Breaking: Dawes

November 11th, 2009 by Josh Eells Leave a reply »

Who: These folk-rock rookies started their career as the buzzy post-punk band Simon Dawes, co-fronted by ­Malibu native Taylor Goldsmith. But when the band’s other songwriter bowed out, the remaining members — Goldsmith, his brother Griffin (drums) and bassist Wylie Gelber — shortened the name and traded their Smiths rec­ords for plaid shirts and pedal steel.

Sounds Like: True to its Cali roots, the group’s new debut, North Hills, is full of twangy folk rock à la Gram Parsons and Neil Young. “Take Me Out of the City” features sweet, Byrds-ian harmonies, and “When You Call My Name” is a dusty singalong with ripping, Stephen Stills-style lead guitar. “All the music we’ve been inspired by was made right here in California,” says Taylor Goldsmith. “We pride ourselves on that.”

Down With: The band is also part of a renaissance in L.A.’s legendary Laurel Canyon scene, having participated in neighborhood jam sessions with local VIPs like Jenny Lewis and the Black Crowes’ Chris Robinson.

Dad Rock: Performing runs in the band’s blood. Keyboardist Tay Strathairn’s dad, David, is the Oscar-nominated actor. And the Goldsmiths’ father is a former lead singer for funk crew Tower of Power who raised the boys on a diet of classic soul. Says Taylor, “I’d ask him, ‘What do you think of Dylan?’ and he’d be like, ‘Oh, he’s not good. You need someone who can sing!’ ”

Good Genes Dawes got their name from the Goldsmiths’ grandfather, a fiddle-playing Okie named Dawes Lafayette Goldsmith. “He used to say things like, ‘If you got a drummer, you don’t need a bassist, and if you got a bassist, you don’t need a drummer,’ ” Taylor recalls....

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


Leave a Reply