So we were approached with the opportunity to interview the band Dancing With Paris from Toronto. Here’s that interview with guitarist Andrew Wilson:
First of all, I want to thank you guys for taking the time out of your busy schedules to do this interview for us.
No problem guys, we always will find the time to answer any questions that people have about the band or for advice of sorts.
You’re getting ready to go on tour with Famous Last Words on December. How did this tour come together and what’s your favorite part about touring?
I guess you could say that we are getting ready for the tour. We have been doing weekend stints since the end of October in support of our new album ‘The Drought’. So when we hit the road with the Famous Last Guys people will be in for quite the treat when they come out to the show. As for how the tour came together CB Booking approached out manager about teaming up with FLW for the tour and after a couple emails back and forth things were already on the roll.
You recently released a new album “The Drought” why was that title chosen and how was the writing process for the record?
There are a couple meanings/reasons why we went with the album name ‘The Drought’. If you look up the definition of Drought you will see a couple meanings, a period of dry weather, an extreme shortage, or a thirst. When we read definitions we all felt that in one way or another they also defined how we feel about the state of the music scene today, and our ‘thirst’ to make a solid impact on the scene today. It also tired very nice together with the title of our first EP, There’s Something In The Water.
We started writing this album last winter while still playing off dates. There was a lot of thought put into it. For the month of January we started really going over part ideas and getting song skeletons laid out in James’ basement. February and the first couple weeks in March we left the basement and rented a jam hall to start to fully get the feel of what we had been writing. At the jam space or the Litter Box which we called it, because of the everlasting damp carpet smell. We were writing/tweeking 10 of the songs that are on the album, the other two ‘Speculation and Lights To Lights were written in the studio. We were spending roughly 40 hours a week jamming, demoing out songs for our producer Shawn Lefebvre (Cancer Bats, Billy Tallent, Muse, LA Guns), really making sure that everyone was happy with what we were going into the studio with. We tracked drums the last weekend in March and Shawn headed back to Ottawa for a week to edit and semi mix the drums for us to start to track the remainder of the album. Just over a week later we headed back the Pocket for another 10 days to finish the guitar, bass, vocals and group vocals. After tracking on average 12 hour day to finish everything we had planned, Shawn headed back in Ottawa to mix the album which took about 2 weeks. The album was then emailed over to Noah Mintz at Lacqure Channel in Toronto. This pretty much sums up the writing and recording of the album in a nut shell.
How do you feel about self-releasing things versus being on a label? What are the pros and cons to both?
There are advantages and disadvantages with having a label behind you. The advantage is they will help or fund the full cost for you to record and marketing of the new album, and any tour band knows it’s hard to come up with X amount of dollars to record that next album let alone write the new album on the road. With a label fronting all this money for the project most bands are forever in debut to the label and end up never owning their masters which means they have very little say what happens with the tracks or seeing profits from the album. When releasing everything on your own you have 100% creative control and final say on everything. With the digital age we live in today any band is available to get their tunes on iTunes, Bandcamp Facebook, it really is endless.
We chose to released and record ‘The Drought’ on our own, there were some offers on the table but no one was offering us anything that we weren’t already able to do on our own. We are a very DIY band and have been from day one and recommend that every band do it DIY as long as you can. You are going to learn a lot more and have an upper hand when labels, management, PR companies come knocking at your door.
If you could change anything about the recording process for your next record, what would it be and why?
I wouldn’t necessarily change anything about the process. There are things that you learn as you go and things that you remember to do differently the next time around. For me its about the learning experience and all about the trial and error. Personally, I would like to take more time in the studio to make sure everything is perfect and have time to sit on it and listen for a couple months because changes will always come up.
What’s the cruelest thing a band or band member has done to you guys on tour, whether out of fun or just to be cruel?
No one has ever done anything cruel to us on tour, the ‘cruelest’ thing that we have done would be playing this game Wet Sack that we came up with on our last tour. It’s sort of like tag but with water. The way the game works is the person that was ‘it’ needs to strategically find a way to toss water on their victims crouch, making it look like they have peed their pants to some degree. Also there are no tag back, and if the ‘it’ person misses their victim or the victim, doges the water they are still it but don’t have to deal with the Wet Sack for a couple of hours. We also had it that the ‘it’ person was not allowed to be ‘it’ for more then 12 hours, keeping everyone on their toes for the full tour. It’s a great way to pass time and to get to really know the other bans(s) you are on the road with.
We also hear alot about bands pulling pranks on their management. What is the funniest thing you guys have pulled on your manager and how did he react to it?
We never have pulled any pranks on our management or manager sorry we don’t have any funny stories there. If anything we pull pranks on each other or just make fun of each like every other band does. With us John gets the worst of it, if you ever get the chance ask him what the meaning to the song title Lights To Lights that is on the new album.
Well, it’s been a pleasure sitting down and doing this interview with you guys. Anything else you’d like our readers to know before we wrap it up?
No worries guys thanks for talking with us about the new album and the upcoming tour! If you are into see some cool and unique art head over to Wilson Art (https://www.facebook.com/wilsonmedia). This is what Wilson gets up to on his down time from the band. If you ever are looking for a custom tattoo, painting, sketch, drop us or him a line!
Go pick up their new album “The Drought” now on iTunes and give them a “like” on facebook at Dancing With Paris!