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Voodoo Lounge

Welcome to the Voodoo Lounge. This is a place where you can relax with Chad and get to know a little more about him personally. Chad likes to sit down and answer some questions from visitors to the Chad Gracey Fan Site as well as myself. Below you can find some of their questions, as well as Chad's responses. Be sure to look at the bottom of this page for instructions on how you can ask Chad Gracey a question. and become a part of the Voodoo Lounge yourself.

Question: Hi Greg and Chad,I have 2 questions that I hope you can help with. 1. What do you do to warm up before a show?. 2. When you play live in front of thousands of people how do you keep it together as far as tempo and playing too loud? I sometimes feel that I play too fast or too hard inlive situations.Regards, Rick Eddy Mt. Laurel, N.J.

Chad Gracey: Hey Rick. I generally do not warm up. I do some light stretches and that is about it. As far as tempo I have a little drum machine beside that I have the tempos for some songs loaded into but most of the time I am pretty steady. Just remain calm and relaxed and you should be fine. CG

Question: Hi Chad, When me and my friend came to see LIVE at the Electric Ballroom last year, (I think the date was June 30th) We noticed that after the second song (Operation Spirit) you were getting up from the drum seat and running around, then you were standing at the drum kit and a man was doing something with the kit. While this was happening the rest of the band were jamming something out. Was there a big problem with the kit? or was it just a minor pin pointed problem? Ben Moore, England

Chad Gracey: I think in that show I blew a kick pedal and it needed replaced. CG

Question: chad, i am in a band in nyc and play the drums. first off, you are one my favorite drummers and one of the few drummers that i inspire to play like onstage since your onstage performance is so powerful and it is more than apparent that you are not just "the drummer," but an essential part of the band. when we play a show, the setlists are almost always different from the previous show, and usually different from any other show we've ever played. why do you guys pick one setlist and play it night after night? do you ever get bored playing the same songs over and over? how come certain songs, like "dam at otter creek" or "waterboy" haven't been played live in a long time? also, are you dissapointed that songs like "white discussion" or "iris" (songs that were played on the Secret Samadhi tour) are no longer played live? scott

Chad Gracey: Hello Scott. We like to find a show that works and has a flow. That is why we have a setlist that is almost the same. We rotate certain songs in and out. As we tour for a new record we like to play songs from that record and also feel that people come to hear certain songs and we have to play them. So older songs, although fun to play have to be taken out. Someday they may put back in. CG

Question: Hi Chad, I have a couple of different questions. First, I was wondering if your brother, Matt, was still traveling with the band and what his role is. I think it is great how you and Ed have taken your brothers on the road with you. Second, I was wondering if you wear contacts during the concerts, or do you play blind? :-) Best of Luck in the Future!! - Katie Weiss

Chad Gracey: Hi Katie. Matt does still travel with us as he has from the very first show we did way back in 1985. He is not, however my brother. He is in fact my first cousin but much like my brother. I do indeed wear contacts when I play. I used to play "blind" before I got contact and was still wearing glasses. I love to see. Later CG

Question: Hi Chad, my name is Steve and I come from the West midlands, England, and I have been playing the drums for 14 years and I am heavily influenced by Live's music and especially your style of drumming. I play in a band called Peoplekind and our style of music is mainstream rock with influences such as the sadly missed Gin Blossoms, Counting Crows, Goo Goo Dolls and Matchbox 20. Although that sort of music is enjoyable to play i'm tending not to progress any further with my drumming style, which is why I now rehearse twice a week on my own playing along to tracks like 'Shit Towne', 'Freaks' and 'Dolphins'. Please tell me how you progressed throughout the years? Did you take lessons? And is it advisable I take lessons as I am'self-taught'. - Steve Walton

Chad Gracey: I have never taken a lesson. I started playing to albums and sort of went from there. I guess being a band with three people that inspire me to create is what has advanced me. I hope that helps and good luck.

Question: How long do you think that you guys will be preforming together? Will you be like the Rolling Stones and just keep going and going, or know when the time is right to throw in the towel (I hope not for a longtime!)? Cathy Bennett

Chad Gracey: We will play together as long as we can and I think that will be a long time. We were always in this for the long haul.

Question: Are you guys more like family then friends or just band members because you've been together for so long? Your music is so great, it makes my day a lot better, especially at work! You're the Greatest. - Cathy Bennett

Chad Gracey: We are definitly more like a family. We have our disagreements but would do just about anything for each other.

