Welcome to Pro-Mark Stix In Session!
Our guest today is matchbox twenty's drummer, Paul Doucette!
Having burst on the scene in 1996 with their first album, "Yourself or Someone Like You," matchbox twenty quickly topped the record and videocharts with singles like "Push," "3am," "Real World," and "Back 2 Good."Their new album, "mad season," promises to extend the band's success even further.
Through it all, Paul Doucette has been the rhythmic power behind matchbox twenty's music. With a songwriting credit on the new album, he shows that he is multi talented as well. Join us as we chat with Paul about "mad season" and his incredible success with matchbox twenty.
We welcome Paul Doucette!
Paul Doucette: Great to be here!
GCSBinker: Paul, could you please begin by briefly telling us a bit about your style of drumming?
Paul Doucette: I am pretty heavily influenced by drummers like Kenny Aronoff. Also people who are most interested in feel and groove....Also I am a songwriter and I try to play from a songwriter perspective.
GCSBinker: Can you tell us about "Stop," the song you co-wrote with Rob Thomas for the new album? What inspired you to start writing?
Paul Doucette: That song came about actually because I was going through writer's block and my fiancee told me to go home and not come back until I had written something. So...I am up with that and Rob had a half a song that he had written so we kinda edited them together.
Susan: Do you do any listening or research to come up with different grooves, or do you jam until you hit on something you like?
Paul Doucette: I do a little of both, Susan. I am constantly researching in anything - it could be an artist or a butter commercial. I am constantly looking for groove ideas. It's a process of sifting through them and seeing what fits the song best.
jimmybrix: What's Matchbox 20's new single going to be?
Paul Doucette: We are going to put out two actually. A song called "Crutch" and a song called "If You're Gone"... We're actually making the video for "If You're Gone" next week.
Dave: Do you have any insight into the band's successes so far?
Paul Doucette: I wish I did! No, I hope it is because people like our songs and nothing else.
MediaGuide: How do you think you've grown and changed from the debut to your latest release?
Paul Doucette: Well, individually, I think that we all have become much better players. I think that I have approached songs as a more mature player. We have also all been willing to take more chances.
GCSBinker: What do you look for in your sticks and drum kit? Paul Doucette: With sticks, it's definitely feel. I like a stick that is not really heavy but is well-weighted with an even distribution of weight. With the drums it's all about the tone of the shell. I am finding that more shallow toms to be the sound that I am liking right now. With snares, I like a variety.
drummerc7: What preferences inspired your decision for the electronics and digitals that you use with your acoustic kit? Paul Doucette: I really only needed something to trigger sounds off the record so since I wasn't looking for sounds from any other source, I strictly went for pads that I like the feel of..... I found that with the Roland V drums.
Snapdragon: What kind of music did you listen to as a teenager?
Paul Doucette: I was a HUGE R.E.M. fan when I was growing up. Bands like Love and Rockets, Soul Asylum and The Replacement... I've also always been a huge Beatles fan.
Steve Ferrone: Your groove and overall feel is impeccable. Would you briefly explain the sources of inspiration and development of your "funky" feel.
Paul Doucette: First, thank you, Steve! That is very, very kind. I think that it comes from listening to a lot of Al Jackson, a lot of Motown, Stax, and R & B.... combining that with the rock influences that I have always had, I've tried to find a combination of all of those. I've always gone back to Kenny Aronoff. I can always recognize a song that he played on within a few measures and that is what I strive for.
Karen: What is your favorite Matchbox 20 song to play and why?
Paul Doucette: Oooo! I love playing a song called "The Burn" because it is a shuffle and shuffles are fun to play! I also like to play a song called "Leave"...it's just a fun, quiet groove to play.
Tibirion: Do you miss having a normal life where you can go places without having to worry about being totally mobbed by the public? Paul Doucette: Tibirion, I don't have that kind of life. I live a very normal life when I am not working. I rarely get recognized.
jimmybrix: What was the first song you ever learned how to play?
Paul Doucette: It was..thinking... "For Whom the Bell Tolls" by Metallica.
Snapdragon: Do you play other instruments?
Paul Doucette: Yes! I also play guitar and piano. Playing piano has had a huge effect on my drumming because it has opened my ears up to how percussion and melody work together because piano is really basically a percussion instrument. Playing piano helped me when deciding on parts. Guitar helps because I can understand where my guitar players are coming from, so it is easier for me to relate to them and makes my conversations with them easier when they need to change a chord.
Snapdragon: What are some of your favorite bands right now?
Paul Doucette: (laughs) There is this band called Wilco that I like a LOT. There are also a couple of songwriters that I like - a girl named Shelby Lynne and a guy named David Gray.
jimmybrix: What advice would you give to young musicians like myself?
Paul Doucette: Don't worry about anything else except the music, jimmybrix. If you don't have that, nothing else really matters anyway.
zipperhead: What age did you begin drumming?
Paul Doucette: I began drumming at 13, zipperhead. I also took about three years off from about 17 to 20 - a time that I really did not play at all.
jimmybrix: How do you think music has changed while you grew up?
Paul Doucette: I don't know that the music has necessarily changed, but I think that the production around music has changed tremendously but the songs are still just songs. I do find it hard to identify with anything that is popular right now. There is definitely a lot of great music out there.
Snapdragon: What type of equipment are you currently using?
Paul Doucette: I use Premier Artists series maple sticks. I'm using Zildjian A custom, Pro-Mark 5B naturals sticks and Roland Electronic and I always carry an assortment of snares There are a couple of Brady snares that I carry with me. Also, Premier snares and a Ludwig 400 that I love.
jimmybrix: What Matchbox 20 song can you most relate to?
Paul Doucette: I guess "Stop" because I wrote it. Out of Rob's songs...I would have to say "The Burn."
GCSBinker: What's coming up on the horizon for you?
Paul Doucette: We're going to start a new tour in September. We're going to tour and tour and tour and tour and that's pretty much it!...well, besides tour.
GCSBinker: It seems that we are almost out of time. Do you have any final comments or insights for our audience before we wrap up?
Paul Doucette: First, I'd like to thank everyone for coming in. If you're trying to become a professional musician, I wish you good luck! Try to concentrate on being the best musician that you can be. Learn to play to a click! The groove is the most important thing. Thanks, Pro-Mark, for sponsoring this chat and for supporting both me as a player and my band. Thanks, World Without Borders! This has been great! I would also like to thank Trish for being my typist tonight. I'm looking forward to seeing all of you on the road.
GCSBinker: Thank you Paul Doucette! I am so glad you could join us today here at WWB and Pro-Mark's In Session!
Tonight's chat with Paul Doucette is being brought to you by Pro-Mark Stix. For more information about Pro-Mark Stix Corporation, visit: Promark-Stix
For more information on our guest, please visit: matchboxtwenty.com