Change Today: Survival and Unity

Change Today is a hardcore band based from the ever rising Baton Rogue, LA music scene with an important message of both survival and unity.  The Survival EP is the name of their just released Hotfoot Records debut – a testament by their now ex-vocalist Derek Guidry who has surely lived through the toughest of times.  And then there’s unity, which Change Today encourages within the local music scene and beyond.  A powerful EP to be sure, we caught up with the band to discuss their music, the impassioned lyrics, and many other topics of interest…

Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Change Today, and how long the band has been together.
Adam Meche – Guitar, Blaze Wyble – Guitar, Tyler Guidry – Drums, Trey Guidry – Bass, Bret Cochran – Vocals. Change Today has been a band for nearly a year and a half with a few lineup changes.

Where is the band based out of and what is your local music scene like there? Any local bands you could recommend?
Change Today is based out of Lafayette, Louisiana. The music scene in Lafayette is rather weak and non-supportive as a whole. We recently have gained a liking to the new and rising Baton Rouge scene, which is about an hour away from our hometown. Strong support and great scene unity are very evident. This scene would be nothing without the help of our friends in Gulf Coast Punks and Skins who are working hard to bring hardcore back into Louisiana. A few locals that we recommend checking out are Wildfires, ImagineIAM, and Mailbomber.

Which members were in The Fight Between Frames and what happened with that band?
Tyler and Trey were in The Fight Between Frames and it ended because of creative differences within the band.

Is there any story or concept behind the EP title The Survival?
Said best by our ex-vocalist Derek Guidry himself (who is featured on the EP): “In writing the lyrics for The Survival EP, I turned an eye inward to my own experiences with life in the past years. As a band, I realize that reaching and appealing to as many people as possible is probably the most definite key to success. Success? Success these days is a word used very loosely to describe the sodomy of artistic integrity in music. This record is the honest truth from my heart. It deals with handling the tragedy in my life, with realizing that you have the strength in yourself to turn the negative events in your life into something positive. You have it inside of you to change things and not put trust in an imaginary being to cope with your problems. I write this, not caring if my honesty is offensive. Life is offensive, it is harsh, it is full of disappointments and setbacks, but without negative experiences in life, there can be nothing positive. To me success isn’t about how many false kids buy this EP and think it’s the coolest thing ever written. It’s not about how “sweet” we look on stage or shoving some bullshit agenda down people’s gullible throats. This record is me vocally denouncing faith in something that is not real to me and letting the strength inside conquer my tragedies and depression. Believing in yourself and dealing with the negative is my method of positivity. Survival comes from inside.”

Please cite two songs from The Survival and what inspired the lyrics.
The track titled ‘They Live’ is loosely based on Derek’s divorce in which Derek’s wife had cheated on him with one of his “best friends” during his time spent recovering in the hospital from a near fatal car accident. The first track on the album titled ‘The Start of Something’ is essentially about what every night was like for Derek because of the emotional and physical distress that he went through due to his divorce, pains from the car accident, and the loss of his house in a fire.

What could one expect from a live Change Today show?
As cliché as it sounds we put all of our hearts into what we do and it’s evident that we have fun doing it. We love meeting new people and making new friends so if you’re at a show, don’t hesitate to come talk to us. It’s hard to say what our show is like from an outsider’s perspective so come out and judge for yourself.

Has Change Today ever played in the Los Angeles/OC area or do you plan to do so in the future?
As of right now, we haven’t managed to play in that area but we are currently booking a West Coast tour sometime in September with our friends We Still Dream.

What was the experience like playing at Cornerstone? How did they like all the cursing in the songs?
Cornerstone was a fun experience. We all have our own religious views and beliefs, but at the same time are very open-minded and respectful. We didn’t have as much cursing in our music at the time, and were much more careful on the songs we chose. I would certainly recommend going to Cornerstone at least once, regardless of your beliefs.

How close are you guys to putting out a full length?
On our downtime during the month of August we will be doing most of our writing for our full-length. We plan on taking our music in a much more aggressive manner. The release date is uncertain but we plan on hitting the studio within the next 6 months.

How did you wind up signing to Hotfoot Records?
At the time we had only been a band for 6 months and were looking for a small start-up label that would help us out with promotion and getting our name out. We recorded a small demo and sent it to a handful of smaller labels that we had our eye on. After reviewing the labels that had gotten back to us, we had decided that Hotfoot seemed like the label that would work out best to our advantage.

Who did the cover art of The Survival EP and what other artwork has he done?
Our drummer Tyler Guidry did the artwork for our EP. We are a very DIY band although Tyler is a very aspiring illustrator. He has done several designs for bands such as Four Year Strong, For the Fallen Dreams, Legend, Continuance, and many others. You can check out more of his work at flickr.com/photos/tylerguid

Any final words of wisdom?
Go to local shows! Support local bands! Check out our blog to find out what we’re doing and find out more of what we’re about at changetoday.tumblr.com

Here is a statement the band made about the changing of vocalists which was released in March…

Change Today has announced the departure of singer Derek Guidry, who has now been replaced by Bret Cochran. The group has issued the following statement:

“I am going to keep this short and to the point, but Derek Guidry has decided to leave Change Today. His leaving the band was in no way on bad terms. After a few bad experiences which Derek has encountered from last year, including an almost fatal car wreck with Blaze and our good friend Tim, in which he has also not fully recovered from, Derek has decided that it would be best if he concentrates on other goals in his life right now. We are 100% supportive of Derek and his decisions to better his life and complete his schooling. Derek will be greatly missed in this band because he was indeed a huge factor and voice for all of us and though technically he is not in this band as of now, we know that Derek will always and would always want to be associated with Change Today. He has been one of our best friends way before this band was formed and will continue to be now and way after this band is done. If you are interested in seeing what Derek is up to you can visit his website here and wish him the best with everything.

“With all of that being said, Change Today is still up and running stronger than ever. We have alot of great things planned for the future including some great summer tours being booked starting May onward and also The Survival EP will be released sometime in May (exact date tba) so please continue to keep in touch and give us great support as you all have been doing.

“Furthermore, we would like to introduce our new vocalist, Bret Cochran. Some of you locals may have seen Bret at shows with us and also from previous local bands in the Baton Rouge/New Orleans area that he was a part of. Bret is a great, whole hearted, well rounded person that has many of the same views as the rest of us in this band as well as Derek. We feel that Bret is going to be a great new addition to Change Today as well as our local music scene and together we will continue to bring our voices and ideals into the music we play and to the people we meet. We hope to see and meet a lot of new faces as well as old ones on the road this summer and we hope that you guys will continue to show us the support and love that you have all been so kind to give!”

(Interview by Kenneth Morton)

Change Today on Myspace

Hotfoot Records on Myspace

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