On Episode 188, I'm joined by rising country songwriter Jesse Daniel, who at week's end (July 30), will release Beyond These Walls, his third full-length album. During this one, we talk about further developing as a storyteller with songs like "Clayton Was a Cowboy," expanding his sonic palette with the embrace of Mexican-influenced music, passing time as a fisherman during 2020, how his long-time sobriety helped him tackle the lockdown's restless weeks, and easing back into touring came naturally.
This episode's presenting partner is Desert Door Texas Sotol and The Blue Light Live.
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Thomas Mooney 0:02
Everybody, welcome back to New slang. I'm your host music journalist Thomas Mooney. We have a great one here for Episode 188. This time around, I'm joined by Jesse Daniel who is releasing his third record beyond these walls this Friday, July 30. So I've obviously thoroughly enjoyed Jesse's previous albums, his self titled debut and last year's rolling on, but this one right here. I think he just does it better. Like he takes those things that he was already doing well, and just does it better. And he just hones in on the songwriting and storytelling aspect. It still has that California country, Bakersfield sound meets dancehall days Honky Tonk rhythms. But I think this specific record, it just finds him finding that sweet spot. It just sounds killer songs like looking back and think I'll stay are just about as perfect as possible. For me, I think what he does here that's just a little bit better. And something that we expand on during the interview is he just really leans in on the storytelling aspects of the record, and just does an incredible job of telling some of these stories. Here, I think like a song like Clayton was a cowboy, for example, that kind of just works no matter what music styling you have. That's just a great song. It just works no matter the lens. And another thing that I really appreciate that he does on this one is there's been hints of it in the past. But this time around, he full on embraces that border TexMex tahanan, or Daniel music. As he mentioned, he was raised around a lot of this music growing up, and he's always had that appreciation for it. He just kind of finds out that right and proper, I guess, context or lens to to share hit that influence. And of course, he does get a really great collaboration here with Raul malo of the Mavericks. And they just knock it out of the park on that one. And of course, whenever you kind of get a collaboration like that, you get some instant street cred. In many respects beyond these walls, it's just really that natural progression of the artists. You find Jesse, honing in on what he's done well, and again, kind of expanding in directions that he's been interested in. I think it's his best work yet, and I think it's gonna really do wonders for him. And hopefully, like you'll enjoy this record, again beyond these walls. It's out Friday, July 30. Today's presenting partner is our pals over at Desert door Texas Soto. You've been listening to new slang for really any amount of time, you'll know that desert door is one of my all time favorite premium, high quality spirits. If you haven't or aren't sure what exactly a sotol is. I'm going to let you in on a little secret that's going to up the game on your liquor cabinet. For starters, the best reference point that I can point you to is to think about a tequila or a scowl. Do you feel that Western desert that text is ruggedness? Okay, Soto is like that, but a little bit more refined, smooth and fragrant. It intrigues the palate and offers these hints of vanilla and citrus, there's an earthiness that often sends me right back to my transpac isn't far west Texas roots. There's plenty to love about desert door. For me, it all starts right there. a close second is just how versatile does your door really is. You can go for high brow and experiment with concocting a variety of cocktails that call for muddling fresh fruit sprigs of time sticks of cinnamon, it's perfect for that world. If you're a little bit more down on, if you've just rolled up the sleeves of your denim Wrangler button up, it's perfect for that as well. If you're just designing something that's short and sweet, it hits the mark every time does adore is genuine and authentically West Texan it's inherently West Texan. They harvest Soto plants out in the wild and are knowledgeable conservationists at heart. That's obviously something incredibly important to me. They shine a light on what makes West Texas special and unique and worth preserving and keeping it safe from exploitation. Right now, you can find as a door all over Texas, Colorado, Tennessee, and there's budding numbers in places like New Mexico, Arizona, California and Georgia. Best thing you can do is to check out desert door.com to find where desert door is locally. Again, that's desert door.com.
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Which of course, like yeah, let's just start there. Like the the new record is out July 30. And you've been releasing singles the last couple of weeks here in there. I really do love the, the, the new sound on the record, I think like you're going off in a lot of different new directions, while kind of you know, still maintaining that Jesse Daniel sound as far as like being, you know, influenced by that Bakersfield sound and the California country what what I guess like, you know, this is one of those things where we're getting into the territory where people are making these records that are coming out of the the quarantine. I know last time we talked we you had already kind of mentioned or hinted at, you know, what was going to be following up your last record. But But you know, like, this is obviously new territory for you as well as far as the the quarantine record, quote, unquote, what what kind of, like, I guess, like this past year, what kind of things did you run into, as far as you know, you know, getting ready for this record, and writing this record?
