Dale Fisher is a well-traveled musician. The Iowa native and Berklee School of Music alumnus has written and recorded with John Mellencamp, conquered the Los Angeles local scene, and performed around the world.
Dale has been steadfast in a business where it is more common to fall away than to remain. We sat down with the seasoned musician to get to know more about him and his musical journey.
Bridge: How long have you been making music?
DF: I started making music when I was about 14 when I wrote the song “Barbara Lynn” for I girl I met at a realtor convention of my fathers.
Barbara Lynn And Its Over Then
I See Your Face And I Smile Again
I thought it was funny her last name was Lynn…and nothing else…that was my first original song.
Also, I was creating original boogie-woogie and blues type stuff for my piano lessons starting at around eight or nine years old. She gave them titles and then gave me gold stars as I improved each week. My sister, to this day, cannot listen to that type of music, because of the destruction to her, during my learning years. I played that sh*t over and over and over and then again. Then I took my few performable songs to each family’s piano in the community, at some point. Moms seemed to love me (laughs).
Bridge: How would you describe your sound to a first-time listener?
DF: When people ask me what type of music I do, I reply “Good” After they smile, then I say Americana, but I have a lot of Elton-type stuff too. A tune I wrote with Mellencamp on this last record “Yellow Machine” on a track called “I Want You” is in the mix, so there is that kind of influence in me also. I would like to think of myself as a lyric type dude, with great melodies and hooks, but I suppose all of us that do this feel that way about their own stuff.
Bridge: What do you want your fans to feel when they listen to your music?
DF: I would like my fans to feel about something when they listen to my music. No matter the subject, or where their mind goes.
Bridge: What is your creative process like?
DF: I am in the middle of a new tune called “Nichol”. I met her last night, she sits next to me in a church choir I joined for whenever I am in Florida visiting my folks.
We have sat next to each other before, but never spoke. She is half my age, but something about her first words and expressions made me write her a song when I got home. The song is actually for me, as they all are, because I learned a long time ago you are only as good as your next gig or song. I would wonder why I was in the dumps mentally, until I finally figured it out. Songs are where my peace is. Looks corny, written in text, or spoken, but it truly is my world. Back to the songs. I write a theme first, most of the time, then put that on some music, OR music first, then immediately a theme, and thoughts of how to map out the feelings. A song last week, which will make the new record titled “17”, called “That’s No Way To Feel”, started with a piano riff, which turned into the exact melody line, with the opening statement being:
“Lying In Bed ‘Cause It’s
Better Than Feeling Alone”
Eventually, the “after breakup” song speaks to me and the listener, at the same time, with “That’s No Way To Feel” repeated in the pre-chorus.
I also am a big fan of just mumbling stuff in rhythm, until I come up with something clever, in the a lotta syllables. That same song is a 6/8 time signature, so all day, for days, I have been thinking of lines in a ” 1,2,3,4,5,6 1,2,3,4,5,6 Boom” state of mind. 13 syllables. Ends on the boom, and it better be good (laughs)
Bridge: What is your “go-to” song whenever you’re going through some hard stuff?
DF: “Hand In Hand” on the “After Berlin” album. I wrote it for a friend after he died, and sang it at his wake. Balled during the ending, so it always touches me.
Bridge: Who would be your dream collaboration with?
DF: That changes with who is new and hot. Billie Eilish would be fun for me. One thing I can tell you is I am not a fan of music that is not out now. Classic rock makes me barf, and anything over five years old is pushing it with me. If I could ban “tribute” bands from the face of the earth, I would.
Bridge: Tell us about your current projects…
DF: My current project is the new record “17”, also the single and first video. We shot a lot of drone stuff in Newport Beach (on the down low, cause I guess its a big deal if you get caught). I am on the roof of a two story beach house, laying on my back with the piano laid out across my lap, so I would be facing mostly straight up for the drone to be able to capture. Then we finished it in Lake Arrowhead on my grand piano. Its sits in front of a fire place with very tall two and half story “A” frame roof that goes all the way to the ceiling in the living room. Drone comes in front door, and rises to the ceiling, slowly. I was pretty impressed with Ryan Lotfi. He is an Iranian born in Dubai with a great eye for film. Chris Wonzer and I will be traveling to Koln, Germany from L.A. to finish “17” tracking at Artfarm Studios in Drabenderhohe, Germany on May 25th. Robert Shuller will be co-producing with us, and we all have be trying to work together in the same room for years, so this is going to be a treat. Then Berlin, June 8th to hang with The Foo Fighters!!
Bridge: What else do you have going on that our readers should know about?
DF: Great last question. I would like to shed some light on mental health issues among teens. It has been very hard on them these past years, AND decades. Conversations about it were always taboo. This is changing, and www.glowmedia.org makes teen short films regarding mental health issues. These films are provided FREE on their website, and even translations are available, as well as curriculum guides to assist educators in implementing them in the classroom. Six films are done, the newest project “Glad I Stayed” which discusses the topic of teen suicide, films in May at James Monroe High School in Los Angeles.
Keep up with the latest on Dale at the links below: