"Strip away all the fluff. Does the song still speak the same way when performed with just a voice and a single piano or single guitar?” This is Copeland’s test of a well written song. Lead vocalist and principal songwriter, Aaron Marsh was bred in the diverse Florida music scene where he started the band with his close friend, bassist James Likeness. During their search to finish off the line-up, Aaron found a kindred spirit in Maryland native guitarist Bryan Laurenson, with a mutual appreciation of quality pop melodies to push his writing to new levels. With a concerted effort to weave memorable melodies with insightful lyrics, the band began crafting their intelligent brand of anthemic pop songs in 2000.
Atlanta producer, Matt Goldman engineered Copeland’s first release in late 2000. This split EP with glam pop band Pacifico, not only earned Copeland some music industry attention, but also their first national audience in the form of a half dozen small East Coast US tours. For that first year, the band excitedly played in any venue that would have them, for whoever wanted to listen. This deep appreciation for their supporters has stuck with them as they’ve begun to see bigger tours.
In the summer of 2002, Copeland signed a record deal with So-Cal independent label The Militia Group and started making plans to focus on the band full time. The band felt it was in need of a fresh start in a new scene. They relocated to Atlanta in the fall. This location seemed more conducive to full time touring and closer to producer Matt Goldman’s studio where they would start a 2 month recording session for their debut full length album.
The fruit of those two months was their acclaimed opus entitled “Beneath Medicine Tree.” Tragically beautiful, and emotionally charged with themes of love, loss, and hope, the album delighted Copeland’s small existing following and earned the band a quickly growing audience. Copeland hit the road with a rigorous tour schedule, hopping from one tour to another with the likes of Switchfoot, The Juliana Theory, The Early November, Hopesfall, Mae, and countless others. They stayed on tour for an exhausting 15 months, playing over 400 shows in that time, but not just playing music every night. Every different city became a chance to meet a new group of kids at the show. Whether playing 4-square in front of the venue, eating dinner after the show, or hanging out at the merchandise table talking about music, Copeland was always excited to turn their fans into their friends.
In December of 2003, during a short break from the road, Copeland took a week to record a covers EP to be released before they begin work on their follow-up to “Beneath Medicine Tree.” Aaron said about the EP, “We wanted to give our supporters something to listen to while we worked on another record. We knew it might take us a while and we didn’t want everyone to forget about us. These were all songs that we grew up listening to that we thought we could bring something new to.” The EP, entitled “Know Nothing Stays the Same,” features Copeland’s renditions of songs by Stevie Wonder, Carly Simon, Phil Collins, Berlin, and Billy Joel.
Copeland released their second full-length album, "In Motion", in March of 2005. It was produced by Matt Goldman and Aaron Marsh. Ken Andrews mixed the album. The band has been touring around the world in support of the record. This fall, they will be touring in England and all over the United States. Look for them in other continents in the coming months.