Search Results for "Bad Cop / Bad Cop"

NOFX announces Australian shows with Hot Water Music, Bad Cop/Bad Cop, and Dad Religion

Punk veterans and staples, NOFX have just announced two more shows before their date at Download Festival 2018, so all you Aussie punk fans can rejoice for more punk, and more fun. They will be playing with Hot Water Music, Bad Cop/Bad Cop, and Dad Religion.

Check out the flyer below, and make sure to pick up your tickets before they’re all sold out!

Lineup for Download Festival in Australia announced

Organizers have announced the lineup for the first-ever edition of Download Festival in Australia, which will take place on March 24th at Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne. Playing at the fest are Korn, Limp Bizkit, Prophets of Rage, Mastodon, NOFX, Bad Cop / Bad Cop, Suicidal Tendencies, Good Charlotte, The Story So Far, Hot Water Music, Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy, Sabaton and many more!

Tickets go on sale at 9AM next Thursday, November 16th, and for more information, go to the festival’s website.

DS Photo Gallery: Bad Cop/Bad Cop, Barb Wire Dolls and The Ataris at Vans Warped Tour in Mansfield

There are a lot of descriptors you can use to help quantify the experience that is the Vans Warped Tour circa 2017, but perhaps the most accurate — and non-judgmental — is “total sensory overload.” Now in its 23rd year and counting, the annual touring punk rock summer camp has morphed into a monster: ten hours and seven stages spread across numerous acres playing host to seventy-ish hard and loud and fast bands, each with their own brightly colored merchandise tent selling the entire gamut of logo-adorned paraphernalia (t-shirts and hats and shoes and belt buckles and skateboard decks and flags and rubber ducks and on and on and on), and that’s before you factor in the food vendors and the independent merchandise vendors and the gigantic Slip ‘N Slide. All of the above is also before you account for the weather, which typically qualifies as hot and steamy but on occasions like last week in Mansfield, Massachusetts, consisted of rain that was certifiably torrential.

The rains came early and often with the sky opening up almost exactly as the gates to the Xfinity Centre  amphitheater grounds did the same. Thunder and lightening made repeat appearances as well, causing a few temporary shutdowns in the action, pushing set times back for most of the day. While bottled water is typically one of the most sought-after commodities at Warped Tour stops, on this particular day it was $5 plastic rain ponchos, though any expectation that they were going to keep their users completely dry was obviously a mistake. Still, it was something, especially if you weren’t one of the masses lucky enough to be in attendance primarily for bands playing under the covered portion of the venue and were relegated to the side stages in the parking lot areas. As you can probably surmise from this discussion, we were there for the parking lot stages.

Having focused on some of the older school bands last weekend in Hartford, we turned our attention elsewhere during the deluge in Mansfield, namely to Bad Cop/Bad Cop. We had missed the Fat Wreck Chords foursome at the Connecticut stop due to the timing of their pre-noontime set, so we made it a point to be present this time. The band filled their eight-song set with tracks from their two full-length albums (2015’s Not Sorry and last month’s stellar Warriors) and played with such a blistering pace that they were able to squeeze a ninth song (“Asshole,” from their 2014 Boss Lady EP) into their scheduled twenty-five-minute set. Say what you will about the concept of divine intervention, but clearly something was at play, as shortly after the band took the stage, the rain not only stopped, but the sky cleared up enough to allow the sun to make a welcome appearance that lasted, all told, about an hour, a welcome mid-afternoon respite for sure.

The weather conditions made photography more than a little bit of a difficult proposition for our lowly-trained camera jockey (read as: me). Still, after having just kinda given in to the rain at one point, we were able to catch all or part of super enjoyable sets from Alestorm (a pirate-themed enjoyably gimmicky schtick band), the mighty Valient Thorr, Municipal Waste, Sonic Boom Six and The White Noise. We also shot…and maybe fell in love with…five-piece Greek rock and roll band Barb Wire Dolls. Frontwoman Isis Queen is one of the more enigmatic, quintessentially “rock star” performers we caught during our two Warped Tour stops, with a five-piece band (rounded out by bassist Iriel Blaque, Pyn Doll and Remmington on guitar and Krash Doll on drums) that remained especially tight and high energy in spite of the conditions.

We also caught a spirited set by The Ataris. We’ll be honest; aside from founding frontman Kris Roe, we can’t honestly say we know who’s actually, officially, in The Ataris at this point in 2017. They’ve sorta become Goldfinger or the touring version of MxPx in that regard. But they’re good; they’re real good. The band’s set, particularly tracks like “Your Boyfriend” and, of course, their set-closing cover of “The Boys of Summer” was well received by the soggy masses, and Roe and company promised to play a much longer, higher energy set when they return to the area with The Queers later this summer.

Check out our full photo gallery below.

Bad Cop/Bad Cop release music video for “Womanarchist”

Los Angeles pop-punks Bad Cop/Bad Cop have released a music video for “Womanarchist”, taken from their new album Warriors. Check it out below.

Warriors was released on June 16th through Fat Wreck Chords. The band will be making their way through the US on this summer’s Warped Tour.

DS Interview – Bad Cop/Bad Cop On “Warriors,” The First Great Punk Album Of Trump’s America

In the wake of the disastrous results of last year’s presidential election in the United States, there were more than a handful of people who took solace in the fact that at least having a sexist, xenophobic, probably racist, certainly narcissistic megalomaniac at the helm of our nation would make for some good, old-fashioned angry protest punk rock. Now that we’re at about six months P.E. (post election), we’re starting to see the musical fruits of that fateful national decision and learning that that solace was not hollow by any stretch of the imagination. With the recent release of the their sophomore album, Warriors, Bad Cop / Bad Cop are among the first out of the gate in the punk rock Trump era and have set the bar incredibly high for those that will follow in their footsteps.

