INTERVIEW: Devon Worley Band

Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Grant Thelen: Been Better! This whole COVID thing has really thrown a wrench in our gears.  I think the disappearance of live shows and the uncertainty about their return is driving us all crazy!

Adam Durand: Pretty good minus the daily struggle of fending of murder hornets.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “No Fool?”

Devon Worley: No fool is one of my favorite songs we’ve ever written as a band. I think it fully encompasses the whole bands talent and abilities, and shows off our unique blend of country, rock, and old school Minneapolis funk.

GT: No Fool is a song that we’ve been working on for a while.  We finally settled on a vibe and it came to life in the studio.

AD: No Fool was a wonderful song to put together. We spent a lot of time focusing on the vibe so that it come out the way we wanted without losing the original acoustic feel that it was written in.

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

DW: This song was 100% inspired by the guitar part. Jason Medvec our lead guitarist sent out the main riff to us just to see what we all thought of it and every single one of us fell in love with it. Writing the lyrics and melody really just revolved around finding something we thought fit the general vibe of the music.

GT: Jason came up with a really cool guitar riff that had a very percussive vibe to it and we struggled a bit to find our way into a full band version without stepping on the implanted rhythm.

Any plans to release any sort of video for the track?

DW: As of right now, we don’t have any plans for a music video for No Fool, we are planning on releasing a video of some kind relatively soon.

GT: We just did a stripped down acoustic version video as part of our DWB LIVE show on Facebook.

The single comes off your new album Teatime For Thieves – what’s the story behind the title?

DW: Teatime for Thieves is actually the title of another song we wrote recently. To me, Teatime for Thieves is a really fun way to put what it feels like being on the road and on the tour bus all the time into words. With all the traveling we do all year long, we sometimes feel like the closest thing people can get to old school outlaws these days.

GT: There are a few interpretations but I like to think about it as the witching hour after a show.  Everyone is on the bus and winding down from the day perhaps a few cocktails are consumed and there’s a camaraderie that we all feel in those moments that are “just us thieves.”

AD: All touring musicians (and all people really) are crazy in their own way. But when we sit down together to write music all of the crazy works together an artistic way kinda like the Mad Hatters tea party. The Thieves part comes from a connection of touring musicians and the road life and how we start to feel like wandering vagabonds yet all the musicians are cordial with each other like and Honor amongst thieves situation.

How was the recording and writing process?

DW: Both the recording and writing process for No Fool were pretty unique even by our standards. When we first wrote No Fool we considered keeping it an acoustic song, the guitar part was really percussive and it had such a different vibe from some of the other songs we were writing, so we didn’t want to change too much. But when we got into the studio and started to really mess around with it, it took on a life if it’s own. I could not have told you what the final product would have ended up being when we first walked into the studio but I couldn’t be happier with the song as it is now.

GT: Our writing process is always varied but we like to take our songs “on the road” and play them for audiences to see how they resonate and sometimes that influences a song’s vibe.  Recording felt really relaxed for this record and we all were able to come in and execute together really well.  There are always a few changes or additions that push us in the studio but we’re really happy with how it turned out.

AD: We put a lot of work into recording, multiple trips down to make sure we got all of the takes just right and so the songs would come out exactly how we wanted them to. We made sure that kept it to the original sound of the band with out extra bells and whistles and to many aux instrument tracks being added. To us we didn’t want it to sound like a generic Nashville track we wanted it to be our own original sound and to capture the same energy we bring to the stage in a purely musical way.

What role did Nashville play on the music of this album?

DW: We like to say, when it comes to our relationship in Nashville, that we keep one foot in Nashville and one back home in Minneapolis. There are a lot of resources and opportunities that we just can’t get in Minneapolis. But keeping most of our operating out of Minnesota gives us a lot more control both over our creative direction and business decisions.

Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

DW: A lot of our songs are inspired by our experiences in the music industry. The best songs are the most honest ones, and we like to paint a picture for our listeners of what life is really like for us.

GT: Well each song is it’s own story but what binds them together is that the are all uniquely “us”. We love to perform live and each of the songs on this record have been a part of our show and we’re super excited to bring the studio versions to our established fans all over the world and showcase our sound to new fans as well.

AD: For me as bassist a lot of the inspiration came from other basslines, and players like Nikki Six, Pino Palladino, and Jeff Berlin. I always enjoy walking the line of country and other genres with the bass. I was also able to experiment with a lot of fun rhythmic ideas and grooves because Grant our drummer has been working playing with me so long. It often felt like we read each others minds when coming up with new ideas.

What else is happening next in Devon Worley Band’s world?

DW: Right now we’re putting together a variety show called DWB live. A biweekly showcase of local and national musicians, our new music, interviews and performances by other entertainers like comedians and magicians. Over the last ten years we’ve made a lot of connections and we’re taking this time away from live music to shine a spotlight of some of our good friends from across the country!

GT: Well with touring being a big question mark we have focused on the virtual experience.  We did a “Totally Real, Totally Not FAKE World Tour” leading up to the release of this record that you can watch online. We are now focused on producing a variety show of sorts called “DWB LIVE” that we share with our fans on Facebook every other Saturday night at 7PM.

AD: Looking forward to touring with the new album once the world starts getting back to normal. But until then we have been putting out a virtual show series “DWB Live” with guests artists, sketch comedy, and plenty of music. It can be found on The show itself is a lot of fun because it is more than just your usual musician performing for tips on their couch or something. There is a lot of work put into it to keep it entertaining for all viewers and to help continue to promote artists like ourselves and guests through these strange times.


About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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