Joey Dosik Talks Solo Music, Answers Hilarious Questions From Vulfpeck Superfans

first_imgJoey Dosik was recently in New York City performing The National Anthem at Madison Square Garden for the Knicks vs. Nuggets game, which is a pretty big deal for any basketball fan. While some may recognize the “game winner” from his songwriting skills and collaborations with Vulfpeck, it is Joey’s solo career that truly defines him. After releasing his own Game Winner EP in 2016, Dosik has spent much of his time sharing music between his home in LA and various corners of the map.Ready to embark on a joint tour with Lake Street Dive, we took the opportunity to chat with Joey before his NYC gig this Sunday, February 19 at (le) poisson rouge. [Full tour schedule here]. We exchanged a few e-mails between his rehearsal time, and decided it might also be fun to fan-source some questions from Vulfpeck’s online fan club (because of course, fans of Vulfpeck love to nerd out over Joey too). Read below for some in-depth Joey Dosik lifestyle explanations, word on upcoming music with Vulfpeck, and what to expect from the tour that will soon begin with Lake Street Drive.Live For Live Music: Joey, you’re about to hit the road with Lake Street Dive. How did that come to be?Joey Dosik: I met the drummer Michael [Calabrese] a few years back and then I got the chance to meet Rachael [Price] and Bridget [Kearny] at our NYC shows this summer. They are super sweet and oh so talented. I’m so pumped that they asked me to come on board!L4LM: Are you playing any new material (original or covers) on this tour?JD: Yes, definitely. I’ve been testing out some new songs and revamping songs that I’ve played before. I like to do as much work in the songwriting process so that the songs can be performed live in many different ways. You’ll have to come out and see for yourself L4LM: Describe your creative process.JD: Oof, it’s always different. Sometimes it starts with a chord or a lyric. Sometimes it starts with an ice cream sandwich.I’m no longer one of these people that writes a full, finished song in 20 minutes. Ideas come quick but it takes me days or weeks to get a song all the way there. It’s even taken years for certain songs to get finished. You might get it 50% of the way there in one day, but then comes the process of refining it and making it air tight.L4LM: We’ll be seeing you in NYC on 2/19 at (le) poisson rouge. A lot of people are excited about the show! Do you have anything special up your sleeve? Do you have a go-to spot you have to hit while you’re in town?JD: So excited for this show!!! I can’t give away all the surprises – but I will say that LPR has a real piano, and that’s a special treat for me. Every venue should have one! None of this fake piano nonsense in 2017. Also, I’m working on a live version of “Competitive Streak” to perform because I’ve never done it live. Come out!!L4LM: That’s got to be one of my favorite songs on your EP, which I was turned on to by your fellow Vulfpeck collaborators. Can you tell us a little about your work together? Do you have a favorite song?JD: The sessions are super fun. Each day is about eating a good breakfast, hitting the songs in the afternoon, doing our best to make it great, and finally, making some dinner. Usually Theo or Joe throw down the food and its glorious.I was super honored when the guys wanted to do “Game Winner”. We also just cut a few more of my songs, hopefully for the upcoming Vulf album. Pumped.Vulfpeck is also the only group that gets me to take my saxophone out of the case and I think it makes my parents happy. My folks are still a bit confused that I would stop doing the thing that I studied in college (full disclosure, my parents are awesome and supportive).L4LM: Gasp! We can’t wait to hear the new stuff. Would you say that playing live with Vulfpeck has influenced your own career?JD: For sure. It’s connected me with their amazing fans. I’m so inspired by their audience and how pure the love is. The experience is all centered around fun, appreciation and feeling good. That’s what I’m looking for!! It’s something I can get used to.L4LM: What brought you to the University of Michigan? Do you believe that meeting Jack, Joe, Woody, and Theo was fate?JD: I went to the University of Michigan on a Saxophone scholarship and was excited for the opportunity there to study both Jazz and Classical music with some great teachers. I had no idea that I would fall deeply in love with the state of Michigan. I also had no idea I would find a vibrant musical community, made up of my best friends, that would last all this time and continue to grow. Sure, it was fate!!L4LM: Your solo work is within the realm of Vulf, but quite different. It must be fun to switch back and forth when you are able to. Do you have a mental process of going from one musical personality to the next?JD: Yes, they are basically different because when I make my music, I am producing. Wearing the producer hat comes with some basic leadership responsibility. When I record with Vulfpeck on the other hand, I am a member of the group, trying to bring my best energy as a team player and