Estrella: Can you please state your name and what you do in the band?
Dan: My name is Dan and I sing in The Dear & Departed.
Estrella: You are a little over a week into the tour with Alkaline Trio and Cursive, how has it been going?
Dan: It’s been really, really, really awesome. We couldn’t ask for anything more as far as bands to tour with, kids coming to the shows to show support and that kind of things. Everything is perfect.
Estrella: I read Matt Skiba (Alkaline Trio singer) personally asked you guys to come out on tour with them, how did that come about?
Dan: I live in LA and we have mutual friends. We try to get fit together as well.
Estrella: Working out? Really?
Dan: Yeah, yeah, it doesn’t happen a lot of the time but we try. Our hearts are in the right place. When he asked us it was great because I have been tied up with the TV show LA Ink. Last year we weren’t really able to tour much at all so it is exciting to get back out on the road and what better way to do it then with Alkaline Trio.
Estrella: When this tour concludes, you are going overseas with AFI, how did that tour come about?
Dan: Well they are touring the new record and they asked us as well.
Estrella: They even asked you guys too?
Dan: Yeah, I mean they are friends of ours and luckily I got to sing on the last couple of records they did. It’s always such an honor when bands that you really love and are great people ask you to go on tour with them.
Estrella: Anything you are looking forward to the most with that tour?
Dan: Just to get to England, I was born and lived there when I was six so I still have a huge connection with England. All of my favorite bands are from England, just being over there is obviously a big change from America and I have been over here for six years now. Our guitarist Darren was also born in Liverpool so it is just cool to go back to where you are from.
Estrella: Are you going to stick around living in the states from now on?
Dan: Yeah. LA is my home now especially with the shop and the show. We are going to be filming some more after we come back from Europe. I’m a busy boy but it is cool.
Estrella: The tour with AFI ends mid to late April, so your plans after that is LA Ink?
Estrella: New record?
Dan: Well, both actually. It is kind of hard to juggle both but I’ll start filming. We already have a whole bunch of songs written it is just a matter of choosing the one’s that we want to end up on the final product and then record them
Estrella: Have you guys started playing new material for your next record at your shows yet?
Dan: Oh no not yet, we have a lot of songs written but nothing final to be able to play. People should probably hear the EP (Chapters), we open and only get half an hour.
Estrella: At the beginning of January you released the EP Chapters, why an EP and not a full length?
Dan: Basically like I said it was because of the TV show it (LA Ink) took up a lot of my time. We weren’t really able to put as much into it as we wanted too time wise really and we took a little break last year. We just wanted to get the ball rolling again and an EP was a way to get that ball rolling. Even on the EP I think it is a pretty diverse five songs, so more of that from the EP.
Estrella: You premiered on LA Ink mid August, what were your decisions behind doing that show?
Dan: Well, I worked in the shop before the show started and Kat (Von D) has been my friend for many years. The opportunity just arose and I thought I better jump on it. It is a really really great opportunity and one I am really thankful for. It wasn’t really a hard decision for me.
Estrella: Did you also see it as a good opportunity to get The Dear & Departed more exposure?
Dan: Yeah, it definitely compliments the band so I am pretty lucky in that.
Estrella: What is something you have always wanted to do but have not done yet?
Dan: Just travel to more places I think. I think luckily in a band you always get to travel and you gain a little teaser of where you want to go back. There are lots of places in Europe I haven’t been and I would like to go.
Estrella: Anywhere in particular?
Dan: I have been to Hungary and Vienna and stuff like that, I really loved those countries but maybe go to Prague or Paris.
Estrella: Touring or pleasure?
Dan: Kind of both, I would like to go work over there and tattoo. I can take my tool with me.
Estrella: Do you take them on the road with you?
Dan: Yeah, yeah for sure.
Estrella: You do, have you tattooed any artists on this tour?
Dan: I haven’t yet, but I will.
Estrella: What’s a song that you never get sick of hearing?
Dan: Probably “Slide Away” by Oasis. It is my favorite Oasis song and there is something about it, I could always listen to that.
Estrella: I have their lyrics tattooed on me.
Dan: Do you, what do you have?
Estrella: I have, ‘I don’t believe that anybody feels the way I do about you now’ in a heart.
Dan: Awesome, that is so cool.
Estrella: I love them.
Dan: Me too, me too.
Estrella: I’m sad they broke up.
Dan: All good things have to come to an end and I’m sure at least Noel will have something pretty awesome up his sleeve.
Estrella: What is one of your favorite lines in one of your songs?
Dan: That’s a very tough question I think. All of my lyrics are really honest and I think they tell a pretty obvious story. Not to not answer that question but every lyrics that I write obviously means something in a pretty big way. I defiantly think lyrics are a huge part of what makes a good band good, so I have a lot of people to look up to in that sense. I like to think all of my lyrics have meaning.
Estrella: If you could see any band or artist perform any song live what would it be and why?
Dan: I would love to see The Descendents set. Growing up they were such a huge, huge band for me. Actually my first tattoo was their band logo. I think just because they have not played for such a long time and they had such an impact for me, I would say The Descendents. Either “Hope” or “Clean Sheets”, something like that.
Estrella: Any final comments?
Dan: Thank you for your time, and thank you for bearing with me. I honestly feel like a bobble-head right now I have so much Dayquil trying to shake this sickness. I am very excited to play in Chicago tonight and here’s hoping I either don’t pass out or throw up on stage (laughs).