Marketing grad rocks with Nixon Rodeo

By Nick Johnson, contributing writer

Rocking his way into the music world, Ethan Harrison has juggled two bands alongside finishing his marketing degree at EWU.

Before joining the music scene, Harrison was raised in Spokane by his parents who would not let him listen to secular music. It was not until he was 15 years old that he first discovered rock ‘n’ roll.

“Everything I listened to was from [the] ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s,” said Harrison. “Tommy Lee was one of the first drummers that caught my attention, and after that I started getting into other music. Whether it was punk, pop or metal, I was just taking different inspirations from different areas.”

After gaining inspiration, Harrison began teaching himself how to play the drums by listening to music on his iPod.

Although he finished his degree, Harrison would have liked to take some classes in music. He has started his own business, Colossus Productions.

“I [wanted] to help promote the music scene in any way that I could,” said Harrison. “I just didn’t have a lot of time with my marketing degree to take other classes, and you also have to be in the music department to take some of the classes.”

Before joining The Nixon Rodeo two and a half years ago, Harrison was already playing in Fallen Regiment, who performed at EWU in 2011. He decided to join The Nixon Rodeo after he had seen and played alongside them multiple times.

“We played another couple shows together and Fallen Regiment was doing really well in town, but then [The Nixon Rodeo] asked me, ‘Hey, we need a new drummer and we thought it [would] be stupid not to ask you.’”

Since Harrison joined The Nixon Rodeo, the band released their first album, “Made to Bleed,” on iTunes in May 2012. That same year, they played at the Uproar Festival.

“It was a lot, having school, work and two bands,” Harrison said. “It was a hassle, but it was totally worth it.”

According to Brent Forsyth, lead vocals, “It’s really nice having two drummers in the band.”

Travis Singleton was originally a drummer but now plays bass. Harrison and Singleton have shared ideas on drum parts for their songs on the album.

“When anybody is talking to Ethan [Harrison] about music stuff, he means business,” said Josh Crites, the lead guitar player in The Nixon Rodeo.

Harrison and The Nixon Rodeo recently finished their second album. According to Forsyth, the band used different styles for various tracks on the new album.

“There’s a lot of sacrifices all of us have to make to be in a band, but when you get to play a big show, that’s the payoff,” said Harrison.