• Christine Samaroo

Interview with Cody Weissinger

Cody Weissinger is a guitarist based out of Rochester New York. Throughout his life, Cody has been in many bands. Cody also mixes audio for live shows, which lead him to become a part of The Funeral Portrait.

EP: How have you been holding up during this time?

Cody: We've been trying to keep busy. Trying to do a lot of writing, A lot of behind the scenes stuff that thankfully with everybody being more or less immobilized. I shouldn't say thanks, but everyone's in the same spot so we’re able to make the best of it. Writing, doing videos, all that other fun stuff. We're just waiting to get the final go-ahead on a few things then we're gonna start recording the album through Better Noise.

EP: Awesome! That's great to hear!

Cody: Absolutely, I see a lot of people taking advantage of this whole quarantine. From covers to releasing some B side stuff, I think it's a really awesome sense of positivity people really need right now.

EP: When did you start playing guitar?

Cody: I started playing guitar in I wanna say 7th or 8th grade, I was probably like 12 or 13. My dad has always been in music and everything like that, so he had a few spare Amps, pedals, and guitars that he let me and my brothers use. All my brothers are musical and started at the same time.

EP: Were you self taught or did you take lessons?

Cody: So funny story about that and If anyone can take lessons off this, I took lessons for about four months, wish I stuck with it. Within me taking lessons I joined a band and we booked up for a show. I remember i told my guitar teacher I'm in a band i don't need you anymore *laughs* definitely should've kept going, I think I would be a whole lot better if I did that. For the most part, I was self-taught just listening and watching my dad play and feeding off other bandmates that I've been in bands with. Thankfully for the most part I've been in bands where I'm usually the weakest link, not to bash myself. Everyone is really talented and I've been able to feed off that.

EP: What made you want to join a band?

Cody: I was in quite a few bands before the funeral portrait, but the band before this was a little more on the serious side, life kinda happened. Not necessarily do the band anymore, more like a little break. It's been about two and a half years since I've been in the funeral portrait, The bass player hit me up looking for a fill-in guitar player, i ended up accepting, and while i was down there rehearsing it turned into me joining the band. Just being in a really active touring band is something I've always aspired to be. I love music, I love the dudes. I actually got to mix them before, sometimes i mix live sound, and i wanna say maybe six months before i mixed for them at a venue on a tour with hotel books and the energy was insane. I remember watching them and saying “man how the fuck isn't this band huge yet? It doesn’t make sense to me.” But they are incredible and I'm very excited to be in a band like the funeral portrait.

EP: What's your favorite tour moment?

Cody: Oh man *laughs* I think my favorite tour moment was last summer, we played Incarceration fest with Shinedown, Taking Back Sunday, Fozzy it was like one of my first bigger festivals shows I've played. We played Imatter fest a year prior. It was really cool, but it was cool playing a straight-up rock festival, especially the direction that the band is going in. I remember the oh shit moment when we were all set up ready to go and see a sea of people it's so surreal. It put an even bigger fire in our bellies just to keep doing the thing. it was like super i knew i wanted to do this, even more so now! This is incredible, if i can feel like this every day that would be awesome.

EP: Is there a pre-show exercise you do?

Cody: Sometimes I'll hop in the van with the vocalist and do scales with him, i don't really do it that often. I'm more of the screamy guy. Pre-show, for me I'm more of a lightweight so i don't really drink much or at least try to. Nothing really too outlandish. I like to kinda just grab my guitar, maybe run a few of the harder songs with some headphones on just in the green room, I try not to think of the show too much. Just so I can live in it doing my thing.

EP: Is there a favorite song you like to play on stage?

Cody: One of my favorite songs I like to play isn't out yet, it's a song called “friends like east” we wrote it with Josh Landry and Johnny Andrews, they are the two people whom we’re writing full length right now. They just have a really awesome vibe and energy that they bring to our music. I feel like a lot of bands tend to utilize it when it comes to a producer and things like that. We play that a good amount on tour it's cool, it's fun!

