Can you talk to us more about your song “Restless Dreamer”? Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?
The song Restless Dreamer was inspired when I was moving from Detroit Lakes MN to the Twin Cities. I was just finishing packing up all my boxes in my 500 sf rental cabin on Little Detroit Lake. I sat down on the couch and looked at all the boxes and the beginning of the song came to mind. “Time to Leave now move your home, pack your bags up and now you’re gone.” As I sat there the song continued to almost write itself. I thought about all the friends that I was going to be leaving. I imagined that they might be saying “Restless Dreamer won’t you settle down”. I was searching for the place that I could stay for a while and call home. Would it be where I would be moving to next?
Any plans to release a video for the track?
Yes, I have considered making a music video of this song. I used to drive a VW bus so I was considering doing it with that as the vehicle for moving. I have also been a professional photographer/videographer so I usually produce, direct and do some of the shooting for my own videos. I like to consider myself a multi-media artist.
The single comes off your new album Thunderin’ Down The Road – what’s the story behind the title?
Thunderin’ Down The Road is the title track of the soon to be released album of the same name. I like to tour on motorcycle. While on a trip from the Great Lakes of Minnesota to the Rocky Mountains in Montana this song was inspired. I would record snippets of lyrics on my iPhone that would be inspired by what I would see and even smell while driving down the road. The song turned into a sort of allegory about life and riding motorcycle.
How was the recording and writing process?
The writing process for the entire album took place over the course of six months, starting in 2015. I worked with Jeff Harrington a retired Nashville and LA song writer. He took me under his wing and helped me focus the lyrics and music. I would then prepare composer demos with electronic instruments. Once key, tempo and arrangement were set, I hired rhythm section musicians in the Twin Cities. Drums – Gordie Knudtson (Steve Miller Band), Bass – Jim Anton (Johnny Lang Band), Guitar – Mark Knoll and Jason Craft – Keyboard. Additional vocal harmonies were added later by Mary Jane Alm (Mary Jane Alm Band). The recording and mixing of the album by Jake Carlson took place at Defhaus Studios in St. Paul MN over the course of two years. Jeff Harrington acted as the producer teaching me how to also produce. The final mixes were finished in August 2018.
What role does Minneapolis play in your music?
Minneapolis has a vibrant music community. There are a lot of great players and famous musicians from the Twin Cities area. There are also many venues featuring live music to be inspired by. Writing music is mostly a solitary activity for me. So living in a rural suburb of the Twin Cities is good for me. It gives me space to feel and think and let the music flow.
How Johnny Cash and John Mellencamp has influence your writing?
Johnny Cash and John Mellencamp are iconic singer/songwriters. I grew up listening to them and playing their songs. Their music is a part of the American fabric of life. I like Folk, Rock and Country music and it comes through in my writing style.
What aspect of death did you get to explore on this record?
During the slow section on Thunderin’ Down The Road, I write lyrics that all have double meanings. “The final mile before me. Red sunset close behind.” Indicating the motorcycle trip is almost over and perhaps life is nearing it’s end. “A life that is worth living is a life that lives to ride.” Riding motorcycle is more than just a pleasure for most riders. It’s a need that seems to make everything else worthwhile. “Wrap me in a ribbon of highway when I die, and slide me into heaven on the thunder I will rise.” This has great imagery of a motorcycle rider being wrapped up with a bow of blacktop and gently slid into the great beyond on the thunder.
Any plans to hit the road?
I have been preparing my live solo show for the past several months. I’ve started show casing it around the Twin Cities. In 2019, I then plan to broaden out to tour around the Midwest.
What else is happening next in Terry Derosier’s world?