Today we’re delighted to share an interview with the Dirt Road Angels, originally posted on the fantastic britishcountrymusic.com site. The interview was conducted with site owner Kish Tailor!
We recently nominated Dirt Road Angels song, ‘Never Again’ as our song of the week and we had to interview the band and help them to get more exposure in the UK. From the dirt road to the main stage, country rock group the Dirt Road Angels have created quite a a buzz in a short time. What started out as solo artists coming together to collaborate on one show, turned into a magical connection that has become an incredible musical project. The Edmonton based seasoned singer-songwriters, consisting of Dahlia Wakefield, Karen Claypool, Danita Lynn, and Shila Marie, formed the group in 2013 and have released three albums and 5 singles since their inception.
Simple things first – where are you from?
Shila Marie grew up in Tofield, Alberta; Danita Lynn is from Plamondon, Alberta; Karen Claypool is from Spruce Grove, Alberta, and Dahlia Wakefield was born in the Philippines and grew up in Maidstone, Saskatchewan. We all currently reside in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada – Alberta’s Capital City.
How did you meet?
We all were doing our own individual projects but met through the music industry…music brought us together. We formed in May 2013. What started out as solo artists coming together to collaborate on one show, turned into a magical connection that has become an incredible musical project!
How long have you been playing?
We have been playing as a band since our first gig in September 2013 to coincide with our Compilation CD album release during the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA) week to a standing room only crowd. The gig was well received and we decided to continue on as a group.
Before you get sick of being asked, where does the name Dirt Road Angels come from?
We held a contest on our Facebook page. We knew that we wanted the word “Angels” to be part of our band name so we posted a picture of us walking away on a dirt road and the lucky winner was our good friend, Tracy Little, who appropriately named us “Dirt Road Angels”. We all resonated with that name and have used it since May 2013.
We recently featured your fantastic new single ‘NOT EVER’. Can you give us an insight into how the song came about?
Our DRAngel Danita Lynn with her friends Lynn Tessari, and guitarist Darren Gusnowski wrote that song…they had a distinct idea of what they wanted…an edgy Gretchen Wilson style song. It’s a fun upbeat song about knowing what you don’t want in a relationship.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
Most of our songs are about being positive, enjoying life to the fullest and making brand new experiences.
What are your influences?
We love modern rocky, edgy country female-fronted music such as Gretchen Wilson, Miranda Lambert and Carrie Underwood. We also grew up listening to Martina McBride, Reba McIntyre, Faith Hill, Terri Clark and Shania Twain..lots of classic country as well as 90s country. We also LOVE the Eagles!
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
In this female fronted quartet, there is actually no lead singer – we split parts & harmonies equally in all of our new songs on our new album. Also, there is an age difference – we cover so much demographic age-wise – from each decade from 20 to 50.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
We always strive to put on a High Energy show with lots of upbeat country rock tunes to get people’s toes tapping and butts on the dance floor. We encourage audience participation and love to talk to our audience in between songs and sets but overall, we have fun…and it shows! People have mentioned that all us girls have a great camaraderie and chemistry between us that is apparent. We have done over 400 shows as a group and always come away with brand new fans.
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
Our drummer Scott Ebner uses a Taye drum kit with a Ludwig snare, Derek Oja our bass player plays a Fender Jazz and his amp/cabinets are TC Electronic, and our guitar player Alan Tymofichuk plays a G&L guitar with a Bogner amp. On acoustic gigs, he plays a Stonebridge with a Fishman amp. Karen plays a Taylor acoustic guitar and Dahlia plays a Garrison acoustic. We all play tambourine and shaker. No one plays the spoons. LOL
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
Currently, we are promoting our brand new album “Extra Dirty” that we just released on March 10th, 2018 and will be soon filming a brand new video to coincide with our new single release of the title track “Extra Dirty” in August 2018. We also have brand new merchandise – hats, T-shirts, tank tops, and hoodies!
What are your plans for 2018?
We are touring our new “Extra Dirty” album and are looking forward to producing a brand new music video to promote the title track in the hopes of expanding our current fan base towards more of a global fan base.
If you were second on a three-band bill, which band would you love to be supporting and which band would you choose to open for you? A chance to plug someone you’ve toured with, or a mate’s band we’ve not heard of before!
We would love for our good friends Cadillac Junkies to open for us….and DRA would LOVE to support Shania Twain!! She is our biggest musical influence; in fact we went to her recent concert here in Edmonton and loved every moment of it! Danita even got her book and guitar signed by her!
Any last words/shout outs for your fans across the big pond?
Please always support Live Music! We love you and hope to come and play in Europe one of these days!!! And in the meantime, our music is available on iTunes Apple Music, and Spotify as well as other digital retailers like CD Baby and you can always go onto YouTube to watch our videos!