Country artist Devin Cooper recently released his new single “The Other Guy,”. This new release comes just weeks after Devin received a monumental 7 nominations for the Country Music Alberta Awards making him the most nominated solo artist for 2023.
In addition, Devin also recently hosted his 4th “Ride To Remember“ charity event in Calgary at Webber Academy. Cooper launched the Ride To Remember initiative in 2019, which consists of a motorcycle ride and concert in support of the Alzheimer Society of Calgary, after watching a close family member struggle with the disease. The inaugural event took place at Ill-Fated Kustoms Motorcycle Shop and raised over $1,500 to help those who are dealing with Alzheimer’s disease. Since then, Devin has continued the event and raised over $12k for the cause. The 4th annual Ride to Remember included performances by Cooper and other artists, which were recorded for a future Stampede City Sessions. The goal this year was to raise an impressive $15k, which was surpassed.
I had the opportunity to chat with Devin about his new single, what he’s learned along the way, and what’s next.
Kat: Can you talk about the inspiration behind your new single “The Other Guy”?
Devin: Is the new track based on a true story? Well, a gentleman doesn’t kiss and tell…so I guess I can say the inspiration behind this track falls somewhere between fiction and reality. There is a thrill in doing the opposite of what you’re supposed to do and that is what I wanted to capture with this new track. Musically it’s bolder than anything we’ve ever done and lyrically as well. It’s about being careless and doing things on your own terms; letting your rebellious side come out without worrying what the repercussions might be, even if only for one night.
I wrote “The Other Guy” with my friend Aaron Pollock and it was one I always knew I’d record. I started playing it live as soon as we wrote it, and there were actually a few times that it got requested again before the night was over. I knew that both the song and myself had to grow and evolve before I could release it and with this next musical chapter, it finally felt like the timing was right.
Kat: What do you hope fans connect with on the new single?
Devin: I hope that the fans are able to find themselves either living vicariously through the song, or reliving a moment in their life. It’s always exciting to relive the moments where we go out on a limb and take a risk, without really worrying about what the consequences may be later on. Aside from just listening to the song, I think that the music video really takes people on a journey, and allows them to be in the moment with the two people, as the affair is happening. There were a lot of really cool visions that Ethan Burke had for the video, and it was so cool to see them come to life.
Kat: What has been a career highlight for you so far? What have you learned along the way?
Devin: One of the highlights of my career to this point, happened during the recording session of my last single “Underdog”. We were out in Vancouver at The Warehouse Studio (owned by Bryan Adams). Bryan happened to be at the studio that day, and came down stairs after we were done recording, introduced himself to myself and my band, and then took about an hour or so of his time, gave us a complete tour of the studio and gave me some insight on his career, asked me about what I was doing in my career, and gave me some really good advice. He was by far one of the nicest, most genuine, and down to earth people I have ever had the pleasure of talking to in my life. Not only that, growing up, I was a huge Bryan Adams fan (and still am), so aside from the amazing advice he gave me, it was really cool to be able to sit there and have a conversation with someone who I have looked up to as an artist, songwriter, and performer my whole life.
Kat: You recently hosted your 4th “Ride To Remember” charity event in Calgary at Webber Academy. You launched the Ride To Remember initiative in 2019, which consists of a motorcycle ride and concert in support of the Alzheimer Society of Calgary. Why is this charity event important to you, and how can the community participate?
Devin: We just had the 4th Annual Ride To Remember on Feb, 25th, and it was an unbelievable success. I started volunteering for Alberta health Services when I was 7 years old, in a continuing care facility where my mom worked. Fast forward to about 14 or 15, and I started performing music for the residents in the continuing care facility. I remember very vividly one day, I started playing an Elvis tune, and a Johnny Cash tune – there were a few residents who were in late stage Alzhemers, and were mostly non-responsive to most things during the day. When I started playing those 2 songs, their faces lit up, they started clapping,and even started singing along. I always knew that music could make an impact on people, but seeing something like that first hand, at 14 years old was something I’ll never forget.
Fast forward to 2019, where I launched Ride To Remember. The 1st year was a motorcycle ride, concert, and fundraiser for the Alzheimer Society of Calgary. In 2020, we had to pivot and moved the event to a virtual online songwriter round, still surrounded by motorcycles. That’s when it started to become more of a motorcycle themed event. In the first 3 years, we raised over $12,000 for the Alzheimer Society of Calgary. This year, for our 4th annual event, we wanted to increase our reach, and increase the size of the event. We went from a 50 person room, so a 350 person theatre, at Webber Academy. The show was also filmed and recorded and will be released as a Stampede City Sessions live TV episode on PBS and KSPS in the spring of 2023. The venue was packed, and we had a ton of amazing silent auction items donated by local businesses so that we could auction them off to raise money. Through many generous online donations, and the silent auction, we were able to surpass our goal of raising $15,000, and we ended up raising over $40,000.
We’re going to be hosting the 5th Annual Event in 2024 in Calgary again, and there will be an online donation link, as well as many ways to participate in the event. Stay tuned on my website for more Ride To Remember info coming about the 5th Annual Event.
If you’re not in the Calgary area, but still want to help, reach out to your local Alzheimer Society and see if they are in need of volunteers, or how you can help them with their needs. Thanks for your support.
Kat: What can we expect from you for the balance of 2023?
Devin: We’ve got a ton of new music that we’re working on, a bunch of shows were really excited to announce, as well as a few other projects I am excited to share with everyone. We’re right at the point where we are getting ready to announce a few more things, so stay tuned on all my socials and we’ll have some new music, and shows coming for you here really soon! It’s gonna be a great year, and I really can’t wait.
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