Interview: 6 piece acoustic alt-rock group, Skytown

Skytown is a 6-piece acoustic alt-rock band from Tulsa, OK that released their debut record titled Outshine the Sun, this past September. They started as three and now they are 6! With their increase in band members, power and exposure came an exponentially increasing fan base and never ending opportunities to perform. I emailed the guys a few questions and got answers out of ALL 6 of them! Read below about the life of Skytown from the perspective of each member and the group as a whole. Though they guys are on the same brain wave for a lot of their answers, some of them are totally unique! It’s worth reading it all. Also, feel free to have a listen while you read:

Dale Crain: Vocals/Guitars

Tim Burress: Guitar/backing vocals

Jason Ford: Guitar/vocals

Eliot Cooper: Drums

David Williams: Bass guitar

John Edens: Electric guitar

 

MFL: The cover photo on your Facebook page, does that pretty much sum up your live shows? Looks like a damn good time.

Facebook cover photo

Jason: Yeah, all Skytown shows are just a big party.  We feel strongly that the more people that get involved with the music at our shows, the more fun everyone will have, so we routinely invite family, fans, and friends from other bands up on stage with us to sing along with us on some of our songs.

Tim: Yes we like to turn up and invite everyone to get involved. When we are on stage it is a party and that is the way we like it.

Dale: A Skytown show is always a damn good time. We always want the crowd involved.

Eliot: Yes, it was definitely a damn good time. Every time Skytown plays a show we try to keep it that way, weather there be 5 people or 500, we always try to party.

David: It seems like every song has its own vibes attached to it. Some are laid back, some are hoppin, some are grooving, some just straight up rock. But regardless of the vibes, a damn good time is guaranteed. That picture was taken during our Irish bar song “Drove Me To Drink” which usually ends the night, when everyone is hammered. And yes, that picture pretty much sums it up.

John: We do like to get rowdy. We play off of the crowd a lot so if they’re into it, it gives us the energy we need to step it up.

MFL: It sounds like Skytown is BOOKED all the time in terms of shows. How does that feel and did you ever see this coming?

Tim: Yes we are booked pretty much all the time and it feels GREAT! Personally I never saw it coming, but we have built a wonderful fan base and they are the ones that keep this train a rolling.

Dale: It feels great to always be booked out. That was the plan from the start. Yes, we seen it coming.

Eliot: It feels awesome! I definitely saw it happening but not at the fast rate that it has, it’s really badass.

David: It feels good, in fact if our drummer, and guitar player didn’t have day jobs, we’d love to be even busier. There’s just nothing like doing what we love on stage, and being a part of the audience’s good time.

John: It feels awesome. Never a dull moment in Skytown. And being the new guy, I can say that watching them before I joined up, yes. Totally saw it coming.

Band_Pic_1

MFL: Who are some of your favorite acts you’ve shared the stage with since your beginnings?

Tim: Well some of my favorite acts would be All About A Bubble, We The Ghost, Nashville Pussy, Framing The Red, Grind, Saving Able, Swamp fox, Dellacoma, Roots Of Thought and Mountain Sprout.

Dale: There are too many, but to name a few Mountain Sprout, Andy Frasco, Saving Able and The Floozies

Eliot: A favorite band of mine that I’ve always liked since we first played with them has been Summit, another local group in Tulsa. Class Zero and All about a bubble are a few others to name from Tulsa as well.

David: Our friends in Nicnos have incredible stage presence, and a badass sound. They, along with a Tulsa based rock band called Swampfox, are breaking the mold in every sense of the phrase. Super talented, and All around great dudes, and we look forward to sharing the stage with them again in the future.

John: Every time we play with The Capital Why’s is killer. Those dudes rule. Playing with Summit rules as well. Sanchez hell yeah.

MFL: Speaking of beginnings, what’s Skytown’s “once upon a time” story?

Tim: Once upon a time about two and a half years ago Vocalist Dale Crain and Timothy Burress who had been playing together in different bands for many years decided that they were going to start an all acoustic driven rock band. After about half a year or so of playing acoustic bar shows they acquired drummer Eliot cooper, second acoustic guitarist Jason Ford and bassist David Williams. Shortly after they got there first Tulsa show at the Dixie Tavern and after just a year of playing around their hometown they are ready to take their music on the road to share with the masses.

Dale: Skytown started with Tim Burress and Dale Crain about two years ago in Skiatook, OK. Picking up Eliot Cooper, Jason Ford, David Williams, and John Edens has really made this band come to life.

David: Once upon a time, a four piece known as “Marvin Gardens Band” was making waves in their hometown of Skiatook Oklahoma, playing at house parties and the local beer joint “the city fountain”. After getting a call from some rapper in New York named Marvin Gardens, they decided to rename the band after their Oklahoma stomping grounds. The sound of the band has changed a lot over the past 2 years, from member changes, to new songs added, or changed. But the heart of the music beats on. I like to think every music project is an organic entity that is constantly evolving; Growing a new set of legs, if you will. Skytown may still be a sea slug at this point, but don’t hold your breath, it will be a fire breathing dragon one day. Coming to a town near YOU.

John: I’ll let Dale and Tim take this one

MFL: When you all are touring, what are the tour bus necessities? I’m talking food, drink, entertainment….

Tim: Well as of right now we tour around in a 79 dodge van with all our equipment and seven dudes so the provisions are pretty much provision-less but we try to have Beer, ciggs, more beer, some snacks, beer, music to listen to and then again more BEER!