Jesse Daniel 6:35
Well, you know, that with this one, I think Yeah, and I appreciate it, you know, you noticing that we kind of we did strive to, to make a different record, that is one of my biggest things with making a record after rolling on was to do something to not make the same album twice, you know, my, my first one, and 2018 is very different from rolling on. And like you said, I try to kind of maintain some of the similar style, but you know, productions different and we wanted to you know, keep it country and keep it within you know, my style and but just kind of the Blue Jays there's so many other avenues of country music that I love. And you know, as well as being influenced by you know, Bakersfield sound and being from California and kind of tapping into that history. You know, living in Texas now, I've always been really influenced by you know, a lot of Texas songwriters. And just kind of traveling around also being influenced by different types of music and things we wanted to showcase that man, we sure had a lot of time this past year to kind of focus on really, like take our time with with a lot of these songs and kind of the direction we wanted them to go in. So by the time we hit the studio, we had a real clear idea of what we wanted to do. Yeah, like that last
Thomas Mooney 8:06
record, you know, I almost kind of think of that as being like the the open road record, there was a lot of you talking about being on the road as far as touring and a lot of connections with like playing shows and just kind of that open road. Where this right here, you kind of lean in further into the singer songwriter, aspect, you you kind of like there's there's moments where you're more in the Honky Tonk rather than like sounding like the Honky Tonk. And then of course, like, you know, you have like a lot of the Spanish and Toronto flair on the record, which I think like is a really really interesting thing. I'm half Mexican. I will always love like,
Jesse Daniel 8:54
I didn't know that yeah,
Thomas Mooney 8:56
I mean, I don't necessarily always look Mexican but yeah, yeah, go ahead.
Jesse Daniel 9:03
Oh, sorry me to cut you off and I was just gonna say my brother's half Mexican. We have different dads his dad's from Mexico and so he he looks just like me and my other brother. Just like I always joke he just has a good tan you around pretty much you know he's just slightly darker skinned but he looks just like us that you never really guess it you know?
Thomas Mooney 9:24
Right yeah, that's like I I'm pretty white passing but I've never really had a sunburn so it's that little nice things about it but yeah it well I guess what was going on is like you know, that's one of the the nice expansions on this record right there specifically if we want to go that route first is is you know, you sing in Spanish and like you know, you have Raul malo on the record and you know, there's there's these moments of the border. First off, like What was it that pushed you in that direction? For starters?
Jesse Daniel 10:06
Well, you know, partially, I've always started out, like, I've always loved that. I've loved that type of music, you know. And my, like I said, My brother's dad, my, my stepdad growing up from Mexico. And we still do, my mom and him would make. My mom is a welder. And so they'd make all these, you know, welded art, basically, they make all this, you know, art stuff, lawn stuff, yard stuff. And they fix stuff in the dump, and basically take it to these free markets. And we'd work those with with him. And there's tons of that music. You know, they're in California, where I grew up, it's kind of like any of those states that touch Mexico. And you know, you'll find a good presence of that there. And so I always kind of, you know, didn't take much I was like, is this cool. And then as I got older, I really kind of had that appreciation for, for it, you know, and I saw the similarities in, you know, country music, American country music, and, you know, like you said, down to entertain your music. And that was kind of a direction that we went on rolling on just as far as having, you know, more accordion, and nylon string and kind of having that be your featured instrument, but I wanted to go further in that direction. But actually, you know, do some singing in Spanish. And yeah, just take it one step further than we did before. That's something that I wanted to make sure we expand on. And I had that song written. And I had the idea to have revenue sing on it. And so I just, I pitched it to him. And I was excited and very surprised that he was, you know, he liked it, and he wanted to sing on it. So that's kind of how it all came together. And I think he he really made that song what it is, so I'm glad to have him on it.
Thomas Mooney 12:21
Yeah, that's a nice connection right there. I mean, I think like, a lot of people the Mavericks are kind of like that underrated band. As far as like the 90s country stuff goes. Oh, yeah, you know, and then of course, like, this is one of those things I always throw in my whenever I have to have a bio for writing articles. It's my first my first concert I ever went to was Mary champion carpenter, the Mavericks at the Houston Oh, wow. Yeah. And like, I was a kid like, you know, like seven or so. But the impact of like that Maverick show is still Adam and Mary shape and shape and Carpenter as well. But like, I just specifically remember the Mavericks were just so fucking great. And it was around that time. Like, here comes the rain and stuff was out. So that was an incredible like, that, that era in their in their career was incredible. But of course, like they've, they've done a whole lot of expansion and explore. So that's, yeah, I mean, just as a note for listeners, go listen to that last Mavericks record, because it is amazing as well.
Jesse Daniel 13:31
Oh, yeah, it's, it's a killer. And I love the Mavericks. They are one of my favorite bands, and is a dream to get to work with rival decent shows. and stuff. Yeah, what a band man, one of the best live shows I've ever seen.
