|Cropduster rock like Ween, roll like the Stones.|
devotion to improving as artists was rewarded in 2000 with The
Musician's Atlas Independent Music Award for Best Rock Act. Cropduster
picked up the plaque for "Nothin's Gonna Change." Judges on
the panel included Ben Folds and lady "Magnolia," Amiee Mann.
"I was pretty surprised at first," Maurizi said. "I was like 'Holy shit dude, this is pretty cool.'"
"You never think about winning awards when you are writing songs, unless you are writing them for Barbara Streisand. But now we have a nice little plaque hanging in our bathroom." Future shock.
Maurizi said the recognition the Atlas award brought has helped jumpstart their career and receive attention beyond their native New Jersey, from Billboard to College Music Journal. Nut as Cropduster slowly infects the nation with their unique sound, Maurizi remains humble
"Right now, I am concerned with making enough money to pay the rent," Maurizi said. "We are very serious about what we do, but we don't take ourselves too seriously."
As a band that thrives on creativity and experimentation, Cropduster does not quite fit into the sugary landscape of pop music today. But Maurizi said he's optimistic about the future of music and confident that people will be over Britney Spears and friends in no time.
"Things go in cycles and the times in music now aren't all that different from the late 80's with Paula Abdul and The New Kids on the Block," Maurizi said. "Because of that, god things will happen.
Right now, Cropduster is part of The Music Syndicate, Inc., which starter in 1997 as a college and loud rock radio promotions company and later expanded to include a management department, street team, and We Put Out Records. Jon Landman was part of the original five that founded the grassroots, family-oriented establishment. When asked about the company's mission and reason for existing, Landman quickly responded with an explanation of the We Put Out Records moniker.
"The whole idea behind the name, besides that it sort of gets a chuckle every time you mention it," Landman said. "is that there are so many good bands out there without record deals and with what we do it was like, 'You know we should start putting records out.'"
Landman added that when he first heard Cropduster, he was skeptical.
"I was like, 'So what?' And then I was driving home from work one night, put them on and it was like the stars aligned. I don't know what happened."
If any of the major labels come knocking now that Cropduster is starting to receive some attention, Maurizi said that he would be careful about making the move to the big, commercialized leagues.
"We wouldn't just sign to a major label deal," he said. "Anyway, it would be really cause they were telling us 'we don't like this song' or 'we need more hits.'"
"We would be like 'fuck you' because this is what you're getting. If you don't want to put it out, don't put it out."
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