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An Interview With Jeffrey Dallet

A new release from Jeffrey Dallet spans quite a few rambunctious and character-riddled genres with rock undertones and a vast and almost cinematic feel at times.

The Acid Tongue album is absolutely lush with outstanding guitar tones that ring out into the distance, and it's bordered with this storytelling and almost theatrical approach that tells these tales that feel like old westerns in a way.

You also get some crisp-feeling acoustic jams that feature harmonicas and a live band feel where the energy of the players seems to feed off of one another.

Along with all that, you also get some heavy-handed and edgy classic rock bangers that feel like you've been listening to them on the radio for a few decades now.

This record shows tons of personality and charm in its own right, but it also shows this wide span of musicianship and songwriting styles that give a diverse but lush and full-bodied soundscape.

There are different elements to the catchiness between these songs as well which is really cool because you get these different sides to the songwriting from one track to the next which sounds overwhelming when put like that, but it's so awesome to go through the record as a whole so you can soak everything in.

This is all part of the reason why this album is so addicting. It shows so much variety and energy, balance and dynamics, and openness to bringing songs to whatever fruition he wants to.

But with each different style, you get a genuine and authentic tonality. Classic rock songs have these guitar solos that are spot on, and that aesthetic is perfected whether it's on purpose or not.

So, you get such a great feel for all these different influences and each one was part of the spark that caused this project to even happen in the first place.

I think it's really fun to be able to take all of that within one album release because you don't get that often.

A lot of times you get an album where a lot of the songs feel extremely similar to one another even if they do tell some stories and venture off into slightly different paths, there's a cookie cutter aspect to certain genres for certain bands.

So, it's really refreshing to hear one album be diverse and alluring because I think that we need that in music right now.

I love hearing all the different influences rolled up into one record.

This is like a love letter to songwriting itself and it's something for any fan of almost any kind of music with even a slight rock or folk backbone.

With the release of such a robust album, we wanted to have a sit-down with Jeffrey Dallet to talk about how this album came to be and what might be coming up next for the project.

Here's what happened.

Buzz Slayers: Okay Jeffrey, let's start with the Acid Tongue album. This had a folk-rock undertone record with progressive storytelling and humor! How did this record come about?

This record came about from years of observing and experiencing this thing called loneliness. I had written the songs over a period of time, and our band at the time did a fantastic job of filling in the colorful additions to help the songs come to life. People have told me it's a pretty dark record, but as you said there is still humor in that darkness, and I think there's hope in there as well. Buzz Slayers: How did this all start for you as an artist? When did you really fall in love with music?

It all started for me as an artist when I was about 8 years old. I had a copy of the Michael Jackson Thriller album and I listened to it until the tape broke I think. I would leap around and sing to it pretending I was Michael Jackson. I obviously don't sound anything like Michael Jackson, and my tastes have changed and evolved over the years, but that's when I really became aware of the power of music and its influence on me as a writer and performer. I lived in France when I was 7 to 8 years old, and my dad's cousin had this old tape that was filled with rock n' roll songs from the late 70s and early 80s. Scorpions, Queen to name a few. Really became addicted to rock n' roll that way as well. Buzz Slayers: What kind of things really inspire songs for you?

I'd say that I'm inspired by injustices, political idiocy...things that can make a person very angry, and thankfully I have a medium as an outlet for that, I'm also inspired by - you guessed it - heartbreak and the un-answerable question of love. Buzz Slayers: This album has some great styles on it! Can you give us some of your biggest influences musically?

Hey thanks! Yeah, there's a variety on this album which I really like. I think it kind of represents the mix CDs and playlists that I've made in the past; having all different kinds of styles of music on them. Music from Bela Fleck and the Flecktones to Soundgarden to Thelonius Monk. When I write I try to write in different styles, but my main thing is the folk-rock deal, I feel I can tell the best stories and emote the best way through that "genre" because that's what's closest to me in terms of where I feel the most comfortable. I definitely like to step out of my comfort zone. In the song "Noche Cuervo" I tried to write that as if I was speaking Spanish. Buzz Slayers: What are you doing when you're NOT working on music?

When I'm not working on music, I work with a couple of media outlets. I work with PBS 12 here in Denver, and I also work as a radio traffic reporter for Total Traffic Network, I also create videos. I'm working on a small under-budget web series called "LA Times" based on a singer songwriter in LA and his friend. They encounter various characters and conversations in the famed Duke's Coffee shop there on Sunset Blvd. I'm 6 episodes in, and if you'd like to check it out, it's here on my YouTube page Buzz Slayers: Who's in your headphones right now?

Let me check my playlist...looks like I've got John Hiatt, Gerry Raferty, Colbie Callait, Ryan Adams (I recently started listening to this guy and he's great! I never knew much about him except some of the songs people would cover at songwriter nights) Curtis Mayfield, Tom Waits (my favorite), Jerry Butler, The Crystals, Warren Zevon (my favorite) Jewel (I've always liked her, but got turned off when she hosted that horrible TV show Platinum Record) Leonard Choen, Thelonius Monk....those are some well played artists. Buzz Slayers: Are you doing any live performances right now?

I play a lot of performances at senior centers, assisted living facilities and memory care facilities, I've been doing that for the past year and it's one of the most rewarding experiences I've had playing music. To see people, light up and recognize a song from their past when they might not be completely there mentally from whatever their affliction is, makes me just feel alive in ways that don't usually happen while playing. The elderly ladies will come up after the show and say things like "We just had the most wonderful time singing those old songs and it means so much that you come to play for us." it almost brings tears to your eyes, because some of those places aren't in the best shape and the people aren't in the best shape. If I can bring an hour and a half of happiness to them, then that's worth everything. I'll also be going on a solo tour this summer starting in August along the west coast and southwest. Buzz Slayers: Did you record yourself or hit a big studio for this?

We recorded this ourselves as a band. Our bass player Jon Von Funk produced the album, I wrote the songs, and we all contributed. Brian Bodley on drums, Scott Holland on Lead Guitar, Mandolin, Baritone Guitar and Backing Vocals. Von Funk on Bass Keys, Guitars and backing vocals. Me on Vocals, Acoustic/Electric Guitars and Harmonica. Buzz Slayers: What can your fans expect from you in the near future?

Some new music and live shows packed with energy, stories and sweaty folk n roll! Buzz Slayers: Before we go, what would you like to say to fans of the music?

I just want to thank them for coming out to our shows, and for taking the time to listen to our music and watch our videos. There are so many places to find entertainment and the market is quite saturated, so if you've taken the time in this sea of Spotify and the endless maze of online platforms to listen to my stuff, I wholeheartedly thank you.

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