Thomas Mooney 13:47
Yeah. The, you mentioned how, like, you know, a lot of that music is in a lot of ways, like really similar, really close to country music, you know, all the as the states, as you mentioned, they touch Mexico, they all have a little bit of that influence. And you're gonna find flea markets anywhere. I mean, I'll tell you right now, like, you find a flea market, you're gonna also find like, probably the best Mexican food in that.
Jesse Daniel 14:19
It is. It's the truth. Yeah. So much good Mexican food and, and it's always at the most unsuspecting little cart or place, you know.
Thomas Mooney 14:31
Jesse Daniel 14:34
Yeah, that's true. And those flea markets I really attribute that you know, people a lot people ask them quite a bit when they hear me sing in Spanish or, or listen to them. They'll ask me about, like, where that came from. And yeah, that's it basically, you know, just my kind of my stepdads influence and having that. Just culture around where I grew up. That's one thing I love about Texas. Nothing gets you know, Only the other southern states or states up north or anything like that. I love the United States. There's beauty all over. But I, I love living in Texas because it reminds me of California in the way that there is a lot of that culture that that culture and influence, you know, just kind of built in here. So makes me feel at home.
Thomas Mooney 15:24
Yeah. Now, the one of the things I think if anyone's been following you on social media the last year, like, they know that, like, you're an avid fisherman, you're always out there, what's going on. And you have like a fishing song on here. And like, whenever I first saw the title, I didn't even think it was necessarily efficient song. But then like, I'll say like, that's the one and I'm not a fisherman. I don't really go. I've not been fishing in since I was a kid. But that's like the one that like, I've been walking around the house doing other stuff, and then end up like be humming that tune. So
Jesse Daniel 16:06
really, yeah, that's awesome, man. I love it. That
Thomas Mooney 16:09
is that, like, I'm assuming like that had to have come from Mike. You know, you're out there. fishing. And, you know, that's where it kind of spawned from.
Jesse Daniel 16:20
Yeah, absolutely. That's that song I wrote. One night I was out in the evening fishing, I came home, went to bed, and I woke up in the morning, it's weird, you know, some songs you kind of spend a lot of time on or they you have to kind of work out the melody first. And that was one of those that just kind of came to me. In the chorus, the words to the chorus just almost kind of has like a bit of a like nursery rhyme kind of cadence to it. And I just was kind of humming and singing that when I woke up and I couldn't get it out of my head. So I picked up the guitar. And that song kind of wrote itself a little bit. Yeah, it's definitely inspired by by all the fishing that I've, you know, done this past year.
Thomas Mooney 17:12
This episode of new slang is brought to you by the blue light live here in Lubbock, Texas. Blue Light has long been the heart and soul of the Lubbock singer songwriter scene, and has been a home away from home for some of Texas Americana, country and rock and roll's finest over the years. Talk with 99.9% of the Songwriters who have come out of Lubbock and the panhandle at large over the past 20 years. And they'll point to just how integral and necessary the blue light is, with live music and touring slowly but surely coming back spots like the blue light or getting back to their usual ways as well. That means music every night of the week. Do you want to see that schedule? Well, I've got a few options for you. One, go to their socials and give them a follow that is at blue light live on Twitter, at the blue light live on Instagram. And of course by just searching the blue light live on Facebook. They're consistently posting that week's lineup of shows as well as those heavy hitters that ought to be on your calendar that are coming up on the horizon. To check out blue light lubbock.com as well. There they have the full schedule, the cover charges time, any of those specials that may be happening while they're go check out their merch page. They have a wide range of hats, twosies, hoodies, sweaters, beanies, jackets, and so much more. You can of course get all of your merchant age, when you go see your favorite band, take the stage at blue light, just ask the bartender and they will get you all set. Speaking of which, that's another great way of seeing who's playing there. Just go to the blue light. It's at 1806 Buddy Holly Avenue here in Lubbock, Texas. And of course, again that is blue light lubbock.com I'll throw a link into the show notes to maybe I'll see you there. Okay, let's get back to the show. When it comes to the fishing like do you get a lot of ideas when you're when you're out there doing that?
Jesse Daniel 19:20
Yeah, definitely man I growing up I did a little bit of fishing just with my dad stuff. We'd go out to the local lake and you just kind of mess around. But getting back into it over this past year really it's been I didn't know I wanted to get back into it. I was like you know what, I think I'm gonna go get some fishing. I didn't have any my old tackle or anything. So I went and got a rod reel and kind of got back into it and then that just kind of ignited the, the obsession again. And it's become a huge outlet for me just yeah, to go out and think and kind of by hand, be away from anything even, you know, music related, life related any kind of troubles or problems, it's kind of a place, especially if you're out somewhere alone, where you can just kind of go think, and really, you know, it's the same with going on a hike or bike ride or anything. It's just that's kind of what it does for me.
