Friday, April 11, 2014

Interview with Lenny Lashley from Street Dogs and the Gang of One!

For anybody in the punk and hardcore scene, Lenny Lashley should be no stranger to you!  From his amazing former punk rock staple, Darkbuster and Americana project, Lenny & the Piss Poor Boys and more recently, the Gang of One and the Street Dogs, he has been making some damn good tunes for sometime now.  Recently we caught up via email and talked about the response of his latest release, Illuminator, working with Pete from the Bouncing Souls, joining up with the Street Dogs and much more!

Run Don’t Walk: How’s everything going today, Lenny?  For starter’s, lets talk about your latest release with the Gang of One, “Illuminator”.   What has the response been to it?   What was it like working with major talents like Joe Sirois on drums (Mighty Mighty Bosstones)?  How did the rest of the band come together? 

Lenny Lashley: hey nick, things are up and down today like most days but trying hard to keep that posi vibe goin .. overall  i'd say " illuminator has been very well recieved many folks goin so far as to say it was their fav album of 13 ,... working with pete, and joe ,and mcdermott , and all the guys that were involved in the making of the record was a dream come true couldn't have happened without their love help and support ..  ( packer ! ) the band and everything that has happened in the past few years for me just came about by asking worst people can say is no right ?.......

RDW: What was your experience working with Pete Steinkopf (Bouncing Souls) in the studio?  What did he do to help the overall quality of the record?  It must have been pretty amazing and inspiring to work with someone who plays in an influential band like the Bouncing Souls. 

LL:  i can't say enough about working with pete best producer engineer and overall great person confidence builder i've ever been lucky enough to work with... he believed in me and the songs and made me focus and work hard to get them down in a hopefully timeless fashion.....

RDW: How did you get linked up with Panic State Records and then Pirates Press Records?  In the last couple years, Pirates Press has put out some amazing music (“Illuminator” being one of them) what was it like to have two labels put your music out? 

LL:  well i've some long time freinds and supporters down in asbury namely joe @ holdfast record who was helping me ( for a long while )to try and find someone to put out the record  bean @ panic state believed in the tunes and was just really nice to offer to do that
and  he  and everyone at panic state are like family that's important to me skippy and the pirates press folks are cut from the same cloth and offered to co release and help get the record out to as many folks as they could it's unbelievablr to have the belief and support of two amazing record labels !!!

RDW: Lets talk about gear!  It seems that you recently started playing Gretsch guitars, which must sound fantastic.  What made you switch from Gibson to that?  It also seems like you are always expanding your sound too between amps, pedals, etc.  Which amps have you been using and what do you like right now? 

LL: ahhh gear !! my favorite the gretsch thing developed  from a craiglist ad guy was getting rid of a black falcon it looked sweet i had some cash ( rare ) and after some set up tlc i fell in love with it lucky enough for me my brother and fellow street dog put me in touch with a rep from fender ( owns gretsch )  and he was nice enough to help me aqquire the white billy duffy that i love to hmmn why the gretsches ? I dunno i still have 2 gibson lp jun iors and they are actually much easier to play but the gretsches make ya work hard to play em good and they sound and look fantastic i'd  buy 30 of em if i could !! special thanks to mike schultz over @ fender music ! as far as amp rigs i been working for like ten years to get my rig built it's a mesa dual racktifier, and a 77 marshall jmp , i run em together a/b'd through a lehle ab box and into two seperate cabs the marshall goes to a 2x12  with a weber silver and blue bell speaker and the mesa goes to a 4x12 marshall bx with 25 watt greenbacks i will be retiring that rig very soon for a multi head / cab rig  by a fantastic amp builder out of san diego ca. adam grimm @ sattelite amps they are just the best things i've ever heard !!! thanks adam ! gear is like everything for me in the sense that i want to always move forward and try harder and reach higher if ya ain't doin that then i ain't woth it for me ! with everything in life not just gear....

RDW: Last year you jumped on board with the Street Dogs!  How has the ride been so far?  You’ve already been to Europe with them and have done a handful of dates in the United States.  Has the band helped you reach new heights as musician?

LL:  Joining up with the street dogs has been unbelievable it's been scary too tobe and marcus were incredibly big shoes to fill and the band was such a well oiled machine.. being with mike , rioux , pete and matt  has made me grow and challenged me as a person and a musicians and i am eternally grateful for their belief in me  !!..........

RDW: Last week, Mark Lind and Josh Smith set up a couple benefit shows for Lt. Walsh and Firefighter Kennedy from Engine 33 and Ladder 15.  How does it feel to be a part of such an amazing event and to play two shows with some amazing bands? 

LL: best feeling in the world to be asked to helpout in any way and support the heros that afford us liberty and safety any time I can. mark and josh deserve so much credit though for bein pro active and doin not sayin which is a lesson i could always keep trying to remember!

RDW: What bands are coming out today have you been enjoying?  Who have you toured with in your music career?  Who would you like to tour with? 

LL: so many good bands out there ... to many to list ( so don't be mad guys if ya ain't mentioned ) depends on what i wanna hear but right now i'm digging on blood or whiskey from ireland's new release , chuck reagan's new record , bishops green and lions law as well as old firm casuals, and i love cheap girls ..... the band  ( get your minds out of the gutter ) also new rancid coming and it's gonna rip.....

RDW:  How does the song writing process go for the Gang of One?  I assume it’s an entirely different process for a band such as the Street Dogs? 

LL: writing songs for my recent stuff has been wait for tragic events and write about em ( it's my therapy ) and street dogs is a much more collaborative effort which is real fun too cause everyone has such great input ....

RDW:  The Street Dogs and Noi!se from Tacoma, Washington have a split coming out in a few weeks.  It must be a great feeling being able to do a split with a fantastic band such as them?  Easily one of my favorites right now, too!

LL: I'm stoked to be a part of the noise sd spilt as i think both bands killed it  guys in noise are just top shelf  people and musicians

RDW: Any final words. 

LL: goats....that's my final word i dunno why it's just the first thing that popped into my head


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