An Interview With '80s Cover Band Judo Chop

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Our most anticipated weekend has come and gone and now all that’s left to do is remember.  But fear not, Campus Vinyl BucknellU still has plenty to catch you up on what you might have missed last weekend. We had a chance to chat with members of Judo Chop, the kicking 80’s cover band that played at Chi Phi Friday night, and ask some questions about the band and some things that we were just plain curious about. CV: So how long have you guys been playing together and how did this all start?

Mike: It started about 6 years ago really as a way to finance our other bands. We each had our own projects going and needed a way to make a substantial income. It turns out that none of our other projects really went anywhere so we decided to drop them and stick with Judo Chop.

CV: Where did the idea to bring 80’s songs back to life come from?

Mike: I don’t really know. We wanted something different, we wanted to do 80’s without the spandex.

Rob: We saw it as the hot ticket, it was really a business decision to finance the other projects. At the time we started, it was what everyone really seemed to like.

CV: How did you pick which songs to play? Was it from personal preference or what people seem to like the best?

Mike: When we first started everyone came to the table with a list of about 15 to 20 songs. We knew how long we wanted our set to be so we picked from there, it was a combination of everyone’s likes.

Judo Chop picCV: So then do you have a favorite song to play or, like children, do you love them all the same?

Mike: No, no I definitely prefer playing Africa, originally by Toto, we do a much heavier version that’s hard to recognize at first but once the chorus comes everyone’s like “Oh Yeah!” and starts singing along.

CV: Why do you think 80’s music is still so enjoyable, even for new generations?

Rob: Its got those catchy, danceable rhythms and easily digestible hook melodies that everyone seems to enjoy.

Mike: That’s a dinner and whiskey sort of question, but if I were to sum it up I’d say it really goes back to the root of it all. This was a time where alcohol and cocaine were not frowned upon and artists more creatively carved their own way.

CV: What’s next for you guys, any more songs planned? 

Mike: We’re making the move towards 90’s music, its what we grew up with and will be fun to play. The 80’s is getting a little tired, we want to bring in some range.

CV: If you could play a set with any artist, alive or dead, who would you choose?

Mike: The Police, with Sting.

Rob: Fell on Black Days by Sound Garden. No-I change my answer! Dream Brother with Jeff Buckley.

CV: What do you listen to everyday; whats playing on your iPod and what influences you?

Mike: There’s various jazz, a lot of bop and fusion but also some metal. I listen to a lot heavier stuff than what we play, its a lot of progressive music. But nowadays, my friends have become my radio station, I don’t really listen to actual radio very much anymore but instead what’s recommended to me.

Rob: The Beatles, Sound Garden, Greenday. Not what’s on the radio but what’s already left an influence on me. And there you have it Bucknell, up close and personal with Judo Chop who rocked Chi Phi like a hurricane, if you will.