Logan Roth and Arjun Dube of Trap Rabbit talk with Dan about forming a musical bond early on in college, of moving to Philadelphia with seemingly no plan, and playing in a basement for hours and hours, becoming what we now think of as a highly energetic, bombastic instrumental duo. The Philadelphia community, the pros and cons of virtuosity, and the soundtrack to Sonic the Hedgehog are all on the table in this very spirited conversation with two young but very experienced players. Check out their EP, 'Empress', produced by Eric Bazilian (The Hooters).
From the posts on the Philly DIY boards to the mic, Dan and Rasan talk about Rasan's return to songwriting and playing after a few years laying low. His band, Rasan In The Heyday (emphasis on "In"), are working hard, playing tons of shows, and working on new material as we speak. Dan and Rasan talk over Rasan's upbringing, his senior project of having his first rock band, and their mutual love of acts like Tegan and Sara, Fiona Apple, and Regina Spektor.
Nick Rahn and Danielle Lovier have a band and a life together. Back from a long stint in New York City and here to stay, they talk to Dan about the differences in the scenes, writing together, different ways to practice, too many dogs in Point Breeze, and their band, all boy/all girl.
Dan has two punk rock musicians from Philly's rough-and-tumble 90s scene: Geeta Simons (Rockula, Swisher) and Christine Weiser (Suffacox, Mae Pang), to talk about their newest project, RunHideFight. They talk guitars, growing up, the fun and challenges of making music now, of the ever-pressing "balance" of being moms that rock (both literally and figuratively), and how RunHideFight is something of a Philly super-group, featuring Brother JT (The Original Sins) and Jon Kois (Marah, Three 4 Tens). The band has a new 7" coming out on Hidden Volume Records on 9/28.
Dan sits down in the control room of Uniform Recording to talk to producer/engineer/musician Jeff Zeigler about the life he's made making records and his own music in Philadelphia for the last two decades. While you might not know Jeff by name, you'd definitely be familiar with some of the artists he's helped: War On Drugs, Kurt Vile, Steve Gunn, Frightened Rabbit, and Waxahatchee's Allison Crutchfield, to name a few. He has a remarkable project called Valley Exit (the debut record gets Dan's big seal of approval), and has been a champion of Philadelphia talent from the get go. Dan and Jeff talk growing up in New Jersey, how to find punk in the 80s, starting your own studio, and the fun of working with really talented people who know what they want.
Returning to the table, Hayden Sammak, aka Deadfellow, talks about his upcoming record, 'Millennials In Love (And Other Pre-Apocalyptic Standards)'. Recorded in Nashville with Carl Broemel (My Morning Jacket) and Robert Crowell (ex-Deer Tick), and in Philadelphia with Phil Nicolo (Studio 4), the record is out 9/14. Hayden and Dan chat about working in the studio with your heroes, management changes, and the joys of being friends with some really high class musicians.
Hetepsa (Briana Mills) and Nu Ra (Mark Cave) chat with Dan about growing up in 'Uptown Philadelphia', going to a unique ag/tech high school and competing in farm competitions, and their path to forming Camp Candle and making their extraordinary music. They riff on old radio classics like 'Quiet Storm', talk about live shows, writing together, and the ever-changing city that is Philadelphia.
With his brand new release, 'Cissy', in tow, Sean and Dan delve into the deepest parts of that record. They also talk about Sean's journey from classical percussionist to 'slutty folk' musician, Bob Dylan, recording the record at a breakneck speed over a few days, and the chaos that is this modern landscape.
On her way through Philly on tour, Emily takes time out to talk to Dan about living in Buenos Aires, her love of words and languages, South American time management, and how the US looks these days to an ex-pat. Emily performs two amazing songs, one in Spanish, and is a voice you should acquaint yourself with right away.
Jacopo may be Italian born, but he's been all over the world and back, and it shows in his music. Part gypsy folk, part Balkan, part moody rock, all original, Dan and Jacopo talk about his many records and travels (including his 500 mile hike of the Camino de Santiago). Improvisation, touring Europe, the kazoo, and The Cure: it's all covered (and more) in this conversation.
In Part 2 of this conversation, Dan and Rocco talk in detail about Rocco's project, New Speedway, and the new record, 'Total Babe', out on Time Castle Recordings. The nature of psychedelia, working with limitations, and what it all even means when it's done live: all this and more gets hashed out here.
Rocco Renzetti was the first Philly musician Dan met when he moved to the city so many years ago. Dan and Rocco talk about Rocco's upbringing in the Philly during the years when the city wasn't the most desirable place to hang out, and what they think about it being a destination nowadays for music and more. Rocco details his former project, Elevator Parade, and how his following project, New Speedway, began to form out of it, as well as the many forms of psychedelia that have influenced him.
