Nick Coyle continues to have an adventurous music career. His first band Strangers With Candy won an MTV Ultimate Cover Band contest and morphed into the dynamic Lifer. A self-titled CD on a major label was produced by none other than Alex Lifeson of the mighty Rush! Early on, a few Lifer members would defect over to Breaking Benjamin, and the remainder would form a band with the unlikely moniker of myDownfall. Finding newfound success with his latest project The Drama Club, Coyle remains a true musical lifer dedicated to his art. Recently, Coyle unleashed a two volume set of myDownfall songs on Itunes, many which are being heard by the general public for the first time. We decided to check in with Nick to discuss myDownfall, the latest Drama Club happenings, and other confessions of interest…
At this point, what made you decide to gather up all of the myDownfall recordings and release them at last?
Well I felt that it’s some great music that no one would’ve heard unless I put it out there. I’m really proud of what we did and the songs we wrote in myDownfall. For years I’ve had people asking me to release this stuff…so I finally did.
Do you remember what made you decide to call the band myDownfall?
We just all came up with a bunch on names and that was the one we could all agree on. I think Derek (Spencer) came up with downfall and I was like what about myDownfall and we we’re all like…”Yeah that’s it!”
Describe the transitioning period between Lifer and MyDownfall and what was going through your mind at the time regarding your music career and the industry?
Well after we brought Derek and Ian into Lifer, our music was heading in a different direction, as was the direction of the industry as a whole. We decided to write a bunch of new songs for a second Lifer record, but the stuff sounded so much different and with the lineup change it seemed like we had to change the name.
One of the highlights of Lifer must have been working with Alex Lifeson of Rush. What was that experience like and do you still keep in touch with him?
It was an amazing experience! Alex is one of the nicest, coolest, and funniest guys I’ve ever met. It was definitely surreal knowing that I was working with such a legend but he became one of the guys. Yeah.. I still talk to him every few months or so. I try to go see him when he comes around with Rush. He always hooks me up.
When revisiting some of the MyDownfall material, what do you think of it now compared to when you first wrote everything?
I think a lot of it still holds up. They’re just good rock songs.
Wake Up could have been played all over the radio. Tell me about that song and what inspired you to write the lyrics?
Wake Up was our “song”. The song is basically about lighting a fire under your ass. It’s motivational…lol
With some of the Lifer members leaving to join Breaking Benjamin, do you have any hard feelings toward them or Breaking Benjamin or ever felt like you were competing with BB?
Fuck those guys!………lol. No just kidding. We’re all still really good friends. Ben sings on Brand New Day (The Drama Club). Aaron (Fink) played a few shows with The Drama Club while we looked for a new guitarist. I sang backing vocals on 3 songs when they did their CD release show for Dear Agony – you can watch it here – http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid2152663001?bclid=1904733161&bctid=54012811001
Transitioning from myDownfall to The Drama Club, what made you decide to change the name and how is the music different?
I left myDownfall and moved to Chicago to play with the guys in Filter. After that didn’t work out I moved back to PA and formed The Drama Club. The Drama Club is a completely different band. Unlike Lifer to myDownfall, this is a new project altogether.
What were you doing in Widescreen with former Filter members and how did that come about? And what happened to the project?
Basically we had the same lawyer and they were looking for a singer. I flew out the Chicago for an audition and got the gig. After moving there and playing with them for a few months I realized it just wasn’t the right situation for me. There’s actually a lot more to why I left but we’ll just call it “creative differences”
What was it like working with noted producer Rob Caggiano and what did he contribute to the overall recording process? That guy is a recording legend!
He’s definitely a legend….lol. No, he’s a great producer and a great guy. He has a great ear for where the song needs to be. Vocally he really pushed me to get the best performance. He really cracked the whip..lol.
Your music career has had so many ups and downs over the years. What do you think keeps the drive and passion going in you after all of this time?
Music is all I know. I’ve been playing in bars and clubs since I was 13. Good or bad I will always have music.
Tell me about the inspiration behind the lyrics of the two The Drama Club songs Brand New Day and November?
Believe it or not Brand New Day is actually inspired by the Disney song When You Wish Upon A Star. It’s about making dreams come true no matter where you come from. I think a lot of people can relate to that. November is about the fight to keep going…. perseverance. Getting knocked down and getting back up, brushing yourself off and moving on with it. Both songs I think have a pretty positive message.
With Lifer once being on a major label, what advice would you give a young musician seeking a record deal?
Practice your craft, whatever it might be. If you are good people will listen. I think the days of the major label are just about over. They aren’t developing artists anymore. They want to see that your band is already out there doing it before they invest any money.
How does a Lifer or MyDownfall reunion show sound? And do you ever feel the urge to play some of those old songs?
There are actually talks of us doing a few Lifer reunion shows this year. We’ll see….
Tell me about the new recording The Drama Club presents The Twilight Symphony. What is the Twilight Symphony and is there any story or concept behind it?
The Twilight Symphony is a collection of songs I wrote and recorded in 3 weeks in the late fall/early winter of 2009. I demoed them in my studio. It’s the name of one of the first songs to come out. It’s sort of inspired by the lyrics for Sex Type Thing by Stone Temple Pilots. It’s a dark and dirty love/hate song…lol. That theme seemed to fit all of the songs so I thought The Twilight Symphony was a good CD name too.
When could we expect to see The Drama Club to play here in the Los Angeles area?
Soon I hope. I love LA! We played the Whiskey with Cold last April or May. It sold out! Good times!
Do you have any messages for long time fans who have been following your career for a while and/or new converts?
Thanks for listening and caring about what I have say. My fans mean the world to me. There is a lot more to come…. stay tuned. ROCK!!!
(Interview by Kenneth Morton)
The Drama Club on Myspace
myDownfall on Myspace
Lifer on Myspace