Interview with Deftones’ Abe Cunningham

Over the years Deftones have released a number B-sides and rarities. And in support of “Record Store Day”  the band released all of their covers on vinyl. A small pressing of 5000 “Covers” were released on April 16th at independent music stores. Currently the band is headlining the Diamond Eyes tour which made it’s way through South America and is now working it’s way through the states.  Between tour stops TST spoke to drummer Abe Cunningham about the Covers release and tour.

TST: On April 16th you released  “Covers”. What inspired you guys to put this only on Vinyl?

Abe: It’s in support of Record Store Day. We thought that we could give a “Special Trinket”. ITunes has each of the covers available to download.

TST: Deftones have taken these cover songs and really made them emotional. Connecting the listener to music making them feel every word. What is it that Deftones can emotionally connect their fans to the music?

Abe: It’s who we are….We are a real band…We are not manufactured….We try to squeeze in 1 or 2 cover songs in the tour for fun. We know some songs we just can’t fuck with…but we take each song and make it our own.

TST: April starts another leg of the “Diamond Eyes” Tour. This tour is mainly the States.

Abe: We will start in South America…and then into the States. We were here the first part of this tour but did not focus here. We went overseas mainly. We wanted to focus and have a full tour in the States. We’re looking forward to our first real headlining tour here in the States.

TST: Over the past few years you guys have collaborated with a number of artist, including Flava Flav, and now with Tech N9ne on “I Know”.  How did you guys get hooked up with Tech N9ne?

Abe:  I know Flava Flav was one our bus one time. That could have been Stephen working with him. Stephen is into Tech N9ne pretty big and vise versa so the collaboration just worked out.

TST:  Is there anyone you would love to collaborate with now?

Abe: Sure , I mean Prince, and there is a long list. But its about it happening naturally. Not forced. We could come across someone out on tour and strike up something together. So its not about planning, its about a organic process. Being open to what is possible.

TST:  So how is CHI doing after his accident?

Abe:  Its been 2 and half years and the progress has been slow. But just this week he was taken back to New Jersey to special group of doctors. We are supporting him and hoping these doctors can help him. But the good thing is he is back in New Jersey and CHI has a huge support system.

TST: “Eros” was the last cd CHI worked on. Is the album still on the backburner?

Abe:  Yes. This was his last cd he worked on,so out of respect for that we are putting “Eros” on simmer till he gets better.

TST: What are the plans for after this leg of the tour?

Abe: We have a lot of tour left. But after this leg of the tour we are going to meet in July and start writing. Well hopefully we start writing that is the plan. Stephen is in this World Poker Championship so it will depend on when he is finished with that.

TST:  Who are you listening too right now?

Abe: OOHHH thats a hard question to answer. I am into Baroness but since I have thousands of songs on my ITunes I usually put it on Random and let it go!

TST: Have a few fan questions for you! Will the Deftones be coming back to Scotland?

Abe: Well we do have some UK Festivals in the works right now. So its very possible we will be back in the area!

TST: What’s your favorite Star Wars Character?

Abe: Hmmmmmm I would say Lando Calrissian

TST: One more for fan question. What was the inspiration of “Change in House of Flies?”

Abe: This song is special. It was the first song we all wrote together as a band. Usually we do in parts but this song was all together each of us. It was also the first song wrote for “White Pony” cd.

TST: Thank you Abe for talking with TST. We look forward to your Atlanta date on May 28th.

Abe: Thank you and we will see you all!

Be sure to check out the tour dates for “Diamond Eyes” @ www.deftones.com

Interview by Michele Meow.

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