Thomas Mooney 20:25
Yeah, I can see very much that that being the case, as far as the the palate cleanser, and a lot of ways. Exactly. You know, it's one thing I've been, I've noticed, as far as talking with people this past year, especially has been, you know, those kind of moments is are like, probably like the the essential, just as essential as whatever it is that sparks that idea for a song. Right? Just that that marinate in time where, you know, all that time that you're working on a song, writing it down. That's, of course, like working on it. But there's so much stuff that goes into it beforehand, before you even pick up the pen that is affecting the the shape of that song, and you may not even necessarily know about it.
Jesse Daniel 21:14
Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah, I feel like so much of it is subconscious. That's very true.
Thomas Mooney 21:23
Yeah. Well, like how much of like this record was, was all of this record written this past year or, or some of these stowaways from, like, previous years.
Jesse Daniel 21:37
There, for the most part is all written. Most of them were written in 2020. And there's a few that were written, you know, late 2019. That were, for instance, a roll, I'm sorry, looking back. That song I wrote with my old bass player, good friend of mine, Nick Foster, he's a great songwriter. And we kind of sat down and I had some ideas, he had some ideas, and we kind of put those together. And that's, that ended up being what that song was just as far as like a really, you know, kind of nostalgic looking back on your life and wishing you wondering if you'd made the right decision type of feel to it. And that was, you know, before we wrote that, yeah, late 2019. And Clayton was a cowboy. Also, Jodie and I, we wrote that on together. But I had had the idea for that song in 2019, as well, and kind of written down some notes. And a lot of times what I'll do is go you know, write down a line or, you know, chorus idea or something like that. And then kind of go back to that later on when I'm actually sitting down to write and that's one of those tunes that came from that from the notes pile.
Thomas Mooney 23:02
Yeah, that one right there is very much like where where I'm talking about you leaning into the storyteller. That and like I think like think I'll stay and Angel on the ground. I feel like those you really like the the the ending song. I'll be back around. You really lean into more of the the storyteller and a lot of those songs right there. Do you feel like that was like a, a focus this time around? Or did you feel or do you feel like now? Like, it's just one of those things where when you put the record together? Those things just ended up being something that that just happened over the the progress of the year? Or was there like ever was there like more of a focus on like, maybe getting a little bit more storytelling? ballads? Not necessarily balanced? I'm saying?
Jesse Daniel 23:57
Yeah, yeah, definitely. I think there was for me to focus for sure on that, because that's a lot of the songs that I like to write and like some, like, for instance, rolling on rolling on. I think my favorite song on that album is champion. And that's kind of one of the most, if not the most, you know, story, actual storytelling song on that record. And those are usually also like when I hear a song, I love Tom Russell. I love you know, Robert okene. Like I love that aspect of like storytelling, and you could call it amerikaner, whatever you want, but like just kind of in country music in general. I love that aspect of storytelling in a song. And so that was definitely kind of a focus for me. I wanted to kind of display that little bit more. And I just wanted to write those songs more. That's kind of what I was having fun with. And I'm glad we we got to do a little bit more Have that with this record.
Thomas Mooney 25:02
Yeah, the Clayton was was a cowboy like now that you mentioned the Robert row Kane and Tom Russell. Like I can very much hear that on like, a bigger piece of sky.
Jesse Daniel 25:16
Yeah, I love that.
Thomas Mooney 25:19
I had a joke last year and I'll know if there was a couple of people who didn't get it but I was like the hypothetical would make your best rubber row cane setlist. And like my setlist was just Jesse with a long hair like 20 times in a row.
Jesse Daniel 25:37
That is the best. This is seriously one of my favorite songs period.
Thomas Mooney 25:43
I can just like put that song on repeat and like listen to it all afternoon and not be tired.
Jesse Daniel 25:48
So my favorite part of that song, I mean, I love the story, but I love how the chorus it's just it's so simple, just flesh and blood turns to death. You know, it's just this short little thing that I don't quote me, I don't know how many courses there actually are on that song. But there's, I feel like there's a bunch of them because there's a lot of verses, you know, but it works for us. So well. Yeah, that's like the epitome of songwriting to me.
Thomas Mooney 26:17
Yeah. Well, I feel like it's Clayton was a cowboy is in that similar vein? I mean, like, the the cowboy, obviously, the Cowboys in the damn title. But those cowboy storytellers. So I mean, great way to kick off the record. Well, I was gonna appreciate it, throw it your way as a question, because I don't know if it's one of those things, because they're the first two singles. Is there like any connection between Clayton and think I'll stay? Because I feel like those are like, I almost envisioned the same character on those two.
