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Consider Los Angeles? Rooney. What makes them timeless is simple: their songs. They love classic pop records, and it comes through in the way the quintet captures the beauty and heartache of being young and loving music.

1. For people who may not have heard some beats from you yet... what can someone who's never heard of you expect from your music?

"beats" is really more of a hip-hop term....we play "songs". Our songs are roughly 3 minutes and contain catchy melodies, lyrics, riffs, harmonies, and of course: 4/4 or 6/8 drum BEATS.

2. Are you pleased with the response you have received so far?

Yes. for the most part, everyone has enjoyed the record and the live show...this of course excludes the "big two" music publications who think we are unoriginal pussy rock with bad production and offensive lyrics.

3. Who would you like to work that you haven't yet, whether it be HipHop, Rock, or any other form of music?

Eminem, Gwen Stafani, Bono, Dre, etc. just kidding....none of those people! We?re mostly into working with each other and a good ROCK producer.

4. How did you come to the conclusion to begin a career as a music artist?

In Los Angeles, if children show any sort of talent at an early age, they are forced into government programs to further develop these is our only hope of escape from peasant life.

5. How did Rooney get together since you all attended different high schools?

Through a secret society known as DESTROYER.

6. You built your fan base through your official website. How did you promoted yourself as an artist on the internet?

This fan built us our first site and the rest of the fans took over from there. We put some music up on the web one time.

7. How do you know that your fan base is so extremely dedicated?

Because they tell us in books of fan mail they assemble at their homes.

8. What do you do in return to thank the fans for all their support?

Keep our heads down and shred. FULL ROCK.

9. What did you went through to get your music recognized?

We played hundreds of shows and wrote and recorded many songs.

10. You guys skipped college to write songs and play in the L.A. area. What was your families? opinion about that situation?

Our families are huge Rooney fans and they were so excited because they were sure we would break up leaving them high and dry.

11. How do you separate yourselves from other artists?

Sleep in my own bed and try to take turns with showers. Also, don?t drink from the same straw.

12. Does everyone in the group have his own role [in production, performance, etc...]?

Yes....they are the following: robert: vocals, taylor: guitar, louie: keyboards, ned: drums, matt: bass.

13. What are you planning to do in the [near] future?

Tour, record, tour, record, tour, record, get addicted to drugs, tour, record, become estranged from our families, tour, record, lose all of our money, record, tour, record, develop ridiculous egos, tour, record. Go to St Louis tomorrow

14. What would you like to achieve with your music and career?

We hope to make many records that are good to very good...

15. What artists are you listening to at the minute?

The Move, Sparks, The Sweet, Humble Pie, Trapeze, Slade- at the minute.

* The answers to this interview havenot been changed by the editor.


The essence of rock & roll is the ability to reinvigorate itself each generation.

Consider Los Angeles? Rooney. What makes them timeless is simple: their songs. They love classic pop records, and it comes through in the way the quintet captures the beauty and heartache of being young and loving music.

Formed in the final hours of the twentieth century, Rooney has built up an extremely dedicated following in both the new and old-fashioned ways: through their independent releases, all-ages club shows and a well-maintained website. "We couldn't have built our fan base without the Internet," says lead singer/guitarist, Robert Carmine. "Seeing that these fans were so into it and brought us to other people, was amazing. We had no record in stores, but people still knew the songs and lyrics."

They?ve been working hard since the start. Back in 1999, bandmembers were still attending various L.A. area high schools. Carmine and Taylor Locke (lead guitar/vocals) soon recruited Matthew Winter (bass), Louis Stephens (keyboards), and Seattle native/drummer Ned Brower. They had a vision, says Locke: "We wanted to put something out there that could potentially be mainstream, but also had a sophistication that was lacking on the radio and on MTV. We were basically disappointed in modern rock."

It was a time in their life when their peers were in transition. They knew they wanted to be in a real rock band, not just a part-time thing for kicks. They knew what they wanted to do-they wanted to rock. They wanted to get a record deal, they wanted to write pop songs, and they wanted to take their songs to the kids. So rather than go to college, they kept on writing and playing in the L.A. area, occasionally cramming in a van to take road trips to play elsewhere in SoCal.

Rooney is renowned for their attention to detail in songwriting, arrangement, studio recording, and live performances. "We are a band with a strong sense of direction and intent. We're not a jam band," says Brower. "Each part has as purpose within the context of the song."

And this is a band that knows its rock history. Rooney?s songs are like term papers on the song structure, lyric writing, and sounds of all the ?60s English stuff that followed the Beatles. There?s a bit of New Wave-Rooney fan Ric Ocasek even loaned a guitar for recording-and a bit of modern rock.

Locke adds, "We've always had a fascination with sparse production and quality instrument tones. You need to hear every part. That is how we approach the recording process, whether we?re doing a home demo or our major-label release."

That self-titled major-label record was produced by Keith Forsey (Simple Minds, Psychedelic Furs, Billy Idol) and Brian Reeves (Billy Idol, Pet Shop boys), with Interscope boss Jimmy Iovine, who has worked with superstars such as Tom Petty and U2, producing, "I?m Shakin?." Andy Wallace, known for mixing about half of your favorite guitar-based albums, mixed the disc.

Rooney was very hands-on in the making of their debut. ("We?re tone freaks," says Carmine.) When it came time to record, they were immersed in all the aspects-they even moved microphones around-and succeeded in capturing the classic tones they love. Musically, the album encompasses Rooney?s warm-weather heritage and sunny pop disposition, offering a boost of light and heat in contrast to the smoky urban rock of New York and London. Yet even while championing Los Angeles? revitalized rock scene, they have the power to recall English power-pop groups such as The Zombies and Badfinger. They are a young, ambitious, hard-working band that promise great things. And not once do they sound out of their league.

"Some of the greatest pop songs were written by people in their early-20s," says Carmine. "Buddy Holly wrote great pop songs, and he died at 22. All those early Beatles songs-they were young guys when they wrote those love songs. Our lyrics are similar to what people experience, no matter what their age. And that?s the kind of music we like."

"I don?t think we tried to make a record that says something beyond our years," says Locke. "It?s a youthful record, but the songs aren?t necessarily high school or kid topics. It?s not about going to the mall. A great pop lyric is open enough that it can mean something to just about anyone. It?s like when people say, ?Oh, that?s my song,? like it was written specifically for them, they relate that much to it. That?s the balance between personal and abstract that we strive for."

While finishing the album, Rooney did a pair of tours, one with Weezer and one with the Strokes. (They?ve also toured with the Vines and the Donnas.) In between, they also found time to record "Here Today, Gone Tomorrow" for the star-studded Ramones tribute We?re a Happy Family, joining the likes of U2, Metallica, Tom Waits, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

On those pre-album tours, the band took 10,000 three-song CDs with them and handed them out to the kids. They could see the grassroots following build on their website?s message board. "We handed out free music samplers after our shows so people had our music to listen to," says Carmine. "You can't rely on other people to promote your band; you have to be involved.

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