The Dead Daisies are the very definition of an international band.
The group’s members are scattered across the globe, and though they’re often called an Australian-American rock outfit, the truth is a little more muddied. Past members have lived on almost every continent on Earth, and the band’s current lead singer John Corabi – of Mötley Crüe fame – has called a range of countries home.
And yet despite the difficulties often associated with operating a band that’s separated by the seas, Corabi says the maturity of those who make up The Dead Daisies contributes to their relative creative ease. “We’re all a bit older and wiser now, so we’ve figured out how to communicate much better with each other when it comes to writing, performances and the overall nature of things,” he says.
“We’re also much more focused as musicians when it comes to writing and recording. Now we understand the nuances of schedules and the finances it takes to do a record, so we’re all extremely focused on getting shit done on time. [Those are] things we didn’t really think about in our wild youth.”
Corabi isn’t kidding when he calls it ‘wild’ either. The Dead Daisies are a supergroup of sorts, led by heir to the Westfield shopping empire David Lowy, and each member has lived a long and storied life outside the band. Indeed, Corabi’s own hard-living history is well known, and when asked to reveal something he’s never said in an interview before, he’s unafraid to make mention of his own myth as a maniacal ladies’ man.
“I like candlelight dinners, long walks on the beach, puppies, cuddling, good conversation, a nice bottle of wine with a little Barry Manilow playing softly in the background, and then slow, meaningful sex until the woman orgasms first,” he says. “And, if you believe any of this, I’ll sell you a bridge in New Jersey.”
Lies or otherwise, sex, excess and an excess of sex are the key to the band’s thematic concerns. Not to imply that The Dead Daisies are one-trick ponies, however. Every now and again they release a straight-up ballad, case in point being their single Song And A Prayer, an emotive tune ready-made to be performed in front of a lighter-waving audience.
As Corabi tells it, the song was written fast, in a manner so free from restraints that it proved almost improvisational. “Because we live so far from each other, we’re a bit geographically challenged,” he says. “The last two records, Revolución and Make Some Noise, were done relatively quickly.
“We really didn’t have any ideas for Make Some Noise, we got together at Marti Frederiksen’s studio and started the writing process. Everyone sat down with an acoustic guitar and threw ideas into the pot. After about ten days of writing we had about 22 ideas, and then Marti and the band whittled it down to 14. We all wrote, and tracked everything together as a band, as we always do.”
Such a writing style relies on an inherent sense of trust between band members. As far as Corabi is concerned, The Dead Daisies succeed because they all have a deep sense of respect for one another, and though they all relish their private time, they understand the importance of staying in touch.
“We’re always sending emails to each other, whether it be a joke, a sports score, or just saying hello,” he says. “For me personally, after spending as much time together with the band as we do, when we go home, it’s home for me. That’s when I relax and turn my attention to my wife, my writing and my solo band. We all have families, so we all go in separate directions, and then right before a tour we’ll get together, rehearse a few full days, hang and have a few cocktails. Then get right back into a groove like we never stopped. That doesn’t work for everybody, but it seems to work for us.”
The Dead Daisies’ latest single Song And A Prayer is out now through Spitfire/SPV.
Written by Joseph Earp