AA: You guys have been at this for a while and you've watched as things have steadily built up. What's it like when you notice something doing well after working so hard at it?
It definitely helps keep you motivated when you find out some people like what you’re doing. I’m glad we’ve done things slow and steady though. My life stays in my control and pretty normal. I also like the idea of our music being a hidden gem.
AA: How did you meet at the Conservatory of music?
Honestly, Dusty was the best drummer in the city and he was a drum instructor at the Conservatory. I needed a drummer for a gig I had booked in Chicago so I went in to meet him and things clicked. We had a lot of the same tastes in music and that’s always important if it’s gonna work. I gave him some older songs on CD and we rehearsed once right before the gig. We both agree it was one of our best shows. It was crowded to the point there was a line down the street.
AA: How does a song start for you guys? Do you have to be together or are you guys constantly bringing bits and pieces to each other?
Each song begins differently but we enjoy it when we can jam together to write. I make it down to Nashville as often as I can and he comes to Indiana for holidays and family stuff. We do a pretty good job collaborating online too. There have been a few times when we’ve used software called Teamviewer so Dusty can control the studio computer. It’s mind-blowing because I remember recording with tape machines in the 90s. The new single “New Tattoo” was bits and pieces actually and it was the first time it happened that way.
AA: 4. What made you guys decide to put out Live in Louisville?
I found some live recordings when I was going through old band files. I debated it because I knew it was lo-fi and raw sounding in spots but decided to put it out anyway. It’s high energy and the drums are great. We wanted to give fans the chance to hear us play live because a lot of them won’t have the opportunity. I thought that was more important than having the best quality or “perfect” performances. Plus, it’s Rock n’ Roll so fuck it.
AA: What's the most challenging part of recording a record like this one?
It was less challenging than a studio session because it’s a one-take record... and it wasn’t planned as an album at all. We played the songs once and recorded a stereo mix of what we did live. When I found the songs I did some EQ and compression and then mastered it. It’s just a live mix but I like it because it sounds like you’re in the room with us. It’s also some of the only recent recordings with other players on bass (Jake McCullough) and guitar (Pat McDermott). Since 2011 it’s normally just the two of us.
AA: How did you guys decide what songs to play/put out on the live session?
AA: We’re lucky enough to get feedback on which songs our fans like the most. Those took priority but we did put some new songs that were never released before on there.
AA: What was special about the room you guys recorded the record at?
Before our gig we recorded in the rehearsal spaces at Guitar Center in Louisville. It was a cool room but by no means a legitimate recording studio. We almost didn’t rehearse there but I’m glad we did since we got those live recordings. A lot ofthe stuff we played live would never be heard otherwise.
Read Part Two of the Interview