In-person interview with all four members of Delta Rose
By Aniruddh "Andrew" Bansal
Spencer Krasch (guitar and vocals)
Forrest Goss (guitar)
Steven Aulcy (bass)
Mikey Herrera (drums)
Billy Schleifer (producer/manager)
February 14th 2010, North Hollywood CA
Andrew: You guys played with Anvil last Friday [Feb 05th at House Of Blues Hollywood]. How did that feel, playing with such a great band?
Spencer: It was an honour man. They own VH1 classic. I don't watch TV, but when I do, its always the concerts on VH1 and they are always on there. Anything that's supporting classic rock and good old fashioned metal, that's what we are about.
Forrest: It was awesome man. It was very cool to open for somebody that has a name out there, and like he said, the rock/metal classic style, it was an honour.
Spencer: It was the first time that we were able to walk backstage and see someone that we really kind of admired, and we were able to sit back and trip out. All the work that we're putting in is a sign of pay off to them. That's what we do of course, support and meet our idols and be a part of what we really love.
Andrew: What were those guys like? How was it like to meet them?
Forrest: We met them before the show and shook their hands when they were doing sound check. They seemed pretty cool.
Spencer: They were in their zone. You could tell that before the show. They weren't fooling around. After the show they were totally cool and talking to everybody, but before the show they were definitely just about the show.
Steven: They came out after the show and met the fans. It was really cool for them to do that, because most bands don't do it.
Spencer: Well hopefully, if we ever got to their level, that's what exactly we would do, and that's what bands should do. You know, you're at a show, people see you on stage and they hope to meet you off stage.
Andrew: What's been going on in the studio with you guys? How many songs have you recorded recently?
Spencer: You caught us in the middle of getting it all done. Its been going really good right now. Its been like the best experience we've ever had in the studio. We're doing four songs right now and we feel that they could all be hit singles. It's a world of singles right now, so we gotta make sure that every song is just packed with great music. There is no 15-minute drum solo, yet (laughs). Yeah he (Mikey) was really upset when we took away his 30 minute drum solo. Well, 45 minutes actually, but he broke his drum stick over his head and that was a really cool sound. (laughs)
Forrest: Its been very cool actually. It has been a lot better than the experiences we've had in the past. We had a lot of bad quality and people ripping us off. We have a producer like Billy helping us out and its been awesome.
Steven: Yeah he has got us to sound as good as we can.
Spencer: When you get Bad Boy Billy Schleifer in the studio with you, he's going to make sure that those songs are freaking awesome. We come in and work so hard before we go into the studio. Just going over literally every note to make sure its exactly what the song requires. So going in we feel really confident, we know exactly what we're going to do and its all about making sure that it has that 'live energy' feel. When you see us on stage, it sounds like what its going to be on the recording. That's what we are going for. We're not trying to get over-produced perfection. No human could ever do that. Our songs are going to be like, you're going to put that on your headphones and you'll feel like House Of Blues on a great night, and that's what it should be.
Billy: As a producer I'm not doing the 'B detectiving', the 50 overdubs and that kind of stuff. Its going to be like you hear them live. That's the best part about it.
Forrest: Once we're done with these songs we're going to erase the five songs up on our myspace page and put these new ones. If you go to the myspace page it says 'new EP coming up'.
Spencer: Yeah hopefully it'll be out by next month. We're not going to rush it. We're going to make sure it just comes out as it should. Its going to be like Led Zeppelin I, well not literally but you know, that album and Van Halen I, they showed that the first album has to make an impact. So this one of ours is going to be true rock and roll and touches your soul. That's true. (laughs)
Andrew: Billy [manager/producer] says that being unsigned and not having a label isn't such a bad thing and these days its more about digital sales. Would you guys agree with that?
Forrest: Yeah definitely. People aren't buying albums like they used to, and its all about singles right now. People I talk to, its like they buy albums just to get one song.
Spencer: Its really hard to decide whether you want to get signed or you really want to take that risk and just go for it yourself. There are a lot of benefits to both sides to decide which one you want to go with. When you get a major record label, you get a lot of attention because you signed with them. People give you a lot more respect but if you're able to do everything that you would have done under that label, under your own name, how much more respect can you get than that?
Billy: Not to say that the label is not an option. We're just going to look for the best option, be it label or be it independent.
Spencer: Whatever is going to put rock n roll on the radio, we're going with it.
Andrew: What would you say is unique about Delta Rose's sound? Also, as you get bigger in the future, would you be willing to experiment or would you keep it the same as what it is right now?
Spencer: Well, what's different about us is that there is nothing that sounds like us on the radio because everything has gotten so far away from what the roots of everything that is on the radio today has come from. Like the blues started rock n roll, rock n roll started metal and metal started this crazy scene where people got out of control. Then hip-hop and punk started coming. Everything has gotten out of control and it needs to make a full circle and get back to the roots. I don't really hear any new band that derives from the Blues. There are a couple of bands out there like the White Stripes, Jet is really rock n roll and Wolfmother are really rocking it.
Billy: I think that of course every band down the line will expand or grow in different ways but the kind of nice thing about what they're doing is that they don't have to change their sound because by just doing what they do, they already have a unique sound. The irony is that the unique sound comes from the old school but its gotten so far away from what rock was originally about. But yeah of course there will be room to expand, but if you think that one day these guys will sound like Yellowcard, that's not going to happen.
