INTERVIEW: SoCal rockers SLEEPING DOG

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

DANNY WALKER – “We are doing alright. It’s been fun doing Sleeping Dogs business–working on new songs, recording, and making videos.” 

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Let’s Be Friends”? 

WALKER – “I wrote it for a theatrical musical I’ve been working on about vampires.  I had a rough guitar vocal demo of the song.  When we were reviewing songs for the album, we decided that we should track ‘Let’s Be Friends’ for Sleeping Dogs.”

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

WALKER – “The vampire is supposed to kill her/change her, but watching her, he doesn’t want to change anything about her.  He is excited by her beauty and free spirit.  It’s a love song, and it’s about the excitement and vulnerability that happens when he lets down his guard down and says, ‘hey, I like you – a lot.’”

How was the filming process and experience behind the video?

WALKER – “We were blessed to have The Magic Crasher and The Girl IQ help us with the video.  They wrote a treatment that was a vampire/human love story, except in the setting of a club that Sleeping Dogs are performing.  We played the song a few times and then each of us played a little role in the dramatic sequences. Bobby Amodeo was the bartender, I was the server, Higgins X-13 was a pool shark,  George Hughes Jr. played a host, and Spider was a pick-up artist.  Spider gets mauled by our vampire, it was kind of unexpected and fun.  Jarrod Anthonee was our videographer, and he did an amazing job covering the band, the drama sequences, and editing.  We had a great team on the project.”

The single comes off your new EP Somewhere Out In California – what’s the story behind the title?

WALKER – “It’s a lyric from another song that’s on the EP, ‘Encino,’   We’re based in Southern California so it works.”

How was the recording and writing process?

WALKER – “I’m the songwriter, but it’s a band effort to take them to a higher level.  On some of these we reviewed demos to pick our favorites.  Everybody works out their parts and then we collaborate on the arrangement.  Leveraging our collective musical experience, the collaboration component makes the songs so much better–whether it’s introducing a riff, a melody or anything, then we come up with ways to stack the songs for tracking.  We recorded this EP at Buzzbomb Studios in Orange, CA.”

What was it like to work with Paul Miner and how did that relationship develop? 

WALKER – “We’ve worked with Paul a few times, and he’s great.  He’s easy to track with and provides good feedback, making our recordings better.  He also mixed and mastered this EP.”

How much did he get to influence the album? 

WALKER – “He helped to improve it.  He’s a great sounding board for parts and tones.”

What role does SoCal play in your music? 

WALKER – “It is our home.”

What aspect of California did you get to explore on this record? 

WALKER – “The concept of going out to California to find what you’re looking for…a modern day Gold Rush.”

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

WALKER – “They are all about wanting something.  I try to capture pain and despair and simplify it in a song.  ‘Tomorrow’s Gonna Suck,’ ‘Rejected’ and ‘No Mercy’ have a little bit of that.  Also, that feeling of wanting something so bad it hurts, ‘Friends’ and ‘Encino’ have a bit of that.  You boil it down, and a song is just telling somebody who you are and what you’re looking for.”

What else is happening next in Sleeping Dogs’ world?

WALKER – “The future is wide open. We’ve got a great EP and album coming.  I’m not sure the music industry can handle us, but we want to get our music out to everybody in the world.  Music can bring us all together.  Let’s Be Friends.”

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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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