The Shackeltons 1

What year did the band form?
Dan Schuchman: January 2005…that was when Justin’s brother, Josh played bass, and our friend Jonathan Slick played drums, Sean and Justin entered the band in early September of 2005.

(photos by Tear-n)

How did all the band members meet?
Dan: I as in another band at the time called Colorless Morning, and I saw the band when it was called Heal, and Mark, Eric, Jonathan, and Kevin were playing. Kevin would later leave and Mark and Eric asked me if I wanted to play. So Eric went from playing bass in Heal to playing guitar, and we got a bass player that didn’t work out too well and he went to college anyway. Mark spoke to Eric once about how we needed a brother in the band, the next day Mark met Josh McDaniel (Justin’s brother), and later that week we practiced with Josh and it went really well. When Josh decided to go to college Justin took is place and we couldn’t really tell the difference, except at the time Justin never talked we thought he was mute, but he’s talking now. Our drummer at them time, Jonathan Slick, lived almost 50 miles away in West Virginia, and it was really difficult for him and his parents, because we too was 16 and didn’t drive. We soon found Sean, a local fan of ours and Eric and Mark practiced with him the day before a show and Sean had all the drumming charts and everything prepared for all the songs and he just delivered that show.

What is the band’s favorite venue/city to play?
Sean Hallock: I love venues like Charm City Art Space in Baltimore, that venue reminds me of our town’s old warehouse venue and it’s the perfect playing environment for me (small dark room, people in your face… by the end of the show, there’s liquid dripping off the walls). But I’ll never forget how well Seattle has treated us… whenever we go all the way over there, people always make us feel like we’re home. I love that place.

What’s your funniest audition story?
Mark Redding: We were a bunch of white guys. One Friday night I was in K-mart trying on jeans with Eric. We needed to update our clothing. For some strange reason, I said to Eric, “You know what we need in our band? A brother.” Small town white guys call African Americans “Brothers”. The next day I visited my friend who was teaching bass lessons. There sat 2 “brothers”. Really, they were blood related, and African American (well, 50%). I immediately asked Josh if he wanted to be in our band. He agreed. We practiced once, and he was sold on the band. In a small town, its easy to be the coolest band. We got our brother. And now we got his brother, Justin.

What was the strangest/most interesting thing to happen to the band?
Dan: Mark’s mouth. He comes so close to getting his ass kicked sometimes it’s crazy. When we played CMJ 06 we went to this pizza place…I forget where but it wasn’t too far from the Mercury Lounge, and Mark always gives Eric shit for being Russian…not that Mark hates Russians or whatever, but I think Eric tripped when he walked in and Mark said something to Eric and then said to the guy taking order, “Oh don’t mind him, he’s Russian,” and the guy asked, “You got a problem with Russians?” and Mark, replied, “Well you know, how they are.” It turned out the pizza guy’s girlfriend was Russian and the guy was so close to jumping over the counter and punching the fuck out of Mark. We haven’t been back there since.

If you could meet any musical hero living or dead, who would it be and what would you say to this person?
Mark: Otis Redding: “can you mentor me? we share the same last name!” I would also love to meet Johnny Cash. He could give me some cash, and some fatherly advice. If he were not dead.

The Shackeltons 2

What do you simply hate about being in a band. You know, like the sound man showing up two hours late for a gig, buying guitar strings from “that guy” at the music store who is more interested in his Chinese food than ringing you up, or trying to find your drummer, (sorry drummers), or insert your band mate who always goes missing, two minutes before your set time.
Sean: Oh mark always disappears briefly before shows… but we’ve grown used to it. But what actually must really piss me off, is when people label us incorrectly. Quite simply, it just makes me want to be like, “dude, listen again… closely. If I’m wrong, I’ll buy you a damn coke” . don’t get be wrong, I don’t mind if people don’t like us… it’s unavoidable. But when people don’t listen, and judge too soon, I think it break’s every passionate musician’s heart.

What is the band currently working on?
Dan:Getting shows, promoting the album (comes out October 16th), writing new songs, getting management, booking agent, we’ve been doing a good bit.

  1. Thanks sentimentalist for the awesome interview, I must state however, that at the time of the interview the release date was scheduled for Oct 16th, now it’s January 29th 2008. Thanks again. Love.


  2. Dan,

    Thanks for the update.



  3. since i am dead, i will give you some advice, young man… never ask johnny cash for cash. just play your songs and he will throw money at you. he is throwing money right now, at this very moment- here in heaven. im not even singing. i think johnny wants me to sing.
    sing on, son!!!


  4. dear sentimentalist, this interview is fantastic. love the shackelton CD review and new music article in the newest magazine as well. otis redding and mr. cash are surely proud. thanks to all the brothers and russians who helped the shackeltons get this far.


  5. Great review, Sentimentalist. It’s nice to see sweet band like the Shackeltons interviewed. And Mark does say some crazy shit sometimes.


  6. Very interesting… as always! Cheers from -Switzerland-.