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Interview With 'Driftwood Pyre'

Firstly, introduce yourself/yourselves and tell us a little bit about the band and how you came to be?

Hello, this is Joe Werner, lead guitarist, vocalist, and song writer for Driftwood Pyre. I've been playing music, and putting out records for the last 15 years in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Prior to Driftwood Pyre(DP), I was in another band with current bandmates, Liam Watkins, and Marie Debris, called First Communion After Party(FCAP). After leaving the band, and FCAP's subsequent breakup, I joined Liam and current DP bassit Aaron Dauphinais, a few years later to play on some recordings they had been working on together, which became the basis for DP. We recruited the help of Courtney Olson on drums, and Marie Debris on keyboards. We eventually caught the attention of EXAG records based in Brussels, Belgium, and in November of 2015 released our first full length, selftitled debut on vinyl. Then in the spring of 2017 we released 'Strangeways' EP, and went on a month long European tour in support of it.

What were you all up too prior to the band, was this always the chosen path or did you have other dreams and aspirations?

Like I said earlier, me and Liam, and Marie were in a band together prior to DP, and I have been playing in bands for a very, very, verrrrrrry long time!!!! I also have a BFA majoring in Illustration, but it didn't do it for me like music does. I just became obsessed with writing, recording, and playing songs. We all still work normal jobs to pay the bills though.

Tell us about your latest EP and why our readers should check it out.

People should listen to our EP, because if they let go, and truly listen to it, it will take them to another place, and it will also heal them in their soul. Writing this album was quite theraputic for me because I had just gotten over issues with addiction, and some toxic relationships, and articulating what I was going through definetly helped me alleviate some of the pain those demons inflicted on me. Also they are just a solid collection of good songs.

Have you ever come face to face with someone within the music scene who has left you awestruck and why?

Well, I used to work at a guitar store in Minneapolis, and one day while repairing a guitar in the backroom, my coworker came back and said, "I might be crazy but, there is a guy who looks exactly Prince playing a guitar on the sales floor." I walk out on the sales floor to see a tiny man, wearing what looks like an incredibly expensive light grey jogging suit. He looked up at me with a soul piercing stare, and a half smirk. He was unmistakable. It was him. He was with a 6 foot tall Brazilian looking woman who was probably a model. Absolutely stunning. I'm not really a huge Prince fan, but his presence was unreal. He didnt seem human. He was like an elf, or sprite, or alien. He just.....glowed, and seemed other worldly. He bought a $250.00 Squire Telecaster. The name on his credit card. Prince. Rogers. Nelson.

You can spend an hour with a musical icon living or dead, who would you pick, why and what would you speak about?

Oh boy, I always have trouble with this question, because I'm afraid I might not really like the person that many of my idols really are inside. I'm going to go old school and say, I really would have liked to have met Michael Jackson. 'Thriller' era. I just want to know his songwriting process. Did he play everything on keyboard or something by himself first? Was a band present? Was E.T. there? How did he create some of the catchiest melodies of all time?! And I think he was probably an incredibly kind, fragile, and misunderstood person too. It makes me so sad to think about how so many people around him took advantage of this hyper talented, gentle soul.

And finally and most importantly is Die Hard a Christmas Movie?

YES!!!! Die Hard IS a Christmas movie!!! Me and my brother watch it every year on Christmas eve as tradition.

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