Question: When listening to your parts I have noticed themes in a couple of the albums. In 'Ghost' and 'Turn my Head' on Secret Samadhi you play a fill in where you go into demi-semi quavers hitting the snare-hightom-bass drum then going back into quavers on the floortom-snare. In 'Where fishes go' and 'The dolphins cry' on TDTH you play in demi-semi quaver rhythms again leading up to a chorus. To me when I hear this I know its you playing, like a trade mark. When you write your parts do you have certain patterns that work that you can use and fall back on as you wish, do you think of them as trade marks like on in 'Ghost', 'Turn my Head', 'Where fishes go' and 'The dolphins cry'? Ben Moore, Leicester, England

Chad Gracey: I guess they would be trade marks. I don't really consciously write them that way. They just flow forth from somewhere when I am playing a new part. I had no idea what the technical terms were. I have no formal training and know no tech terms. I hope that helps

Question: When are you coming back through California? Haven't seen you since you played shoreline in Mountain View a couple of years ago. I love to watch you play! Kristen, central California

Chad Gracey: We will be coming back to Cali on a co-headline tour with the Counting Crows. I estimate we will be around San Fran sometime in either Sept. or Oct (2000).

Question: hey. my question has to do with something i read a while ago. i read that you used to play drums in your bare feet. do you still? are you guys planning on releasing any unreleased songs, or THE DEATH OF A DICTIONARY? i've been wanting to get a hold of that one for (6) years. and what about the Unplugged special you guys did? any chance of releasing that? well, i can't wait until september so i can see you 4 wonderful guys for the 3rd time. until then... ronda

Chad Gracey: I still play in my bare feet. I have never played a show with shoes. We will be releasing eventually a lot if not all of our unreleased material. We have been saving it for the right occassions. Thanks for you support.

Question: I'm curious to know if Chad follows the same religion as Ed? if not, is he religious? believe in God? I don't know why I'm curious, but I am. thanks if you can help. Mac Phisto

Chad Gracey: I am not religious. I do have a belief in God but do not subscribe to the bible. I hope that answers your question.

Question: Hi! I was at the Lycoming College concert on February 16th, 2000, and I was curious if the bra collecting is done at every show. It was a blast, and I wish I had thrown mine up there! Also, I was wondering why there's not a diary entry from Lyco on any of the diaries that I've seen. Thanks so much! - Candi Smith, Williamsport, PA

Chad Gracey: Hey Candi, We do not do the bra thing at every show. It wouldn't be fun anymore if we did that. About the tour dairy entry for Lyco. That would be my fault for not feeling like doing it that night. Sorry.

Question: This is not a question but a compliment - the pictures from the tour diary were awesome! I found myself eagerly awaiting each entry, just to see the sights from around the globe. If you wanted to change careers you could be a professional photographer! I also want to say that you are the LIVE member that I would most like to meet - I have loved the band since 1991, and there is just something so cool about you - you just seem like a really great guy. We named one of our dogs Gracey after you - I hope you take that as a compliment! One more comment - I probably have that woman beat as the "oldest" LIVE fan (I have 2 kids in college and have seen you 6 times in concert) - hope you don't mind that your fans come from all age groups! - Toni from NJ

Chad Gracey: Thanks for the compliments about the tour diary and about me. I appreciate that. I also appreciate being the inspiration for naming your dog. I love dogs. I have two myself. A Beagle named Trigger and a Rhodesian Ridgeback named Luther. And yes we love and appreciate all Live fans, be they young or old.

Question: I'm sure there are songs that have been written that you aren't too fond of (maybe). What happens to these songs? Do you speak your mind and work on the songs until EVERYONE in the band is happy, or if 3 of the 4 of you like it, does it still come out anyways? If you have made songs like that, do you still give those songs your all when playing them, or are they not as important as your favorites? I mean, I've seen you live seven times and am a drummer myself and I can't tell, but I'm just wondering if there are any songs that aren't 100% the best in your humble opinion... you don't have to name names if you don't want to :) - Bob Givnin, Bellevue, WA

Chad Gracey: If all of us do not love a song idea that someone brings to the band then it doesn't get worked on. I personally have shot down many ideas. If it doesn't move all of us it is not a Live song.