The California-based four-piece all-female “freight train of ‘fuck yeah!’” that is otherwise known as Bad Cop / Bad Cop were on a nationwide tour with The Interrupters in the lead up to, and immediate aftermath from, the aforementioned election. Knowing that they were due to head into the studio immediately upon completion of tour, it became obvious pretty quickly exactly what direction the new album would take. Says Jennie Cotterill, one of the band’s two guitarists/lead vocalists and principal songwriters, We kind of made a conscious decision to make this more meaningful than fun — not that there’s anything wrong with fun — but we wanted to really talk about issues that were important to everybody.”

If the question of what to say was pretty apparent from the beginning, the question of how to say it was a little trickier. While the pull for a punk rock band might be to attack an administration in a relentlessly in-your-face manner, the Bad Cop / Bad Cop crew opted to try to pull people in toward at least having conversations, rather than just pushing them away. Says Cotterill: “the reaction to this extreme situation is extreme. But then, when you go extreme, you lose people in the middle.” While the punk scene was still in its infancy forty years ago when Joey Ramone poked some tongue-in-cheek fun at the certain faction within this little world that seems hell-bent on simply being against everything, though that element still remains. “We talked about…how are we going to do this and what are we going to say, because we don’t want to alienate people,” says Cotterill. “Having productive conversation is more important than just saying “I’m against you!” Once there’s a physical line, that’s where people stop listening, and I really don’t care to do that.”

And let’s face it; we’ve all got friends (or parents, or friends’ parents, or at least that one uncle) whose beliefs remain about as diametrically opposed to our own as possible, in spite of what should be overwhelming commonality.  “(As we were writing) I kept thinking about this one friend that I have that is real right thinking,” explains Cotterill’s co-frontwoman and partner-in-crime, Stacey Dee. “We grew up together, and I won’t give up on this guy because at the end of the day, I know we get along. We’re coming from the same fucking place in life. I know that his search is one of health and positivity and happiness, so at the end of the day, you can’t be fucking hateful when you’re positive and happy.” And while a more in-your-face approach might be appropriate for some — Bad Cop / Bad Cop favorites and co-Warped Tourmates War On Women for example — there’s room at the table for different approaches. Says Cotterill: “War On Women is great if you’re woke, but there’ a lot of people that aren’t woke… I think that our platform is hoping to rope the unsuspecting listener into a conversation.”

With that in mind, the band recruited their frequent producer Davey Warsop (Dave Hause, Foo Fighters), took a little creative input from their label boss, the one-and-only Fat Mike Burkett, and put out the first truly defining album of the Trump presidency. While’s it’s got an obvious progressive bent to it, to call it a political album is a bit of a mistake. “No one political belief will sum up who you are as a human being on this planet,” says Dee. Like her fellow sisters-in-arms, Dee takes seriously her role as a conduit for change and for building bridges. “The truth is, entertainment is going to be the way to reach across the aisle, because people on the other side that are going to be racist or whatever are going to see something in somebody, whether it be an actor or a musician or whatever, and they’re going to say “fuck, I can’t deny that. I like that person.”

Cotterill and Dee alike have seen the tide shift at its most basic level, taking note of positive changes even though they might be slow to come to pass. Cotterill remembers a sense of bewilderment when marriage equality first came on the ballot in California in 2008.  “(At first) I was like ‘of course it’s going to pass because people aren’t that awful.’ And then it didn’t pass and I was crushed. But then Iowa passed it (the following year)…And we think we’re the ones that are so progressive.” By the time the California Supreme Court finally overturned Proposition 8 five years later, the tide had long-since turned and a clear majority of California voters were in favor of same-sex marriage protections. “Really conservative people felt that it was a victory (the first time around),” says Cotterill, quickly pointing out that “everybody else was like “I never thought about it until right now.”

While the bulk of Warriors consists of material aimed not only at the current political system but the overarching nature of American society circa 2017 as well, there are still a handful of moments that are not merely a little more personal, but that are personal in a way that is stomach-punchingly honest and raw and without any shred of pretense. Album closer “Brain Is for Lovers,” for example, deals head on with Cotterill’s feelings surrounding the suicide of a longtime friend and former band mate. The chorus of “Brain…” relays a sentiment that’s not overly common in songs that are ultimately about grief and loss and remembrance. “(That song) was about someone who was a really good friend of mine and committed suicide about a year ago and I was so worked up about that song that I couldn’t even talk about it,” explains Cotterill. Dee, herself the author of another of the album’s more powerful and personal tracks, “Retrograde,” (more on that in a minute) sounds particularly proud of her Cotterill’s work on “Brain Is For Lovers”: “It was gnarly! But where we got to in the end, and the way that Jennie pushed through, her voice is fucking killer! She was pissed that she had to do it, but it came out fucking great. Sometimes you have to see the forest through the trees!”

