Published on June 18th, 2018 | by Darren Paltrowitz0
Beastö Blancö’s Calico Cooper On The New “Live From Berlin” Album, Upcoming Projects & More
Initially formed by Chuck Garric (Alice Cooper, Dio, L.A. Guns) and Brother Latham in 2012, Beastö Blancö is a theatrical and forward-thinking hard rock band. Vocalist Calico Cooper — who has worked with her father Alice as a choreographer and on-stage performer — joined the group shortly after. Prior to the first West Coast tour of the States by Beastö Blancö in March 2015, the band already had three successful tours under its belt in addition to plenty of international radio airplay. The year after its first major U.S. touring, Beastö Blancö had another big break in supporting platinum-selling German band Böhse Onkelz on a big arena tour through Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Fast forwarding to 2018, Beastö Blancö is about to embark on another major European tour, kicking off with a June 22nd slot at Germany’s Matapaloz Festival, as followed by U.S. dates that run through July 28th. To learn more about the past, present and future of Beastö Blancö, I had the pleasure of doing Q&A with Ms. Calico Cooper. More on Garric, Cooper, Latham and crew — which includes bassist Jan LeGrow and drummer Tim Husung — can be found online at www.beastoblanco.com.
You have found success as a choreographer and actress. Were you pursuing music all along?
Calico Cooper: I mean, bottom line is I’m an entertainer. It has always brought me satisfaction and joy to make people laugh or gasp, you name it. I do love doing it on-screen, but nothing beats a live crowd. The energy is palpable. So even though I grew up in music, I never entertained being in a band till someone came to me with a bold edgy idea that I thought had a big wow factor and a message. And that guy was Chuck Garric.
Live From Berlin is the latest release from Beastö Blancö. Did you know that you were recording a live album when the concert was going on?
Calico Cooper: No. And it’s probably better we didn’t. I heard Tracee Ellis Ross say once that when she gives herself room and freedom to mess up, she never does. That Berlin show was just a great show that the headliners, Böhse Onkelz, recorded for us from the soundboard. We were in the middle of the tour and just hit it perfect. No idea it was gonna be a record. We had started to have fun with it and boom. A great live record happened.
Live From Berlin kicks off with the song “Beastö Blancö.” Which came first: the song or the band’s name?
Calico Cooper: The band. We wanted a title track like in a musical. Like a song we could open with that tells you exactly who we are. What the show’s about. And Beastö Blancö is that song. It’s gritty, snotty, and irreverent. And there you have it.
When did you and Chuck first get together as musical collaborators? Was it while he was in the Alice Cooper band?
Calico Cooper: Yes. Years ago he and our guitar player Brother Latham had a vision for this band that started with a sound. And a persona. All the blue collar knuckle-busting people that make the world turn were our target audience. The people who get up and grind everyday. And the songs were born from that. Honoring them, being a part of that grind. Then they brought me in, and things clicked. I represented all the women that rise from the ashes. And the story went from there.
Have you already started writing your next studio album?
Calico Cooper: We are on studio album three, yes. Set to come out soon but the more we tour the more ideas we get and the more cool inspirational people are eating to contribute to the record, so yeah, it’s coming. Duck and cover.
Beastö Blancö aside, are there any other current projects of yours that you can talk about?
Calico Cooper: Oh man, yeah, pilot season on TV was crazy. And although they won’t let you talk about ANY of them till they get picked up, us actors just sit home hoping they air. (laughs) But I’ve been busy. How lame and cryptic is THAT?! (laughs)
So when not busy with your career, how do you like to spend your free time?
Calico Cooper: I’m not really great with downtime. I usually have two or three things going down at once. Right now it’s Beastö, the pilots I just shot, and a horror film i wrote that I’m shopping to production companies. I also just learned to make sushi. Seriously. Man, I should take up figure skating so I can say I do everything.
Finally, Calico, any last words for the kids?
Calico Cooper: Never let people treat you like a yellow Starburst. You’re a pink Starburst. And never forget it.