Question: Are you ever planning on having an autograph series drumstick with Pro-Mark? I'm dying to know, cause I'd love to pick up a set! I mean, I know you play off-the-shelf 5A's with a wood tip, but nonetheless I'd still love a pair of them :) - Bob Givnin, Bellevue, WA

Chad Gracey: Actually I do have an autographed series with Promark. They are not however available at retail. The sticks I use are custom made for me by Promark. They are heavier then standard 5As but the same thickness in the shaft. The neck however is slightly thicker than standard and they are of course wood tip.

Question: Concerning the setup of your kit: Why do you have the small tom right above the snare and the bigger tom to the left of the snare? Is it easier for you, a style thing, did you learn how to play with a kit with that setup, or just prefer it there? Is there a specific reason? - Bob Givnin, Bellevue, WA

Chad Gracey: I do this with the 13" tom more for a style thing and because I don't like traditional tom rolls. I really adapted it from Larry Mullen Jr. He however uses a 16" floor tom.

Question:When are you planing to tour africa - namely South Africa? -

Chad Gracey:We will be touring South Africa in mid-June (2000).

Question:In the video for "I alone", why were you running all over the place instead of playing your drums? -

Chad Gracey:I ran around in the I Alone video because the director didn't like the drums in the set. I didn't want to do it but sometimes you have to take one for the team.

Question: Chad likes Tom Clancy as a writer, as do I. What is his favorite book? -

Chad Gracey: Red Storm Rising would have to be my favorite Tom Clancy book to date.

Question: I'm a big fan of his wedge/triangle-like drum set-up, but wonder how much use the floor tom he has mounted on his left side near the hi-hat gets used and what songs he really uses it. I know he's said he's kind of a "free-form" player and hits drums when it feels right, but are there any set songs that he really uses it? - Michael Sugarman, Atlanta, GA

Chad Gracey: Thanks man. That is a 13" mounted tom actually. It gets used probably about 20% compared to the 12" and the floor. There are however specific songs that I do use it on, one being We Walk in the Dream on TDTH.

Question: Whats the one quality about each or your bandmates you admire most? -

Chad Gracey: Ed's ability to write a melody, Pat's ability to play just about every instrument, and Chad T's work ethic.

Question: Boxers or briefs? - Karyn Markovitz, Pittsburgh, PA

Chad Gracey: Sports boxer. Calvin Klein. Not quite boxer but not quite briefs.

Question: What is your favorite food? What kind of clothes do you like to wear the best? -

Chad Gracey: Sushi is my favorite food and I have been wearing a lot of stuff from Urban Outfitters lately.

Question: How often do you break drumsticks?... do you consider it a lack of skill to play TOO hard or do you think there is such a thing? -

Chad Gracey: It depends on the individual batch of sticks. I have bad wood where I have broken 3-4 sticks on one song. Generally I use about 8-9 pairs a night. They are not all necessarily broken. Just battered. I don't think you can hit too hard. You do have to however know when to and not to hit too hard.

Question: As a fellow drummer in a local band now working on originals, what processes do you come up with (do) to create your drum parts. While they don't come out and smack you around, (maybe except for IRIS), your drum parts blend very well and it almost seems more spiritual than anything. Do you rely on the rest of the band for parts or is it collective. -

Chad Gracey: I write the drum parts for Live. I will take some pointers if, say, the guys have a particular thing in mind. I really let the idea and the melody help me write the part. I listen to everything going on and then weave my part into it, most of the time. Sometimes, on the other hand, I hear a song idea once and the part just flows out. Those are the best songs.

Question: How does one become an opening band for Live? - Bob Givnin, Bellevue, WA

Chad Gracey: Our booking agency usually gives us a list of bands to pick from. The agency is Monterey Peninsula artists.

Question: I read an interview you did with "Modern Drummer" a while back, and you said that if it were not for this particular band and the guys you are playing with, that you probably would not be drumming at all. You also revealed that you are a "self-taught" drummer, which I can certainly relate to. My question is this: What were the circumstances that led you to drumming? Did the guys convince you to be "their drummer" and then you began to learn, or were you already messing around with drums beforehand? -

Chad Gracey: I bought a drum set a month before we started the band. I had always wanted to play drums. I knew Pat and Chad T. were messing around with a band idea and it just fell into place like that. If that hadn't happened I think that I would still have gotten the drums but I know I wouldn't be playing them now. People confuse my attitude about me not being a drummer if it weren't for Live. I love playing drums but only in the context of Live. It is the only environment that I know and that is why I love it.

