Bringing a band back together after a break isn’t always a good idea. Plenty of reunions end up a disappointment for both fans and the members. Well, not for The Deslondes. They reunited in the pandemic and recorded their third – and possibly strongest – album Ways & Means. They describe it as the easiest recording process to date, perhaps the time away and other experiences helped solidify and define the group’s dynamic. In any case, after all these years, the band from New Orleans is still very much good to go. On Friday June 2nd, we set up shop at the Mailmen Studio in Utrecht and recorded covers of J.J. Cale’s Drifters Wife, Woody Guthrie’s This Morning I Was Born Again and album opener Good To Go.
Sam Doores tells us a little bit about their choice for J.J. Cale’s Drifters Wife: “We’re all J.J. Cale fans, but I first heard Drifters Wife when a friend was singing it around the campfire. I was in a long term relationship while spending most of my time away on tour at the time… so the chorus hit home for me. When I looked up JJ Cale’s version later, I thought it was begging for harmonies so I slowed it down a bit and brought it to the band.”
“I always kept these Woody Guthrie lyrics with me.”
Riley Downing explains why they chose this Woody Guthrie song to cover: “This Morning I Was Born Again is an old Woody Guthrie song that he never recorded officially, so we can only imagine our own ways to play and interpret it. I found the lyrics when I was about 21 and always kept them with me playing different variations. This one is ode to our old band The Tumbleweeds’ version we did many years ago upon our first visit to a recording studio ever.“
“You gotta pay to play and play to pay.”
Riley Downing: “Good To Go is about just getting older and still being able to keep yourself optimistic as an artist, traveler, and a human being. Guess at this point we’re all in as far as doing this music stuff and need to motivate and root for each other to continue to do it.”
“I wrote this song after a night of playing cards and dice with a bunch of old friends in Missouri and making out alright just to wake up and discover I had an expensive car repair to take care of and just being able to laugh it off and calm down in my own way by singing about it. Kinda just the way it goes though; you’re up one min and down the next. But that’s life and that’s gambling, I guess you gotta pay to play and play to pay. Same as the band all getting older and coming back together and heading back out on the road. We’re still here and we’re still good to go.”
The Deslondes are on tour
The Deslondes are currently on the last dates of their European tour before flying back to the United States to start another tour in their home country. Find all the dates here and go out to see them. You will have a damn good time.
Filmed & edited by Matthijs van der Ven.
Audio recorded & mixed by Martijn Groeneveld. Assistent recording engineer: Steffie Gelderblom.
Utrecht, The Netherlands
There is no better way to discover music than watching great musicians cover the songs they love. The Influences has been producing these videos ever since 2008.Read more.