Editors Note: A few days after this interview was conducted, Dash Ten announced unexpectedly that they were pulling out of the Warped Tour citing reasons beyond their control. A year later, the band separated and Corrin announced she was leaving the Army.
AltWire [Derek Oswald]: How has Warped Tour been for you guys so far? Have you been happy with the response your music has been getting so far?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Yeah! I mean, we’re a pretty new band. Actually, our first performance como Dash Ten was the Warped Tour kick-off!
AW: Oh wow.
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Yeah! So we’re really new and I think that’s what’s really cool about here. A lot of kids come to see the artists they love, but Warped purposefully leaves these ‘holes’ where they can go see new bands. And we end up falling into those holes and, for us, that’s really cool. There’s just so much music discovery that happens out here. And they’ll stay if they like it and they’ll leave if they don’t. So you get a pretty clear picture! It’s been a really great response so far and we feel really encouraged, ’cause our music is a little different from a lot of the stuff that’s out here. But everyone’s been really positive.
AW: Warped Tour — it seems like a pretty crazy, fun time for many bands on the tour. Has anything memorable happened so far that you’d like to share? And have you bonded with any of the other acts out there?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: We definitely love Assuming We Survive. The frontman, Adrian, is a Vet — and we’re all active-duty soldiers. So we’ve talked a lot of ‘shock talk’ that way, and they’re just really great guys. I’m acquaintances with Chad from New Found Glory and I’m a huge fan of that band so being able to meet them a little more and talk with them was great. I think Jordan’s gonna give me some ink later in the summer, ’cause he does tattoos, too! So I’m looking forward to getting the genuine article there. Also, Against The Current has been a really surprising supporter.
AW: We saw them earlier, they were real good.
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Oh, they’re amazing! Chrissy’s super sweet too and their band is three [people]. They’ve got some people on tour with them, but they’re three people just like us. But I don’t know if she happened by the set or if she came on purpose, but then she tweeted us out to her 400-bazillion followers, or whatever! [Laughs]
It’s been really cool to see who we line up with. And I think a lot of the bands think that we’re here to make some kind of political statement, because we’re soldiers or whatever? So, it’s been really cool putting that out of the way and being, like, ‘No, we’re just people and we love all people of different kinds here,’ and kind of represent the people and our Service that way. The bands have been realmente sweet to us.
AW: It’s amazing that you guys are basically made up of active-duty soldiers and combat veterans. How did that idea come about to begin a band? Did you all know each other beforehand, or did you meet each other through other means?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: We knew each other through the Army. Not really, really close but, like, all the bands that are in the Army… that’s what we originally came in to do, not this specific job.
So we knew of each other, we had friends in common. I’d actually been doing this as a solo artist in partnership with the Army for a couple of years before. And I was, like, ‘I wanna start a band,’ and I asked the people I work for if they would be interested in that and they were like, ‘Hell yeah!’ [Laughs]
So I called up Steve and Pete and we ended up deciding on the band name and I like it because I think the music I like sounds like there’s more than one person — it’s not really pop music. So I definitely am really happy that we came together and now we’re a band.
AW: You’re really the only band of your kind in the sense that you’re employed by the Army as musicians. Is this through MOS or is it something kinda different?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Yeah, our MOS is ‘Army Musician’, which is 42-Romeo — or 42-R, as normal people would say! — so we technically came in to play in whatever Army band that they put us in. But this is unique. We’re the only ones who actually record and then play original music, versus, marching bands, or covers, or whatever.
I don’t think any of us knew that we could possibly be playing original music and being out on Warped Tour and representing! [Laughs] I didn’t think we knew that could happen, so it’s been a pleasant surprise.
AW: I mean, the music you guys have released thus far is pretty fantastic! Are the songs we’ve heard so far part of an album, or will you guys be releasing an EP first, before you release a full length?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Well, the full-length that’s out right now — which is just titled ‘Dash Ten’ — it’s a compilation of songs that we’ve written over time, and kinda recorded over time, while we were trying to get this moving.
