banner ad
banner ad
banner ad

A Dirty Dozen with WILL JAMES from PISTOLS AT DAWN – November 2023

| 16 November 2023 | Reply

According to a recent press release: “Atlanta-based hard rock band PISTOLS AT DAWN announced they will be hitting the road this fall with Moon Fever on the Ready, Set, F’ing Rock Tour sponsored by and TKO. The tour will kick off October 26th in Nashville, TN at The Eight Room. When rules break, rock ‘n’ roll moves forward. Standing at a crossroads between 21st century attitude and old school arena-size ambition, Pistols At Dawn lock and load hard-hitting hooks, magnetic melodies, and intricate instrumentation in a searing signature style. The Atlanta quartet—Adam Jaffe [drums], Will James [lead guitar], Gabriel Cuevas [bass], and Jon Sookdew Sing [lead vocals+rhythm guitar]—re-energize the genre, while maintaining its edge. After independently amassing over 6 million streams and collaborating with icons such as GRAMMY® Award-winning producer and engineer Sylvia Massy [Tool, System of a Down, Johnny Cash], the group deliver eight anthems on their 2022 full-length album, Ascension, via distributor Megaforce Records/MRI Entertainment.” We get lead guitarist Will to discuss new music, influences, and more.

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets the band put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Our most recent release, “Fly (Radio Edit)”, has really set an almost “new” “bridge-like” feeling as we’ve transitioned into writing new material for our next album these past few weeks. In the sense that it truly sets up the direction in which our band is heading and very much so gives listeners a first hand look into the pure energy and power we are looking to expand upon in the very near future!! We love dropping all kinds of fun things in our tracks and in “Fly (Radio Edit)”, there are most certainly a few layers of beauty hidden in the fray that you may not catch your first time listening through! Sometimes we catch things that we forgot were there haha!!!!!

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

What got me into music was without a doubt the classic video game Guitar Hero! Me and my sister would play it for hours every day and it without a doubt influenced my musical taste and showed me how amazing rock and roll truly was and is!! I remember the moment I wanted to be a musician like it was yesterday. I was attending a Trans-Siberian Orchestra show in Greenville, SC with my parents back in 2015 and the moment I saw Joel Hoekstra rip into “Christmas Jam” with all of the smoke, lasers, and roaring arena sound… I knew!!

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

I would have to say that the moment I listen to Van Halen’s debut album from start to finish, I was changed forever! Truly no one more influential than the master Eddie Van Halen himself!!

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

In no particular order… Eddie Van Halen, David Gilmour, James Hetfield, Steve Vai, and Richie Sambora to name a few! The list is endless though!!

5. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

It would be a dream to collaborate on a song with Steve Perry! Truly one of the greatest voices of all time. And it would be an absolute pleasure to just see how he works!!

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

If I had to describe our sound for the first time to someone, I would try and paint a picture with words. Imagine, the lights go out and the atmosphere of 20,000 fans just explodes with pure energy!! Everyone is cheering and screaming their hearts out and then BOOM!! The band erupts into their first song with the sound waves crashing over your whole body! It’s almost an earthquake of sound yet so pure at the same time. Pure energy, sheer power, driving force, and a show you’ll never forget!! Pure ROCK AND ROLL!! I can’t say that I’ve ever read or heard someone make a comparison that has made me cringe haha! The beauty of music is that it can be perceived in SO many different ways and I truly believe there’s no wrong way to describe it or compare it!!

7. What’s the best thing about being a musician?

Getting. To. Perform. LIVE. Nothing beats it!! Especially with an audience that loves it as much as you do!!

8. When the band are all hanging out together, who cooks; who gets the drinks in; and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

Jon and Adam most definitely give me head chef vibes haha! And then Gabe for sure busting out the drinks!! (A Dr. Pepper for me please!!) And then I ALWAYS have a guitar in my hand no matter where we are!!

9. When was the last time you were star struck and who was it?

The last time I was starstruck was seeing Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony live for the first time a few weeks ago! To see such legends in person and for them to sound as amazing as they did, I will NEVER forget it!!

10. If you weren’t a musician, what would be your dream job?

I’ve always been obsessed with aviation and aerospace technology!! So either a pilot or aerospace engineer!

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over”, even if it didn’t change your current situation?

One of my most favorite things about the world of music is that you’re able to truly be your own self, no matter where you’re from, or what you’re background is. I really feel it’s those missteps or not-so-ideal situations that really shape who we really are and especially who we become!! I most definitely would not be who I am or where I am today if it wasn’t for those learning experience!! So I wouldn’t and couldn’t possibly change a thing about this beautiful journey so far!!

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

100% the recording of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon album!! This record means more to me than I’ll ever be able to tell. It’s the only one I can play from start to finish ANY time and the only one that brings an unmistakable sense of joy, comfort, and pure peace! There’s a reason why it’s still charting after FIFTY YEARS!!!! Mind blowing!!





Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

Leave a Reply

Please verify you\'re a real person: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

banner ad
banner ad