Santa Cruz’s Wooster Unveils New Album
Fusion rockers play CD release party at Moe's Alley on Oct. 20
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by Cat Johnson on Oct 16, 2012
Wooster plays Saturday, Oct. 20 at Moe's Alley.
A local band that shows up regularly on Best of Santa Cruz lists, Wooster has caused a sensation in both California and...Guam? Yup, the video for the song “Ooh Girl” has received hundreds of thousands of hits on YouTube, and a good deal of the traffic is coming from the little island.
According to bassist Bobby Hanson, the song was being played on the radio next to Adele and “whatever else was popular six months ago.”
“We got really lucky with ‘Ooh Girl,’” he says. “They love it in Guam, and the video just blew up.”
So what does a band do when they’re big in Guam? They go there, of course. The day after I spoke with Hanson, he and the band left to play a string of shows at Ralphy’s Lounge in Hagatna, Guam. When they return home, they’ll be celebrating the release of the brand new Wooster album, If All the Dew Were Diamonds, with performances throughout California.
A band with a groove-driven, rocking sound, Wooster tends to get the slash treatment when being described: rock/reggae/funk/soul/dance/etc. Rather than being symptomatic of a vague style, the inability to pin Wooster down to one genre is a testament to the variety of musical influences that each member brings to the band. Collectively, Wooster has roots in punk, funk, jazz, folk, soul, hip-hop and more, and the members (Brian Gallagher, guitar, vocals; Caroline Kuspa, vocals; Zack Donoghue, guitar; Hanson, bass; Nate Fredrick, drums) rely on an organic songwriting process that draws from everyone’s unique musical angle.
This Saturday, Wooster will play a CD release party for their new record at Moe’s; the ticket price also includes a copy of the album. The name of the album is taken from John Steinbeck’s Tortilla Flat. In the book, two hungover paisanos, with not a penny to their names, find the beauty in the morning dew sparkling on the grass. When asked about the connection between the name of the album and the band’s big-picture perspective, Hanson says, “We may not be millionaire rock stars on Cribs just yet, but we have a strong musical force that drives us. It’s what has kept us together as a band and kept the drive to share our music with everybody, and rock as hard as we can, going.”
Wooster plays a CD release show Saturday, Oct. 20 at Moe’s Alley, 9pm.