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The Goodnight – Keep Control
The Goodnight are settling in and making a name for themselves in the pop-rock realm of California. Formerly known as The Goodnight Sunrise, the band went through a metamorphosis and emerged as an even stronger powerhouse of catchy hook-driven pop-rock. I got the opportunity to ask lead singer Dan Murphy a few questions:
Let’s go back to the beginning. I read that you and Jud played your first show together in the 6th grade. I’m curious to know what your set list was like when you guys first started. Did you play original material, or covers?
Our first show together was during assembly at our drummer’s middle school. We played as an instrumental three piece – two guitars and a drummer. I think we played three or four terribly boring instrumentals because none of us knew how to sing. The funny thing is, we were the only band that played and we had nothing to do with the school’s music program. We ended up playing a few middle school dances in the same gym in 7th and 8th grade. There is some hilarious video footage on a VHS somewhere.
Tell us about the album artwork and why you chose it.
The photo was taken by our friend Jake McEachern. He shot it just outside of our hometown Helena, Montana in summer 2012. There were some pretty awful wildfires last summer. We considered a few different covers, but this had something unique and it fit well with the title “Keep Control.” It was nice to use a picture that came from back home.
How has the response been to the record? Do you notice a difference in the band/audience from before the album was out?
We’ve had great feedback on these songs. I think there are plenty of people out there who know Goodnight Sunrise who haven’t realized we changed the name yet. We knew that starting over wasn’t going to be easy, but it feels great to have a fresh start and to finally be working on a new project. Rebranding the band to reach a broader audience was the main reason we changed the name. We can’t wait to finish this new batch demos to test on people.
What career field do you think you would be in if you weren’t a musician? Why?
Craft beer. It’s a booming industry and I’m a big beer nerd. I’d love to start a brewery or bar/venue one day.
What artist/album did you worship/learn all the songs/play non-stop when you started playing music?
First it was Aerosmith. I was, and still am a huge Pearl Jam fan, but I think a lot of later 90’s, butt-rocky bands inspired me to learn and write heavy guitar riffs. I was really into Thrice and The Used in high school. It’s hard to pick out one specific record or genre because my musical interests have been so scattered.
(Stealing your question from Twitter!) If you could only listen to bands/artists that started with the same letter, which letter would you assign yourself?
Haha, glad you follow @TheGoodnight. Right now, I think I’m feeling J – James Morrison, John Mayer, Jason Mraz, James Taylor, Jimmy Eat World. So many great singer/songwriters.
Name some other independent bands that you think people should pay attention to.
It’s sad, but most of my favorite bands we used to tour with have broken up. Check out some great friends from LA – The Material and Culprit. Places is a great band from Denver who also has members from Montana.
Craziest thing you’ve experienced on the road?
My mind is racing… I can think of so many memorable days on tour. Maybe getting arrested in a tiny mormon town. Why do memories with the police always stand out?
If you were to piece together a supergroup – who would you pick for vocals, guitar, bass, drums. (Alive or dead)
Maybe a young John Fogerty on vox, Brad Paisley on Guitar, Billy Sheehan on bass, Darren King of MuteMath on drums. Weird.
What Simpsons character would you be and why?
Bleeding Gums Murphy because he’s in the family. Murphs gotta stick together.
Who’s your musical ‘guilty pleasure’?
Keith Urban, Taylor Swift, Maroon 5.Although, I don’t feel too guilty admitting that.
Did you cry a little too when you heard Thrice was going on ‘hiatus’?
That was definitely a huge bummer to hear, but at least I got to see their farewell tour! Thrice is one of the only bands I grew up listening to over their entire career, and I still enjoy all of their records. They’re such a great example of maturing musicians pushing their boundaries. I get a little irritated always hearing “Artists In The Ambulance” was, by far, their best record.
Thanks again Dan! Keep up the good work and we’ll look forward to hearing more!