Oh, so about the above-mentioned track, “Retrograde.” Frequent readers of these pages may recall last year’s in-depth sit-down we had with Dee in which she opened up about her battles with drug addiction and her subsequent journey out of that particularly dark era of her life. This made for a notoriously difficult experience when it came time to write music after finding sobriety: “As I got older and as I got sober over the last couple years, my writing hasn’t been like it used to be. I was predominantly negative, and negative stuff comes out when you’re negative.” Album-opener “Retrograde” reclaims Dee’s place as a songwriting powerhouse, telling the story of a woman grappling her own demons in kick-ass, unapologetic fashion. It’s also a song that Fat Wreck co-founder Erin Burkett is particularly fond of: “To me, it’s about finding your inner strength, and re-inventing yourself.  Stacey wrote this about her battle with drugs and alcohol; however, addiction takes on all forms. Sometimes being addicted to behaviors or people can be just as damaging, and the only way to overcome any of it is to realize, that all the power is yours.  No one else is going to fix you.”

Fat Wreck Chords, the label founded by Burkett and her now-ex-husband Fat Mike more than a quarter century ago remains a pillar of the independent music community in large part because of the family environment that they’ve created and fostered over that period of time. As all too many people know, it can be devastatingly painful to watch a family member struggle their way through an active addiction. Burkett elaborates on this particular situation: “I have to say that I am so proud of Stacey. She was in a very dark place on our FAT 25 year anniversary tour, and the band ended up having to leave the tour, possibly breaking up for good. Over the years, we have put a lot of band members through rehab, but it’s up the individual to do the work. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. Looking yourself in the mirror and not liking what you see is a very hard thing to overcome. Stacey has come back better and stronger and pissed off and ready to change the world. These four woman have really gelled as a band, and found their voice together. It’s awesome.”

The tide may be turning in a more positive and encouraging direction both for the band and for society as a whole again, but as the Bad Cop/Bad Cop ladies note, it won’t do so without education and hard work. That we’re at a point where a group of four women who are not, as Cotterill states it, “twenty-anythings,” is a bit of a light in the darkness in and of itself. “For people to like us as women in our thirties and forties is fucking killer,” explains Dee. “We definitely have something to say and stand by, and I think we have to lead this revolution!”

Warriors was obviously released last Friday (June 16th) on Fat Wreck. Bad Cop / Bad Cop are playing the duration of this year’s Warped Tour, which also kicked off last Friday in Seattle; head here for info on your local stop!

Head below to check out our email exchange with the one-and-only Erin Burkett and the text of our far-reaching and in-depth chat with Dee and Cotterill below!


Bad Cop / Bad Cop stream “Retrograde” from upcoming album “Warriors”

Bad Cop / Bad Cop have unleashed yet another song from their next album, “Warriors,” due out on June 16th from Fat Wreck.

Bad Cop / Bad Cop will be along for Warped Tour this summer.

You can hear the song your own lovely self over at Brooklyn Vegan. While you’re there, see Stacey Dee’s words regarding “Retrograde,” and check out the Warped Tour dates if you want to see them live.

Bad Cop/Bad Cop announce album “Warriors”, stream song “Womanarchist”

Prepare yourself for new Bad Cop/Bad Cop! The Californian pop-punk four piece has just announced their sophomore full length album, “Warriors,” will be released via Fat Wreck Chords on June 16, 2017.

To get you fired up you can stream a brand new track from the album titled “Womanarchist” below.

Show Review: Leftover Crack, Starving Wolves, Bad Cop/ Bad Cop @ the WOW Hall Eugene, OR

I could have seen Leftover Crack in Portland. In fact, I have before. I’ve seen them tear it up at the Hawthorne, I’ve seen them in Vegas, tearing it up at Punk Rock Bowling. Both times they were great– energetic and fun, bringing a sense of musical ambition and bravado to their radical anthems. This time though, I saw a chance to see a friend in Eugene and catch a band guaranteed to kill it. I’d never been to Eugene before, so it amounted to the question, “Why not?”

Besides an excuse to see an old friend, what drew me to this particular tour was just how ridiculously strong the lineup was. Leftover Crack was headlining, of course. Then there was Austin upstarts Starving Wolves, and then the amazingly melodic Bad Cop/ Bad Cop. It was the latter that I hadn’t seen yet, and probably the one I was the most familiar with on wax. The tickets were an easy purchase.

The venue was the WOW Hall, a surprisingly awesome place to house a show with the look and feel of a true DIY space. It was a fairly large room, nothing out of the ordinary for a concert hall, but with a very humble, community oriented vibe. The next day, while I was checking out an awesome record shop called House of Records, one of the dudes who worked there told me it had been a fixture of the scene forever, a place where the legendary Ramones had played. The more you know.

So, there were we. Checked in, relieved to find a beer and wine bar downstairs. We swilled IPAs and checked out the vests and watched from the screens as the local opener came on. It was loud, heavy, and reverberated through every wall in the house. With a couple quick chugs we left our drinks and went upstairs, curious as to what the local scene in Eugene had to offer.

And it is moments like this that make going to shows worth the sweat, smell, and claustrophobia. There’s no better way of discovering a new favorite band than being won over in the live setting. Broken Dead were the first opener, and they set the bar high early on. They played crust punk, the melodic variety not out of bounds for the likes of Tragedy or the Holy Mountain, but with a greater emphasis on classic hardcore and touches of the black metal that rears its head in some of Leftover Crack’s heavier tunes. Even cooler, is frontwoman Manda’s commanding presence, on both ax and vocals, impressing with her acidic screams and darkly melodic rhythm work. Broken Dead left me reeling with the excitement of discovery.