Question: I am having trouble coming up with and remembering licks and chops, and I can't seem to come up with a drum solo. I am a real good solid drummer but I have a hard time in those areas. Any ideas on helping me over this brick wall? Also, did you ever hit a wall where you didn't think you could get any better and wanna give up? -

Chad Gracey: I personally don't really work at remembering licks and chops. I hear things and store them in the back of my brain. I then just let them flow. Don't think so much about it especially when you are playing. As for drum solos. I am not a drum solo fan unless it is in jazz in which case go for it. I have personlly never hit a wall. I think for me is I don't think about it too much. I hope that helps.

Question: I heard that you didn't like Brazil very much. Is it true? I hope no, but what did you think about Brazil? - Renata Duarte Mendes, São Paulo, Brazil

Chad Gracey: We love Brazil. We haven't been back because it hasn't fit into our tour schedule for some reason. But we do indeed love Brazil and all of the Brazilian people especailly the Live fans.

Question: What color are your eyes? - Erin Longley, Allen Park, MI

Chad Gracey: My eyes are hazel.

Question: Just curious if you like to go crabbing? My parents and I like to go and we were wondering if you have any advice for us? - The Aus Man, 6 years old, Portland, OR

Chad Gracey: I do like to go crabbing quite a bit. I personally like to use as many different baits as I can. I usually go to Garibaldi. I use chicken (of course) fish heads (of course) and squid. You have to get these little squid nets and squid at the Tesoro station in Garibaldi right near the marina. If you go to Newport you have to get the best crabbing bait I have ever used. When you exit highway 1 after you cross the Newport Bay bridge there is a small bait shop right on the water as you are going to the public fishing pier that sells frozen mink hides. Yes that was mink. I have caught the most crabs using mink and chicken. I hope it works for you.

Question: What kind of workout does Chad use to stay in shape and what kind of a diet does he have? - Scott, Seattle, WA

Chad Gracey: I work out about 4-5 times a week. That usually involves 3 days of weights and 2 days of cardio. I really don't follow a diet. I just try to limit the amount of desserts, drink lots of water, and eat breakfast every morning.

Question: I have a tape in a concert and you are not using Pearl Drums, I think is Gang... Why weren't you using Pearl Drums? It was in 1994. Do you miss Brazil?? Do you have plans to come back?? - Renata Duarte Mendes, São Paulo, Brazil

Chad Gracey: It probably because I couldn't at the time bring my drums. They were obviously rentals.

Question: How long has he been playing the drums for? - Natalie Graham, Melbourne, Australia

Chad Gracey: I have been playing drums for about 15 years (since 1985).

Question: Who were your influnces as drummers, and why? -

Chad Gracey: Some of my influences are as follows: Larry Mullen Jr. (U2), Tony Thompson (The Power Station), Matt Cameron (Soundgarden), and Stewart Copeland(The Police). First of all I like all of these bands a lot and in all cases I like how the drummer weaves his part into the music instead of trying to play over it to show off. That is what I try to do.

Question: How, oh how, does he (or the engineers) get that snare sound? It is one of the best I've ever heard recorded. With the notable bite, howl and reverb that follows each hit, I'm wondering if it has more to do with tuning or just how everything is mic'd and processed? (or a combination of all). - Gregg Albahari, Chicago, IL

Chad Gracey: It is more tuning. There was really no special effects used. I use several different snares as well. From a Pearl brass freefloating piccolo, a vintage Slingerland Radio King, and a Brady Jarra wood 5 1/4"X 14" snare.

Question: How did you manage to stick to the "Live" dream, after so many years, after what must have been hard at first? I'd love to hear an answer, even an indirect one through the website. - Candi Smith, Williamsport, PA

Chad Gracey: I travel the world with my 3 best friends and make a nice living do what I love. Its not hard to stick to that.

Question: Do you ever get annoyed at how the females go crazy over Ed? I mean I saw +Live+ for the first time in November of 1999, and I was amazed at the amount of attention he got. - Angela Romano, Maywood, NJ

Chad Gracey: I don't really get annoyed at the attention Ed gets. I love my anonymity.

