An Interview with Dante White of Oozelles

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In the world we live in today, it’s good to be creative. Next time you’re bored, give it a shot and throw all your creative influences into a blender and see what comes out. Why not? What have you got to lose? Dante White and Oozelles get that. As a band who refuses to be defined by any single genre, the best I can say is the band is funky…in all the right ways. They’re fresh and singular. Sound cool? If so, head over to the band’s website here, or Org Music’s site here and check out their debut record, Oozelles.

Dante White from Oozelles is with us today. This is a fun one. We talk about the band’s debut record, Dante’s love for books during the pandemic, the band’s interesting array of deeply underground influences and their never ending quest to finally not just learn, but master “Louie Louie.” Dig it.

Andrew:
Dante, thank you taking the time to speak with us. Its been a very long and strange year, hasn’t it?

Dante:
Are you talking about that little girl that got murdered?

Andrew:
Tell us a bit about your musical origins? What was it that got you into music?


Dante:
I’m a masochist that loves doing everything the hard way. Being in a band seemed like a good fit for such a temperament. So far my hunch has panned out. 

Andrew:
Oozelles are a very interesting band. Tell us about how you all met and how the band got its start. What is the origin of the name?

Dante:
We met on ancestry.com after our DNA tests revealed we are all at least 60% Esperanto. The name Oozelles has always existed and predates concepts like “origin.” In fact, all origin myths presuppose the name. 

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Andrew:
In May of 2020, Oozelles released its self-titled debut album. What can you tell us about the recording of your debut?
 

Dnte:
I recorded and mixed it in my home studio, which is also where we practice.

Andrew:
One of the things I really like about Oozelles is the fusion of many genres. The band feels like a true melting pot. Would you agree?


Dante:
In truth, we’re abject failures. We keep trying to learn “Louie Louie” but we’re such bad musicians that all this other nonsense comes out instead.

Andrew:
Sort of following up on my last questions here. What or who are some Oozelles’ greatest influences?


Dante:
Aside from “Louie Louie,” it would have to be the great songwriting duos of Schwartzman and Feeble. We also listen to a lot of The Kreg Pennies, Chinzor LeDoux, Glevzip zip zip, Shool Maevin , Pibnobo, Blervegot, A Not Ned Flush, Zaaaaaaaaaa Ho Ho – ?X78 Boo? and Garg Diiv.

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Andrew:
I really like how you guys have eschewed what’s “popular” and just basically have done whatever you wanted with your music. What are your thoughts on the idea that bands have to subscribe to the norm or any one particular genre?


Dante:
I’d like to see those bands try to play “Louie Louie.”

Andrew:
For me at least, your album was a true musical bright spot of 2020. It oozes creativity and has this sort of temperamental humanity about it. I think in a year like this, having something this refreshing is nothing sort of essential. What was your inspiration for the record?

Dante:
Thank you! That’s very kind. Being caught in the meat grinder of life is a never-ending source of inspiration.

Andrew:
Your debut is available through Org Music. What a great and forward-thinking label. How has the experience been working with Org?


Dante:
They’re great people and they have an amazing label. I feel bad that they released a record at a time where we can’t even play a release show. 

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Andrew:
We know you haven’t been able to play live this year, but to me at least, this music feels like it’s itching to be expanded upon in the live setting. Are you looking forward to getting out there when things calm down? How do you think your music will translate in that setting?


Dante:
We are. We love playing live and all of those songs were tested live long before being recorded. 

Andrew:
Shifting gears here now. What are some things within the industry that you would like to see change for the betterment of both the artist and fans alike?


Dante:
More narcissists would be refreshing. The introduction of exploitative labels owners, promoters and booking agents would be an innovative twist. Every band member having their own litigious manager would be beautiful. 

Andrew:
Do you collect vinyl? Tapes? CDs? Or are you all digital now? Where do you like to shop for music?


Dante:
I don’t collect anything, but I horde false memories.

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Andrew:
What are a few albums that mean the most to you and why?

Dante:
I feel personally cast adrift in that department. I rarely listen to music any more unless it’s a band I’m recording. I’m honestly more influenced by incidental environmental noises like doors closing, animal sounds, wind. Every now and then, I’ll once again get way too excited about the sonic qualities of Funhouse by The Stooges, but that’s probably just because of it’s legitimate and intimate connections to “Louie Louie.” Granted, the record itself is just one more list of failed attempts at playing “Louie Louie,” but then again, most records are. 

Andrew:
2020 was a been a weird year, but we’ve still saw a lot of great music released. What were some of your must have albums of 2020?

Dante:
It feels weird to say this but I haven’t paid any attention to records this past year, only books. Some highlights are Chaos by Tom O’Neil, Feeding Your Demons by Tsultrim Alione, Food Of The Gods by Terrence McKenna, Partial List Of People To Bleach by Gary Lutz. Actually, wait, there is one record I discovered this year that excited me but it came out in 2018. It’s called Two Niles To Sing A Melody: The Violins and Synths of Sudan. Even after 16 tries, the poor guys just can’t seem get “Louie Louie” right, but it’s okay, because you know what? Neither can I. 

Andrew:
Last question. Once COVID-19 calms down (if it ever does), what’s next for Oozelles as a band? Anything else you would like us know?


Dante:
We’ve started trying to learn “Louie Louie” again. We’ll probably blow it, which means lots more “original music.”

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Interested in diving deeper into the work of Oozelles? Check out the link below:

Dig this interview? Check out the full archives of Vinyl Writer Interviews, by Andrew Daly, here: www.vinylwritermusic.com/interview

Published by Andrew Daly

Since he was a young child growing up on Long Island, NY, Andrew has always loved writing and collecting physical music. After losing his life-long vinyl collection in 2014, Andrew began his vinyl collection from scratch again when he met his future wife Angela in 2015. Andrew’s love of music only further blossomed as his collection spanned all genres possible. After amassing 5,000 albums, Andrew knew it was time to finally follow his dream, and thus, Vinyl Writer Music was born. Present-day, Andrew is proud to share his love of music with the world through his writing, and the result is nothing short of beautiful: articles and interviews written by a music addict, for fellow music addicts. Andrew lives on Long Island with his wife Angela and their four cats, Oliver, Patrick, Charlie, and Kevin. Andrew works as a Horticultural Operations Manager by day and runs the Vinyl Writer Music website by night. Andrew is also the admin of several Facebook groups dedicated to music.

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