DangerousGuitar.com recently conducted an interview with guitarist/vocalist Richie Kotzen (MR. BIG, POISON) about THE WINERY DOGS, his new power trio with drummer Mike Portnoy (DREAM THEATER, AVENGED SEVENFOLD, ADRENALINE MOB) and legendary bassist Billy Sheehan (MR. BIG, TALAS, DAVID LEE ROTH). You can now watch the chat below.
THE WINERY DOGS' self-titled debut album sold around 10,200 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 27 on The Billboard 200 chart. Released in North America on July 23 via Loud & Proud Records and in Japan on May 15 via Victor Entertainment, the CD was mixed by Jay Ruston, who has previously worked with ANTHRAX, ADRENALINE MOB, STONE SOUR and STEEL PANTHER.
In a recent interview with Guitar World, Kotzen stated about where THE WINERY DOGS' name came from: "What's funny is that in the collaboration of making this record, everything was easy and just happened so naturally. The hardest thing was actually coming up with a band name. [laughs]"
He continued: "I had suggested the name THE WINERY DOGS. They were dogs that were used many years ago to guard vineyards and keep stray animals from screwing up the vines. I thought that was cool because in a weird way, it parallels what we're doing musically.
"Many artists these days have gotten more into programming and using samples. Even though some of those new records are cool and creative, they're not necessarily made by musicians in the sense of what we know a musician is capable of doing on an instrument. So, where winery dogs are protecting the vineyard, we're protecting (or promoting) the old-school thought of making a record by playing an instrument and not sampling or tuning your vocals."
Regarding how the songs on "The Winery Dogs" came together, Kotzen said: " The three of us got together at my studio and started throwing around some ideas. Then we ended up demoing a few of those arrangements, and after Mike and Billy left, I sat down with what we had recorded and came up with some lyrics and melodies and sent it back to them. The guys really liked them, so we decided to try a few more. We did that a few times and ended up developing those ideas into finished songs."