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Interview With Paul Wandtke

Let's talk a little about the history of your band. When did you originally form and is this the original line-up?

Dead Original has been years in the making. Originally I tired to start it in 2013 but the songwriting and band memebers commitment wasn't there. Fast forward to 2017 after I had just gotten off tour drumming for Trivium and playing drums for the world famous musical Rock of Ages, it was a lot easier to put a band together because I think people trust you more with their time if you have done "pro" things, otherwise you're just another local egomaniac who thinks their songs are so amazing.

Do you remember how the idea of forming the band first came up?  

I always wanted to front a band, ever since I started playing music so; years!

How would you categorize the style of the band?

 Rock music, like grunge in the now

What image do you want your music to convey to your fans?  

Less is more, no backing tracks or click tracks, basically like what rock used to do (no autotune)

Who are your influences and how have they shaped your bands’ sound? 

Nirvana, Tool, Pantera, Incubus, Chevelle
They make us want to be the best.

Let's talk a little about your debut album what are the listeners in store for with this release?  

Less is more, with a grunge feel.

Where did record your latest release at? 

At my music studio in Chicago

Producers are a very important factor in recording a good record. Who did you use to produce your record? 

I produced and engineered the album at my studio syftsproductions.com in Chicago.
I just had the music professionally mixed and mastered by three separate mixers.

Does the entire band contribute to the writing process?  

Not yet, but def for album #2! Rob and Sean are killer creative players.

How do you feel the band has evolved musically and personally over the last year? 

We are def getting more of a live vibe going.

Where do you draw the inspiration for the songs you write?  

Honestly, from anywhere. I don't set out to write a song, just an idea wlll come to me and I'll sing it into my phone or strom the riff into my phone and archive for review later to see if it's any good.

What is the first single FADE TO LIGHT about?

 Fade to Light was written about the mind of a Kamikaze pilot and it’s neither embracing or slandering them, it’s just kinda role playing like, “maybe this is what they were thinking during Pearl Harbor.” This song idea came to me when I was on tour in Japan helping the Trivium guys out on drums. I was chilling in my hotel room and  this  ⅞ groove came into my head and I just thought about Japenese Kamikaze pilots and Pearl Harbor and it just made think; what would or what does it take for a human to conjure the thought of being a suicide pilot ya know?

How important do you rate the lyrical side of your albums?  

Music is more important, I def think about lyrics later haha

What are your current tour plans, if any?  

We are going on tour with CANDLEBOX, dates/tickets at deadoriginal.com

Describe your live performance for those who have never seen you live? 

It's all about the music! Strait forward, we just play our instruments, no crazy live show or anything.

Do you see as we do that most local radio rarely support the up and coming new bands and even more local bands just starting out? 

That's a tricky question because it's so general and broad so I don't want to answer that.

What do you think of the music industry right now?  

It's good! ROCK IS NOT DEAD. oldschool radio is but bands are touring!

Did you find it hard to break into the business and what was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome?  

Money. No one can buy you an instrument if you don't have a wealthy family. No one can pay for music lessons or music school if your family isn't rich. You have to finance your way at it all.

Tell us about your thoughts on your local music scene?  

I don't have a clue other than Chicago is mostly a thriving cover band scene.

Are there any new and upcoming bands that you are into?  

I'm a fan of Greta Van Fleet; no joke!

How has Social Media impacted your band?  

Yes it's helping us stay independent

Where can our readers find you on the web?   


What equipment is the band using and do you have any endorsements currently? 

Yes we endorse Mesa Boogie, Tama Drums, Evans drum heads, Meinl Cymbals, Pro Mark drum sticks and humes and berg drum cases

Thanks for answering these questions. Do you have any last comments for our readers?  

No! Thank you!