Hi folks, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
Oh gosh we have been burning the candle at both ends, haha, I’m honestly not sure day it is half the time but it’s all been worth it! – Desi
Very busy!!! But also, very good. – Cody
Can you talk to us more about your song “Misunderstanding”?
Yeah, we’d be happy to. – Cody
Cody wrote this song so I don’t want to assume I know exactly where he was coming from but I can recall everything that had been happening around us at the time it was written and when he put those lyrics into my hands and asked me to sing through it…. I felt it! Every line.-Desi
Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?
It was more like a series of events. We had been having some trouble financially. The truth is, we were kinda in a place where we were partying and running from our problems. We had done all these tours, and made some investments in our band that didn’t pan out. We had hired some folks to help us out, it was very expensive, and ultimately… very fruitless. As result, we did a Midwest and West Coast tour to promote our previous album, and it felt like a total wash. In reality it wasn’t, but it felt that way. Getting home, our debt was out of control and our bills were just piling up on top of us. As result, Desi and I were fighting more than usual. Drinking more than usual as well. On many nights, we would have a few drinks and kinda realize what was going on. We were drinking because it felt like the only way we could escape the reality and stress of our day to day lives. It wasn’t a healthy escape, but an escape nonetheless. On one such night, I picked up the guitar and just kinda banged out that song. Its a song about Misunderstandings… and the underlying problems that lead to them. Since then we’ve kinda got a handle on everything… a big step forward was to stop all the drinking, and start taking control of our lives again. We are in much better shape now. We just needed to do some soul searching… make some changes…. get our hands back on the steering wheel.
Yeah, the song is pretty much literal. It’s about Misunderstanding a situation. – Desi
Any plans to release a video for the track?
No plans yet. But that doesn’t mean we won’t end up making one.-Cody
The single comes off your new album Yes, This Is Killing Us – what’s the story behind the title?
I feel like the explanation for the song “Misunderstanding” kinda sums it up. We were really struggling there for a while. Pushing ourselves beyond our limits… and yet we just keep doing it!
“Yes this is Killing is” is a line from the last song on the album. It starts out, “yes this killing us, why must we live for the night” and eventually ends with “what was once killing us, now makes us feel so alive.”
The song is titled “Open your Eyes.” We both connected with that song in particular when the album was complete, and it was in our minds when it came time to come up with a title. We were both exhausted, sickly and felt like raw exposed nerves when all was said and done. We often asked ourselves, what are we doing all this for? Should we just get regular jobs and live a normal life? Hahaha this is killing us! So when Cody joked about that being the title nothing else made more sense! -Desi
How was the recording and writing process?
The writing process was pretty fluid. We just wrote and wrote. We must’ve had 50-60 songs before we narrowed it down to 16 for the Little Rock Sessions… and then from there whittled it down to the 11 that ultimately made it onto the album.
As far as the recording process goes… that was an absolute joy!! We had a great band. Stephen Lee, Bo Halford, and Andrew Bones. We all went to Little Rock together and worked with Jason Weinheimer. We were really prepared, and by that I mean… we had really rehearsed the tunes… and also had plenty of whiskey and champagne… haha. We were like kids again in there. Sure, we were playing all these tunes about heartbreak and dissapointment, but we were having an absolute blast doing it!! I can’t think of anything more cathartic that playing music. There were times where we were just laughing and laughing like crazy people!!! We really bonded with those guys that weekend in Little Rock. Then, when we got home, the fun continued as we collaborated with Chris Combs and John Calvin Abney… just everyone we worked with. Everyone was so great. There was a real collaborative effort this time. It felt more like a team than just a duo.
The recording process was amazing! We had the opportunity to record analog and knowing that we had some pretty intense rehearsals leading up to those three days in the studio. By the time we got there we felt ready and were able to just have fun with it! It was a really cool experience getting to play all in the same room while tracking. I don’t know if I’ll ever strive to record any other way! It was so much more natural. -Desi
What role does Tulsa play in your music?
