Q&A with Hayden Wheeler of Fredericton’s Goofetroope


Hayden Wheeler (vocals/guitar) took some time with Fredericton Locals to fill us in on the ins and outs of local alt-jam/rock trio Goofetroop. You can catch Goofetroop at Reneu Boutique Tues, Oct. 29 with The Famines, Wild Domestic and Motherhood. They’ve also been selected for the 3rd annual NB Musicians Emerge Festival, where they’ll workshop with other artists and perform during the two day event (Nov. 15-16). Tickets are available at Read’s Newsstand, Reneu Boutique and Backstreet Records

Q. When and why did Goofetroope begin?

A. Goofetroope started in January of this year as a two piece and in April we added our synth player, Tate [LeJeune], and started gigging

Q. You’ve recently been on the bill with international touring artists like Calgary’s Rae Spoon and Vancouver-based Jay Arner. How have those experiences been?

A. I guess the coolest part about playing around town is the stellar people you meet. I don’t think we’ve met a touring artist and been able to say, “man, that dude was a jerk!” Monomyth was cool, Rae Spoon was totally inspirational and super moving and kind, Jay Arner is just unbelievably talented and has to be blowing up sometime soon.

Glorious Moonrockets, Nap Eyes, the Backholmes, and all of the other touring artists that we played with were all amazing people with no exceptions. It hasn’t been a “superstar” kind of feel or anything, the bands do a great job of making everybody feel equal, and just having people listen to us was a blast.

I’ve got to say, the dudes around town have been crazy supportive too. Mootherhood, The Ray Finks (rip), Eugene, Redwood Fields, The Lee Harvey Oswalds, so many more too, they are all just crazy supportive and it was almost weird to see people being so nice and just all around cool and equalistic towards a bunch of high school punks. That was super awesome.

Q. Great news with the NB Musicians Emerge. What do you hope Goofetroope will gain from being a part of the festival?

A. The lineup of Emerge is something that we are all stoked about (been looking forward to playing with Shorty Tubbs, Pastel Skeleton, and Celestial Sunrise for a while!), and I’m sure they will all be just as amazing as everybody else in our experiences.

Goofetroope was always about having fun, to begin with. It was really just two dudes being total idiots. But when things started to unfold we where like, “okay now maybe lets just be an idiot in public too.” Like we never got any more serious about anything other than music while playing in all of the lineups we are super thankful for, so I guess after Emerge we will be whatever.

I don’t think we will ever say “okay time to pull up our socks and become a different band” or anything of the like. It’s more just being wherever people seem to want us to be, and lately that has been really nice.

Q. What’s next for Goofetroope? Are there plans to stay in Fredericton after graduation?

A. So in that I guess, what’s next for Goofetroope will be just whatever people ask. We might move into the ground, but in whatever we do I guess its all about fun. We are all in high school, two in Leo Hayes and one in FHS, and we’ve all got different plans at the end of this school year (two of us graduation, Devon [Cole] and I).

So I mean, life may get in the way, but we will take everything that comes our way, and I’m pretty sure we are all staying in Fredericton because we’re all scared of leaving. All in all I mean, working with Dev and Tate, Micheal Taggart, Bondo and all the other CHSR dudes, Zach and Chris from ASAD, and everybody has been super amazing, and I know Tate and Devon and I will always keep making music and recycle ourselves.

It’s hard to say what the future holds, seeing as how our entire lives, being in grad year for the most part, aren’t going to stay the same for much longer, and our musical self will (maybe?) change as well.


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