Not A Part of It, another Eugene local played next. They played a competent melodic punk, with boatloads of energy. Sort of Rancid-y, sort of Queers-y, but a bit harder edged with that classic 90s goofball intensity. At this point in the night, we were worried that the WOW Hall wasn’t going to fill up enough for a proper pit, because, even though we are often too old and tired to participate, a mosh pit, like a painting, is still a joy to look at. Each band brought a handful more, and slowly, the room was beginning to fill.

We were really there for Bad Cop/ Bad Cop, so we stayed close by for their set. The room filled up a bit more and to my surprise, punks were circle pitting with abandon to the Fat Wreck alums catchy anthems. There was still more than enough room to breathe, but Bad Cop/ Bad Cop sealed the gaps with their vocal and instrumental tightness, so much so, I can say with a decent amount of confidence that I’m not sure I’ve ever heard a band pull off harmonies as tight as theirs live. Besides their songwriting (and bassist Linh Le’s infectious stage moves), I was further endeared to the band by their palpable admiration for opener Broken Dead. On stage, they were incredibly complimentary, and to my delight a day later, I saw that it wasn’t just for show either. Facebook updates don’t lie, Broken Dead were added to the next two dates also. Cool stuff.

I managed to catch the last two songs of Starving Wolves’ set in Vegas, also opening for Leftover Crack. I was never really sure how to feel about them. Their recorded material is limited to a two song EP, and yet I keep seeing them on these big bills. A part of me thinks there’s some artificial push going on here, like there’s some sort of punk rock cabal that Starving Wolves is hooked up with that is trying to make them superstars or something. I don’t know. I can’t really be that negative beyond that, because they put on a raucous live show. They play a pretty melodic variety of street punk with a bunch of gang vocals. It all comes together in the live setting. Their hair is a silly exaggeration of everything punk rock, their frontman keeps making circles with his arms and reminding the crowd to circle pit; it’s goofy, but I couldn’t help but think it’s pretty earnest. Sometimes you gotta let go of your cool and just have a good time. Starving Wolves are an amazing live band, and punk cabal or not, they are worth seeing.

By the time Leftover Crack hit the stage, the WOW Hall was stuffed. Denim as far as the eye could see. This was when I started to reflect on Eugene as a whole, and decided that it was a pretty damn cool town. Not anywhere could support a scene like this. To see such an active group of participants at a punk rock show was sort of inspiring. I remember going to see shows in Spokane, a bigger PNW city, with a way lower turnout. I was in awe. And the unique feel the WOW Hall lent to it was of a real punk rock show. The people there, for better or worse, were punks, and they were there to let loose. Despite it being a pretty diverse show, there was a sense of danger too– not the sort of thing you expect to find (except from our most optimistic punks) at a major show with such household-name bands. I remember a moment in Leftover Crack’s set where a man stumbled out of the pit to the back of crowd, as soon as he cleared the mob, he collapsed with his hand in his head. Moments later, a throng of people carried him out of the building. I found myself reminded again and again, perhaps in comparison to seeing Nails the night before, that this was a punk rock show, and it was take no prisoners.

Leftover Crack’s set was a tense affair. It was where the night got weird, but no less fun. Stza was intoxicated, and super chatty, and not everyone seemed to enjoy this as much as I did. Some of the crowd got belligerent as the frontman told stories in between songs, chanting, “Shut the fuck up!” To his credit, he performed ably throughout the night, and heckled his hecklers right back, elongating his pause between songs with some mock tune-ups. The rest of the band took it all in good humour and stride. Brad Logan mused with Stza on whether or not he was “too nice,” and  bassist Alec Baillie wondered aloud if he even knew how to play any of their old songs, with some gentle ribbing from Stza. The overall impression was of a band of punk veterans who happen to be old friends.

They played a range of material, Choking Victim songs included, which were met with a frenzied pit. Despite the tension between audience and artist at points in the set, this was probably the most enthusiastic crowd I’ve seen them have. They amplified their show by destroying a Donald Trump pinata on stage and then throwing it into the crowd. Turns out the effigy was filled with condoms, which dispersed throughout the venue. Soon, people were blowing them up like balloons and bouncing them around the crowd. As the band played, fat, inflated dicks soared above our heads. I’ve never seen punk rock be as sublime as it was then.

A special shoutout deserves to go to Kate Coysh for her role in Leftover Crack’s live show. She might just have to be one of the best screamers I’ve ever heard. She has the type of voice to send chills down your spine, and whenever she was on stage, whether taking the lead or trading off lines with Stza like some sort of rap duo from hell, it was impossible not to be wowed by her talent.

The set was finished family style. Stza announced that they were not going to do an encore, that they were just going to keep playing instead of going through the pageantry. They brought on Starving Wolves for one song, and Bad Cop/ Bad Cop for another, tying together disparate threads of punk rock with a sense of community. They ended their set with perhaps their darkest banger, Fuck World Trade’s “Operation M.O.V.E.” The incredible Kate Coysh took lead vocal duties, grasping an invisible orange in the air (any metalhead’s birthright, I suppose) and finished the night off with a buzzing electricity. Of course, the same assholes who antagonized Stza earlier antagonized more, calling for an encore. To no one’s surprise, the band kept their promise– once they were off stage, they were off for good.

The crowd in the WOW Hall dispersed and soon we were back out on the street, going through the show point by point, conversation points blooming out of every detail we could remember. It was one of the better shows I’ve been to, and probably the best introduction to a new city that I could hope for.