‘Cause with the Army — it’s Government so of course it takes a while to get anything actually implemented in the world! We’re looking forward to heading back into the studio and doing one album that’s all in one session, in one place, and really developing that story just all at one time; versus what we did before which was kind of gather over time.
“The uniform doesn’t blur out someone’s face and it doesn’t blur out who they are inside. That stuff doesn’t have to change. And I think that’s probably the largest misconception is that you don’t get to be your own person anymore. And that’s definitely not the case…”
AW: Now you guys are part of a steadily growing collection of artists from the military who are putting out their stories for civilians to hear. One person wanted to know, ‘Have you heard of To The Fallen Records and, if so, what are your thoughts on it?’
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: I actually know the guy who started To The Fallen Records, which is Sean. And I think it’s really cool! I’m glad that people are supporting soldiers who get out and wanna share their story through music — I think that’s awesome.
I think, for us, it’s really important that, the music has got to come first. And we love people who come from all kinds of backgrounds, whether it’s military or civilian. So we strive to make sure that our sound is not reliant on anyone’s thoughts about whether we’re soldiers or not.
But, I think it’s really cool that there’s a way out there that soldiers can kinda collaborate. I know they’ve put out a couple compilation albums and stuff like that. It is a cool place to have kind of a specialised community. But the music always has to come first.
AW: Now, as soldiers, what do you feel is the biggest thing civilians and the general public get wrong about life in the military and military service?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: I think it’s exactly what we’re out here to dispel, which is just this idea that, if you’re a soldier, that makes you a Tea Party Republican and you love war… and shooting people. And that’s just not the case.
The Army is a collection of people from all different places and backgrounds and belief systems and even the three of us — we’re very different people. We’d probably — all three of us — vote for three different people in this upcoming election.
It’s important for us, to just put that out there; more so than anything political, or whether you support politics, or what they’re doing with the military, or whatever. It’s more just about how the uniform doesn’t blur out someone’s face and it doesn’t blur out who they are inside.
That stuff doesn’t have to change. And I think that’s probably the largest misconception is that you don’t get to be your own person anymore. And that’s definitely not the case.
AW: The next two questions actually come from former U.S. Army Sergeant Bossi who was deployed in Afghanistan.
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Ok!
AW: Inquiring minds want to know: jalapeño cheddar, bacon cheddar, or chocolate peanut butter?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: [Sharp intake] …Jalapeño cheddar, for sure! Because there’s something about — when you’re talking about food like that [Laughs] — jalapeños kinda, that tastes almost like Tabasco. Like, there’s Tabasco in every kind of MRE possible, because sometimes that food needs a kick to remind, or maybe distract your taste buds, from what’s really going on. So, yeah, jalapeño cheddar, for sure!
AW: And she didn’t, but she wanted to know if you did: ‘Did you keep your moobie when you left?’
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: I did! I think I probably keep more things than I should keep. [Laughs] But I was like, ‘I’m only gonna have this…’, y’know what I mean? I keep a lot of memento-type stuff, even if I’m never gonna use it again.
AW: And last but not least: what can fans, both new and old, expect from you guys in the year ahead?
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: They can definitely expect more new music and they can expect a lot of touring. I’m actually getting out of the Army in April, and so Dash Ten is gonna be able to take on a little bit of a different life.
Just because it’s very different touring where the Army wants us to tour and touring where normal bands tour. So we probably won’t be doing as many high schools and stuff like that! But we wanna see people out here, we wanna connect with them, we wanna see them at future shows.
Since we’re so new, just learning all those new faces, that would be great for us. For a new band, I think, touring and new music is pretty much all anybody really cares about until they get to know you. So that’s what we’re concentrating a lot of our time on.
AW: Excellent! Well, on behalf of the entire AltWire staff, thank you so much for your service for this country.
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Oh, I appreciate that!
AW: Also, thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us today.
Corrin Campbell [Dash Ten]: Yeah! Thank you so much, you guys.