Jesse Daniel 26:52
That's funny, man, it definitely could be that I actually thought about that. But that definitely could be. Yes, sounds most definitely like something Clayton would have, you know, would have lived and it's, we think I'll stay really I was writing that from, from my perspective, really, you know, going out in the past years, you know, I remember, I was in relationship with a girl for a few years, we live together and we split up, it was one of those kind of like atomic breakup situations where she left and it was very dramatic breakup on both sides, and like, I took it really hard. I had been sober for a while at that point, and I started drinking again. And I went sure drinking and then later using drugs again, and all this stuff, but like in the period when I when I got back into drinking, and was kind of just at that point, starting my career as clean music as Jesse Daniel, go out to the bars a lot. And basically, every night, I mean, I was at the blast at the bars every night or drinking at home or drinking, you know, with somebody, you just kind of have done a lot of that just going out to the bars and meeting somebody dancing, that type of thing. That's like, mostly from my perspective, but I know a lot of people. My story is not unique with that. Yeah.
Thomas Mooney 28:29
Yeah. Well, I think a lot of us have those two left feet for sure.
Jesse Daniel 28:35
Yeah, most definitely. Man. I've gotten a lot better to the two feet, man, but definitely, definitely, I'm not a dancer outside of, you know, the two step and stuff like that. I know how to dance to country music that's just about it.
Thomas Mooney 28:53
Yeah, I always love whenever I got a place like blue light, where it's so small in there. And every once in a while there'll be people trying to dance on the dance floor. And if it's too cramped in there, like they're just running into people and it's like, you know, sometimes they get kind of regulated to the, to the very, very back in this like one little strip on the floor. And yeah, it's sometimes like, I don't know, it's such a small place. And it's one of those like, that's just not made for dancing. Yeah, sure. And, you know, that's something like I don't know, like our grandparents. were big into cars like, you know, yeah, it's all over Yeah, like, way bigger places the dance around but they'll try and do it in these like little small venues. And, you know, it's I don't know, it's
Jesse Daniel 29:45
my buddy. Yeah, Dallas, bro. Yeah, he's got a, he's got a venue. Really cool. Listening room that he just opened a while. It's actually been I think about a year or so. But he opened this venue called the red bird listening room. And I've been lucky to just go and catch some shows there. It's a killer listening room. They've got like, you know, pews like church pews for seats, and then they have some chairs and stuff. And it's like a just a really nice, like, I actually haven't been to the blue light, but I imagine it's a little bit more on the listening side, then, like you said, A dancehall or whatever. But I actually saw somebody there and it got up while everybody's sitting intently and listening to this acoustic songwriter. Somebody got up and started to stepping. And it cracks me up. Definitely. out of place, you know?
Thomas Mooney 30:42
Yeah, that's, I don't know. It's, it's, uh, I'm going off on a tangent here. But I remember a couple years ago, there was like rumors that they were going to bring back like Urban Cowboy, but as like a television show, and set it obviously in Texas. And then like, but like the focus was gonna be about, like, the dancing scene in Texas or something like that. Something related to that. And it's like, Huh, nobody dances in Texas guys. Like, are you guys in Texas right now? Are you guys going to show because like, there's not like a there's not a dancing circuit like at these, like any kind of remotely country Texas country shows. Except, like the few and far between. It's not like I feel like
Jesse Daniel 31:34
only Yeah, yeah, it's it's, I feel like it is definitely more of a and I'm not from here, obviously. So you know, better than me. But from what I've seen, it's it's more like for Tommy, good morning. We did this record in the last week. He plays a big guy. Jay Coker. Yeah, they play. They play a lot of like, dancehall gigs, but they're specific to that, you know, people go to that show, and they're there to, to dance and stuff. But yeah, from for the most part, like a lot of Texas country shows and stuff that I've been to and seen and played. People just want to go to the show.
Thomas Mooney 32:13
Yeah, the Yeah. Jay Coker, he you? He'll play like Turkey, Texas up here, like, Bob wills days kind of stuff. Oh, yeah. Like those kinds of events. Obviously connected to any kind of Western swing. That is there. But you don't really see a lot of kids up there learning. Yeah, how to dress and stuff. But yeah, it's, uh, there's, I guess there's, there's circles, but I didn't know if there was like a television show.
Jesse Daniel 32:44
If they do that show, I'm gonna put this out there right now. And if if they're listening, they should definitely consider putting think I'll stay on that. on that show. I'd be alright with it.
Thomas Mooney 32:58
I know if they if they're not doing it, maybe this like revamps some interest and we'll have to make a little bit of a couple of changes. But we'll we'll get Come on as like market. Yeah, get get brought on as like some kind of consulting producer. There it is. So, yeah, I was gonna ask about, you know, like, obviously, this past year, it was such a wash as far as really know, touring, you know, as you mentioned, a lot of off time for yourself. Did that or did that also mean? Like, were you? I guess like when it came to recording? Did you guys still approach it in that very sensible kind of, we've got X amount of days to record a record and we went in there and, you know, a two week period or whatever the case is, or, or was it more spread out because there was a lot more time to do this. What was kind of like the approach with this one?