Question: i noticed you use remo and attack drum heads. is there any significance as to why you use remo only on your snare and bass? also....where (or can i ) get a pair of your signature stix? my final question is, my self being a pearl lover....what would you suggest the best wood for a master works series be? - Jeff Tripoli, East Syracuse, NY

Chad Gracey: The reason I use a Remo snare head is because I haven't found an Attack head that I like on the snare. Unfortunatly you can't get my signature sticks through retail. I know Greg has some. I personally like the maple shells for the Pearl Masters Series.

Question: I have read on many occasions that you drum with bare feet and always have done. Do you have to do anything special to keep your feet in shape and pain free? Personally, my feet kill when I drum barefoot so I take my hat off to your capacity for withstanding pain! -

Chad Gracey: Maybe because I have been drumming barefoot for my whole career I have no problems. I don't do anything special to my feet. I have never had any problems.

Question: You have been to many parts of the world, if you could go back to any of them, which one would it be? - Elia Lugo, Anahuac, TX

Chad Gracey: I would definitely like to go back to Australia. The people are excellent and it is just really cool there.

Question: If you could have any meal right now, what would it be? - Elia Lugo, Anahuac, TX

Chad Gracey: If I could have any meal right now it would have to good Sushi. I love the stuff.

Question: My question is how did you learn to drum and can you play other instruments? - Arno Wegman, Zuidhorn, The Netherlands

Chad Gracey: I taught myself how to play drums by listening to records and playing along and I also play the saxophone.

Question: I have read that you have had no actual training in drums and were wondering what you think are some of the essential skills you require to be a good drummer... - Edwina, Sydney, Australia

Chad Gracey: Some natural ability is good. Good timing is another and the abilty to know that you are not going to be the star of the band. That is not your job.

Question: As you know, I love your site but when you are talking with Chad tell him that I think he is doing a great job with the tour diary! His pictures are great! I prefer the "behind the scenes" photos better than the concert ones ( I like show pics but let's face it, most concert photos are the same...) . But I love to see backstage, the airport and the days off (and McDonald's). All that goofy stuff! Can you ask him what type of camera he is using, who uploads the pictures, and what time frame is he working with from when he takes the pics till they are up on the website? - Rose Marie (Rory) Brown, New York, NY

Chad Gracey: Thanks for noticing the tour diary. I prefer the backstage stuff too. I use a Sony 2.1 megapixel cybershot camera. I usually upload the pics to the guy who oversees our website the night or the next morning after I take them.

Question: First of all how long had you been playing drums before you formed the band? Also what professional instruction, if any, have you had? And finally what advice do you have for an aspiring band/drummer? - Tim Conway, Brick, NJ

Chad Gracey: I had been playing drums for all of a month before we started the band. I have never had any form of instruction. I am self taught. I guess I had some natural ability and just listened to records, figured out what was going on, and went from there. My advice, and this only from my experience, is first find poeple that you like and then start a band with them. It is usually not going to happen that way but liking each other is the first step. Also make sure you are a solid drummer. Have good time and don't try to show off. The drummer is the spine of the band not the face. People don't really get to see the spine but it is definitly there. I hope that helps.

Question: How hard is it for you to think of the drum beats for all the songs that you write the beats for? I know you're totally self-taught (for the most part, so am I), but I hear the beats for like Unsheathed and I wonder "how the heck did he think/do that?!) - Bob Givnin, Bellevue, WA

Chad Gracey: For me writing beats is usually feeling them first and then just letting them flow out. Sometimes though I have to sit down and listen to what is going on. I think a lot of it is dictated by the melody and what the rhythm guitar part is doing. I then weave my parts into that and fill accordingly.

Question: Does anyone ever get bitter at all the attention Ed gets? I mean, does it make you or anyone else in the band bent that some consider LIVE to be "Ed and Company?" Kind of like "and the rest" on the early Gilligan's Island tune. Oh yah - does Ed's spiritual quests disturb band output or are you all in agreeance with his ways? - Shane Borowski, Yorba Linda, CA

Chad Gracey: When you are in a band, any band, the singer is the focus. That is how it is. I for one am not an attention seeker. So from my point of view Ed can have all of the attention he wants. I like my anonymity very much. Knowing personally that Live is not just Ed and having Ed know that is fine with me/us. We are the true definition of a band. A group of friends that play instruments and write songs. If someone outside the circle can't see that, then they are missing the whole picture.

