Dawes sophomore album Nothing Is Wrong gets its release Tuesday June 7th. Last week I got a chance to talk to lead man Taylor Goldsmith while the band was up in Vermont.
ATF: So Taylor, what inspired you more on this album home or touring?
TG: Out of the two I would say touring. I mean, It is easier to write about a place when you aren’t there. When you are on tour you think about home and when you are home you just think about being on the road. Hemingway used to write about Spain when he was in Montana and New York when he was in Spain, I kind of feel like it is the same process for me.
ATF: The first track on the album, “Time Spent In Las Angeles” is a great song. Did the inspiration from that all come on the road as well?
TG: Yeah, well I feel like there in an ineffable quality to a person from a certain place, and when a bunch of people are in a room together you can kind of feel that connection and all the people from L.A. can kind of pick each other out, and I feel like that is the case with people from everywhere…and that is what the song is about. And how it is hopefully an accurate portrayal of L.A.
ATF: Not being from L.A. I feel like there is a stereotype that Los Angeles is such a shallow town, even though there is a really rich history of song writers and musicians from your area.
TG: Well, you aren’t wrong. There are rich celebrities and Hollywood and the Sunset Strip, but I fell like every town has that bad crew. Every town has its good crew too. If L.A. was just the strip and Melrose I wouldn’t live there. I hate that part of town. The L.A. I love is the East Side and up in Laurel Canyon. There is a real music community, but you just have to find them, like anywhere else.
ATF: On this album did you use a similar recording process to your first album?
TG: Yeah, it was all done on two inch tapes. We recorded the whole thing more or less live. We also had a lot nicer gear and we recorded for a month instead of just the two weeks, so it gave us more time to clean it up.
ATF: On the first album you had some great musicians help ya’ll out. you had Pat Sansone from Wilco and Chris Robinson from the Black Crowes. Did you get anyone to help out for this album?
TG: Yeah, we actually got Benmont Tench, the organ player for Tom Petty and The Heart Breakers on the album. We also got Jackson Browne to do backup vocals on one song which is still hard to believe. He is just such a hero of mine.
ATF: Wow, that is pretty awesome. You also just finished playing with Robbie Roberson from The Band. How was that?
TG: That was really incredible as well. He is a real cool guy. The fact that he chose the whole band instead of just session players shows that he knows why it is important to keep a whole band together. It is so much different getting guys who have played together their whole lives instead of session guys who don’t have a history together.
ATF: Alright, last question… So ya’ll are the new face of Chevy, with your song, “When My Time Comes”, how does it feel to follow up Bob Segers’ “Like A Rock”?
TG: Bob Segar is one of my favorites. I have all his records and a lot of them that you can’t get anymore because he doesn’t want to release them on CD or digitally, which is pretty bad ass. But he is really a hero of mine. There are some people who have criticized us saying we sold out doing the whole thing. But it is kind of crazy, because it is such a dynasty if for no other reason than Bob Seger and “Like A Rock”. The big difference is “Like A Rock” was used for years and years and ours is kind of a short thing. They could quit using it next month, but it would still be an honor to be a part of it regardless.