The band Dresses is comprised of Timothy Heller on vocals & piano and Jared Ryan Maldonado on vocals & guitar (Timothy’s the girl). Together, the Oregon-based indie pop duo bring you delightfully quirky and happy music. I got a minute today to talk with Jared on their stop in Columbus.
How is the tour treating you so far?
Really well actually! We’ve made five stops so far, and after tonight we’re heading to Pittsburgh. We’re really happy that the weather hasn’t been too bad. Glad there’s no snow. There are lots of long night drives, but there are some pretty cool mountains in Utah.
You just put out an album not too long ago. Can you tell me about the songwriting process?
In the past, we’ve typically wrote songs separately, but with Sun Shy we tried more collaborative songwriting. We really spent the year 2012 writing and finishing songs. Working with Timothy, we’ve learned things about each other, and helped each other grow as songwriters. Sometimes we fill in song parts that the other was having problems writing.
Do you have more material that we might hear on another album?
What’s your favorite song from Sun Shy?
Definitely “Friends Are Dead.” I have fun playing it live.
You have a few music videos too. Tell me about the shoot for “Blew My Mind.”
That was a fun one! The idea came from our directors Dannel Escallon and Jess Dunlap and we loved it. We got to spend two days in the woods in Oregon.
Your label SIDEONEDUMMY Records is, historically, a rock/punk/ska label. How did you end up on their roster?
We were surprised at first too. But they just loved the album. We have a really great, mutually beneficial relationship with our label. Maybe we will be the first group they bring in to broaden their horizons.
Who is your dream collaboration?
Vampire Weekend. I definitely consider them an influence and have been inspired by them, and many other artists.
How do two people reproduce the album’s full instrumentation for a live show?
We have a great four-piece touring band. In the past we’ve worked with more people, and that’s always great.
It’s been great talking to you, Jared. I imagine you’re a pretty busy guy.
Absolutely. We have a concert booking agent who keeps us busy. We have 10 more stops, and our last show is the 31st.
You can hear Dresses on WXCU. Below, check out their music video for “Blew My Mind” and their stakes to various parts of the internet.
Buy the album Sun Shy on iTunes.