Question: How did you come about the distinctive setup that you use. Coming from a conventional 5-piece kit, to the cool setup that you use is quite a change.... -

Chad Gracey: I borrowed a bit from Larry Mullen, Jr. (U2) He uses a 16" floor tom there though. I also did it so that I could have different options for my left hand without getting crossed up with my right while playing hi-hat.

Question:Do you plan on having children, and if you do how will that effect your position in the band? Erin Longley, Allen Park, MI

Chad Gracey: I do not plan on having children anytime soon but thanks for asking.

Question: What do you do to keep yourself busy while on the road when you're not performing? Tonya Furr, Tempe, AZ

Chad Gracey: I keep myself busy on the road by first of all working out almost everyday with the band's security guard. I also go online a lot and play video games on my computer. TV is another big distraction for me. Especially if the hotel has TLC or The Discovery Channel.

Question: What is the absolute funniest or weirdest thing you saw(from either a band member or the audience) while on stage playing a concert? Meryl Klemow, Kingston, PA

Chad Gracey: The funniest thing I have seen on stage is Patrick's naked ass.

Question: Now as you know there are tons of of Live fans who check into the live sites for the latest news, sign up for mailing lists to get the latest information, etc...and I was wondering are there any group(s) that you are fanatic about, like ones you go to the record store the morning their new album comes out, and check out their websites for info? Chris Capello, Glen Spey, NY

Chad Gracey: I am not a crazy fanatic about any group. Not that their is anything wrong with that. I am however a huge U2 fan. I won't necessarily go out and stand in line on the first day their record comes out but I will buy it shortly after.

Question: I know that you and the guys are all the best of friends. Have you guys ever seriously argued with one another? James Little, Brentwood, NY

Chad Gracey: We are the best of friends it is true. We have however had our share of......lets just call them tiffs over various things. Obviously nothing that has done any permanent damage. When you know just one person for 16-17 years you are going to have some run ins. Let alone 3 people growing up and being in a business and then being creative together.

Question: Does it bother you when fans, without back stage passes, try to meet you after shows (for example at the State Theater in Detroit, when we all gather by the busses)? Erin Longley, Allen Park, MI

Chad Gracey: Generally it does not bother me or us to have the peeps by the buses after the shows. We love our fans. I feel bad when I can't sign everybody's stuff. Sometimes though, you are in a bad mood or something and you just want to go to bed. Then it can be slightly frustrating. But don't stop.

Question: If you could describe yourself as any food on the entire planet what would it be and why? Meryl Klemow, Kingston, PA

Chad Gracey: If I could describe myself as any food on the planet it would have to be Sushi. Simply because I eat so much of it.

Question: How has your relationship with Chad T, Ed, and Pat changed from high school to the present time? Brian, CT

Chad Gracey: My relationship with Chad, Pat, and Ed has changed only slightly I would say. The fact that we all live in different parts of the country being the key. We obviously don't hang out during off time as much. Other wise we are still the four fun loving friends that left York High in 1989.

Question: Why have you started using those plexiglass "walls" in front of your kit for the touring of TDTH? Are they for soundproofing, for miking purposes, or for Raylo's sound, so his keys are more clearly audible? I'm rather curious, because I've found that all your subtle drum licks are harder to hear now, even though you're miked. I really find it hard when you're using the Hot Rods on songs like Face and Ghost, Lightning Crashes and Pillar of Davidson, if I'm not mistaken. :) Bob Givnin, WA

Chad Gracey: Ahh, the Plexiglass wall question. I have started using this because we needed to greatly reduce the amount of sound on stage. I obviously cannot change my volumes so I needed to be reduced somehow. This is the answer. It all greatly effects the amount of control our front of house mixer has over his mix. As far as the Hot Rod question, I will have to talk to the mixer and let him know.

Question: I've noticed that for songs such as "Rattlesnake" and "Lightning Crashes" your "Hotrods" look like they are taped or bonded together somehow. Previously in black, and now clear to match. If so, why and what is the material? James Little, Brentwood, NY

Chad Gracey: Yes, my Hot Rods are taped together at the top. This helps them retain a longer life and fall apart less. The stuff used is just plain old gaffers tape. White or black is expectable.

Question: I just got a copy of your performance at Woodstock 99 and noticed in the shots that the snare you were using wasn't a Pearl piccolo. So I was just curious as to what type of snare it was, and if you'll be using that in the future for touring as opposed to a brass piccolo. - Greg

Chad Gracey: You are correct. The snare that I've been using is made by a company in Australia called Brady. It is 14" X 4" and is made of an indigenous wood from Australia called Jarrah. During the last tour in Australia the boys from Brady came to the show in New Castle and let me play on some snares and I had one made. It is silver. I will be using it as my main snare for a while. It still has the crack that I like but is a little softer in overall tone.

