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Interview with Dorothy Martin of Dorothy, January 19, 2017 – Portland, Oregon – ROCKISDEAD Tour.
MIRP: Welcome to Portland. Did you get any time to explore our city?
DM: We get Voodoo donuts every time we come to Portland. We didn’t get to do a band night out at Sassy’s, but we will next time.
MIRP: You are part way through your tour. How is it going so far?
DM: It was great. I’m loving the winter tour. I’ve never seen this much snow in my life; it is beautiful!
MIRP: On your debut album, ROCKISDEAD – which is your favorite song? Why?
DM: That’s a tough one. I don’t have a favorite. I love singing “Medicine Man” live, and our cover of “I Put a Spell on You” is going over well at the shows.
MIRP: Do you have a least favorite song?
DM: No Way!
MIRP: Which was the most difficult to record?
DM: A few of them in the beginning, but my voice got stronger throughout the process of recording ROCKISDEAD.
MIRP: How was the writing process?
DM: It is a lot of fun. Writing is actually my favorite part of the creative process sometimes. It is right up there with live shows.
MIRP: On December 30, 2014, Rolling Stone pegged Dorothy at #14 on their 50 Best New Artists of 2014 list. How much did that nod from Rolling Stone help your career?
DM: It is a blessing to be recognized by a legendary music magazine. I’m looking forward to getting the cover someday. Goals keep us focused. Shout out to Rolling Stone! Thanks for the love!
MIRP: Before Dorothy, were you in any organized band?
MIRP: Talk to me about your obsession with film; your album cover was shot on 35mm/polaroid.
DM: My dad used to dabble in photography and had a lot of beautiful film books in his library. I remember looking at Hamilton’s work and loving it. I collected art and photography books. Lachapelle being one of my favorites. I collect old cameras and have plenty of Polaroid, which I like to shoot with.
MIRP: You were born in Budapest…. how long did you live there before moving to California?
DM: Until I was three.
MIRP: You were introduced to classic rock from your father?
DM: Most music! The Jacksons, The Bee Gees, Joplin, Pink Floyd! I have all of his vinyls.
MIRP: What was the first LP you remember loving?
DM: “Great Gig in the Sky” and “Thriller.”
MIRP: Your musical taste varies… from Bob Dylan to Dolly Parton. Are there any current bands that you are loving?
DM: I love NOSEY, who is a very talented rapper/singer from Minnesota. Slim Jeff is dope and so is True Violet, and The Georgia Flood.
MIRP: You grew up listening to classic rock at home, west coast 90s hip hop, and punk. What elements of each do you put into Dorothy?
DM: If any, it is all subconscious. I leave most of the production up to the producers and focus on melody and song structure. My lyrics come from poetry that I write on the road and random ideas I get. Music is amazing; if it feels good, it’s good. There are no rules!
MIRP: Your trademark vintage t-shirts, red lips, and fir – how did you come up with that and do you see that continuing?
DM: That’s the SoCal rocker girl inside me. I grew up shopping in vintage stores because I didn’t necessarily always have money for really nice clothing. I also never wear real fur; it’s faux.
MIRP: You are quite beautiful. How important is that in Dorothy?
DM: Not important at all.
MIRP: Your voice is unique and very beautiful. When did you know you were a singer?
DM: I always knew I WANTED to be a singer. It’s like being an athlete. I had to work hard at it.
MIRP: What do you do to keep your voice healthy?
DM: Rest and vocal exercises. My teacher, Coreen Sheehan keeps me strong.
MIRP: What you do besides music?
DM: I paint and design. Right now, I’m painting a series of acrylic on canvas and giving a portion of the proceeds to charities that focus on drug and alcohol addiction recovery.
MIRP: You’ve been in many music videos and extras in movies, can you give us some?
DM: “Date Night,” Rob Thomas, “Entourage,” I love movies. I’ll definitely be revisiting acting when we aren’t on tour!
MIRP: I saw an interview where you expressed your desire to get a ginger cat. Did you ever get one?
DM: You mean [our bass player] Gregg Cash? (Laughs). He’s out there somewhere, and he’s going to be fat and VERY cuddly.
MIRP: You are a fan of Dolly Parton, have you had a chance to see her live?
DM: Sadly no. I love you Dolly!
MIRP: Tell me about possibly venturing into country music?
DM: Only if I get to do a duet with Jack White or Steven Tyler and crash Nashville for a bit.
MIRP: How was it touring with Halestorm and Lita Ford?
DM: Amazing. We learned a lot from them and they’ve become like family to us.
MIRP: Woman fronted bands in rock, who are some of your favorites?
DM: Debbie Harry, Janis Joplin, Tina Turner, Izzy Hale, Chrissie Hynde, Shirley Manson, Gwen Stephanie, Ann Wilson, Annie Lennox.
MIRP: Do you play an instrument?
DM: Piano and guitar. I wish I played drums. I might get lessons from Dylan Howard.
MIRP: Are your bandmates protective of you?
DM: Very. It’s like a built-in security team (laughs).
MIRP: What do you like to do most in new cities?
DM: Walk around and eat local food.
MIRP: Is there anything else you’d like to talk about?
DM: Check out our album ROCKISDEAD and www.itsdorothysucka.com for exclusive merch, tour dates, and more.
MIRP: Thank you for taking the time to sit down with us. It is or pleasure!
DM: Thank you!