Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. Comes to the Echo, June 3rd
On tour for their forthcoming album It’s a Corporate World (truer or timelier words haven’t been “record-titled”), Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. will be gracing the stage of The Echo on June 3rd, bringing NASCAR fashion into the Hipsterism of West Coast Williamsburg (Echo Park). The recording and songwriting project of Josh Epstein and Daniel Zott, DEJJ have a way of weakening the knees and pleasantly surprising audiences with whistled anthems of the Midwest.
Last year’s Horse Power EP gave listeners a cross hatched neon indication of their full length album potential, with tracks like “Nothing But Our Love” and “Simple Girl” being sound down payments on our attentions and fandom. Combining echoes of Brian Wilson remembrances and drawing heavily on Motown influences, the group has successfully synthesized a dreamy originality that has eluded strong categorization and inspired a number of sub-pop and pseudo genres. It’s a Corporate World promises not to burst our speculative bubbles, but make the summer swoon and us with it.
The Detroit duo took some time between shows and costume changes to talk beginnings, middles, and dividends.
How did Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. come about?
Two men born in the same city- one of those men had the guts to call the other.
What were some of your early creative influences?
Motown, The Beatles, Paul Simon, Robert Frost, Procol Harum, Rachmaninov, and old cars to name a few. Anything with a strong sense of melody and a loud muffler.
What are some of your guilty musical pleasures?
We have none. Why should anyone feel guilty for listening to what his/her ears find enjoyable?
Have you ever met or spoken to Dale Earnhardt Jr.?
Josh wrote Dale Jr. a letter a month ago explaining our situation. Dale Jr. wrote a thoughtful and supportive letter telling us that he’s flattered and a fan of our music.
Songs like “Almost Lost Detroit” bleed sentimentality for motor city beginnings. How has the city (Detroit) influenced your music and outlook?
Motown music was the biggest reason I started singing at a young age. The hit-makers in the Motown circle have been something I’ve always admired. Their emphasis on melody is part of what makes that music timeless. Josh and I would love to add to Detroit’s list of songs that never die. (It doesn’t hurt to try)
What was the inspiration behind the new album It’s a Corporate World?
We wanted to make an album that sounded good when it hit our ears. If we both liked the songs then we figured there would be a decent amount of people that would also find it enjoyable. We are inspired by everything going on in our lives.
Does the band have corporate sponsorship i.e. from Cheerios or Lysol?
It’s in the works. We’re hoping to start a bidding war for ad space on our outfits.
What genre, existing or invented, would you describe DEJJ being related to?
We are POP music. Anything less would be uncivilized.
If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing?
It’s a Corporate World is out June 7th.