Question: If Live hadn't become as big as it is today, what do you think you'd be doing with your life right now? - Karolyn Knepple, Yoder, IN

Chad Gracey: If Live hadn't become as big as we have today we as a band would still be playing at a much smaller level. Music is the first thing in all of our lives. If there was no Live I guess I might be in the medical field or perhaps parapsychology. I love the idea of chasing ghosts even though I have never personally seen or heard one. I also have a fascination with the practice of medicine.

Question: Is there any specific reason you chose to be endorsed by Pearl/Zildjian (i.e. sound, heritage, etc.) ? - Kymla, Phoenix, AZ

Chad Gracey: I have always liked and played Zildjian and I love the sound of Zildjian. I play and use Pearl because I have and always will love Pearl hardware. Pearl has also come a long way in the past few years with the sound and quality of their drums.

Question: What is your favorite song to play? Do you miss York? What is your favorite venue to play? Place to visit? - Robin Jones, West Keansburg, NJ

Chad Gracey: I have two favorites: White, Discussion and Lakini's Juice. We have been working on some great new stuff of which I have not found a favorite. I do not miss York! I get back there quite often. I do sometimes miss my family in York but I get to see them a lot. My favorite venues would have to be Red Rocks in Colorado and the Gorge at George Washington. My favorite places to visit are LA, Hawaii and home. LA because I have a few good friends there. Hawaii because my wife and I spent our honeymoon there on Kauai and I am fascinated with the volcanoes on the big island. Last but not least home for obvious reasons.

Question: How has traveling/touring affected your personal life? - Karyn Markovitz, Harrisburg, PA

Chad Gracey: Traveling has affected my personal life in a few ways. My wife and I usually travel together and that's great. We don't get to see our friends at home as much as we might like. The good thing is I get to travel all over the world with my three best friends and that makes it a little more tolerable. I also have to put off the things I like to do at home such as rock climbing, hiking, mountaineering, backpacking, and my favorite thing to do, work on my house and generally fix things.

The rest of the questions are from me:

Question: How often do you change drum heads?

Chad Gracey: I change snare heads every show, tom heads every other show, and kick heads about every 40 shows.

Question: How many drumkits do you currently use/own?

Chad Gracey: I own seven kits in total. They are all Pearl but one. My first kit is a Ruether, a no name brand that I bought for 100.00 from a kid in my old neighborhood in York. I have a black export I bought for 500.00, my second kit. Another black kit that was about 1500.00. After that I got endorsed by Pearl, and thank God, The rest of my sets have been free. I love Pearl. I have a green Master series, a limited edition silver sparkle Masters series, a sort of tannish small jazz kit that I used on the Throwing Copper summer tour during the acoustic set, and my newest kit a limited edition natural mahogany Masters series.

Question: Besides rock climbing, what other interests or hobbies do you enjoy?

Chad Gracey: My other hobbies include working on and around my house fixing things like the sprinkler system and anything else that needs done. I love backpacking and hiking. I am also trying to get into mountaineering. I also spend time working out and keeping in shape for drumming.

Question: What exactly is Hogmah??? (Reader's note: Hogmah was listed in an article a few years back as being one of Chad's favorite foods)

Chad Gracey: Hogmah is a pigs stomach stuffed with sausage and potatoes and baked in the oven. I used to eat it but have gotten a clue. Patrick still loves to enjoy a bit of Hogmah at my parent's house.

Question: If you were rock climbing, and came across a small cave that had a genie in a lantern in it that offered you three wishes, what would you wish for?

Chad Gracey: This is a good question. First I would wish to know and or make contact with other Intelligent life in the universe. The government may already know more than they are telling but that is just speculation. Next, I would like to be able to travel interstellar space and visit other worlds. Third, and this could be a little selfish on my part, unlimited wealth.

Do you have a question you'd like to ask Chad? Well, it's easy to submit one! All you have to do is send an email to and if it's a question that hasn't been answered before or isn't offensive, I'll send it on to Chad and hopefully he'll be able to respond and I'll post it on the site for you to see. I hope to hear from you soon!

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