Boss’ Daughter (Punk) Announces West Coast Tour Dates

Reno, Nevada punks Boss’ Daughter are hitting the road again and it seems Mr. Fox and Company are keeping pretty good company these days! Cleverly dubbed Febrewary Tour 2017, this road trip features stops with Fat Wreck Chords heavyweights Bad Cop / Bad Cop and Decent Criminal, as well as other stellar acts like Fall Silent and Gentlemen Prefer Blood along the way. Tons of talent on display! Check out the dates and stops below. If the boys are making a stop in your area, get out to a show!

La Escalera Fest 6 lineup includes Bad Cop/Bad Cop, The Bombpops

La Escalera Fest,  the annual punk festival in Mexico, will be celebrating its 6th year from April 14-16 in San Diego and in Tijuana. The lineup will include Bad Cop/Bad Cop, The Bombpops, Western SettingsCivil War Rust, and more. You can find the full lineup below, and more information about the dates, locations and tickets here.

Watch: Bad Cop / Bad Cop perform “Joey Lawrence” for Live From The Rock Room

Whoa! The third of four videos that the mighty Bad Cop/Bad Cop filmed during a recent sit-down for “Live from the Rock Room” is now upon us. It’s for the track “Joey Lawrence” and you can check it out below.


“Joey Lawrence” appears on Bad Cop/Bad Cop’s debut full length, “Not Sorry,” which was released in June 2015 via Fat Wreck Chords. Stay tuned for video #4 in the near future, and refresh yo’self on our very personal and revealing conversation with BC/BC’s Stacey Dee right here.

Bad Cop / Bad Cop robbed twice in 24 hours; fans launch campaign to get band on Saturday Night Live

As you have read about all-too frequently here on the pages of Dying Scene, touring bands have a tendency to get their gear stolen at an alarmingly high rate. In what might be a bit of an unprecedented turn of events for California punks Bad Cop/Bad Cop, the band got robbed twice in the same 24-hour period earlier this weekend…

Early yesterday morning, prior to the San Antonio stop on the band’s nationwide tour in direct support for The Interrupters, the band’s van got broken into. While the bulk of their gear stayed tucked away in the trailer, co-frontwoman Stacey Dee’s computer and Takamine acoustic/electric guitar are among the items that have now gone missing. That’s a picture of the guitar below, in case any of our San Antonio-based readers might be lucky enough to stumble upon it.

The band posted about the theft on their various social media pages, and some considerate fans came to the rescue, donating the band some money to help with the purchase of a new guitar and computer. Upon hearing of the band’s unfortunate turn of events and learning of the generosity of a few of their fans, another San Antonio showgoer proceeded to steal co-frontwoman Jennie Cotterill’s purse, complete with the band’s (and Jennie’s personal )money, Jennie’s prescription glasses, her house keys, and more. People suck. If you’re so inclined, you can throw Jennie and the band a few bucks via PayPal to

In other, lighter BC/BC news, you may recall a few weeks ago when we ran a pretty in-depth and personal interview with Stacey Dee; if not, read it here. Anyway, in talking about future goals toward the end of our chat, Dee mentioned the idea of wanting to get her band on Saturday Night Live someday. A rather ambitious fan took up the cause, and started Facebook and Twitter campaigns geared at accomplishing exactly that. Click the appropriate links to help the campaign pick up speed; the band could certainly use the positive turnaround!

Bad Cop/Bad Cop stream new song “Get Rad”

Lookout everybody! Los Angeles pop-punk quartet Bad Cop/Bad Cop just threw a brand new song at us without any warning whatsoever! It’s called “Get Rad” and you can stream it below.

Oh, and if you haven’t see it yet, DS posted an incredibly personal interview with Bad Cop/Bad Cop’s Stacey Dee, which we highly recommend you read while you listen to the new tune.

The band released their last album, Not Sorry, in June of 2015 on Fat Wreck Chords.

Bad Cop/Bad Cop are currently touring the US & Canada with fellow Californians The Interrupters. Check out the dates/locations for the tour here.

DS Feature: Stacey Dee (Bad Cop/Bad Cop) – The Fall and Rise of a True Punk Rock Lifer

The music scene in general, and the punk scene more specifically, is notoriously riddled with tales of immensely talented artists who were taken from us way before their respective times should have been up. Many of them turned in to tragic figures, at least in hindsight, due to their respective early passings due to having succumbed to addictions, accidental overdoses, insurmountable mental health issues, or some combination therein. For specific examples, one needs to look no further than the present entry on their This Week In Punk History calendar, which marks not only what would have been the 46th birthday of the great Tony Sly, but the one-year anniversary of the death of Teenage Bottlerocket drummer Brandon Carlisle.

And yet, as long as the list of tragic, gone-before-their-time punk rockers is, there is a small but growing list of punk rockers who’ve waded through the muck and the mire that is drug addiction and come out the other side all the better for it. A non-scientific survey of this writer’s memory bank finds current and former members of Social Distortion, NOFX, Dropkick Murphys, Street Dogs, Strung Out, The Loved Ones, Fake Problems, and no doubt countless others who have put down the bottle or the baggie or the pipe or the needle in years past and still continued to make powerful, meaningful work. Hell, even the inimitable Fat Mike got rather notoriously sober over the last year, if only for a while.

