Hi Kenny, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
Thank you! I’ve been great, thanks for asking. Even better now that I have some new music out there!
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Ain’t Too Late For Memphis”?
“Memphis” turned out to be a comeback anthem of sorts for me. When I first started getting song ideas for this project, I thought some of them were a little too country sounding to put on a rock record, so I was toying with the idea of maybe doing a country album as well under a pseudonym….hahahaha like anyone knew who Kenny Dubman was anyway, I just cracked myself up! “Memphis” was one of those, but after I started to toy with an arrangement, I thought it became rock sounding enough. Lyrically, I had this thought l like “what if I had the opportunity to just walk away from everything in NJ, go to Nashville, and pursue music full time again, would I have the balls to do it?” “Memphis” sang better than “Nashville”, so I used it…. Memphis having a pretty major musical history as well. Memphis just became a metaphor for getting off your ass and making something you’ve been longing for become a reality. Which is what I did!
Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?
Yeah, my being out of the game for way too long.
Any plans to release a video for the single?
We have the song up on YouTube, but it’s just the album art over a cool background. I’d actually love to do a video for “Son Of A Colt .45″…. I have some absolutely hilarious ideas for it. As far as videos, the funnier the better. I could never be Johnny Serious rock dude in a vid, it would just seem really really goofy and dumb to me. I’m all about the humor.
The single comes off your new album Reckless Abandon – what’s the story behind the title?
Simple… it’s the way I went about making this record. Full steam ahead, expense and everything else be damned! Once I decided to do it, I just put the throttle wide open.
How was the recording and writing process?
Fantastic. The greatest high is when a song that I’m writing comes together; when it “clicks” and I know it’s a keeper. This doesn’t happen with all song ideas, believe me. If an idea clicks, I know right away, and I’ll end up recording it. Those are the ones you hear on “Reckless Abandon”.
Tracking the songs was pretty amazing. It wasn’t until then that I got to hear them for the first time with drums, bass, and electric guitar. All the songs were written and arranged alone on an acoustic guitar, so when they came to life through the studio monitors, it was like Dr. Frankenstein was applying the current to his monster and watching it sit up for the first time!
What led to record a very 70’s classic rock infused material?
I am a child of the 70’s! It’s my favorite musical era by far, having been schooled by all the greats….. Zep, Floyd, Aerosmith, Yes, Queen, Johnny and Edgar Winter, Rick Derringer, Rush, Skynyrd, The Allman Brothers, Priest, UFO….the list goes on. So naturally, my writing is going to be in that vein. It certainly wasn’t intentional, it’ just what naturally came out.
How has your previous background have influenced this new project?
Not sure I can say that anything in my previous background really influenced this project… with the exception of the actual music I grew up on. The trigger, however, was getting back on my feet spiritually after a very long, very tough period of my life. When I started to feel good again, the ideas started flowing. I should also mention that I discovered and listened to Blackberry Smoke’s “The Whippoorwill” album every day for over a year while I was climbing outta the hole. I couldn’t believe how great it was… is…. and I thought “if this band is out there making music like this and people care; people are digging the shit out of it, then maybe I can put out something and it may actually have a shot”. Gotta give those guys mad props for writing some of the best songs out there today, they are phenomenal.
What aspects of your life did you get to explore on this album?
Welp, the return to music aspect was covered above in “Memphis”. My journey through a very dark time is graphically chronicled in “Wolf At The Door”; you readers are gonna have to listen to it and draw your own conclusions, hahahahah! That theme, with a very positive outcome, is also the basis of “After The Bomb Fell”. My Jewish roots are illustrated in “Little Venom”; it’s a history of persecution that ends with the formation of Israel, though still surrounded by enemies that would love to see them wiped off the map. “Ghost On The Wind” kind of summarizes what it was like to be looking for a girl that may not exist. I just gave up on that, hahahah I learned to love being single, it’s absolutely awesome.
Would the whole album follow the story of a particular musician, meaning, it’s a sort of a concept record?
Nope, not at all. Though the next one has a theme that runs through quite a few songs, so maybe that one will end up being a concept album.
Any plans to hit the road?
Yes, but it’s tougher to make happen as a solo artist. With a band, everyone has a stake, and is fired up to play live when a recording is done. In my case, I’m assembling players that are hired to do a job that takes an enormous amount of preparation; these songs aren’t Ramones arrangements! We’re not 20 year old kids, and everyone I’ll be working with has jobs, kids, schedules. It’s not gonna be easy, but I’ll make it happen somehow. At the moment, I’m opening some shows around here (NJ) doing acoustic duo arrangements of the songs….which is easy because they were all written on acoustic guitar.
What else is happening next in Kenny Dubman’s world?