Sometimes you have to just sit back and have a little fun. Not take life so seriously and I have been guilty of sometimes taking myself, and the music I listen too way too seriously. Then you come across a band like the Dollyrots, a fun power pop/punk band that has the infectious ability to make you smile along with them on their ride through life. I had the pleasure of taking a few minutes with Kelly Ogden as she was getting in from the airport and prepping for a string of dates up and down California with Go Betty Go.
BT: For me, and through no fault of your own, I followed you when you were starting out, got busy doing my own thing and lost track of the band, was surprised and excited when I heard the Joan Jett cover on the Easy A soundtrack, and after having “Family Vacation” release at #15 on the Billboard Heatseeker charts, it’s fantastic to see your momentum still moving forward. What keeps you motivated as a band?
Kelly: It’s each other, it’s the fear of having to find new careers at this point in our life, and our Fans. I feel like after 10 years we have this core group of people that love us like family. Bands say that, but we do have the support of a true fan family. I think the idea of not having them be a part of our life, or not giving them the music to motivate them in their lives just seems like a terrible idea. Even through times when it feels more like a job, or a business than a band I think it’s been made easy for us for those reasons. There’s really nothing else that we would rather do. It matters to other people, so I don’t think we could let them down at this point.
BT: I’ve watched the clips online, listened to the new live album, how does it feel after 10 years to be able to give your fan family who haven’t gotten a chance to see you live, that ability now?
Kelly: It was so awesome! We have fans that we communicate with almost on a daily basis sometimes on twitter and facebook. These are people we know who we’ve never met in person. It’s like online dating someone but never meeting them. I don’t know who you are in a weird way, so I feel like it was such an awesome treat for us, and it looks like for them as well. We can’t get to everywhere in the whole wide world and to be able to bring the show out to them finally it just was really satisfying for us. It was also really cool for us to have it documented for the rest of our lives and for our kids in the future to see what it looked like when we played a show. It was just a regular Dollyrots show and I think we were prepared for mistakes, if a string breaks or a cymbal falls over to not sweat it, kind of our mentality going into it. We wanted it to be real and true. What it ended up being was more than we even planned.
BT: The Dollyrots, have kind of always been a bit tongue in cheek with your lyrics and light and solid sense of humor, where does that come from?
Kelly: Not sure, I guess it’s just kind of the way both of us are. We’re kind of silly and we don’t take ourselves too seriously. When you’re writing lyrics, at least for us, what comes out of your mouth sometimes can see some stupid. So when you can Twist on It, it makes it more fun and a little less poetry style. We want our lyrics that someone can listen to on the surface and be happy listening too, or maybe if they look it up they can learn something about us or something we’re into without beating them over the head with it.
BT: You recently got back from Europe, touring with Bowling for Soup, does going over there change your live show at all when you get back?
Kelly: Bowling for Soup is huge in the UK, I mean they’re a big band here, but in the UK they’re selling out 2-3000 capacity venues. It’s really special to be able to play with a band like that who allows you to share in their crowd. I think a lot of the fans that we gained over the last 5 or 6 years is because of that band. We are super grateful for the opportunity and it’s also just really fun. Our music is different, a lot different than Bowling for Soup, but I think it comes from a similar place. I think that the fans seem to like both bands and that part of it is awesome and we get to hang out with our favorite guys in the whole wide world for three weeks and that’s sort of the best.
BT: What was the moment, that impacted you to become who you are now, and when did you decide this is who I am and what I want?
Kelly: That’s tough, I think the moment that I thought I really could do it was just external validation. Our first big thing that ever happened we went on an open audition for a big company, we didn’t know what it was. We got a commercial for Hewlit Packard, and it played before the very first Lord of the Rings film in all the AMC theaters. So Luis and I went to the movies, I think we ended up sneaking in or something, it was just the two of us all alone and we saw ourselves on the big screen and I remember thinking, maybe we can actually do this, it isn’t the craziest thing I’ve ever considered before. It definitely took a number of those situations for me to be confident moving forward, and I think still we question it sometimes. Just got to be a bit delusional and believe that when all the positive things are happening you just got to go with the flow. Sounds like a really hippy answer, but things point us in that direction and we just keep going with it.