The Naked I proudly call themselves “your mom’s favorite local band,” a label accurate in all the right ways. Ahead of this Saturday’s no-cover showcase at the Rush Bar in Lake Forest, we chatted with lead singer Dakota Ringer about the old-school rock sound they bring to the scene, the artistic music video they just filmed, and 1 very productive shower…
How do you like to describe The Naked I’s sound/themes/ideas for the uninitiated?
Dakota: We are a 5-piece rock band that all grew up on classic rock, blues and funk! Those genres are very apparent in our songs, but we like to give them a contemporary kick in order to make them more appealing to a larger audience!
What bands did you really feel the influence of while making your new EP Grin and Bear It?
Dakota: I wouldn’t say there was one band that influenced us in particular, but one band we get compared to a lot is the Spin Doctors. Aside from the 2 songs that everyone knows by them (“Two Princes” and “Little Miss Can’t be Wrong”), they are a RAD jam band with a lot of our same sound; Up-tempo blues rock with a funky rhythm section. We rely heavily on Sean and Alexander (bass and drums) to really spice up our tunes.
What track stands out as starting from an interesting place?
Dakota: One of our new songs “Sunglasses Song” definitely has a pretty cliché story attached. The main riff of the song came from a shameless shower-jam session, and as soon as I got out, I grabbed a guitar and wrote the whole song in about an hour or so. It’s a fun, upbeat, beer-drinkin’ party song that I wrote in the shower…
As a band originally from San Diego, playing both there and OC, what do you think makes each of these local scenes special?
Dakota: The music scene in Southern California is a tough ocean to wade through! There are so many good bands hidden within this place and you’ve gotta hustle extra hard in order to break through at all. The bands within the scene are so supportive though, no one would ever step on a smaller guy to gain success. They’d rather help the small guy try to grow to their level, because they deserve to be heard!
What do we have to look forward to from The Naked I in 2018?
Dakota: 2018 should be a good year for the band! We ended 2017 on a very high note, getting radio play on local stations like 91X and an on-air interview where we got to discuss our album release party at the Casbah on January 15th. We are starting the year off with a bang, releasing our first major EP!
And coming soon is a music video for our new song “Further from Freedom,” which we just wrapped the filming for. The local art scene in San Diego and LA came together to create a music video that would make people think we had a very high budget. We had top of the line cameras, lighting rigs, a professional film crew, and actors willing to work for food! The passion for creating amazing art down here in San Diego is sometimes overwhelming. We are so lucky to have everyone we had working on it and its gonna be a stellar release! Should be releasing within the next couple weeks we believe…
Catch The Naked I this Saturday, January 13th at the Rush Bar!