Poseidon’s music has an emotional range that is rare in the world of musicians at Colorado College, and something that the students of CC have flocked to house parties to get a taste of. The band is spearheaded by senior Caleb Cofsky who handles rhythm guitar and vocals at live shows. Cofsky hails from Massachusetts and has been a part of the CC music scene since his first year when he connected with Poseidon drummer Jake Lauer. Ian Huschle, at least on a Wednesday afternoon, is a mellow presence and plays bass for the band. Huschle is joined by senior Jamie Rushford as the lead guitarist during Poseidon’s live sets. Poseidon’s approach stems from a shared listening history of the Grateful Dead and Phish. At times, the tender touch of Trey Anastasio can be seen leading the band forward into a Phish-esque jam. The band has been ramping up their live performances this fall, and with stand-in drummer Gabe Sashihara, the band has been wreaking frenetic havoc and spreading sweaty divinity at off-campus houses as of late.
Here’s the lineup:
Jamie Rushford, senior, lead guitarist
Ian Huschle, junior, bassist
Caleb Cofsky, senior, rhythm guitar/vocal
Gabe Sashihara, senior, lead drummer
Jake Lauer, senior, drummer abroad
What is the most frenetic party or show that you’ve played?
Gabe: “I’ve played 75 to 80 shows at CC with various different groups. I’ve kind of been one of those guys that people could call upon to fill in a part or make something, be it in a gig, or with setup for tech. I would say that overall the craziest show would be, it’s really hard to say, but I think the one that was most publicly crazy was the so-called “Riot at Armstrong Hall.”
Ian: I can’t remember how many times we played there, but the shows we played at the end of last year at Slug’s [Adam Young’s] house were pretty wild. They lasted pretty late. We played from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. and the same people were there for all three hours.
Caleb: Those shows were ripping. We bought marshmallows and threw them into the crowd and then they got stomped into the floor so the floor got really sticky. So people got stuck in the same spot and had to dance in the same spot. They just couldn’t move, but it was awesome because we forced them to stay there and listen to our music.
Jamie: I heard someone smashed a window at our show last Saturday. So that’s pretty crazy.
Gabe and Caleb: Editor’s Note: All of Poseidon ‘s members have a memory of a wilder, more untethered time at CC where student bands would get truly out of control. One such incident was “The Riot at Armstrong Hall.” Below we piece together the details of one of the most rowdy nights in recent memory.
Caleb: It was sweet, at one point everyone in the audience stormed the stage and we were all on it, over 100 people, and we were all dancing around the band on the stage and then they shut off the power, so the band couldn’t play anymore and then they turned on the house lights and security started coming up and I remember one guy was *makes chokehold motion with arm*
Gabe: We finished the song actually. I think it might have been “Can You Hear Me Knocking,” you know, by the Rolling Stones. I remember when they turned off power there were kind of multiple switches involved but I kind of just soloed while some bandmates plugged some stuff back in.
Do you guys connect a lot on the music that you are listening to in your personal lives?
Jamie: To a certain extent, yes. I think we each have parts that don’t overlap as well.
Ian: In general, I think we all are pretty big Dead and Phish fans
Caleb: I think we can all connect on the music we have listened to in the past. Growing up, I know I was a big Dead, Phish guy and I think Gabe was too.
Gabe: I avidly appreciate Phish and the Grateful Dead. Well, not avidly, but, I’m not super familiar but I’d say it’s kind of a comment on our relationships between our musical styles and preferences as listeners and performers because our experience playing with each other varies. For example, I’ve engaged with musical activities with Caleb since our freshman year.
Caleb: We’ve also engaged in sexual activities.
Gabe: That last part is probably not at all true, in fact it’s definitely not true. It’s nice to keep it light-hearted.
Do you feel like you create better music when you are feeling despair or when you are thinking ‘Wow, everything is awesome?’
Ian: For me, when I write music it comes from a part of me I can’t really articulate, and I don’t really write music. Basically, it’s just my feelings at the time wrapped up into sound.
