Deer Tick’s John McCauley
Article Tools Email Print Share Share Digg More Gotta Start Somewhere Related events Deer Tick, Guards, and Paleo Related artists Deer Tick John McCauley: My first show was a basement birthday party for the band’s guitar player’s girlfriend. We were called Kadaver—with a “k,” of course. It was the first time I ever exposed myself in front of a large group of people. I was 14 and I was playing bass. The A.V. Club: Okay, we’ll come back to that exposing yourself bit later, but first, how did you get in the band? JM: Me and another kid in the band went to the same high school. We both played guitar and we were the two white kids that everybody made fun of, so we got together like that. Our friend Paul had a vague interest in drums and I had a drum set, so we just kind of made him play even though he didn’t know how to. I think we just wanted to sound cool. AVC: When was this and where? JM: Probably around 2000 in Providence, Rhode Island. AVC: Did you play covers or originals? JM: I think we played two originals, “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” and “Welcome To Paradise” by Green Day. Then when we did our set, we did all those songs three times each. AVC: Man, everyone mentions Nirvana when we do these features. Why do you think everyone learned those songs first? Were they just easy? JM: I had to do the bass parts, so it was not easy. I mean, I’m still a huge Nirvana fan to this day. Green Day kind of went sour on me, though. I think the reason we covered those bands, though, is that they’re just bands kids like and they make sense to young people, especially kind of misfit kids. AVC: How was the crowd response? JM: I don’t think anybody really liked our band. They just said they did. We really weren’t that good, though. AVC: But you got naked? JM: I think I thought it would be funny. I don’t know. Jackass had just started, I think, and I thought shit like that was funny, so during “Welcome To Paradise,”—one of the times we played it—I took my pants off, and then the boxers came off. I was dancing around and I didn’t give a fuck, my little 14-year-old wiener saying hi to everybody. It’s all on video somewhere, but that’s child pornography. AVC: So what happened to Kadaver after that show? JM: We never played another show. I think we definitely wanted to, but we weren’t that good. AVC: What was the first Deer Tick show like? JM: It was in December of 2004. I was 18 and it was at this space called The Grow Room. Someone bought it at a police auction because it used to be a grow room for marijuana. I think maybe five people might have been there. It was just a small building this guy John owned, and he let us do whatever the hell we wanted in there. It was kind of a garage.