EP: You guys just made a cover of “Mad World”, what was the influence behind that?

Cody: Right around when quarantine started, I'm sure anyone on the internet saw a lot of bands were doing covers. Pass some time, keep people interested, we were tossing around ideas and at the start “Mad World” wasn't even in the carts. With all the current events in the world, we felt like “Mad World” was a really appropriate choice when we were refining our selection. We worked with Zack Keel from Hollow Front and Josh Landry, they did a really awesome job with putting this all together with us.

EP: You guys were recently signed to better noise how has that been?

Cody: It's so surreal, I'm a big Motley Crue fan, to be able to say we're label mates with Motley Crue I'm still dreaming it doesn't even feel real to me still. They've been taking really good care of us, the amount of resources given to us by them is just insane. The Funeral Portrait used to be signed before this, we were independent for a good chunk of time but just the attention they give us is amazing. We have a really really awesome team backing us, we have no complaints. We're stoked and really excited to see the album rollout. I think it'll be solid if it matches anything they've done so far.

EP: You guys have a unique sound from “Paper Mache Man” and “Holy Water” moving forward. Are you going to keep that rock style?

Cody: There are definitely aspects that you know hindsight 2020 you listen to “Paper Mache Man” and “Holy Water” we love those songs and will continue to play those songs, who knows they might even be on the record for all i know. We have so many songs we have to pick from and narrow it down. I think we're gonna try to push the envelope on a few more things. We're trying to make things weird but not for the sake of making it weird. We’re trying to make a statement with this album, trying to completely smash it out of the gate so people know this is The Funeral Portrait. It's really theatrical fun weird rock music, i think we're gonna stay true to those roots but keep expanding on it. For those few songs, it's a great base for what the album could and probably will be.

EP: You guys also made a stripped-down version of “Holy Water” was there a reason behind that?

Cody: Honestly no it's just something we always talked about doing, i remember being in the studio we all kept saying wow this sounds like we can turn it into an acoustic song easily. When you have a swiss army knife song like that, I'm sure you can have an EDM artist mess with it and make a dubstep mix. Huge shoutout to SiriusXM Octane, they shoved that down people's ear holes. Holy water is doing pretty solid right now, hopefully, one day we can do a live raw video of us doing a stripped-down version.

EP: Do you have a favorite city to play in?

Cody: That's a tough one, Atlanta is always so awesome to us that's where the band is from. I live in Upstate New York, there's a solid scene here so it's always nice playing up in my hometown in Rochester. Just playing down in Atlanta is a really nice thing. I always loved playing Sound Bar in Miami Florida, an awesome venue, super iconic. Playing the La area is really cool because i feel like for any musician it's always a big milestone.

EP: Is there any band you'd love to tour with in the future or a dream lineup?

Cody: Yeah, it's one in a million chance but if I can tour with any two bands it would be Deftones, Foo Fighters, and us. That doesn't sound like a cohesive tour but i know if i went to that show I'd have a really good time. Honestly, anything in that world, if Chris Cornell was here with us touring with Audioslave or Soundgarden that would've been cool. For bands that fit The Funeral Portrait, definitely more on the realistic end touring with bands like Don Broco would be really cool. There's this band I've been digging lately called Crowbot super reminicite of 90’s Chris Cornell type stuff, super riffy super driving. Shinedown would be really cool, i think that would be a fun tour.

EP: Moving forward is there anything you can release or a time frame on the new record?

Cody: What I can say is we're in the final preparation stage of the album, we have the songs. It's basically just picking which ones we want and then do the final recording of the project and then we're there. Everything is set in place, just waiting for a few more green arrows on some stuff. If i were to give a time frame i would say i would hope for it to be out by fall, i feel like it's pretty realistic. For anyone that's curious keep an eye out, late fall I'd say.

EP: Is there anything else you'd like to say?

​Cody: Thank you so much for supporting The Funeral Portrait during a really crazy and confusing time. We love you and we can't wait to get this music out to you guys!

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