trying to help fulfill the vision of the band.Vulf sessions are also unique because what we are making that day is essentially the finished track – MEANING there isn’t too much overdubbing or adding on to what is getting recorded that day. My music is like that sometimes, but often I am playing multiple instruments and continuing to work on the music at home.L4LM: You have a lengthy tour ahead of you, hitting venues in the United States and in Ireland and the UK. What differences do you notice in the crowds of these different countries?JD: I’ve noticed a real unique excitement for music in Europe. People seem much more willing to express their emotions during a show. It comes in many forms … Screams, singing, laughing, dancing, hugging their friends. Everyone just seems a bit looser there.But the United States is also so interesting because of how massive it is. Every city / region is different!! For example Los Angeles is very cool and full of people in the music industry. Then, if you travel up north 5 hours to San Francisco, everyone seems ready to party and lose their minds!I would love to play music in all corners of the world and I really want to get back to Japan. Mata Kuru Ne!!L4LM: What is your favorite memory of a live show experience?JD: I saw Feist @ the Blind Pig in 2005. She played the song “Let It Die” and had people at the club slow dancing with each other. Some folks were dancing with strangers. My friend slow danced with a stranger that he ended up dating for a little while. It was a fantastic show.L4LM: When can we expect a new record from Joey Dosik? Can you give us an idea of what to expect musically?JD: I’m finishing it up! You can expect a taste this year. I’ve worked on it with Mocky – we’ve co-produced and co-written many of the songs. Loose concept is Marvin Gaye meets Harry Nilsson, but in 2017. Mocky and I play most of the instruments, but there are also some assists from the great Miguel Atwood Ferguson (strings), Gabe Noel (Bass), Jack Stratton (claps), Theo Katzman (percussion / voice), and more special surprises.L4LM reached out to the Vulfpack (Vulfpeck’s enthusiastic online fanbase) to see if they had any burning questions. Here’s what they want to know:Extrapolate the approach taken on “It Gets Funkier II.” How many takes did they do? How much written vs improv? Who’s bedroom?JD: Hmm I don’t remember how many takes. The song was written and then all the playing is improvised. That was filmed in my bedroom (formally carpeted).What’s in your warmup on keys if you do warmup? Same question as far as vocals.JD: I don’t warm up on keys. I do try to warm up my voice if I’m lucky. I use simple scale exercises with vowels and try and get to my entire range. The voice is way trickier and is constantly changing. Its hard to explain but it’s a physical change that morphs as you sleep, eat, talk, etc. It takes effort to get the voice in a good place. It’s much more demanding than any other instrument I’ve ever played.What was it like playing sax through the Vulf compressor?JD: It’s the best. Jack works hard to make me sound good. He’s the only one I fully trust to mix my saxophone playing.Do you write more on piano or other instruments? Do you typically start with harmony, a melody, or lyrics or is it always random?JD: I usually write on piano. Sometimes I write on guitar or bass. It’s always different! But when the lyrics come first, it makes it way easier to write the song. Lyrics are usually the toughest part for me. Melodies and chords come easy.If you could ask Marvin Gaye one question, what would it be?JD: Do you want to go get a drink??If you could shoot around with one NBA player (current/retired, alive/dead), who would it be and why?JD: Magic Johnson!! He’s my all-time favorite player and he’s one of my biggest inspirations. Would be so fun to hang out with him and shoot hoops, my gawd.Favorite Donny Hathaway song?JD: It’s kinda cheesy to say, but I really like “This Christmas.” Favorite Donny record is “Donny Hathaway Live.”When can we start calling you J-DOS?JD: You can call me that lol.What is your favorite 80’s movie?JD: Ferris Bueller’s Day OffWhat’s your favorite Rhodes model?JD: Late 1972 Fender Rhodes SuitcaseWhat is the airspeed velocity of an unladen sparrow?JD: Ask WoodyWho is more deserving of the name J-Boogie? Jack, Joe, or yourself?JD: I’m gonna go with Joe.What’s the best album of all time, and why is it ‘what’s going on’?JD: I guess it’s “What’s Going On” because it’s like medicine that we so desperately need.If you could create a day of the week, what would you call it? And where would you put it?JD: Breakfast Day. It’s a day off. Every restaurant would serve breakfast all day. Eating breakfast all day is encouraged. I’d make Breakfast Day every day.You’re a big fan of Carole King… Would you ever release a cover and if so which track would it be?JD: Yes, Carole King is one of my singer songwriter spirit animals. I’d do “For Once In My Life” or “So Far Away”.Don’t miss J-DOS at (le) poisson rouge this Sunday, February 19 with Lake Street Drive. Tickets available here.last_img

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