QUICKIE OF THE WEEK: A short interview with Corey James (Carbonstone)

written by Marko Jakob | 05.04.2022 |

Pix666: Hello Corey. Thank you for your time for this interview. Are you diong these days? How are the other guys of Carbonstone?

Corey: Thanks for having me Marko! I’m doing great! Constantly staying busy and focused on all things music. Thank God for coffee 😂. The other guys are also doing well. Everyone lives such hectic lives outside of the band but none of us would change it for the world!

Pix666: Corey, when exactly did you realise that you wanted to become a musician – how did it all start, who or what inspired you?

Corey: I actually grew up a military brat so My family was constantly moving around the country. Tons of time on the road. My mother would play the Rolling Stones “Voodoo Lounge” cassette tape on repeat. That’s where I got my first taste of Rock music. I fell in love instantly! Fast forward several years, The Offspring album “Smash” drew me even further into the music world. When I finally came across that little band called KoRn…it was game over for me. That’s when I absolutely knew that I HAD to pursue music!!

Pix666: You have resurrected the band in 2019 – after a break of several years. What were the reasons for the break-up of the band back then and what was the reason for the restart?

Corey: I literally blame it on a full blown burnout. We were so active with playing constant shows, writing, recording Etc over the years that eventually everything kind of caved in on everyone. Specifically me. I definitely needed a break from all of the chaos. I really honestly thought that was going to be it for the band. Everyone eventually jumped Into different projects and we lost touch. Years went by and I found myself in a dark, stagnant place. I still continued on with music.

I never fully quit it..but nothing ever quite felt the same. Then literally out of nowhere while tracking guitars in the studio for my wife’s project (ANOXIA – check’em out 😉) it felt as if something just “woke me up”…like getting hit by a freight train. It’s super tough to explain. It literally felt as if I had been asleep for all of these years.  Now I feel that I have even more drive and passion for music than I had ever previously had.  It’s almost like I was completely resurrected in a sense. It’s still pretty amazing to speak about!

Pix666: You returned with a really great album. How were the reactions to ‘Dark Matter’?

Corey: Thank You!! 🙏🏻 The reactions were all positive thankfully! It really shocked the hell out of me. “Dark Matter” as a whole was completely written around those crazy, dark and stagnant years that I slowly trudged through.  I went through some really horrific and tragic events during the bands hiatus. The album as a whole is just really fucked up. It’s absolutely amazing seeing the fans praising and connecting with it!! 🖤

Pix666: What topics do you sing about in your songs and how do they come about?

Corey: This is a great question. My song topics are generally not happy haha! I never really sit down with a topic goal in mind when I write. Everything starts with my guitar. As soon as a guitar riff or melody connects with me, the song pretty music writes itself.  A perfect example would be “Mend”. As soon as I started messing around with that hook on guitar, the vocals and lyrics happened instantaneously.  I find that writing about darker topics not only helps me to release and vent, but ultimately helps others to do the same as well. It’s incredible that music truly is the strongest form of magic. It literally heals our souls.

Pix666: A few days ago you played your first live show since eight years. Describe the feeling of returning to the stage after such a long time.

Corey: Man…it was absolutely exhilarating!! Eight years is a LONG time! 🤣 I remember the feeling the morning of. Total butterfly’s and excitement!  It’s so wild because with all of that build up leading up to the show – I remember stepping out onto the stage as the opening track for “AM Trauma” started playing…and in that moment saying “Holy shit – it’s here. We’re finally here again! Let’s fucking GO!!”

Pix666: … and are there any plans for more concerts this year? Where can we see you perform live in 2022?

Corey: Absolutely!! Our next performance is May 21st with Flaw, Jimmie’s Chicken Shack and Tantric at the Rock On The Hill Music  Festival in Hanover, PA!  We also have some other crazy show surprises this year we can’t quite comment on yet!! Keep your eyes peeled!😉

Pix666: Recently your new single ‘S C R E A M’ was released. The video already has 30,000 views on YouTube. Do you look at such statistics and do you know where the majority of your fans and listeners live?

Corey: Yes!! Absolutely incredible! (Thank You to everyone that’s watched it!!) I’m definitely the numbers guy in the band. I feel it’s important to keep track and follow view/spin statistics. It’s the best way to really see where your core fan base is. In the beginning all those years ago, USA was our core location for our listeners…but now after all this time they have expanded to Germany, Italy, Canada, Brazil and on! Fun fact, Germany is the second highest listener location on the planet for us!! Fun fact #2, I was actually born in Bremerhaven, Germany! ☺️

Pix666: Would you rather have been a musician in the ’80s and ’90s, or do you feel right at home in this millennium with social media and all that stuff?

Corey: I was an 80’s baby so fortunately I was able to witness the massive world change once the Internet happened in the 90’s. At first I was resistant to it (the thought of the total downfall of physical CDs in exchange for digital downloads terrified the shit out of me as an aspiring artist) but now, this day in age…it can really HELP bands if they utilize it properly. Plus…I don’t think I would of faired all that well in an 80’s hair band 🤘🏻😂

Pix666: You’ve been on the road with Carbonstone for many years now. What have been the most memorable moments with the band so far?

Corey: All of them but one  of the most memorable/greatest moments for me was going out to dinner with the band ADEMA after a show. I grew up a huge fan of those guys so being able to actually hang out with them was incredible. Totally down to earth and polite dudes! We had salmon and beers at a diner at 3am haha! Neely and I had a killer time with them. Hanging with Drowning Pool was also amazing as well!! Those guys absolutely SLAY🔥

Pix666: As a musician, you certainly spend most of your time creating music – but what else do you do in your free time when you want to get your mind off things – are there any interesting hobbies that you pursue?

Corey: Before I “woke up” I was pretty big into gaming! Apex Legends was literally my obsession for years (Revenant main here🙋🏼‍♂️)..jumping into video games is always an immediate release from daily life…sadly I haven’t played in a while. On a totally random note, My wife and I have Six chickens in our backyard. We literally harvest 6 eggs a day! Breakfast for DAYS! Chickens ROCK haha! 😎

Pix666: Do you have any other news that you would like to share with the fans?

Corey: We’re constantly active on all of our Social Media accounts! Especially our fan group on Facebook (CARBONSTONE TRAUMATICS). We’re always doing contests/giveaways in there! Plus, our group members always get all of our big band news first! So If you’re reading this and aren’t a member, Jump in and join us! It’s a good time I promise!! ☺️

Pix666: Thank you very much for the interesting answers – good luck fort he future and stay healthy!!!




photos © by Carbonstone