5 Questions with Dan Reed of Dan Reed Network

July 5, 2016
Dan Reed Network released three studio albums for Mercury Records between 1988 and 1991.  Thankfully, DRN have now returned 25 years later with the mature, but still rocking Fight Another Day CD.  If you're new to DRN, do yourself a favor and track down Dan Reed Network, Slam and The Heat for excellent songwriting, great performances and true band chemistry.  Check out the band's website HERE for more info and many thanks to Dan Reed for answering my 5 Questions!

1 - Dan Reed Network has a new single/video “Divided”, the opening track off the 'Fight Another Day' comeback album.  When you released 'The Heat' in 1991, did you ever imagine it would take 25 years to record a follow up?
First let me say thank you for taking the time to ask these questions and for helping spread the word about the new album!  Pertaining to your first question... It's actually hard for me to wrap my head around that concept because when we made ‘The Heat' we had no clue at the time DRN would not be making new albums after that.  However, the change in music climate with Grunge's explosion and becoming exhausted with being on the road non-stop took its toll.  I'm actually more surprised that we found our way back to being inspired to create a new album 25 years later!  That to me is both the shocking part and a great privilege.  We are having a blast again, both in the studio, on the road and making music videos.
2 - How would you describe 'Fight Another Day' compared to the first three DRN albums?
I believe the new album is kind of culmination - or rather visitation to all three former albums musically.  When composing I had the history of the band in the back of my head pretty much all the time, and primarily the focus for myself was to make sure the new songs could stand beside or even surpass the old material... especially when performed live.  We certainly didn't want to make a new album that sounded nothing like DRN but at the same time we wanted to experiment with the idea of what would we sound like in 2016 had we never broken up... so that was a goal.  Regarding the lyrics I believe this new album is much less focused on love/sex relationships or blind idealism, and instead takes on some very important questions that are relevant in this time we find ourselves living.  I hope it's not coming from being on a soapbox or political or even worthy... It's more about addressing subjects that we all in the band find important during our conversations and concerns for the future.  Of course the 'art' of implementing these ideas into rock/funk songs is key, and all we can do is reach for achieving composing songs that party on first listen but get under your skin later on, hopefully with some resonating weight.
3 - DRN has done several live shows in recent years without the benefit of any new material.  Was your goal to reestablish the band as a live act and/or refine your chemistry before going back into the studio?
That was not a goal or concept when we decided to start performing again.  In fact, I recall all of us saying 'Hey, let's get back out there from time to time and perform the old material because it feels like we left a story unfinished and have some fun and see if the audiences show up and enjoy the experience.'... This in time did indeed lead to us considering the idea of making a new album, but that notion didn't really take root until early 2015.  Writing began in March of last year, and by November we were in the studio... So it all happened rather quickly!
4 - You have a European tour dates on the books – do you have plans to tour the U.S. to support the new CD?
Absolutely!  We have dates booked in Seattle and Portland the last weekend of October and are hoping to get to NYC, Baltimore, Cleveland, Los Angeles and possibly some other places.  We should have news on those dates very soon!
5 - As a funky rock band, Dan Reed Network's music was once described as “Bon Jovi meets Prince”.  What are your thoughts on the tragic passing of Prince?
I was shattered by the news…Not really wanting to be among other people for a few days.  A few long walks on my own in parks contemplating his influence and contribution to the music world.  He was a true inspiration and master of music.  A great influence to myself and DRN.  His genius is sorely missed.

(Photo use approved by Frontiers Records / Dan Reed Network)