Dunn Dunn Fest roars back into Chicago for a weekend packed with diverse bills at outstanding venues. One of the more intriguing lineups will feature local favorites Spare Parts with San Diego based Brothers Gow at Tonic Room on Friday.
Brothers Gow hit the road pretty hard these days, especially for a band who calls the Southwest home. But this is not their first time in Chicago and word seems to be building fast.
Guitarist Ethan Wade shared some thoughts on where the band is and where their headed in advance of the gig. We're offering one of our readers a pair of tickets for the show for free. Click here to find out how to enter.
How has band changed musically from when you started?
I would say that we actually play the instruments that we own.
In the beginning we were a bunch of buddies who liked to drink and mess around with instruments. When we started out we had no real clue of what we were doing. Some of us had musical knowledge, sure, but really we didn't think we were embarking on a career path by any means.
While many bands seem to avoid the term "jamband", your sound at least seems to embrace it. Any thoughts on the label?
I personally think you might get a few different answers within the band, depending on who you'd ask.
I think the reality is that we'll always live in the "jamband" world. We have those free spirited moments each set that just sort of go with the flow. If someone asked me personally if I thought we were a jamband, I would say no we like to think of ourself as a "band that jams", not really a stereotypical "jamband".
But let's face it, jamband fans actually go see live music, so if they think we're a jamband, let's jam!
Checking in on your Tonic Room set from the last Chicago stop, seems a pretty even mix of covers and originals. Does the band have a philosophy on the "best" mix?
It definitely depends on the night, how long the set is, who we're playing with, what the band before us just played, etc.
I would say that throughout any given set there is about 20% - 30% cover songs happening. We like to do covers with our own little flair, our own little take on it. For us, it gives newcomers something tangible to latch onto. It also keeps things interesting for us. We always know when to hit 'em with a little Bowie, or some Dead, maybe even some Michael Jackson.
Then who knows, we might be feeling some Michael McDonald and Warren G that night too.
Are you still based in San Diego? What are benefits / challenges of being from that part of the country?
Yep, still San Diego. Ocean Beach to be a little more precise.
The biggest benefit is, well, it is San Diego. We don't really have bad days. Everyone in the band is a stones throw from the beach, and its beautiful here.
It's a big enough city to get yourself into any sort of trouble, yet OB has this small town feel to it where we've really found a home for ourselves. The one downside, due to our profession, would be its geographical location. If we want to set out on an East Coast tour, we're looking at a 3 day drive in Big Black Mariah (our tour bus) before we even make a buck.
What goals to you have as a band? Short, mid or long term?
Short term goals are to play all the festivals we can and to make our way out to the East coast for our first time.
Mid-term goals are to grow our fanbase exponentially through the country, transition to bigger rooms and theaters for most shows and I think we all would love to play at Red Rocks or The Gorge one day.
For long term, we'd love to be able to do this for the rest of our lives. At least until we're too old and fat to play our instruments. Oh and have techs and stagehands -- those would help!