: Hey Rocklahoma get ready weíre coming to rock your world with wildstreet!