BAM Weighs in with the Heavyweights: Interview with DARENOTS

For anyone who has not yet heard of Darenots, please do yourself a favor and Check Them Out Now.  The Toronto based band has been quickly gaining popularity in the midst of their American tour, and have been “sending it” every step of the way.  In meeting Darenots at CaliRoots, we had a chance to see just how genuine their chemistry is, and why we should all be looking forward to their new album, Strange Love, dropping on June 16th.  Take a look at Darenot’s views on everything from the release of their new single to Bruce Lee in BAM’s interview with Darenots.

How does it feel to be in Monterey?  What does it mean to you to be playing at Cali Roots?

Rev: It feels great!  On the ride here it was cloudy, but as soon as we stepped off the bus, it just opened up.  It was angelic.


So you’re playing a Reggae Festival in California, how does the Reggae scene here compare to the one back in your home of Toronto?

Swav: Here, it’s 100% more, because we don’t have one at all… In Toronto.  Nothing going on there versus here.

How did Darenots first get together?

CJ:  The history between Swav and Rev, they’re a little bit older than us, and they went to High School together, weren’t friends in High School… Later on in the years I joined a band with Swav…  And Jimmy, I swiped right on Tinder with him, we matched up, but we’re friends.

Swav: He is right, Rev and I went to High School together, and we never hung out, but years later we had a mutual friend, Rev would come over, and we would just jam.  We would jam randomly, and that turned into “Wow, we have a couple songs” and then Jimmy joined shortly after, then we just started turning those “sessions” into actual writing sessions, (those sessions turned) into the first three songs, and from there, as we started recording those first three songs, that’s where CJ came into play… And the rest is history.

Your new single Murda Whistle just dropped, how do you feel about the reception that it has been getting in the time since it’s release, and the reception your tour has been getting on the road?

Rev: The dust hasn’t settled yet, so I truly can’t take how the reception was received.

James: (On Spotify) we have (seen it featured) on a couple of cool playlists, so it’s, as far as numbers go, people have been listening to it, and gauging credit by (energy of) live shows, the vibe is there.

CJ: It’s cool to see something growing, you know?  And even just getting the opportunity to just tour with bands like “Ballyhoo!”, “Through the Roots”, “The Holdup”, “The Late Ones”, and developing fan bases.  As we went on from our last tour, we had some (fans) returning.

Rev: There is literally no greater feeling than looking in the audience as a new band, and seeing someone who you don’t know singing your lyrics.  That is literally the best feeling in the world.

Your song “911” is, at least lyrically, kind of a break from the usual flow of your music.  What was the inspiration and process of creating that song and those lyrics?

Rev: Well, 911 was just more about a relationship that I was in.  It was mainly about… A love lost.  The writing process with that was having a huge vibe that people can just sway to, get the lyrics in, and just really feel the vibe of the tune.


If you could pick any one of your songs to be covered by any other artist, which would they be?

CJ: One of my favorite tracks to listen to and play on the album “Now is Truth” is “911”, so we actually got Grieves to feature on that track during the bridge, but what (I think) would be the coolest thing would be (to feature) Eminem.

Rev: (If the artist can be) dead or alive, I would want Heavyweight to be sung by Frank Sinatra, or Tom Jones.

Swav: I’m going to say Destiny’s Child covering “Good Good”, all A Cappella.



Who influences you?  Both Musically and non musically?

Rev: A lot of us are influenced by Bruce Lee.  A lot of his philosophies are encompassed in our music, and even “The Now is Truth” the title of the album, is from a book by Bruce Lee.

CJ: My influence in Swav.  He’s the man, he’s my sense, he’s the coach.  It’s like I am Luke Skywalker, and he is Yoda.
Swav: You look like Yoda a little bit.

James: I’m a really big Twinkie fan, those have always been keeping me up and up.  Twinkies, like the actual delicious little pastry, it’s my spirit animal.  Now for a more serious response, as far as the music is concerned, a big influence for it (the album) was Gorillaz.  I like the idea of the beats vs. acoustics, and having different vocals, and that’s kind of what this band is.


Several of you have been in other projects which have been subject to great success, what is it like to go from a well established band to a newer one with much more potential?

Rev: It’s the most exciting thing in the world because every day you’re trying to outdo what you did last time.  So if (people) liked what we did before, they’re definitely going to like what we do next, and if you like what we did next, then you’re going to shit your pants after what we do after that.


What’s next for Darenots?

James: We have a new EP coming out on June 16th, It’s going to be Volume One of three volumes, and it’s called “Strange Love”.


What is some advice you would give artists who would like to emulate you?

CJ: Enjoy what you do and keep it going, because obviously something like this, it’s possible for anyone

Swav: The opportunity is out there for you, you just have to work really really hard and not lose sight of the goals you make.

Rev: Don’t give a fuck, within reason.


What is a question that nobody ever asks you that you wish you could talk about more in interviews?

Rev: When it comes to people asking questions in interviews, they don’t really want to touch on real issues, and go into real things.  I’m not saying I’m going to get into (these real things), I’m just saying I wish that I was asked questions beyond music.



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