Jesse Daniel 34:01
Well, with with as far as like writing songs and getting all the materials together, like did the studio we kind of you know, took our time over the summer and fall. We actually recorded in 2021 is the first week I think we started recording on January 4, I want to say and we were kind of adamant about doing it out of coining 20 you know, leaving that year behind and but you know, all those songs and basically everything all the I'm pretty methodical with getting all the stuff like all the lyrics really, you know, printed out dialed in all the arrangements like I'll have like a black book that I just write, you know, basically down to like, which, you know, this fiddle take first half of the Where's your dispute or this or that, and then I kind of, you know, we email back and forth or call back and forth with Tommy and we kind of work those things out. And so there was a lot of like pre production work that that goes into it went into this one. And then when we finally hit the studio, in January, we just knocked it out pretty quick. I think it was about a week and a half. That we, you know, initially did all the tracking, and there's some overdubs and stuff like that, and I go back down. And now that I live closer to Tommy, it was a lot easier to make that happen. And I could go home, go back, you know, the next week, but we knocked this one out pretty quickly, once we were in there.
Thomas Mooney 35:44
Yeah, I wasn't sure if it was going to be one of those things where, you know, since there was so much open time, you just did like a, you know, a day here two days here, and then, you know, afternoon here and just kind of like doing that over the course of like, a long period of time. But I do like the let's, let's shut the book. Let's Let's shut the door on 2020. Yeah, you know, starts a new page. Yeah, that's a start with that clean slate and try. Yeah, exactly. not have any of the bad luck coming through, hopefully.
Jesse Daniel 36:22
Yeah, I'm really glad that, you know, the that, you know, year, it did teach me a lot, as far as, you know, kind of it was a good practice, impatience and learning to be cool, you know, just kind of sit through disappointment and all that stuff. So it was really this record was really rewarding to be able to put, even if, you know, not, really, any of the songs are about, you know, the past year COVID, or anything like that, but it's good to kind of put that just all those emotions into this record and kind of move on to the next year. It was kind of like a cathartic thing.
Thomas Mooney 37:07
Yeah, well, like when it comes to that, as far as, you know, clearly, you wrote a record last year. But, you know, it's one of those things where, I don't know if anyone's was, has been prepared to just have that massive chunk of time to, to create, you know, like, it's, that's such a foreign thing where you don't nest it, not creators don't necessarily have like, you know, hey, this next year, you're gonna have every day off, and also you're going to be quarantined, and all that all the stuff attached to it. Right, you know, obviously, you found a way to dry and to create and stuff like that. But, you know, a lot of people I talked with, they were not necessarily having writer's block, but like, they found it challenging to to write clearly, like, you know, you took out fishing. Was there any other creative outlets that you that you felt, helped shape your songwriting? You know, you talked a little bit about, you know, finding some patience and discipline within within the year. Oh,
Jesse Daniel 38:18
yeah, yeah, definitely. I went to, you know, aside from fishing, like I got, kind of before wrapping for that, over, you know, the spring and summer, I really got into working out I got backing, I got into kind of like the best shape I've been in since probably like high school, I got a bench. I found somebody on Craigslist, you had a used bench and some weights, and got some running shoes. And I basically just got into running and lifting weights, and I got got kind of a discipline in that way, where every day, I was waking up early for a while. And it's obviously you know, as things have kind of come back, it's hard to do. And I haven't been on my routine, like I was, but for that, you know, spring summer and into winter was pretty consistently doing that. And that was like, I would have probably gotten that if that without that. That was a good thing for me. And just a lot of it was just being outside too. I'd go out and run down to the river. We live really close to the San Marcus River. And so I you know, run down there and then go jump in the water and swim for a little bit and come back home. And that river was a huge saving grace for us for both Jody and I, we were down there a lot. And kind of just like you said earlier palate cleanser when everything when you're reading the news and everything's just kind of doom and gloom, like we just go outside and it was pretty funny, man. There's A lot of the river was completely blocked off in town in San Marcos, and we would, here's a few times that, you know, there'd be police patrolling on quads, making sure people weren't in there. So it kind of took me back to high school and running from running from cops and stuff. And I would like hop the fence and go jump in the river real quick. And they'd see me and I'd have to, like, scurry up the hillside. And I got my kicks, or I could, and, you know, didn't get in any trouble or anything. But yeah, it was it was good. Break from all seriousness, you know?
Thomas Mooney 40:38
Yeah, it's one of those things where the, it's such a weird balance right there as far as like, you know, trying to find that schedule, trying to maintain a schedule and set up, you know, a schedule of how you're going to, you know, attack last year as far as occupy the time because, you know, it was very, very easy to waste time. It's very, very easy to just realize, Oh, you know, I just binge watched every episode of whatever show and then it's like, I
Jesse Daniel 41:13
definitely some of that, for
Thomas Mooney 41:14
sure. Yeah, well, I mean, it's, obviously when you're writing songs when you're creating, it's almost always about, like, trying to, you know, we're trying to like, figure out what that magic is, like, how do you capture a song? How do you do all that? And there's, like, that magical aspect of it all, and, but like, it's weird, how sometimes having that schedule, kind of creating that rhythm of the day, actually helps. And I'm sure like, yeah, you know, running and jogging and lifting weights, you know, it's, uh, it helped, like, maybe give some structure of everything, because I know, like, you know, not necessarily anything I did, but last year, but it was trying to find those moments as pinpoints right to kind of like structure the day.
