INTERVIEW: ERIC Stachewicz (CHESTER COPPERPOT, SUPER KILLER ROBOTS)

Eric Stachewicz is a name I’ve been hearing almost nonstop since high school. Going back to my very first band, I’ve heard countless stories of how Eric was then and is now, “the best bassist in Buffalo”. Having seen him live a number of times, playing a multitude of styles, I’m hardly in a position to disagree. Then again, this city is blessed with an abundance of impressive, and versatile rhythm talent. You might remember Eric from local bands like, Super Killer Robots, Whiskey Reverb, Chester Copperpot, and more…

1. How did your musical journey begin? Talk about the bands and artists that first inspired you to start playing. What or who was it that made you gravitate toward bass?

1. I started playing drums when my brother did in 1994. He was jamming with guitarists all the time and I always remember them saying, “We need a bass player…” so I figured begging to take the role would ensure me a slot in the cool kids club of bands. I’ve always been a fan of the flashy guitar players I saw (Slash, Eddie Van Halen, John Frusciante) so it’s fair to say they were my first musical inspirations.

2. I’ve heard your name so many times over the years. I’m 37 now and even back in high school, I remember hearing that you were the best bassist in Buffalo from the dudes I jammed with at the time. In fact, I’m fairly certain that you and I were both in Boss Tribal at the same time, though that particular lineup never played a show or practiced together that I can recall. If you could, please list off all the bands you’ve been a part of since your very first band practice.

2. Boss Tribal was a huge band I don’t doubt that we were enrolled at the same time! In order, the only bands to make it to the stage were: Boss Tribal, The Dreaming Tree (Dave Matthews Tribute), Left of Oblivion, Torn from the Rest, Touchin’ All the Candy (all rock covers), Falling Into Place, Chester Copperpot, Type Relevant (Dick Bigly, Big Chief), Super Killer Robots, Whiskey Reverb, and Suck On This (Primus Tribute).

3. Of all the songs you’ve contributed to over the years, can you pick out a few bass licks or song sections you’re most proud of having written?

3. Three bass lines in particular stick out to me: “Holding On” by Left of Oblivion, “Really Clear” by Chester Copperpot, and “Tidal Wave” by Chester Copperpot.

4. Whether they are local bands or not, please list off the bands or artists you’ve been listening to the most lately. Who has been on constant rotation in your playlist the past few months?

4. Honestly, we’d be here all year listing off bands, but some off the top of my head are The Toadies/Burden Brothers, State Radio/Dispatch, The Dresden Dolls/Amanda Palmer, The Omnific, Polyphia, Despised Icon, Logic, Gift of Gab, Consider the Source.

5. If you had to choose, what is your favorite part about being in a band? The live show? Practice/writing/song completion? Recording/album completion? The camaraderie?

5. The best parts of being in a band to me are writing and live performance.

6. Plug any upcoming shows or album releases for any of your projects that you’re allowed to talk about.

6. For the first time in my career I am band-less with only solo bass in mind.

7. Did you find yourself playing your instrument more or less during the worst months of the pandemic? Did your band(s) suffer, increase productivity, or remain about the same aside from playing shows?

7. I found myself playing more but mostly jamming along to live shows, less original writing. The ‘demic didn’t effect me negatively in the music world.

8. Who are your top favorite bass players of all-time?

8. Victor Wooten, Flea, Les Claypool, Matt Freeman, Bootsy Collins, John Ferrara.

9. Talk about some of the drummers you’ve clicked with the best over the years.

9. Aside from my brother who basically raised my musical soul, there’s four that stand out: Dave Liggimari, Ryan Puckhaber, Joe Urban, and John Hunter.

10. What is the best advice you feel you can give to aspiring bass players who don’t know where to start?

10. Never stop playing. Regardless of how much the world is pushing you down into that little dark corner stand up and let your emotions pour through your hands. Play until you feel empty and fall asleep. Wake up, rinse, repeat.

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