Dale: Cigs, alcohol, a little bit of weed and for sure some food of any kind.

David: The only entertainment we need is Jake the merch guy. He usually keeps us rolling. Aside from that, the SkyVan is usually stocked with Trailmix, Marlboros, and Pabst Blue Ribbon, YEEEYEEEEE.

John: Cigarettes, water, coca-cola, maybe some chips or any kind of chocolate, iPod, pillow, sleeping bag, back back.

MFL: Are there any venues or cities you dream of playing at? Expand on this and tell me why!

Jason: Red Rocks Amphitheater in Denver is high on our list of venue to play some day.  So much musical history has been made on that stage, that it would be such an honor to be a part of that.  Plus, the view and the setting is breathtaking.

Tim: I would love to be able to play every city in the world but just to name a couple i would have to say anywhere in Seattle and New York just because I would love to check out all they have to offer. More than anything tho I would love to play Europe and any other country that would have Skytown so I can travel the world and see the many different cultures and sites.

Dale: I’m down to play anywhere hands down. No real direction just as long as we’re moving.

Eliot: I would have to say Austin City Limits and Red Rocks. ACL seems to have such rich history in it and red rocks is just an extremely beautiful place.

David: Small scale dreams, the Diamond Ballroom in OKC, and Tulsa’s BOK center. Large scale dreams, Austin City Limits, Red Rocks Amphitheater, LA’s Whiskey a-go-go, and NYC’s Beacon Theatre.

John: I want to play Chicago really bad. Every time I’ve been there it just gets better and better. Amazing city.

MFL: What thoughts were running through your minds the day before release of your debut record, Outshine the Sun?

Tim: The only thing running through my mind the day before was that I hope everyone enjoys what we have put our heart and soul into.

Dale: I would say the anticipation of everybody getting to hear that piece of your heart you played on that record wondering who will like it and who won’t.

Eliot: The only thought in my mind was people are going to fucking DIG this album. And sure enough they did!

David: After sitting on those recordings for a solid year, we couldn’t help but think, “Damn, it’s about time.” Already can’t wait for the next CD release show. Some of the songs we do live that didn’t end up on OTS (Outshine the Sun) will definitely be on the sophomore album.

John: Again, as the new guy I wasn’t a part of the band when the album was recorded, but I remember thinking how humbling it was that they asked me to join and be a part of the madness that is Skytown.

MFL: Now that, Outshine the Sun is out, is there any part of you that wishes you could change anything on or surrounding the record? Or, are you pleased with your musical and artistic product?

Tim: I am totally happy with this record and I cannot think of one thing that I would change.

Dale: I’m very pleased with the album.

Eliot: I mean me personally I know I could have done some extra drum parts or something but all in all no, I wouldn’t change anything! Only have ideas for the next Album!

David: No matter what you do, There’s always gonna be something for someone to nitpick about, so we do our best to live life like we wouldn’t do it any differently given the chance. Just do you, and do it the best you can, and don’t apologize for it. If you’re unsatisfied, don’t get bitter, get better.

John: I wish I could have been there for the recording process.

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MFL: When and how did putting together and releasing a full length record become a reality?

Tim: It all became a reality when we were contacted by Glenn Sawyer from the Spot Studios in Lakewood, Colorado. He was interested in recording us and that was something that we had all been talking about doing so we set up a recording date a few months before we actually hit the studio so we could play some shows and save the money to record the album, and well as you know now we have a great album.

Dale: It became a reality with a lot of hard work and dedication much like with anything that one could be successful at in life.

Eliot: I honestly couldn’t tell you. Except for maybe getting hit up by The Spot Studios saying they wanted to record an album for us. We saw how awesome the studio was and started working our asses off to make it happen, and after a few shows it happened.

MFL: What does 2016 hold for Skytown?

Tim: I can only hope that in 2016 Skytown will be on the road sharing their music with every person we come into contact with.

Dale: Hopefully a shit ton of touring.

Eliot: Hopefully 2016 holds LOTS OF TOURING and promoting of our album.

David: If all goes well, A LOT. We hope to play as many festivals as possible this next year, maybe go on a few mini tours. We’d really love to branch out farther and farther, and build our fan base to other states and let America know that some pretty cool shit is happening in Oklahoma.

John: Hopefully lots and lots of touring.

MFL: Finally, current favorite record for each of you (if possible). I’m wondering what’s playing in your car or on your iPhone, Pod, whatever you have, right now.

Jason: I’ve been spinning “Field Report’s” debut album a lot lately.  Also “The Sailor, The Captain” by All About a Bubble.

Tim: Well, I am more of an old school guy myself so I don’t really have a favorite current record but the bands that play in my car and other devices are Pantera, County Crows, Lamb of God, Killswitch Engage, Cage the Elephant and A Pony Named Olga.

Dale: Every Counting Crows album is on point in my book and currently playing right now is a compilation cd of our local Tulsa,OK Music scene.

Eliot: Currently I’ve been rocking out to a band Called “The Sword” Age of Winters is the album. Super riffy and high energy.

David: Recently I’ve been jamming out to “Because Of The Times”, by Kings of Leon; another band from Oklahoma.

John: Age of winters by The Sword. Can’t and won’t stop jamming that entire album. A more common album that plays in my car is AC/DC’s ’79 If You Want Blood live album. Perfect.

Big thanks to Dale, Eliot, Jason, John, Tim and David for answering my questions! If you happen to be nearby Tulsa, OK this Friday November 13th, check them out at The Shrine!

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