We constantly feature new & notable indie artists that create diversity & drive innovation in all aspects of songwriting, production & performance. Meet this week’s featured artist in an exclusive interview. Introducing You To Your Next Favorite Artist: Sundog.
Sundog is a four-piece rock band from Seattle. They play high energy Rock N’ Roll and give it everything they got. Comprised of guitarist Danny Francoeur, bassist Brandt Scanlan, keyboardist David Marowitz and drummer Daniel Gronfein, Sundog create a high energy and powerful live show. There debut LP “All My Love” is full of songs that grab you early and won’t let go. This is music made to get you moving!
Comments from the Curating-Editor
There are hubs where you just know that you’ll find thriving music, which is why we constantly head back to Seattle to tap the well. Sundog brings us another dose of vibing, genre-bending rock in their debut LP All My Love. They aim to create “classic sounds with modern sensibilities,” and they accomplish that with an album that integrates southern rock and brass-soul tendencies into the band’s timeless and crisp sound aesthetic. Joined by The Honeynut Horns to round out their sound, Sundog combines brass-band grooves with shredding guitar riffs and contemporary indie-rock songwriting form, making for feel-good nostalgia at times reminiscent of a more bluesy Pearl Jam. There’s many incredible sounds on the 12-song record, a diverse collection of dynamic tracks (we’re obsessed with the development and piano/sax breakdown of “Lucky”), but our current favorite has to be the easing “Sweet Mary.” “Sweet Mary” has a slight 70s California rock flavor under all that southern-rock charm. It’s equal parts soulful and gritty. The song showcases the powerhouse capabilities that a Sundog live show must have. Yearning yet effortless, “Sweet Mary” is well constructed with warm instrumentals and cool vocals combining to form the perfect soundtrack for a thought-provoking sunny afternoon. This is a band you’ll definitely want to unwind to, as they tease out your frustrations and incorporate them into visceral, scratchy & swelling jams. This is what bona-fide old-time rock-n-roll should feel like.
What are your top 3 favorite albums that inspired you to get into music?
This isn’t an album but the Chuck Berry scene from “Back to the Future” kinda sums everything up for me musically. It was all there, the song, the stage moves, and the audience reaction. I was totally hooked and didn’t even fully realize it! Later my mom bought me the “Led Zeppelin Boxed Set” from Costco and I started playing guitar shortly after that. I studied classical guitar and composition in college and by the time I got out I needed to reboot musically. I bought “Let There Be Rock” by AC/DC and basically haven’t stopped listening to it since. Bon Scott is the greatest!
What are your fondest musical memories?
Watching Michael Jackson’s “Moonwalker” over and over as a child. Taking my first guitar lesson. And writing my first song.
Lately what musical periods or styles do you find yourself most drawn to as a listener?
I’m drawn to everything as a listener, new and old. In the streaming age we have so much access to music that it can be overwhelming, but also thrilling! It’s all right there. I listen to tons of music, we all should!
What is your creative process like? How do you approach the writing process? Is there a particular message or theme central to your creative works?
It all just comes from the creative spark. Sometimes I play something on the guitar or sing a melody. Other times it’s lyrics that come first. The approach doesn’t really matter to me as long as I listen and capture the idea. It’s like catching a wave. I just try to write things that are meaningful to me and glorify rock n’ roll!
We’re a firm believer that the cities that artists are based in helps craft their sound. How would you describe your city’s music scene? How has it inspired you into crafting your sound?
Seattle’s music scene is vast and constantly going. If you look for it, you can find great music every single night. This city has proven to me over and over that rock n’ roll is alive and well.
How would you describe your visual aesthetic, in terms of album artwork, music videos, and artistry? How does the music you create contribute to your visuals? Does this extend to your live show experience?
Obvious NASA rip off. We just want to make everyone feel like they are blasting off like a rocket! Rocket rock!
As an indie artist in the digital age, social media and streaming are essential tools for marketing and promotion. What do you think about online music sharing, both as a music fan and as a musician? How do you think social media/music streaming services impacts the rising musician?
Like I said before, listening in the streaming age can be fantastic. Everything is there all the time. Listening is the most important thing for a musician to do. You just gotta take the time to dig and find all the great music. I have never known anything other than social media and streaming as a working musician, so it’s hard to have an outside perspective there. What will always be true is you gotta practice, write songs and play live. That will always be important, no matter what. And it’s so damn fun why wouldn’t you!
What is your dream collaboration and why?
Dave Grohl. He is rock music!
Which songs are you currently obsessed with? What new acts do you recommend to our listeners? What bands do you believe are your best kept secret in the indie community?
I’ve been on yet another heavy Prince kick lately. But that is nothing new really. Listen to The Dip, Lanford Black, Po’ Brothers, The Good Wives, James Anaya. Listen to local music and support your local music scene. They all need you and you need them!
What are you currently working on? Any new projects?
We have been focused on our album release at the moment and lining up more shows in the Seattle area.