That small-but-growing list can add to it one of the more powerful female figures in the current punk scene: Stacey Dee. After starting to play guitar at the comparatively late age of twenty, Dee spent years in bands like The Angry Amputees and Compton SF and Blacktop Idol and Park Royal before finally striking gold with Bad Cop / Bad Cop. The four-piece all-female “freight train of fuck yeah!” signed to Fat Wreck Chords, released one of the best albums of last year (Not Sorry), and have toured fairly regularly, including the seven-week, nationwide run as direct support for The Interrupters that they’re currently about halfway through.

Yet just as quickly as the BC/BC freight train started to pick up significant speed last year by way of their opening spot on the Fat Wreck Chords 25th anniversary tour, there was, in hindsight, the very real possibility that things could have derailed for Dee in rather dramatic fashion. A combination of years of Xanax abuse coupled with increasing amounts of alcohol, painkillers, and, as it turns out, bad cocaine in Minneapolis resulted in a bottoming out that left Dee at a crossroads: get clean and fast, or lose everything and faster.

But let’s back up. Because while stories of redemption after years of despair and descent into the abyss (and this is certainly one of them) pull at the heartstrings, it sometimes helps to start the tape at the beginning to provide context and understanding. Stacey Dee grew up in California, the daughter of a working-class singer-songwriter father. “I grew up in a very rock-and-roll, drug-infused party house,” says Dee, adding that while she considers her parents great and “fun as shit,” they also did little to impose boundaries or discipline. This marks the first of a couple of themes from childhood that would rear their heads going forward.

As should be apparent, Dee grew up in a musical household, and learned piano and drums at a relatively early age. Upon reflecting on that childhood, Dee reports “knowing that from the time I was four or five years old, if you had asked me what I wanted to be, I was going to be a famous singer… I always fucking knew.” That said, the guitar playing and the songwriting that not only marked how her father made his living but would eventually come much, much later; Dee didn’t start playing guitar until the age of twenty. So if you know from the age of four or five that you want to be famous in music, why not pick up a guitar early on? “I was real poor growing up, but I came from an affluent area,” she explains. “I couldn’t have nobody like me because I was poor. I couldn’t have it. So all of my energy went into making sure people liked me, and that was a problem I had up until this last year, even.” Instead of focusing on what she knew was her passion, Dee focused from an early age on being accepted by other people. Herein lies the second of our recurring themes…

After the breakup of a long-term relationship, Dee finally picked up an acoustic guitar at the age of twenty and armed with a few newly-discovered barre chords, she followed her instincts by moving to Santa Barbara, an early baby step toward taking a gamble on herself, and to support what would eventually become her career. She would return home from Santa Barbara three years later with a budding confidence in her newfound talent for songwriting and a desire to be “that girl in the punk rock band,” but also with a decent taste of the ‘real world.’ “I got this pretty good job for a twenty-three year-old kid — I was selling floors, making almost 50 grand a year, which wasn’t bad,” states Dee. While the job provided a certain comfort level and while she and her boss remained friendly, they also engaged in a fair amount of butting of heads. As Dee tells it, “one day, he came downstairs and he was mad at me about something. And he was like ‘I want you to lock all these doors, go upstairs, and write me a letter about how you plan to better yourself as a human being!’ And I wrote him a letter of resignation, and decided that day that music was going to be my life.”

And so began a life of splitting time between semi-stable temp jobs and a series of bands with varying levels of success, perhaps most notably The Angry Amputees. A European tour with said band brought her in contact with the man she’d eventually marry and move to the UK to be with. After a stay across the pond, the pair eventually moved to Los Angeles, where their marriage would start to deteriorate. As is the case when any relationship goes belly-up, there are obviously myriad things that can be pointed to as the catalyst for the demise of Dee’s marriage. For starters, says Dee, “around 32 or 33, a really bad thing happened in my marriage and it wasn’t my fault. I’m still trying to find what my place in all of that was, but it was really damaging.” Moreover, there was perhaps more importantly what Dee perceived as a lack of spousal support of her musical aspirations. Remember that point about growing up with a lack of boundaries and structure and normalcy? Dee’s husband, she says “wanted to be a firefighter and he wanted me to be a nurse and have that whole white picket life, and I wanted to be that person so bad. My whole life I wanted to be that person. And this is going to make me cry, but I never had that life, so I don’t know what that person is.”

And then there were the drugs, specifically benzodiazepines. “Somebody in my family had started getting a prescription for Xanax,” says Dee, an event that marked the beginning of what could conceivably had been the end. “I had been looking for a doctor to give me a fucking prescription for Xanax since I was maybe 18 years old… I would go sing on people’s records if they could fill me a prescription of Xanax or get me a bottle. But then I decided that I wanted to check out. I finally found a doctor in the entertainment industry in Los Angeles and she would give it to me; I could get whatever the fuck I wanted.”

After a period of time where she was “getting launched on drugs,” Dee and her husband finally called it quits in the year 2011. Commenting on what it took to get her to leave, Dee reports that she “felt like I needed to get out of the way of my marriage so that…we could both be happy,” adding rather matter-of-factly that “it was very sad.” As one might imagine, the drugs didn’t stop with the dissolution of her marriage, particularly as she had recently torn her ACL after falling off a stage. “When I first moved out of my husband’s house and got my own little apartment,” she explains, “I was just sitting there popping Xanax and painkillers and taking Benadryl on top of that.” After realizing that, perhaps, she shouldn’t be living on her own, Dee reports that she “moved to Inglewood, California, and let the quality of my life really just go down. I was living in the basement of this house for four years. I barely left. The only time I would leave was to do music.”