Jesse Daniel 42:09
Sure. Yeah, I think yeah, definitely did. That's it structure, man. That's important. I think traditionally pretty not. Not very good at structure, you know, and I really kind of allowed me the time to get into a rhythm and kind of learn how to be better. So I feel like that was something that I learned. over last year. I always have been kind of just flying by the seat of my pants type of person. But yeah, that was definitely a good feel like a learned skill over the last year. Yeah, didn't 100% stick a lot going for my rights every day. Now. I gotta get back to it. But there's time. Okay, back.
Thomas Mooney 42:53
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Jesse Daniel 46:00
Well, yeah, that's a good question. It was. It definitely took its toll, you know, on. on that, and I think in a weird way. Before we were just vamping up and I think that was around the time I talked to you, we were doing a lot of touring with Jason Bowen, we'd done some stuff with Coulter wall, we're doing a lot on our own tees, and we're kind of gearing up for all, you know, a lot of touring, there's a lot of stuff that we're doing all all ourselves as far as like shipping, coordinating, you know, God handling all the booking and management stuff. And I was feeling kind of at that point, like, that was the first time things had really picked up for me, in my career, you know, to that extent, and I was feeling some of the effects of it, you know, some of just those those pressures and stuff. And I think more than anything, being you know, not knowing how to handle all those things, and then being out playing, it was kind of getting hard. With the sobriety stuff, you know, definitely, you're thinking about that, and it crossing my mind more than being kind of a struggle, but the weirdest thing was the past year, you know, it wasn't really a big issue, I think I really fell into fell back into my stride with with sobriety and kind of learned to love it again, through you know, the saying that like, you don't miss your water till the well runs dry type of thing. You know, when there was no shows and nothing happening, we didn't know if we would come back, I really kind of was got pretty grateful for having a kid and not, you know, running back to, you know, drugs or alcohol to fix that. So I think it definitely helped my mindset and help getting through. I know, it was really hard for a lot of my friends and a lot of people. A lot of my friends went back to drinking or using drugs and a lot of people got divorced and all kinds of crazy stuff, you know?
Thomas Mooney 48:18
Yeah, that's what's like, been kind of crazy is the, you know, specifically like, obviously, you know, idle hands kind of thing. The the restlessness, restlessness, that obviously put so much pressure but yeah, the as far as divorce rates going up last year. That's, obviously it's one of those things where that's a that's a side effect of the last year that I wasn't necessarily thinking like, that was going to be something that happened, you know what I mean? Like, I was kind of like, Oh, absolutely makes sense. But, you know, not something that I was necessarily thinking about, you know, in March of last year, and right, yeah, but it's, it's one of those things clearly, if you're stuck in a place with someone you know, you
Jesse Daniel 49:10
were under less than perfect circumstances, you know,
Thomas Mooney 49:13
and maybe maybe like, it's one of those things where you guys were great together with X amount of hours a week, like it just felt like yeah, every hour of the week is an entirely different story. But yeah, I guess go back to though was Yeah, I could, I could definitely see as far as it being one of two things as far as you know, the the stress and the the restlessness of last year putting more pressure on on sobriety or the other way around, as you kind of mentioned like, you know, the the ramp up of the career and the, you know, all the the career pressure, if you will And kind of also being in those settings. Obviously, yeah,
Jesse Daniel 50:05
and not, and not to sound like, you know, like, oh, the courier pressure, like, um, you know, like rolling stone or something like that, you know, I definitely don't want to sound like that, like, last year with rolling on, I was like, just just barely starting to get just the miniscule little amount of recognition and, and people just kind of starting to take a look and pay attention a little bit and, and more. So I just mean, like, you know, being being on the road, and I don't know, for somebody like me, I think sometimes my brain has a hard time differentiating, you know, good excitement. And, you know, good stress from bad stress, you know what I mean? It's just, it all kind of ends up, winding winding me up quite a bit. And I think that's always why I drink and use drugs and stuff, even if it was good stuff happening, it was just kind of didn't quite know how to regulate my own stuff. But that's definitely what I learned, I think in the last year more than just kind of self regulate.
