If you go

What: Gooding

When: 8 p.m. Wednesday

Where: Laughing Goat Coffeehouse, 1709 Pearl St., Boulder, 303-440-4628

Cost: $5

More info: thelaughinggoat.com

T o keep California-by-way-of-Kansas band Gooding going for 10 years, its three members have relied on brotherly love and competition.

Gooding, the band's single-name namesake, has known Jesse Rich since they were "both knee-high to a grasshopper" and met Billy Driver in college. They've been touring pretty relentlessly for 10 years, and Gooding said they estimate they've spent more time together than the families they grew up with. It's the secret to their success.

"At the end of the day, when you're not playing, it's the other 22 hours a day you're living with these people," Gooding said. "It's more and more rare that bands really stay together for a long period of time. And we're crazy. There's times that I'll start smiling while I'm playing, not looking back at Jesse on the drums because I know 16, 32 bars out what we're going to do. It becomes ESP."

The trick, he added, is that they're not too comfortable, even if it breeds sibling-like rivalry.

"The only drawback would be that I can't impress these bastards. They know every trick I got. It's good. They don't let me get away with anything," he said. "There's always something. These guys always bring something new to the table, I just gotta make sure I keep surprising them, too. If I can surprise them -- I can definitely surprise the audience, but these guys have known me way too long."


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The chemistry plays out on stage, so they aimed for that vibe on their latest album. Buffalo will be released on April 23 and Gooding sounds exceptionally thrilled with it. Naturally, the band's straight-forward rock 'n' roll sound translates best in a raw form.

"I think this is the most indicative of our live sound. Everything on the record is made from drums, bass and guitar," Gooding said. "We all come from everything from Zeppelin, to blues, jazz, motown. My mom listen to classical music. We're a real mix of different influences, but I think, this one, we were able to hone in on what we can do best live."

To bring in enough money to keep rolling, the band drops all pretension. They license their music for movies and commercials. Their songs appear in "Iron Man 2," "Walk the Line" and "Ice Age 2," in addition to commercials for Dodge, Jeep and Chrysler.

But, as is certainly clear, the road is where Gooding thrives. Much of the music is written from inspiration pulled from tours and the band has a classic rock tour spirit.

"We're still kind of on that 'live by the sword, die by the sword' thing," Gooding said. "Rock 'n' roll is live music. I'm really lucky because the folks I play with are really strong players. No matter how hard the day is or how long the day is -- and you're cooking ramen in the coffee pot -- those problems go away when you finally hit the stage."

See them on the stage at the Laughing Goat on April 10.