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Corey Smith of The Baboonz

Senior Corey Smith is a Finance major with from St. Louis who’s motto is “Never miss a class, never miss a party, never miss a gig.” When Corey isn’t studying you can find him singing for The Baboonz at any of the bars downtown or around campus.

Her Campus Mizzou: Where are you from?  
Corey Smith: Saint Louis, more specifically Wildwood. I went to Eureka High School
HC: Tell us about The Baboonz and how you started.
CS: Lance (Baker) and myself started it senior year of high school. Once we got down here we knew that there wasn’t much of a live music scene so we got together and recruited a few people. Then we went to the local bars and told them about us. They were hesitant because they don’t ever do live bands but then we eventually started playing. We picked up Tanner (Walters), Nick (Wilson), and then Daniel (Burke), who I actually met through Mizzou Idol my sophomore year.
HC: You did Mizzou Idol? Tell us more about that.
CS: I was like one of only 3 guys to make it. Lance was like, “Dude you’re doing it.” And I was like, “Alright fine.” So I rolled in literally the day of and I made it into the competition. It was pretty fun.
HC: Tell us about the rest of the members of the band.
CS: Well Nick Wilson is the lead guitar player, the one that always does the cool solos and stuff, and he lives here in Columbia. Tanner Walters is the bass player. He’s from Booneville. He’s a funny guy, but he also does a lot of the hard work for the band such as pulling the trailer and stuff. Lance Baker is the drummer, and he’s a KA with me. He’s just a goofball, always smiling and stuff. We also have two other guitar players that kind of swap on and off Daniel and DJ (Dietrich).
HC: Why did you decide to call the band The Baboonz?
CS: Lance and I had English Lit together our senior year of high school and we would always goof around. Our teacher would always say, “You guys are just acting like a bunch of baboons!” We entered the variety show just for fun, and we were trying to figure out what to name our band and we were just like…The Baboonz!
HC: So how long have you been singing?
CS: I never did choir or anything like that, but I’ve been singing for a long time. My mom can sing. I sing in church and stuff like that. I don’t really know, someone just heard me singing once and they said, “You should come sing in our praise band at our church.” So I started doing that, and then Lance told me he thought we should start a band.
HC: What type of music does the band typically play?
CS: Overall, we’re more into the 90’s stuff. We just started playing more country because people love country. We do blues, R&B, and some mainstream hip-hop stuff, but we’re trying to write our own stuff now.
HC: What’s your favorite song to perform?
CS: I’m a big Rob Thomas fan so I like to sing “Real World.” We just started playing “She’s So Mean,” Matchbox 20’s new song. That’s probably my favorite right now.
HC: Where on campus have you performed so far?
CS: We’ve done a bunch of charity events. We’ve played in the shack. Daniel and I have played multiple lunch hour acoustic sets last semester on Tuesdays. I think we’re going to do it again this semester, but I don’t know. We played at senior celebration this past semester. We’ve played at Jesse Hall and RAMS. We’ve also played at The Blue Note, Mojo’s, Bengals Bar & Grill, Harpo’s, Shiloh Bar and Grill, Quinton’s; like everywhere I feel like.
HC: What has been your favorite venue to play?
CS: I really liked playing at The Blue Note because it’s the big place on campus. But besides that I really like playing Tuesday nights at Quinton’s because we play an acoustic set, so it’s different. I also like Harpo’s a lot and Bengal’s a lot. I like Harpo’s because it’s inside and everyone’s close. They’ll get really into it and dance a lot.
HC: Where would you like to perform that you haven’t yet?
CS: I want to start traveling, going to Chicago and places, that’d be sick. I want to play at The Blue Note more, like opening for big acts, because we have a lot more original music.
HC: Who comes up with your original music?
CS: It’s mainly Nick and I, but lately Tanner has been helping a lot too.
HC: Why did you decide to start writing your own songs?
CS: I just love it. Original music really brings out who you are and what your unique group sound is. When you’re playing cover songs you have to play them so people know them. Your original music shows people what you’re really about.
HC: Do you have any funny or embarrassing stories from performances?
CS: Well, every time we have a gig we have monitors up front and people will trip on them and fall on me sometimes. This one time a girl was doing her 21 shots, and her friends asked me to sing her happy birthday. It was in Harpo’s, and I won’t forget it (her name) because it was inside. I was singing happy birthday, and about halfway through I forgot her name and it got really quiet. When I finally got her name I sang it, and my voice cracked super hard and it was super embarrassing. That was just recently.
HC: Do you want to continue with the band, after you graduate and leave Mizzou?
CS: We’ve talked about it, like right when we graduate, moving somewhere together and trying it; like Nashville, Atlanta or California. That’d be sick. I don’t know if that would ever happen, but you never know. I think we have enough originals right now, and I think some of them could be really popular.
HC: What gigs do you have coming up so our readers can come check out the band?
CS: Thursday we play at Harpo’s, Friday at Bengals and Saturday at Shiloh for game night!

To learn more about the band and find out where they’re playing next, you can check them out on Facebook  or Twitter @THE_BABOONZ_. Don’t miss out on a great night full of awesome music!

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