For the 100th episode, Dan sits down with his brother, Dave, to talk about what it is to be a producer, a musician, and a creative person. Taped at Dave's studio in Western New York (1809 Studios), the two brothers talk about how each of them have helped shape each other's path, and clue each other in on things they might now have already known. Thanks to all the listeners over these 100 episodes, it's been a blast, and there are plenty more to come.
Think of this episode as a sort of 'night before'. With the 100th episode nearly upon us, Dan put together a look at some of the highlights of the last three and a half years of the show. Listen to selections from conversations from Joe Reinhart, Kyle Pulley, Marley McNamara, John Vettese, and more. Musical highlights, too! Enjoy a look at just a few of the many great episodes over the years.
On the eve of his departure for Portugal, Brian and Dan talk about Brian's jazz training, love of the saxophone, his time with Swift Technique, and his album under the name 'Bison’s Big Bang’. Brian recounts his early days as a music student in Philly, and how studying the dynamic of different kinds of jazz groups helped inform his own record, 'Pure Imagination’.
Growing up on a beach resort in Italy, loving opera and Motown, and having a very healthy obsession with good food, Valentina talks on all these things and more. From her former band, Sunshine Superman, to her newer solo work and her work with her folk band, Sparkle Pony, Dan and Valentina cover a lot of ground, and still manage to geek out about food, too.
Photo by Lisa Schaffer
Dan met Luke pretty recently at a Philly DIY gathering about press and promo, and was impressed by his knowledge of how to get your band out there. After listening to Luke's band, Port Arthur, it was a no-brainer to get him on the show. Dan and Luke talk Luke's classical training, his knack for arrangement, his record label Hickory Lane, and their impressions of Philly and the music and art therein.
Sarah Puleo and Eric Zrinsky of goodnight/goodluck sit down with Dan to talk about their new EP, 'Missing', working with Joe Reinhart (Hop Along) at The Headroom, and how letting go of careerist expectations can result in a much more satisfying experience as a band.
MH the Verb, aka Marcus Harris, comes back for an hour full of great conversation and insight. Afro-futurism, touring, Oakland and the Bay area, A Tribe Called Quest, the tumultuous year that was 2016, and the making of his new record, ‘Afronaut’, are all on the table as Dan and MH catch up. They try their best not to be cranky old dudes, and are mostly successful.
From her upbringing in State College to her time at Berklee to her arrival in Philadelphia, Ellen Tiberio-Shultz has been building an impressive body of music. Dan and Ellen talk about playing house shows as a teen, the trappings of "authenticity", her complicated feelings about her music education (being one of the only women studying guitar amidst a "sea of dudes"), and the amazing people she's met along the way who have helped her become the musician she is now.
It's great to check back in with a past guest and see what's been going on. Andrew Corkery was on back in the summer of 2016, and this time, he's brought along bandmate Ed Flynn to talk about what they're up to. Touring, covers, and growing up in New Jersey are all talked about, and we check out a track from their album, 'Almost Lifelike'.
Andrew Chalfen fronts the post-punk instrumental band I Think Like Midnight, and plays one mean guitar. With a new record, 'This Land Is Your Mind' (produced by Brian McTear), out in the world, Dan and Andrew talk Andrew's upbringing outside Boston, their love of the late Tommy Keane, and still being on the hunt for new music that wows them. Stick around to the end for a preview of the new record with the track 'Daychord'.
Andrew Harris fronts The Naked Sun, a folk-rock band that's releasing it's third record, 'War With Shadows'. Dan and Drew talk about the band working with producer Brian McTear (War On Drugs, Kurt Vile), the writing process, the importance of singing together, and the age old battle with squirrels in your garden.
Dan and John Faye have been trying to sit down together for nearly two years, and it is well worth the wait. John talks about his long rollercoaster of a music career, from signing to a major label in the mid 90s (The Caulfields) to releasing nearly a dozen independent releases since. Taking the next year off from his usually non-stop performance schedule, John talks about focusing on his memoir, '1-Way To Avalon', and how it's shaping up to be anything but the typical rock n' roll bio.
Dan talks to Paul, a young and incredibly accomplished electronic musician, about his massive body of work and the unique way he's chosen to string it all together. Paul makes music under more than a dozen different project names, and they all intertwine in some way. It's a bit of a head trip, and thankfully Paul has it all jotted down in a notebook to keep it straight. It's a spirited conversation about making music, having visual elements play a role, and the joy of losing yourself in the work. Check him out at forestkids.bandcamp.com.