Tulsa is a music town. I’ve been here for a long time. You just have all this history. Leon Russell, JJ Cale, Dwight Twilley, then of course all the guys that they brought here. I mean, there was a time when a few of the Beatles had apartments in town just so they could come hang out here!! Plus, it’s a real tight knit community. Oklahoma has a phenomenal musician and songwriter that lives out by the Illinois River named Randy Crouch… he’s a real legend here in Northeast Oklahoma. I think he said it best, “We’re all in the same band, and the rest is bullshit.” Its true. Not just Tulsa, but all of Oklahoma has a very inspiring music scene. Everyone helps each other out. We have had the pleasure of working with so many talented people, and they are all our friends!!!! I couldn’t be happier to call this place my home.-Cody
I’ll just add that it’s not just a family of awesome musicians that impacts our music greatly. Tulsa/Oklahoma musicians receive incredible support from fellow music lovers like Brian Horton of Horton Records, Kevin and Amy Smith of Soul City, Shannon White at The Gathering Place, and Tulsa FMACs very own Abby Kurin! They have done so much to help promote and employ the Oklahoma music scene! Tulsa is evolving so quickly and having the support of people who are helping it grow has been such a blessing! -Desi
What aspect of the 60s do you seek to capture in your music?
I mean, it seems like it was a creative time, but I wasn’t there… so its hard to say. Many of my favorite records were made in the 60’s. The Stones, The Beatles, The Doors, Mamas and Papas, Gram Parsons, CSNY, The Beach Boys, and countless more…. and they all worked together. It seems like there was a real sense of collaboration in the 60’s. I suppose that collective spirit they had would be the aspect I seek most. In all truth though, I’m a child of the 90’s. I grew up in the grunge era… and as a young man was most inspired by those bands… Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins… all that. That’s what I cut my teeth on. I wouldn’t have even picked it up had it not been for Nirvana’s “Unplugged in New York.” Haha. – Cody
The 60’s were an exciting time… but we love music from every era. Not just the 60’s. – Desi
How your relationship does influences your music and writing?
It has no choice but to. I don’t usually plan songs out. They just kinda happen… almost as if some unseen voice is whispering into my ear. That’s probably just the subconscious I suppose. When you love someone the way we love each other… live with someone… and make music with them. Yeah, it’s gonna effect your writing. Songs like “Misunderstanding,” “Stay,” “It’s Our Thing,” and “It Happened Again.” All of that stuff is a byproduct of us being in this thing together. It’s undeniable, and it would be foolish for us to try and fight it or work to avoid it. – Cody
It effects every aspect of our lives. So yeah, it definitely effects our writing. – Desi
Where else did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?
Film. We always find a lot of inspiration in film. “Stranger Things” was a big influence. All those 80’s synth sounds, that nostalgic feel. Also, the song “Mind is Gone” was inspired by Gottfried Huppertz’s 1927 Silent Film, “Metropolis.” I’d also have to say the death of David Bowie was a big influence on it all. That last album he made, the way he orchestrated all of that… it really blew my mind. The man had literally made his entire life, and death, a work of art. – Cody
I find inspiration in all things. But yeah, we do get a lot of ideas from film. – Desi
Any plans to hit the road?
Yeah!! We are having an album release show on Friday, Oct. 12 at The Vangaurd. After that we are doing a Midwest tour… St. Louis, Chicago, Minnesota, Iowa, etc. Then in December we are gonna go out to the desert. Maybe even make it out to L.A. again… we will see.
We are looking forward to these tours!! We learned a lot about what to do and what NOT to do on the road over the last few years. Haha. – Desi
What else is happening next in Desi and Cody’s world?
We are selling and buying homes!! Haha, thats right, we close on our new house on October the 24th. We get back from tour on the 21st. Crazy, Hectic, Stupid… haha that’s our life!! This new house has an amazing attic space that I am converting into a recording studio. I’ve been working in a tiny bedroom the last few years, and to say it is less than inspiring is an understatement!!!! Can’t wait to have a new creative space!
Yes! I foresee a lot of it in our future! Opportunities just keep arising and we are in a season of saying YES. You never know where one road may lead!- Desi