Scott Copeland is a very interesting guy. He played college football at Oklahoma State and is now a professional musician. During his time in Stillwater, he befriended Red Dirt legend, Mike McClure. McClure noticed the big guy’s talent and fostered it by producing Scott’s first album “Dig Your Deal”. Scott is a very intelligent, witty, humorous and observant songwriter. Get to know him in this edition of 20 Questions.
1. What’s new with Scott Copeland?
I just finished recording a new record entitled “Mood Swings”, and I’m in the mixing and mastering process. The artwork is coming along slowly and hopefully in May it’ll be ready. Maybe not, though.
2. Mike McClure is a big champion and promoter of your music. How did you two meet?
Mike and I met at the Wormy Dog in Stillwater in ’92 or so. He used to play acoustic gigs at the Wormy Dog and I used to get drunk there.
3. Name association:
Jason Boland–He should do one of my songs.
Ray Wylie Hubbard–I absolutely love the “Eternal and Lowdown” record.
Townes Van Zandt–Truly, a songwriter’s songwriter.
Bob Dylan–The greatest songwriter of all time, bar none.
Travis Linville–The most underrated artist in the Red Dirt, Texas, Alt-Country, Americana, Folkabilly, Western Swing scene.
Stoney LaRue–Great set of pipes. He should do one of my songs.
Willie Nelson–The Ambassador of Cool.
Brandon Jenkins–The best bald, tattooed songwriter I know. He should do one of my songs too.
4. You played college football with Barry Sanders at Oklahoma State. Do you ever get tired of people asking about him and wish they’d ask about the 2nd string punter instead?
Not many people ask me about Barry Sanders.
5. Your “Scott’s Thought’s” blog on your website (www.scottcopelandmusic.com) is quite popular. People that don’t even like your music or your opinions read it religiously. What inspires you to write? Do you have a routine or is it just stream of consciousness?
I started posting “Scott’s Thoughts” as an outlet for my boredom. I guess I could have kept a private journal, but that’s kind of gay. I don’t really have a routine per se, but there are some constants in my writing process. Generally, I write an hour or so after I wake up. It kickstarts that part of my brain, and I really think it helps my songwriting, which is much more important to me. I usually start the morning with a Dr. Pepper and the paper, crank the Rolling Stones as loud as possibe, and eventually mosey over to the computer and start clanging away. I type pretty fast and I hardly ever know what I’m gonna say before I sit down. I really think that I enjoy reading my thoughts more than anyone. I usually read back over it once, and if I deem it worthy……I hit post and publish and go on about my day.
6. Stories behind the following songs:
The Lighthouse Keeper–This is one of my favorite songs of mine. It is the only song that I finished in one sitting without the use of a thesaurus or rhyming dictionary. I don’t really know exactly what it means, but that’s what i like about it. I think McClure should do that one. He does it way better than I do.
Paranoid Schizo Blues–I started that song after an ex-girlfriend threw all my clothes in the yard and told me she never wanted to see me again because I took a nap. I couldn’t help it if it was right in the middle of one her stories about California. McClure helped me finish it and a great friend of mine named Damon Tope added the wonderful line, ‘you’ve got 18 lives inside you, you do like jekyll and hyde and do’.
Rolling Downhill–I wrote it a few months after my divorce and a day after I got fired from a cardboard factory. My mother called me and told me that the whole family knew I was “rolling downhill”. I didn’t give her any writing credits though.
Living Hell–It was written in that same time period. I was living with my brother in an apartment and we had a cool little balcony overlooking a park. That’s all i remember.
Nothin’ To Do–I don’t remember.
Slick Willie–I decided that I was a folk singer and that I had to have a political song. I didn’t have the civil rights movement or the Vietnam War to write about……but I did have a sperm stained dress.
7. Who are your dream co-writers?
Bob Dylan and Kris Kristofferson.
8. You regularly dish out advice on your website, much like a more intelligent Ann Landers. Ever given any thought to replacing Dr. Phil when he decides to hang it up?
I could kick Dr. Phil’s ass.
9. In your song, “Alien Weed”, you are abducted by aliens and attempt to bring some of their “alien weed” back to earth. Just HOW stoned were you when you wrote this? That must’ve been some good stuff.
I don’t smoke weed.
10. You’re a movie critic, having reviewed films for several different websites and newspapers.
What’s your favorite movie? Who’s your favorite actor? Favorite actress?
Movie–One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
11. Favorite touring memory of the following towns/clubs.
-The Wreck Room
12. If you were put in charge of booking a large concert festival. Who would you tab as the headliners, past or present?
Elvis and Jimi Hendrix together at last.
13. Have you ever been arrested? If so, how many times? and what for?
I have been arrested 8 times. All the charges were trumped up.
14. You’re a very opinionated and outspoked person/artist. Do you think that has had a positive or negative effect on your career? And why?
I believe that every songwriter is opinionated, at least every good songwriter. I think I’m outspoken in my writings, but in real life I’m usually pretty quiet. Unless i’m drunk.
15. What are 10 albums that everyone must own?
1. Bob Dylan–Blood On the Tracks
2. Willie Nelson–Willie Sings Kristofferson
3. Tom Petty–Wildflowers
4. AC/DC–Back in Black
5. Beastie Boys–License to Ill
6. Van Morrison–Moondance
7. The Band–Music From the Big Pink
8. The Beatles-Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
9. Townes Van Zandt–The Late Great…
10. Various Artists–Kindred Spirits, A Tribute to Johnny Cash
16. You’re a single father. Does that ever interfere with your chosen career? Or is that something you don’t allow to happen?
I have definitely not been the father I should be, but my children are the most important things in the world to me and I cherish all the time I get with them.
17. Rapid fire:
-Copenhagen or Marlboro: Copenhagen
-Budweiser or Coors: Budweiser
-Cubs or Red Sox: Cubs
-Jerry Jones or Satan: Satan
-Angelina Jolie or Charlize Theron: Charlize
-Real golf or Tiger Woods on PS2 or Golden Tee: Real golf
-BC Powder or Excederin: BC Powder with Gatorade
18. Your nickname is “Vinny Bignoggan”. How did you acquire that?
My best friend in college, ryan roberts, gave me that name. We used to pretend we were in the mafia and we all gave each other mafia names. I wear a size 8 hat and the name Vinny Bignoggan stuck.
19. Favorite George Strait song.
“Does Ft. Worth Ever Cross Your Mind”
20. Compare/contrast the music you and your peers are making with the stuff the major labels in Nashville and LA are pumping out.
I believe there is good and bad music everywhere. I just get upset with what radio america chooses to cram down our throats. Whoever is deciding that has a really poor taste in all things artistic.
Bonus: Play A&R man for a second. Your record label sends you down here to scout this scene. Who’s the first act you sign?