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Seven Quick Questions... Dawes

Seven Quick Questions... Dawes

Tuesday 20th October, 2015 4:15PM

California roots outfit Dawes are en route to New Zealand to join the impressive line up for the Southern Fork Americana Festival. Currently in fulll swing, the festival is in its second year of bringing a wee downhome slice of country, folk and Americana music to central Auckland from a whole host of international and local acts.

For their Thursday evening show Dawes, which is led by brothers Taylor and Griffin Goldsmith, will be performing songs from their fourth studio album All Your Favorite Bands. Released in June, the record was laid down with the help of producer David Rawlings (who has worked with the likes of Gillian Welch and Old Crow Medicine Show) at the renowned Woodland Studios in Nashville. In anticipation of their show we caught up with Taylor to ask Seven Quick Questions about the album, among other things...

1. How has touring the new album been going? What’s a standout place you have visited over recent months?

This has definitely been our best year of touring so far. Best crowds and best shows we've ever had. It's always hard to say what has been a standout place for us. It mostly has everything to do with the show. I think Charleston SC and San Francisco were among the shows that really took us by surprise. New Zealand is definitely going to be the most exciting place we're going to that we've never been to before.

2. Dawes have been playing shows with an interesting musician named John Moreland. Can you tell us a bit more about how you connected and came to perform with him?

Our agent showed me his songs and we couldn't believe there was such a gifted songwriter on the scene right now that people knew so little about. We think he deserves to be at the top of people's lists. When we knew we were gonna play some shows together we asked him if he was interested in us backing him up on some songs. Supposedly it was the first time he's played with a band in years.

3. It seems like there is a musical community surrounding you that seems pretty tight. For example you had a bunch of famous friends put together the video for ‘All Your Favorite Bands’ single. How did that fall into place?

We feel lucky to have close relationships with our friends. And it's inevitable that any touring artist is going to end up with a lot of friends in the same line of business. We felt that having our friends sing that song for the music video would really give the song itself the right kind of context to bring it out even more.

4. Another branch of that community is the Woodland Studios in Nashville where you recorded the album. How was that experience, working with Dave Rawlings there?

Dave is a masterful musician and songwriter so we all developed a language very quickly. And there was an implicit trust and respect that helped us stay productive and performing at our best.

5. In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, you spoke about the R Kelly philosophy - and recording parts more spontaneously than in previous albums. Do you feel the new record that is closer to the live Dawes experience?

Absolutely. We're a very intuitive band. We try to strike a healthy balance between what we will do from night to night the same and what we'll try to play completely differently. With this record we were really thinking on our feet and responding to each other and I feel like that inevitably brought out our personalities as players and the relationships therein.

6. What’s your favourite song from All Your Favorite Bands?

The last track 'Now That It's Too Late, Maria'. We had no arrangement for the song. Just a very vague sense of the chord changes and structure. We ended up making a lot of the performance up on the spot and for that reason, I feel like it's the most pure representation of how we function as a band.

7.You recently shared news that Tay Strathairn, who has played keys for Dawes has departed the band. How will that change things for Dawes moving forward?

[No answer].

Watch Dawes performing 'Now That It's Too Late Maria' live in studio below...

are performing this Thursday 22nd October at The Tuning Fork in Auckland as part of the Southern Fork Americana Fest. Head over here for more information.


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