Caleb: I think that they’re just two different kinds of music, both good. Jeff Tweedy of Wilco has a good quote about it where he says that the idea of the tortured artist and you don’t have to be depressed and lock yourself in a dark room. You can just channel what you’re feeling on both sides of the spectrum. I think I err on the side of sad music, though. I love melancholy ballads.
What have you guys been listening to lately?
Ian: I’ve been listening to a lot of Fleetwood Mac
Caleb: I’ve been listening to a lot of Mac Demarco and Beatles. Ian and I both went to see him play at the Ogden. It was so good. It was just the most entertaining thing. Never at a single moment was I disengaged and waiting for the song to end.
Ian: Caleb and I talk about it all the time. They don’t take themselves too seriously, but at the same time they’re such virtuosos. People don’t really appreciate it sometimes.
When you’re old men, what do you think you will look back and think about when you think about being in a band in college?
Ian: I don’t know how much perspective I can have on it right now, but it’s a fun thing.
Gabe: I’d say it’s not just a fun thing, but a good thing. My brother [Eli Sashihara] graduated last year, but when he was a freshman this place was a lot different. It was a lot more of a party scene. People used to dress up. It was a bit more of the Wild West here, so to speak. There were some policies and admissions policies that ultimately made this a more tame campus. It was good for decreasing the number of bad events in a sense, but there’s been one externality: the taming of the campus. There has been a discontentment with social recreation outside of an in-school context. Concurrently, there is another force which is the growing music scene at Colorado College. When Eli was a freshman there were like 8 bands in Battle of the Bands. When I was a freshman, two years later, there were something like 26 bands. That has had a good impact on the social life at this school. It helps bring people together and restores cohesion to the student body.
Caleb: I think the reason that I am in a student band like this is because house parties and events tend to be so much more fun, there’s so much more life to them, when there are student bands. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as there are real musicians playing real music.
What would you suggest to the passionate freshman that wants to get involved in music at CC?
Ian: Just get out there, somehow. Just go to a concert, get one of our numbers, or there are so many good musicians at CC. Just go out and make it happen. Honestly just ask for their number. There are no rules to it.
Caleb: I know for me, when I came in as a freshman, I know there were two or three bands that I really looked up to. There was YouJazz, King Duck, and the Raisins. But, it was like not that many bands. My year, the bands exploded because we all looked up to these bands and really just pick someone and pick someone who you look up to and get after it. Don’t give a sh-t about what anyone thinks and ask someone if you can play a show at their house and go play the show and burn it down.
What is the energy or quality that you look for in music? Why does everyone go to these shows and freak out?
Caleb: I think it’s just the rock and roll attitude. The Raisins played really good music, did originals, did good classic rock, and it was just kind of like the whole attitude. When you went to their shows you knew it was going to be a good time because no one gives a shit about anything.
Ian: Yeah, it’s just the don’t give a f-ck attitude.
How different are you now in your Wednesday afternoon life than your midnight on a Saturday?
Caleb: I think the coolest difference between me now and me at a show and me at midnight is that at midnight we are all trying to create something together. I never know really what’s going to happen but when we find a groove that we can all get into, it happened two or three times last Saturday, that’s why I play shows, for that one ‘we all find a groove together’ and it’s like a deep, deep pocket groove and it doesn’t even really matter if anyone there likes it. But if I look at Ian and make eye contact and he’s groovin’ and I look back at Gabe and he’s groovin’ and Jamie and we’re all smiling at each other, and that’s frickin’ awesome about music
Ian: I really get after it. I really like it.
Is there something you can compare with music, of touching the divine or something orgasmic?
Caleb: I’d compare it to crawling back inside my mother’s womb and floating around in her embryonic fluid. It’s definitely a warm and comfortable spot to be. It’s nice to take your ear protection out like once a show and just feel the loudness, like the organic music.
Ian: It’s super loud and super sweaty. So loud. You wouldn’t even believe how loud it is.
Gabe: You gonna Benjamin Button that sh-t?