Thomas Mooney 51:12
Yeah, that's a great point right there. Like not being able to differentiate good stress and bad stress until you, you kind of have those, those life experiences and like, just maturation, of course, you know, like, you know, that's a, that's really interesting, you know, because I obviously, like there's so many people in this world, especially when it comes to musicians and artists and, and people who are in that kind of way of life where so much is often given at such an early age where, you know, you sometimes don't differentiate between the two. And that's, that's clearly like, where a lot of dependency issues, you know, stem from, but it's all interesting, right? They're also just by, I mean, it's not that like, I'll make a note right here. Like, you know, my stepdad is a is a counselor. So I know a little bit of stuff, but like, I'm not, you know, I'm not a counselor by any stretch. Yeah, you know what I mean? Like you hear enough at Thanksgiving tables and stuff, but
Jesse Daniel 52:21
it's coterie? Yeah. They're gonna rub off a little bit,
Thomas Mooney 52:26
a little bit. What's it been like, though, as far as you know, obviously, the shows have been picking up. What what are some of those things that you, you know, you're getting prepped up, as you mentioned, as far as like, you know, when you're recording, you're a big note taker. As far as like the structure of what you want to what you envision. I'm assuming, you know, like, that probably relates to as far as you guys getting ready to go out on the road and getting prepped for this year. What are some of those things though, that you're like, Oh, fuck, I forgot about this part of being out on the highway? Is there anything that like that, like you get you kind of forgot about or? Or is it just one of those things is like riding a bike.
Jesse Daniel 53:13
Either, in a lot of ways, it has kind of come back to come back pretty easily. You know, we were so ready. And so excited for it. By the time that, you know, shows started coming back. I remember we did New Year's Eve. You know, this recent New Year's Eve that we had, we did with Sonny Sweeney at Green RF sorry, Luke ambach. And that was kind of we had done some shows before that, you know, in the fall, but that was really the first show where there's a good amount of people there. You know, that it was like socially distance, but still everybody sitting in chairs just about sold out. And really, you felt like okay, this is there's the light at the end of the tunnel. And and that was definitely kind of a weird feeling just being not that we're necessarily uncomfortable with that. But just getting back into being onstage and performing in front of people. And since then it has been kind of like riding the bike, just getting back to it. And there hasn't been a whole lot. That's other than, you know, just long, long drives, we've got a van that has a lot of seats in it. And we've kind of made the switch from just cramming everything in the van to now we have a trailer that will we'll haul and so that's nice. Now everybody can kind of take some naps and whatnot in the pack. If somebody's driving. That's been one of those things that I used to just charge through, never sleep or I'd be the one who drives and then we get to the venue and I'd be exhausted and now kind of learning that this year. Please take it easy, a little bit more Get some get some sleep if you can type of thing. But really, yeah, it's kind of like riding a bike when it's coming back.
Thomas Mooney 55:08
Yeah, this is maybe something that's not even a thing. But, you know, going, basically your without playing those shows? Did you have to get like, you know, an ease, I guess like maybe like, did you have to, I don't know, exercise the voice throughout the year to kind of maintain a, where, you know, you're not like, I'm imagining you're not like singing, you know, 90 minute sets this entire time through the quarantine, you know, but did you have to, like, exercise the voice or anything or get it ready, or anything like that, as far as this past definitely,
Jesse Daniel 55:46
I think the one of the biggest thing that helped with that was doing the live streams that we were doing. And we kind of we stopped doing those because after a while, it kind of became like a live stream hellscape where everybody was just, you know, constantly doing live streams. And we, I felt like I was contributing to that, like, you'd log on Instagram, and it would be like bing, bing, bing, bing, bing, like everybody's doing live stream at the same time. And, but in the beginning, in the first few months, it was really cool. And I got to catch some good ones. And then, you know, we do our weekly one, and that really kind of kept me singing, it was an hour long. So we just, you know, did to sing and talk and kind of interact with people and kind of keep that even though it was different. It kept me singing and talking and with the banter and whatnot, kept that kept that sharp. And when those were over, I was we stopped doing and basically because we didn't want to loan ourselves or you know, anybody else to really get to us to just see us on there. It's like I wanted to get back and I knew eventually that we get back to playing shows. So it's looking back on it. I'm grateful for those live streams, they definitely kept. kept my voice warmed up and, you know, kept us doing thing without it. Yeah, we would have just been playing for phone and like you said, You usually don't play for 90 minutes, send things straight, you know. Maybe Maybe some people some discipline people do But
Thomas Mooney 57:32
yeah, I was just I was one of the things I always wondered about. As far as like, if people had to, you know, start ramping that voice back up before, you know after like these long cold stretches, I guess if you will, because I mean, that's it's another it's another muscle. Oh, yeah, definitely. Yeah. I think that's a pretty good place to start.
Jesse Daniel 58:03
Cool. Yeah. Likewise, man, I've got to catch up.
Thomas Mooney 58:14
All right, that is it for this one. Beyond these walls by Jesse Daniel is out this Friday, July 30. Go ahead and check that out. When it comes out, check out our presenting partners desert door and the blue light live. Make a pit stop on over at our Patreon and the Newsline merch store. And yeah, I'll see you all next week for more episodes.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai