Dead Sara

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What'd I Say

Dead Sara

S2, Ep. 2

It took another singer bailing on the California State Fair for Emily Armstrong to step up to the mic. She hasn’t stepped back since. The singer and guitarist of Dead Sara takes us from humble beginnings to rock airwaves, detailing the band’s rise. Drummer Sean Friday joins Armstrong to discuss their 2018 EP, “Temporary Things Taking Up Space,” and first favorite songs.

Episode Transcript

Intro: Hello and welcome to What’d I Say, where Atlantic Records talks with artists about songs they made, songs they like and songs they’d like to have made. It’s an inside look into the craft of songs from the artists themselves.

Emily Armstrong in Dead Sara spent the last few years taking the next step. They spent more time writing and recording. They enlisted the help of new collaborators like Grammy Award-winning songwriter Simon Katz and producer Tony Hoffer. But most of all, they just let go. Their new EP, the result of this evolution, “Temporary Things Taking Up Space,” has Armstrong contributing what she describes as more exposed and vulnerable lyrics, while guitarist Siouxsie Medley and drummer, Sean Friday, contribute to this changing creative process. Whereas Armstrong stated, “When we started scaring ourselves, it was the best thing possible.”

“Temporary Things Taking Up Space” is now available everywhere and the band is heading out on a nationwide tour in September, running through Oct. 20.

Tom Mullen: I want to talk about the start. 2002.

Emily Armstrong: Oh, I can’t talk about that. Sorry.

Tom Mullen: Why not? What is it like starting out as a band in LA?

Emily Armstrong: It’s like any old band that you start. I don’t know, I mean…

Tom Mullen: I mean you’ve got access. You’ve got the second major city. You’ve got venues. You’ve got a lot of places. Like it’s almost… You’re not the small town one place to play.

Emily Armstrong: I kind of wish it was that way.

Tom Mullen: Really?

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. It seems a lot easier. Like I feel like there would be like mom’s basement, you know? And here, like you have to have a lock out and it’s like neighbors complain and it’s a whole thing. You know? I think that’s kind of like half of being in a band when you just start out is avoiding those confrontations or getting the cops called on you and stuff and it’s fun. And I guess when that happens it’s like… When that happened for the first where Siouxsie and I, you know, just out of high school, we were like, “Hell yeah. We’re loud.”

Tom Mullen: What did that connect… like rock music connect to you? Meaning like, when those first … Seeing those first bands or seeing those things on TV, what connected about being loud or being the sort of rock?

Emily Armstrong: You know, it’s funny. I didn’t grow up watching TV and stuff. I didn’t have that and looking back it was a great thing. I got to focus more on music and I listened to records and I know that we were just talking about the Jeff Buckley thing that you put together and stuff, but like I would just listen and listen and it’s a lot different. And I would create in my head what it would look like and how it was supposed to sound. So, I just had this vision that I created in my head how I had to be. I didn’t get to really see bands and stuff until I was about probably 17, when I switched high schools. Because before that it was a boarding school and we didn’t have all that kind of fun stuff.

So, since then, I was like, “Oh.” And I had already kind of figured out what I wanted to do as a performer and had already been practicing like religiously. Like, listening to these records and trying to figure out exactly how they sang because that’s how I learned to sing. So, I just kind of had this vision and my own set of standards just like what I had to meet. And so, when I went to this next school, I was just kind of like whatever and exposed to the whole internet and movies and stuff.

Tom Mullen: What were some of those first bands?

Emily Armstrong: What do you mean?

Tom Mullen: One of those first bands that sort of, you were listening to and wanting to emulate?

Emily Armstrong: Oh gosh. I mean of course it was like the late ’90s so you know that was Third Eye Blind to Fleetwood Mac to… And then I went really heavy into the ’60s and ’70s, like hardcore, you know, from the folk singers to Zeppelin to Sabbath to everything. And I just wanted to live in the ’60s and ’70s at one point. Like I literally … If there was an option. Like, if I had to die and I would go back in the ’60s, I would have taken that poison pill and done it. But yeah.

Tom Mullen: When did you… Because I feel like you listing all those bands off, you can hear that in your voice. You can hear those little pieces which is great. When did it click that, “Oh my God, I think I can do this.” Or, “I think I can sing.” Like, this is all making sense.

Emily Armstrong: I mean there was an aha moment, you know. When it was… Again, like I lived in my head a lot about standards, you know. I brought that up before. Just by listening and knowing what I am capable of and what I could do by practicing. And I never sought out to be a singer when I first started.

Tom Mullen: Really?

Emily Armstrong: No. It was more of like guitar and songwriting and just the whole idea of rock and roll and being in a band was it for me. Like if that was it, that would be awesome. That would be, I just loved it. I definitely took to the guitar first thing and that’s what I learned to do so that was kind of the crux of it, you know? And then I kind of learned to sing and I put bands together, since 12. I’ve been in a band since I was 12 years old. I just loved it. And I always had singers. Like, “Oh, you like singing?” And they had common interests of other bands and I’d be like, “Just come. Come to the art house.” That’s where our rehearsals… That’s what it was called and it was just like, “I have some songs. Let’s just sing some songs.” And so I’d have people come in and you know, friends and we’d be a band for maybe a month and then at one point… I think we were doing the state fair up in Sacramento and the singer couldn’t do it.

I don’t know, for some reason. At the time the reasons were really stupid, you know? But it was like, “What? You can’t?” And then I was like, “You know what? Screw this. I’m going to sing it.” And it was so weird because I never had that idea to ever be the singer until then. I was just like, “Well, I guess I’m going to have to do it.” Because I always wanted a male singer. It was like my thing. Like I was just like, I just thought Stephen Jenkins was somewhere out there. Steve Jenkins two, you know?

I was really young. I was probably 14, 13. So, at that point, I was just like, “Okay, I’ll just do it.” And then I was the singer ever since, but then I was like, “Okay. If I’m going to do it. I’m going to have to really do it.” And so I took to my acoustic and I would practice many, many hours a day and I would just write songs but then I would sing them and so it just became this thing where I would do that and then we’d play a little bit more of punk rock at night with the whole band. And so, I just kind of learned this thing and then I started a band with Siouxsie out of high school and that was louder than anything and then that’s when I really learned to scream.

Tom Mullen: Because I think there’s an art to it. I mean knowing like… When you see a hardcore band and a guy can do the whole tour. You might think it’s just noise but he actually knows how to use his or her voice for that entire tour.

Emily Armstrong: Absolutely. Yeah.

Tom Mullen: And one of those things you figured out. I always find that interesting of how… So were there things that you did? If it was exercises or things that you would know you could scream?

Emily Armstrong: No. It was all just by-

Tom Mullen: Just feeling?

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Just figuring it out. Just kind of… I would do it to a point. It’s funny because people say, “Well, doesn’t that hurt your voice? Like you don’t want to push too hard.” I would do it to the point it was so hurtful or like get to the point where I’m like I want my voice hoarse. So, I did the reverse of just, like, just go. Just go to that. Feel everything about it that’s bad about it because then at that point you’ll understand where not to go because you’ve been there before. You know what I mean? So, I would do that. I would do that hard work and sometimes not knowingly, you know. I’m like, “Oh, yeah, that was probably bad.” Or I’d walk around hoarse and I’d be like, “This is the coolest thing.” So, I just let it happen and just kind of let those feels and figured out what it is and then I just went on from there, you know?

Tom Mullen: That’s great.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. And all. You know, I did it on my own. But now, you know, I do like these exercises and stuff like that for tour that help a lot.

Tom Mullen: And then writing with Siouxsie, how was that when you first started making songs? Was there little flashes of this is going to be really cool? Or, this is crazy?

Emily Armstrong: It was all genius. No, I’m kidding. No. It was so fun. It was… We were just good friends that were just like, “Hey, let’s start a band.” Basically and it was… Already we already had that chemistry of just hanging out all the time. That’s what we would do. You know, and let’s make something of it.

Tom Mullen: That’s what I mean, like you were… You have relationships with everybody in that band. It’s like having four or five different boyfriends, girlfriends but having you already were comfortable. It made it probably easier.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. It wasn’t even a thought. You know, I definitely would push it a little bit more. I was just kind of like, “Let’s do this.” And again, I was quote unquote, the drummer and she was quote unquote the drummer for a second. Like, were just kind of switching and then we’d be like, “Hey, I had my friend that was a drummer when I was like 15. Come back.” And so at that point it was just kind of like figuring out what it is, but we just loved writing and being in a band and then just kind of eventually, it’s where it is today. It just kind of. It’s a constant create. It’s never going to be the same. Whereas, I mean, like as you evolve, you know what I mean? I think that’s a very healthy thing.

Tom Mullen: Yeah. Definitely.

Emily Armstrong: And just things have to just kind of fall and for other things to come in to place and such.

Tom Mullen: That’s great, I mean you grow as band.

Emily Armstrong: You have to.

Tom Mullen: You grow in performances and writing, understanding the studio.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Like this is, I mean not to jump forward into the new EP, but we’ve never really worked with other producers and especially other writers. And this was something that we actually were not really accustomed to, obviously, and we never had the idea that we really would do that. But there came a point in time where we were like, “You know what? Why not?” A good song is a good song, or it could spark and idea and it could create something from us that we didn’t know we had.

Tom Mullen: Having that outside opinion.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah.

Tom Mullen: That outside person looking at everything as a whole and saying this and you trusting them.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Trusting. Yeah. It’s a big thing. Yeah. But even just going in blind and just being like, “I know nothing about you. Let’s see what we can do.”

Tom Mullen: What was that like?

Emily Armstrong: If it’s terrible, it’s like great.

Tom Mullen: Was it scary or was it fun?

Emily Armstrong: I mean I’ve worked with other people before, but like on their projects and stuff, just for fun. So, I kind of had that mentality more. Of just being like, “Let’s see what happens.” Instead of like, “This is going to be attached to me forever.” Like, not having that type of mentality and just kind of… And the whole band just being like, “Yeah, let’s just do this. Who cares? Let’s have fun. Really.”

Tom Mullen: Yeah. I mean I feel like you could have a little pressure off from having someone as this independent producer to kind of… You go in there, do it and then they can say, “This was awesome. Do this again.” Or, “Have you thought about this?” And it kind of opens up the song.

Emily Armstrong: Absolutely. I mean, we’ve worked with producers before but not to the extent that we’ve done with this last EP.

Tom Mullen: What was the difference?

Emily Armstrong: I mean we’ve gone in with… God, instead of just one, it’s been like 15.

Tom Mullen: Oh, wow.

Emily Armstrong: Maybe not 15, maybe it is actually 15. Like as far as like… I’m sorry. You guys can’t see but I’m looking at the drummer, Sean Friday, to my right for approval and he’s not saying a word. Producers, writers, throughout this whole thing. Was it about that many? Maybe, okay, I’ll say about 10.

Tom Mullen: Okay. We’ll stick with 10.

Emily Armstrong: But who cares.

Tom Mullen: Yeah. Who cares?

Emily Armstrong: Because it’s a constant thing.

Tom Mullen: More than one.

Emily Armstrong: It’s like I’m still doing it. But then there’s other people that we’re just like falling back on to, that were just really fun to work with and I feel like they’re part of us. But that’s the whole thing and it’s like just expanding our pallet and getting that constant create with other people and stuff. That’s how it should be, I think, with music and art in general. Just the community, you know? Instead of being really focused, like, very self-centered and it’s one thing to know what you want and just be like, “No, this is us. This is how we do it. We don’t want other people’s opinion.” It’s like, “Cool, yeah. We did that. It was fun while it lasted.” And now we’re just like, “Okay. Let’s have some more fun.” And, lost my train of thought but-

Tom Mullen: No it’s fine. No, I think that the whole point about like the making the music and finding those moments, that there’s something different about and you’re changing. It’s not like you went into the studio and said, “Well, we just made …”

Emily Armstrong: It’s more competitive, too.

Tom Mullen: Yeah. “We just made this same song again. Shit.”

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Absolutely.

Tom Mullen: And you’re not.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. We just wanted to compete more, I think, and that just spins all kinds of creative wheels and that’s where I think you should be all the time. Just out of your comfort zone. That’s exactly what we did.

Tom Mullen: Going back a little further, do you remember your first favorite song?

Emily Armstrong: What’s yours Sean?

Sean Friday: Young MC. What’s the song called?

Tom Mullen: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Sean Friday: The big, I had the cassette tape.

Tom Mullen: Of course you did. “Bust A Move.”

Sean Friday: “Bust A Move.” Are you kidding me? Every day. Several times a day.

Tom Mullen: That’s a good one.

Sean Friday: White cassette tape. The single version.

Tom Mullen: The cassingle.

Sean Friday: So, cassingle. So, one side was instrumental. Other side was with the vocals.

Tom Mullen: Solid.

Sean Friday: Oh, I just, I still don’t even know the lyrics but I listened to it a million times.

Tom Mullen: That’s a good one.

Emily Armstrong: Man.

Tom Mullen: You don’t remember your first cassingle?

Emily Armstrong: I remember a song that I fell in love with from a movie, Thumbelina. And I don’t really remember. I almost looked it up the other day and then I just didn’t. I was just scared because I don’t want it to be different from how I remember it. But how I remember it… I’m going to sing it to you. Okay.

Tom Mullen: Was it written by Barry Manilow?

Emily Armstrong: I don’t know. I was so young.

Tom Mullen: Do you remember the song title?

Emily Armstrong: I’m going to sing it to you.

Tom Mullen: Okay.

Emily Armstrong: And I think that this is how it goes. But this is how I’m remembering it from when I was maybe four, five.

Emily Armstrong: (Singing) “Thumbelina, you can fit into my hand.” That’s all I remember.

Tom Mullen: That is the… That stars Thumbelina and the farm animals and Barry Manilow agreed to compose the songs for this movie.

Emily Armstrong: Oh my gosh.

Tom Mullen: Yeah.

Emily Armstrong: Are you serious?

Tom Mullen: I’m on their Wikipedia page right now.

Emily Armstrong: Oh my gosh. It was Barry Manilow. How cool am I? We are just figuring this out. Oh my gosh.

Tom Mullen: Let’s see.

Emily Armstrong: My mind is blown. I don’t want to… Should we hear it? Should we do it?

Tom Mullen: We can definitely throw it in the podcast. Yeah. He totally did.

Emily Armstrong: Oh my God. I want to hear it.

Tom Mullen: This soundtrack was composed entirely by Barry Manilow, along with lyricist Bruce Sussman and Jack Feldman, who wrote the songs.

Emily Armstrong: (Singing) Thumbelina. You can fit into my hand.

Tom Mullen: 1994. It’s a good year.

Emily Armstrong: I can’t… I don’t know what the notes are, but I tried really hard and I hope it’s somewhat close. If it’s not-

Tom Mullen: I think you’re close.

Emily Armstrong: I don’t know. I mean I was five. Like, this was like a long time ago. I have not heard it since, but I loved it. I was absolutely infatuated with that part of the movie.

Tom Mullen: Just that part.

Emily Armstrong: I remember she was flying around. I guess that’s what Thumbelina did anyway, but I don’t really remember the premise of the movie or anything but that song.

Tom Mullen: I think it kept you quiet for an hour and a half. I think that’s what your parents were, that’s probably what it was.

Emily Armstrong: That was a good thing for somebody like me with just-

Tom Mullen: “Oh, Emily’s finally shutting down for five minutes.”

Emily Armstrong: Way too much energy.

Tom Mullen: Do you remember the first song that you bought? Or first album that you bought with your own money?

Emily Armstrong: Yes. It was actually a cassette tape because it was cheaper.

Tom Mullen: Of course it was.

Emily Armstrong: Cassettes were definitely on the way out and I saved up eight dollars and I got the Odelay Beck cassette.

Tom Mullen: That’s a good start.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. I wanted to get the CD but I didn’t have enough.

Tom Mullen: That was like 13 or 14 probably.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. That was like way too much. I got it at a Wal-Mart.

Tom Mullen: Is there is specific song in the past, and it could be something soon, or the recent one that you took you to the next level of writing? Like, I know that we’ve talked about sort of those moments where you were figuring things out or working with a producer, or doing things on your own, having fun. But was there another one? Where you were like, “This one song, I learned this from.” Or, “This one song took me to this place where now I’m doing X.”

Emily Armstrong: We really worked hard on this EP with figuring out conceptually with the song, how does somebody hear it and do they get the communication that is being told? Like, instead of just kind of having in this haze to it, where we’ve kind of brushed that type of thing on songs before. Just kind of like a free kind of verses type of a thing, like I could do very easily in a room and just kind of jam and come up with lyrics and lyrics and lyrics and just kind of not know what it’s about, but also kind of know what’s about it. And just kind of like, “Do I care what people know it’s about?” That’s kind of what my MO was beforehand and then this was just kind of like, “Okay, Emily. No OCD at this point.” We got to sit and down and Sean here too would help me a lot with that and just be like, okay. Why the lyric would work and why it didn’t.

And it was just like, that was tough for me. You know, I mean to some degree. Obviously, I’ve done that before in the past but I just love starting songs and just kind of like, if it gets to a point where it’s just like, “Oh, there’s no real inspiration anymore.” Then I’ll just go write a new one. And it’s just kind of like these half donesies and they all have great ideas but it’s like that getting to the beginning to the end where it has again, that conceptual. It has a meaning. And so, when you listen to the song and you read the lyrics and you go, “Wow.” Like you could, it fully makes sense.

Tom Mullen: And it fits sort of sonically too.

Emily Armstrong: Absolutely. Yeah, and that’s the trick too. And it’s a battle at some points but once you get those, it’s like Tetris. You know like once it fits, it’s just like, “Oh my gosh. This is so great.” It feels so good.

Tom Mullen: That’s what I mean, like feeling good and then you’re like, “I can’t wait to come in tomorrow.”

Emily Armstrong: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely and we’ve grinded out for like, just like slumped it for like a week. Just like pushing it. Like we know it’s there. We know it’s there.

Tom Mullen: But your mind sometimes like tells you… Like you beat yourself up.

Emily Armstrong: Oh, yeah.

Tom Mullen: Like, I’ve been open this D, and I know that it fits, but I need to find another one or whatever the note is or the feeling.

Emily Armstrong: 100 percent and see, so that was kind of… I guess on the whole project was more of like what you’re talking about. What you’ve asked. Like was there one song? I can’t say if it’s one song. It was just more of a mentality that just kind of… We had set for ourselves, in general, with all the songs.

Tom Mullen: That’s great.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah, we weren’t relaxed on any of them.

Tom Mullen: Stressed out for all of it.

Emily Armstrong: But once it got done.

Tom Mullen: You guys are probably great in the studio.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah, and there’s so many more that are like so good that obviously didn’t get chosen for the EP, but will be for future stuff.

Tom Mullen: I meant to mention this earlier. The “Heart-Shaped Box” cover and having Grohl be aware of it, right.

Emily Armstrong: Sure.

Tom Mullen: And then, I think Courtney Love had kind of, she had reached out to you guys abou working on a record-

Emily Armstrong: Years before.

Tom Mullen: Yeah, years before. So, were there… Had you been a fan of Nirvana, like how did that happen?

Emily Armstrong: Oh, of course. Of course.

Tom Mullen: How did that happen? Was it seeing one of the videos? Or was it-

Emily Armstrong: No. They had asked us to do it. Sorry, they. There was a video game. I forget which video game. They asked us to do it. They gave us some money to do it. And we’re like, “Cool, yeah. We’re fans. Awesome. Let’s do it.” That was all. That was the extent of it. We’ve never played it live or anything. I don’t think we ever will but of course we’re fans and stuff and it was-

Tom Mullen: But was it cool to have those sort of connections happen? I don’t know. You kind of… You know when it’s like the music’s only so there’s only so many people in the music industry. And to kind of have that band and have people aware of it and aware of you guys for different pieces.

Emily Armstrong: Oh, absolutely. Having your peers acknowledge you is exactly that. It’s acknowledgement to what you’re doing is correct. You know? Or it’s like, it’s just… It’s a nice like … I don’t know. It’s just a nice feeling, I guess. And it doesn’t really go, it doesn’t go beyond that, you know? I don’t know.

Tom Mullen: I mean I think to-

Emily Armstrong: It’s just kind of keep doing what you’re doing. It’s like great, alright. That’s kind of the-

Tom Mullen: But rock in general, I mean I grew up on hardcore. Grew up on punk. Like those were those people that I looked up to.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Yeah.

Tom Mullen: And to have, you know Dave’s an old punk guy. You know, like to have that DIY ethic kind of seep through the major label system was a good feeling and I think rock music still has that.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Yeah.

Tom Mullen: And then for you guys, I think getting noticed in, I mean there’s a sea of rock bands.

Emily Armstrong: You’re right.

Tom Mullen: It’s a sea. That’s always the first thing that comes up. So, kind of to rise above that is a big thing. Especially, I think too, in LA. I brought that up earlier. I still think to get noticed in a small town is one thing, but to do it in a bigger city and be able to continue.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah.

Tom Mullen: Because there’s so many different things that happen.

Emily Armstrong: You’re right. You’re right.

Tom Mullen: Had you thought about that? Or just sort of the-

Emily Armstrong: Obviously it’s very humbling. You know? It’s absolutely humbling. I guess I don’t really ponder too much about things like that. I just kind of, it’s mainly about the future of like, “Okay, cool. That happened. Now what can we do? What’s next?” You know?

Tom Mullen: Yeah. So you haven’t really looked back?

Emily Armstrong: No. It’s not time to, I don’t think. You know?

Tom Mullen: It’s like you’ve got the health. You’ve got everybody going in the same way. You might as well keep going.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. That’s exactly it. And I think that’s just a more positive way to look at and to push forth a new tomorrow and a new sound. You know? And a new everything.

Tom Mullen: With rock music, there’s just so much you know, deluge of like bands and to be able to come out of that, but then also have these moments. If it’s the Loudwire Awards or having Dave say you guys are fucking awesome. Like bands will kill to be on the radio once. On the local show in their podunk town.

Emily Armstrong: You’re right. You’re right. I’m like going back now to being like pretending I was on like 98.7 when I was a kid. This is something that is funny. You know, cassette tapes. Have you ever done like little funny like-

Tom Mullen: You’re on radio shows?

Emily Armstrong: Yeah.

Tom Mullen: Yes. 100 percent.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Okay. I used to do that.

Tom Mullen: Do you have call letters? Did you have fake call letters back then?

Emily Armstrong: No.

Tom Mullen: I did.

Emily Armstrong: That’s great.

Tom Mullen: WDHT.

Emily Armstrong: That’s a whole new level.

Tom Mullen: Do you know why? Do you know what that stands for?

Emily Armstrong: No.

Tom Mullen: We don’t have a transmitter.

Emily Armstrong: Oh, wow.

Tom Mullen: I thought that was funny.

Emily Armstrong: Wow.

Tom Mullen: I still have the tape. I saved it.

Emily Armstrong: Man, I would have listened to that radio station, for sure.

Tom Mullen: It’s a high pitched kid introducing Nirvana.

Emily Armstrong: I feel like I would have learned a lot.

Tom Mullen: And like Fugazi.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. That’s pretty cool. So, you make these tapes and you know you’d find these songs on the radio or you’d put your own to it and then I would use Star 98.7. And then I would my own song on it. And then I’d be like, “One day, we’ll be on 98.7.” And keep in mind, I’m like 13 years old. Skip to many years later, we’re actually on 98.7. So, of course it’s like a big thing, you know what I mean? And it was, at that point I was just like, “Oh my gosh.” Like, I almost forgot that I did that. But it wasn’t until it happened that I was like, “Whoa.” I kind of quote unquote willed it into actual existence.

Tom Mullen: I believe in that a lot.

Emily Armstrong: Yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely. And I think it was one of those moments. But it’s not something that I sit and think about and I go, “Oh, I always wanted to be on the radio of 98.7.” But it’s just like, you just got to keep having fun with what you’re doing and stuff and it just, those moments kind of go, “Whoa.” You know? Like, it’s a trip. It’s kind of like this magic that we just somehow tap into every now and again. You know, and I think that’s kind of where I like to leave it, you know? That’s why when you asked me about rock in general and going back and stuff like that. I’m like, it’s great because I’ve always wanted to work with them.

You know what I mean? I listen to these records and I’ve always had that thought like, “Oh, that’d be sick.” Or like, emanating them while I played, you know what I mean? And these are things that I don’t really remember until I meet them and I’m like, “Oh my gosh. We used to like scream these songs driving down…” Like Siouxsie and I with Hole, we’d scream these songs in her car late at night down Hollywood Boulevard just fucking yelling and tearing our voices apart to Courtney. Things like that that just kind of are moments, really. And I think that what all this is about are those kind of moments.

Outro: Thanks to Emily Armstrong and Sean Friday for coming on What’d I Say. Visit for more information. Our theme music is by Max Frost. Be sure to catch up on all the Atlantic Records Podcasts at Thank you for listening.