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Joel Kosche of Collective Soul

Atlanta’s own Collective Soul just completed a long run of touring and released its eighth full length album in late 2009. Now, the guys are kicking back and enjoying some quality time with friends and family. Although the quartet is planning some ‘weekend warrior’ shows, according to guitarist Joel Kosche, the guys also have been working on some side projects, including solo projects and mentoring emerging Atlanta bands.

“We’re recharging our batteries,” Kosche says. “We toured really hard last year and are getting ready to start the next record cycle too.” MDT Hint: Look out for what just may be another collaborative effort on the next album.

Kosche joined Collective Soul in 2001 and says the experience has been amazing. “The guys had a really good run in the ‘90s and, when I joined, had taken a few years off,” he says. “Sometimes that’s not good for a band’s career but, in this case, we came back in ’04 and people still care and love the songs.”

With veteran fans now bringing their kids to shows and introducing them to the new albums, including a track on the popular Twilight soundtrack, a new generation of Collective Soul fans has been born. How has the band withstood the test of time? “The songs speak for themselves,” Kosche says. “If you build your fan base around songs that resonate, a band will last. That’s why bands from the ‘70s are still so popular.” Well, songs that resonate and a healthy boost from Guitar Hero and shows like Glee and Supernatural.

Never one to rest on his laurels, Kosche also is set to release his first full length solo album, Fight Years, in June on which he did all the writing, producing and guitar playing. “I’m really proud of it,” Kosche says. “It’s a good example of what happens when you leave me alone in a studio.” Stay tuned for more about Fight Years in upcoming MDT Tracks but, in the mean, time don’t forget to check out Collective Soul at their homecoming concert June 23 with The Less and Uncle Kracker opening at Chastain Park Amphitheatre.

These are a few of Joel Kosche’s favorite things:

Favorite day trip: The High Museum

Favorite restaurant: Atlanta Fish Market

Favorite festival: The Dogwood Festival

Favorite activity: Walking with my wife … we have our spots that we frequent

Favorite upcoming local band: The Less; they’re playing with us at Chastain Park June 23 and Will Turpin talks about Eleven Standing Still a lot

What’s on repeat in your iPod right now: The new Muse record and Aimee Mann