While a divorce and a growing reliance on drugs could have made 2011 the worst year on record for Dee, it also coincided with what could have been the most pivotal positive moment, though it might take some years to realize. The “music” that Dee would leave the house to do was, increasingly a new band. Bad Cop / Bad Cop, you see, started that same year. As should be obvious if you’ve listened to the band or, more specifically, you’ve seen them live, it should be no surprise that this new project caught the attention of some of the punk scene’s heaviest hitters, most notably NOFX’s Fat Mike Burkett, who’d also shown an interest in a prior Dee project, Compton SF. Burkett signed the band to his genre-defining label, Fat Wreck Chords, and produced their stellar debut full-length, 2015’s Not Sorry. And though the band’s level of success continued to increase and she “should have” been happy, Dee’s drug use would continue. “I kept telling myself that I was this broken artist and that that was somehow romantic, you know what I mean?

By the time of Not Sorry, Dee was the closest she’d get yet to seeing that dream of becoming “that girl in the punk rock band” approach fruition. The bar would raise again by mid-2015, as Bad Cop / Bad Cop would earn the opening slot on Fat Wreck Chords’ 25th anniversary tour, where they’d be sharing a stage with such legends as Strung Out, Swingin’ Utter, Lagwagon and, of course, NOFX. And while the tour would raise the band’s status yet again and be the latest in a string of increasingly monumental events for Bad Cop / Bad Cop, it was very nearly the end of their run too. The culprit, of course, was drugs. “I had been partying a lot,” explains Dee, noting that she increased her drinking and “had added cocaine to the mix,” that already included abusing her prescribed Xanax and Klonopin (a total of 120 pills a month) and snorting painkillers. The band were becoming increasingly stressed out, in part because their opening slot meant that they needed to arrive notoriously early to the respective venues. By the time they reached what, by all accounts, was a rough night of August 18th in Minneapolis, things bubbled over. “Every band fought,” states Dee, adding that by the end of the evening, “from what people tell me, because I don’t remember, I fought everybody. I was like “fuck this, fuck you guys, fuck music, fuck this, I’m not playing this game anymore.

Things went from bad to worse, and quickly. Dee explains, with a great deal of heaviness in her voice: “I got taken away, driven to the hotel. I tried to kill myself. I took handfuls of pills, I took an X-Acto knife that I had that was dull, thankfully, and was like AHHH (*makes hacking motion towards forearms*)! I called my dad to tell him I was done. Fat Mike called me and begged me, he said “Stacey, what are you doing? You can’t do this. I love you, stop it!” I got flown to Vegas, continued to party, left my band in Minneapolis to where they had to drive back. They couldn’t play any fucking shows. They couldn’t make any money. And I left them in the lurch, you know what I mean? It was a point where I hated them and they hated me.

Dee eventually made it home, where she was joined on September 4th (coincidentally her fellow Bad Cop Jennie Cotterill’s birthday), by her band. At that meeting came the ultimatum: get help, or they were done. Though feelings may have no doubt been hurt, Dee’s bandmates (Cotterill, Myra Gallarza and Linh Le) stood by her side. Her parents stood by her side. Fat Wreck Chords stood by her side as a label, and Burkett and both his former wife/ label co-owner Erin and his current wife Soma stood by her side personally. Burkett’s bandmate Aaron “El Hefe” Abeyta and his own wife, Jenn, offered to help. “Friends from out of the woodwork” offered to help. And so, with that support, Dee got clean on September 7th. She went to detox for ten days, and emerged bruised, battered and broken…but alive.

And while it would take some time to learn how to think and feel and see and function again without drugs, particularly benzodiazepines, Dee wouldn’t have much time to wait. “I had this acoustic thing booked five days after detox and I was like “there’s no way! I don’t remember any of my songs! They’re gone!” she explains, adding that BC/BC drummer Myra Gallarza gave her the supportive push she needed. “I managed to remember three or four songs, Myra came and picked me up because I couldn’t drive! It was like I was disabled.” She made it through that set, and the band’s first subsequent set sober, and relatively unscathed, relying primarily on muscle memory to get her through

Fast-forward just over a year, and Bad Cop / Bad Cop is as successful as ever. They’re presently halfway through a seven-week full US tour (their first), and are playing killer shows in front of high-energy packed houses night in and night out as direct support for Epitaph/Hellcat Records’ The Interrupters. In the process of getting clean and going to counseling over the last year, Dee has learned not only a lot about herself, but has learned how to become positive. “Every tour since I got sober has been so great. We have the best time together, we laugh. I’ve said this before and I saw this in a book recently, but we are a freight train of ‘fuck yeah!’ We love everything. We don’t talk shit. Once you let a tiny crack open to let negative in, it will infiltrate you quicker than you know.”

Once they get off the road, Bad Cop / Bad Cop will dive right back into the studio, in anticipation of the June 2017 release to their follow-up to Not Sorry. The writing process is progressing, as Dee points out that Cotterill is presently writing and singing better than she ever has. For Dee, however, it’s gone a little slower. “I’m having a hard time. Songs don’t come as easily now, because when you’re negative, you have shit to bitch about. But I think through all the self-awareness, the things that I am writing are better and more meaningful and will help other people if they want to listen. That’s the one thing that I’ve been frustrated about in my recovery. It’s not happening fast enough, but I just have to be patient.” Learning to be patient means going against how the drug-addicted brain is accustomed to functioning, but as a beacon of newfound positive energy, Dee has given herself more than a fighting chance, and is incredibly mindful of having to do the work and stay the course; that the band is on their most successful tour as she’s newly sober is not coincidence. “It’s almost like you’ve gotta tell the universe you’re open for more things to come. As soon as you’re closed off and guarded about taking those chances, you’re not going to get the opportunities.”

