Chris Post Interview

They take their name from another era, but Dillinger is very much a group of today. Based out of Los Angeles, Dillinger's debut album "Horses and Hawgs" has been released on the new JRS Records label.
Lead vocalist Chris Post talked with us about his group.

Q. One of the things that makes Dillinger so unique is your vocals. They're right up front. You can actually hear every word you're saying.
A. Real good point. You're right up there. I tell you, we specified it when we recorded it. Some of the guys were concerned about it initially, whether we emphasized the vocals too much, maybe losing a little power in the guitar outage. I think the power is still there, enough. That's a good point that you brought up. I think that what people are mainly concerned with, when they finally get to hear it, is vocals. I'm glad you brought that up. That's good.

Q. Dillinger is on the road now, but you're not playing dates. You're going to radio stations?
A. All the stations that have picked us up across the country, we're goin' from state to state, each of the cities, and bringin' in our acoustics and playing over the air. Then they'll interview us.

Q. Since no one in the group has the last name Dillinger, why did you decide on that name? Were you fascinated by the era of gangsters in the 30's?
A. No. You know something, quite honestly, Dillinger was like a folk hero. It's like a piece of Americana. Since we all came from other parts of the country we thought we'd cover a pretty wide spectrum. Somehow, for whatever reason, Dillinger when I hear it, correlates to the west. It's got a good sound to it. I don't think we all thought of who he was, the man, but more of the myth about it. It's kind of hard to put into words. We just liked it. It's a real southern kind of looking band. All our amps are covered in burlap instead of the typical Marshall Cloth. We have a rope inside the amp. The grill cloth is branded Dillinger. The drums are wrapped in real cowhide. We have bullhorns on 'em. There's cactus on stage. But, that's what we like. That's our vibe.

Q. Am I correct in stating that everyone in the band, contributes to the songwriting?
A. Right.

Q. How can the drummer contribute to the songwriting process? Does he write the words? Does he play another instrument?
A. No. To start with, we write a lot on acoustic guitar. I'll bring in the bulk of the ideas to the guys. Then, we'll work on the music first, I'll already have a basic melody to go with, then I fine tailor the lyrics. But the drummer, his input is mainly on the groove, on each individual part he does during each particular breakdown section. Mainly his input is his drums, not necessarily the particular writing of a lyric or writing of a chord. That's generally done by myself and either the bass player or the guitar player.

Q. How tough is it these days for a band to get work in L.A.?
A. There's a lot of places in LA. on quote "The Strip," Sunset Strip, that accept "pay to play." What the promoter does is, he'll go out and rent the club for the evening. Then he'll make a band come in, and if you want the headline spot you have to buy like a hundred tickets for eight dollars a piece. That guarantees a promoter he's got his rent covered, at least. So in other words, if a young band comes out, and they got a rich dad, they can go out and buy tickets and give'em away to their friends, and headline at The Roxy. That's kind of cheap to me. It's undeserving in my opinion. (Laughs) I thought those clubs used to have some prestige, when you got a chance to play there, it would mean something. But, that's not the case anymore. I think it's a sad situation. It's not tough to get gigs out there if you got money. There's a lot of other venues that are free that are more along the "honor" system.

Q. JRS Records caught your act where?
A. They caught us I think at a place called The Spice in Hollywood which is a pretty famous hang-out. That was during the time we were playin' around. It wasn't a pay to play place. The vice-president Stan Schuster saw us in there, 'cause he was a friend of the guitar player's sister. So, she brought him down, and he loved us. They were called Ventura Entertainment Group, before JRS Records. Then he said, "Well, we're gonna start our own label, and if you guys hang tough, we want to sign you guys." We did, and the rest is history.

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