Spencer: Really, if we do decide that we want to go to other realms of music that we like, its nice to reach out so when you come back to your roots again, its going to feel great. Like we could go to the metal side, or country, like the Boxcutters or what are they called, the Boxmasters, who do a little bit of everything.
Billy: Yeah sure. Delta Rose and Timbaland in 2011. (laughs)
Andrew: Do you have any gigs coming up?
Spencer: We just played in Barstow yesterday and I'm just going to put it on the map right now, that Barstow knows how to rock n roll. They really do. We would not go out there unless there's already a mob of people who are going nuts for what we play. Its just a whole another scene out there. Hollywood is kind of mixed. In Barstow everyone likes rock n roll.
Forrest: Even the young kids were singing all the rock covers. The place we played they had vinyls all around us on the stage, like Ted Nugent and all of that. It was just the perfect place.
Spencer: We had people jumping up on stage and grabbing the mic to sing with us. So yeah as far as upcoming gigs go, as long as people are interested and want to see what we got to offer, it's a perfect place. When word gets around, people come to see you and you come through for them, it feels great.
Billy: And like I said we have a residency at the House Of Blues opening for Steel Panther on one Monday every month. So that's a ton of exposure.
Andrew: If you had to pick a dream band to tour with, what band would that be?
Forrest: Van Halen would be so cool.
Spencer: Jet would be cool. Also Kings of Leon, some of their early stuff stands true to the roots. They got the audacity to play that kind of music.
Mikey The Stones!
Forrest: ZZ Top and Ted Nugent.
Steven: Iron Maiden would be great.
Spencer: Yeah but that's a dangerous crowd dude! They don't want to hear anything other than Maiden. You gotta respect an Iron Maiden fan.
Billy: But people at the Anvil show only came to see Anvil, but when these guys got on the stage, you know what happened next.
Spencer: The whole crowd loved us, except for that one dude in the first row who had his head down and trying to pretend like he wasn't interested. I got on my knees right next to his face and played one of my solos. I beat him up after the show real bad though. Just kidding. (laughs)
Andrew: What other bands that you didn't mention already, do you guys get inspired from and influenced by in your music?
Spencer: Muddy Waters, because that guy has the most soul on his voice that I've ever heard.
Mikey I listen to a lot of old blues stuff and also Van Halen.
Spencer: I also like Foghead and U.F.O. When you get an interview you're thinking of the bigger bands and there are so many bands that don't get enough credit. I can't not mention Eric Claption, Buddy Guy and so many others including Alice Cooper. That guy really influenced me man. He put on a stage show that can be remembered forever, and he also had the music to back it up. That's what we want to do. We want to put on the craziest show and the music to go with it. I hope people don't have to pay for the whole seat when they go to our show, because they're only going to need the edge of it!
Andrew: If you have to pick one album with which you would define rock music for people who don't know what it is, what would that be?
Spencer: Dude, that is awesome man! You're thinking outside the box and your name is definitely not Jack. (laughs)
Mikey I vote for Sticky Fingers by The Rolling Stones.
Forrest: Van Halen I, can not be anything better than that one.
Steven: Appetite For Destruction by Guns N Roses.
Spencer: I gotta say ZZ Top's Tres Hombres. While waiting for the bus all day, I would listen to that song 12 times in a row and was still like freaking mad when I had to go back to work.
Forrest: Yeah that album is always played on our way to a show.
Spencer: It's just so raw. Also they put on such a great show. For a three-piece band, they take up the whole stage and make it look like it's the tip of a needle. Oh my God!
Back In Black and Appetite were two of the most listened albums. 'Shoot To Thrill' would be my encore, when I put the CD and listen to it, and play concerts in my head as if I was AC/DC, you know like all of us do.
Billy: I think Delta Rose's single to most look out for would be 'Ain't Dead Yet' and it draws very much from Back In Black.
Andrew: What covers do you jam on, other than 'Let There Be Rock', the cover you played at the Anvil show?
Forrest: We have like 50 covers, but the ones that we do most justice to, are Bad Company's 'Can't Get Enough' and Rolling Stones' 'Brown Sugar' and 'Beast Of Burden',and Van Halen's 'Everybody Wants Some'.
Spencer: Yeah that's a great live song!
Billy: Its going to be the next one on stage I think.
Spencer: One of the songs that we're really proud of, because it seems like a 'Freebird' or 'Stairway To Heaven' is 'Stranglehold' by Ted Nugent. That song really brings down the house. One of the really fun songs that we recently started playing is 'Life In The Fast Lane' by the Eagles. That song could really go with country or metal. We kind of put it in between those, with rock n roll. Another fun song is 'Squeezebox' by The Who because its like, where are the cougars at? (laughs)
Andrew: Thanks guys! This was awesome.
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Spencer: One last thing I want to say is we are really huge fans of Steel Panther. For me as a frontman, Michael Starr has really shown me a lot. They're all up there doing their thing. The way they get the audience to laugh, if you can get someone to laugh and to rock out, you can't get a better show than that. Plus they also have a lot of entertainment and talent on stage. And we're here in the rehearsal studio even on Valentine's day because of our love for music.
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