Head below to read the full transcript of our conversation. It’s well worth the time, we promise!

DS Photo Gallery: The Interrupters, Bad Cop Bad Cop, The Doped Up Dollies and Mickey Rickshaw take over Boston

To refer to The Interrupters current nationwide tour featuring direct support from Bad Cop Bad Cop as “highly anticipated” would be understating things in every possible way. The seven-week run circumnavigates the lower 48, and serves as not only The Interrupters first full US headlining tour, but Bad Cop Bad Cop’s first lengthy full US tour as well. For those reasons, and I’m sure many others, the tour rightfully ranks as a giant milestone moment filled with countless smaller milestone moments in the careers of both bands. But there is something about the tour that also feels like a milestone moment for the observer. For starters, it feels like a bit of a throwback to the groundbreaking glory days of Epitaph Records and Fat Wreck Chords, respectively, a time period that formulated the punk rock listening habits of a great many of us. But more than that, and you’ll have to forgive my occasionally foggy-at-best memory, but in the recent annals of punk history (and probably the not-so-recent ones too), you’d be hard-pressed to find such a lengthy, well-received tour involving not one, but two female-fronted punk bands playing in front of such high volume crowds. To put things bluntly, the tour feels, on paper, to be important. (Check out our recent tour-previewing interview with Kevin and Aimee from The Interrupters here.)

If you’ve been following the tour via the respective bands’ social media accounts, you’re probably well aware of just how fun and positive and high energy things seem to be as the tour rounds into its second month. But just like calling the tour “highly anticipated” is an understatement of epic proportions, so to is referring to its individual shows as an amalgam of “fun” and “positive” and “high energy.” So when you add to that already stellar lineup two intense and passionate local openers (The Doped Up Dollies and Mickey Rickshaw) the net result is that the Boston stop equated to one of the better showgoing experiences of this or most any other calendar years. Touring in support of their stellar sophomore album, Say It Out Loud, The Interrupters overcame a few early-set microphone-related technical difficulties to blast through a 21-song set that left little-if-anything to be desired.

From the very first notes of set opener “A Friend Like Me,” the foursome never really took their collective feet off the gas pedal. Anchored by the rock-solid Jesse Bivona on drums, the front-of-stage trio of Kevin Bivona (guitar), Justin Bivona (bass) and of course Aimee “Interrupter” Allen on vocals served as a continuous ball of frenetic energy, endlessly dancing, bouncing back-and-forth across the venue’s rather small stage. There are very few bands going who seem to genuinely enjoy their jobs and interacting with crowds night-in and night-out like The Interrupters do. Loyalty and family are recurring themes throughout the band’s body of work, and they seem sincere in referring to their fans as part of their extended family. Another of their family members, David McWane of Big D and the Kids Table fame, joined the band on stage for a true-to-the-0riginal cover of the Operation Ivy classic “Sound System,” while all available members of the collection of opening bands joined the foursome on stage for a dance party during encore closer “This Is My Family” before posing for a now-trademark post set group shot.

As mentioned above, Bad Cop Bad Cop are providing direct support for the duration of this tour. If there were another band in the scene that can match The Interrupters level of frenetic energy and their seeming enjoyment of taking the stage and playing night in and night out, it would o doubt be Bad Cop Bad Cop. Making only their second-ever Boston stop – and their first with bass player Linh Le in the house (Masked Intruder’s Intruder Yellow filled in when the band opened up the Fat Wreck 25th Anniversary tour last year as Le was attending her best friend’s wedding), the band seemed intent on making up for lost time in front of a crowd that seemed all-too eager to welcome them back to town. Drummer Myra Gallarza, who is easily one of the more underrated pace-setters in the scene provided a stable foundation for the three-part monster of co-frontwomen Stacey Dee and Jennie Cotterill to trade riffs and three-part harmonies with the whirling dervish that is Le.

Speaking of three-part harmonies, direct local support came by way of The Doped Up Dollies, a trio that rather famously started as supporting vocalists for David McWane and his band of Boston ska veterans, Big D and the Kids Table, before branching out as a unique, standalone act. The Dollies bill themselves as a three-piece act that play a “fusion of hopscotch/double dutch, ska, reggae, blues and soul,” and backed by a band that I’m pretty sure consisted of eighteen parts (honestly, I lost count but I think there were a total of nine members on the small club stage), including McWane himself, the trio of Brie McWane, Sirae Richardson and Erin McKenzie (pictured in that order above) present one of the more unique newish acts in the game. The variation in styles keeps the band from being pigeonholed, and allows them to fit in perfectly in myriad settings, and they proved to be a fantastic sonic change of pace on this particular bill without sacrificing much, if anything, in the way of overall energy.

Mickey Rickshaw, another stage-crowding local band (I’m relatively convinced that there are 8 of them, but again, the stage was small enough that I might have lost one or two or seven of them), opened the show off with about as frenetic a set as you can get. The band play an unapologetically fast and loud blend of Celtic punk that somehow, because of their energy level, make that occasionally well-worn sound seem fresh and vibrant. In a scene, particularly locally, that can seem crowded and redundant, Mickey Rickshaw have rather quickly made a name for themselves as the cream that has risen to the top.

Check out our full photo gallery below!