We had the chance to talk with Ben Dumas from The Wild Feathers recently! Ben chatted with us about the exciting past year they’ve had since the band has released their debut album last August. They’ve performed over 200 shows in 2013 with names like Gary Clark Jr, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Dawes, Dwight Yoakam and more – not to mention playing the Austin City Limits festival, San Francisco’s Outside Lands, Sasquatch and Hangout Festivals, Milwaukee’s Summerfest, Louisville’s Forecastle Festival and Nashville’s Live on the Green.
Check out our full interview with Ben below!
You guys had an incredible year last year – over 200 shows with some amazing artists! Do you have a favorite moment from 2013?
Ben Dumas: Yes, last year was a whirlwind of a year. I have a lot of favorite moments, but one that stands out to me happened in Oxford, Mississippi. We had had a couple difficult days in a row, and we were begging our manager and booking agent to not make us drive 13 hours overnight after playing a show to make it to a show the next afternoon, but we could not get out of it. So we were really feeling down until they called us back a few hours later thanking us and telling us that they had lined up some shows playing with Bob Dylan. Needless to say that changed our mood. We were all standing out in the streets of Oxford laughing and crying.
How would you say that each of your sounds evolved when you came together in this band?
Ben Dumas: I really feel like everybody brings his own style and special wrinkle into the band’s sound. We all tend to lean different ways musically, whether it’s rock, folk, soul, or country, but it all blends together to make a true rock ‘n roll sound. Because we do and play what we want, and that’s what rock ‘n roll is all about.
Since several of you all were lead singers in your own bands before coming into Wild Feathers – was the musical collaboration initially challenging? Is there a particular way you all go about songwriting together now?
Ben Dumas: Sure, collaborating as a group was challenging at first, but in a very fun way. We do not have a set-in-stone writing process. It could be one of us writing an entire song, or it could be all of us combining our own parts of songs to make one song. The songwriting process is organic, relaxed, and therefore refreshing.
Is there one specific song from your debut album that you all feel the most personally connected to? If so can you explain?
Ben Dumas: I feel connected to all of the songs on the record, but “Left My Woman” hits the closest to home. We live our life on the road, so go listen to that song and you will understand why it’s easier for me to relate to that song in particular.
What would you say the band’s most memorable fan experience has been to date?
Ben Dumas: I cannot pick out one single fan experience, because any kind of fan experience is special. We are all so grateful for everyone that enjoys our music and shows. Though one time a fan did draw me a pictures of my dogs, and I thought that was pretty sweet.
What do you guys geek out on besides music? Any favorite TV shows or video games you guys indulge in while on tour?
Ben Dumas: We are all big football fans, so we get pretty fanatical about football, college and pro (go Dawgs!!), in the fall. We do not really get to watch to many new TV shows because we are usually spending all day long in a van and all night in venues playing shows.
What’s next for you guys after you wrap up this leg of the tour next month?
Ben Dumas: This tour ends in March. Right after that we will be in Austin for SXSW then off to Europe for a small tour there. We also have a lot of festival dates this spring and summer. After that? Who knows? All I can say is that we are gonna keep on rolling down the road and playing our hearts out. So come see us.
Twitter Fan Questions
Did you guys bring songs with you to the band or did all the writing for the debut album happen after you met?
Ben Dumas: It was both. Some songs or parts of songs were written prior to meeting. Others were written after the band started.
Do any of you plan on doing any future solo work aside from the band?
Ben Dumas: No one has specific plans to do any solo projects right now. We are all really focused on this band. But someday it’s very possible that we might.
The Wild Feathers North American Tour Dates:
TUE 12/31/13 Nashville, TN Mercy Lounge
WED 1/22/14 Austin, TX Stubb’s
THU 1/23/14 Houston, TX Warehouse Live
FRI 1/24/14 Dallas, TX Gas Monkey
FRI 1/31/14 Mobile, AL Soul Kitchen
SAT 2/1/14 Atlanta, GA The Loft
SUN 2/2/14 Athens, GA The Melting Point
TUE 2/4/14 Washington, DC U Street Music Hall
THU 2/6/14 New York, NY Mercury Lounge
FRI 2/7/14 Philadelphia, PA World Café Live
SUN 2/9/14 Boston, MA Brighton Music Hall
MON 2/10/14 Montreal, QC Belmont
WED 2/12/14 Toronto, ON Horseshoe Tavern
THU 2/13/14 Ann Arbor, MI Blind Pig
FRI 2/14/14 Indianapolis, IN Radio Radio
SAT 2/15/14 Madison, WI Majestic Theatre
SUN 2/16/14 Chicago, IL Double Door
TUE 2/18/14 St. Paul, MN Turf Club
WED 2/19/13 Lawrence, KS Granada Theatre
FRI 2/21/14 Denver, CO Bluebird Theatre
SUN 2/23/14 Boise, ID Neurolux
TUE 2/25/14 Portland, OR Star Theater
WED 2/26/14 Seattle, WA The Crocodile
THU 2/27/14 Vancouver, BC Media Club
SUN 3/2/14 Sacramento, CA Harlows Night Club
MON 3/3/14 San Francisco, CA The Independent
TUE 3/4/14 Solana Beach, CA Belly Up Tavern