In Cleveland, Jonny had a special guest in attendance, his father. It was an emotional show on his part and there was no opportunity to speak to the singer after the cables were wrapped. In Detroit, UTG contributor Melanie Hodgins sat down with Craig to chat on an array of topics including his dad’s visit the night before, his new EP, and the future of Emarosa without him.
Your EP, Find What You Love and Let It kill You, is fantastic and the quality of the production is superb. You can really tell that every dollar that was raised was well spent. How did the recording process go for you?
It was fun. [Captain] Midnite would love to hear you say what you just said. He put a lot of time into the beats and all the music, ya know, in general. We flew to Atlanta and spent a bunch of time with Kyle Lucas. We sat down and wrote a bunch of stuff. He helped me write a bunch of stuff and, ya know, Midnite worked hard on all the beats. I think it went over really well and I feel like the money did get spent pretty well.
There’s a wonderful mix of rock and R&B on the new release. You recently mentioned on Twitter something about a full-length. Is this style something you’re going to continue on with?
Yeah. Yeah, we’re going to do a full length. I don’t know who I’m going to be doing it with exactly but, I mean, the EP was just to show the type of direction I’m going to go in from now on instead of just trying to do the rock/screamo stuff that I’ve been in. The EP was just to show everyone where I’m going and the full length, I really think, is going to have the full effect of what we’re gonna do.
I listened to the first 30 seconds of it (the EP) and had to buy it, it’s really good. I’m excited for the full length.
Thanks, I appreciate that.
It’s been almost a week since it (the EP) has been released. Are you happy with how it’s being received?
I mean everyone’s saying that it’s doing pretty well and they like it and I really haven’t had a bunch of people talking shit so that’s a first. Usually everyone just talks shit no matter what but I mean there’s been rarely any of that.
What is it like working with Benjamin Wentworth of The Heavy Empty on this tour?
Oh, that guy, he’s intense man. Nah, he’s a good dude. I’ve known him for a long time. He was actually going to be the bass player for Emarosa at one point and then Emarosa kind of bitched out. So that’s what they are. A bunch of bitches but, uh, they bitched out and they didn’t want to have him in the band ‘cus they wanted to keep the old guy. But I’ve known Ben for years and on the last tour we met up with him in New York and he said he was looking for work so I just asked him if he wanted to be a part of it and he did. So here we are.
Which artists that you haven’t worked with yet would you like to have on your next album?
Oh, I don’t know. I mean there’s tons of artists out there that I would love to have on my album but it will probably never happen, at least not at this point. We’ll see.
Bradley Walden has taken up your old position in Emarosa, how do you feel about that?
I mean, I don’t really know the kid so I don’t really care. I watched some videos of him on tour with his old band and shit. It was cool. He’s got a good voice so it’s not like he’s not going to be able to fill the shoes, or however you want to put it, but I mean I can’t really expect anyone to ever be able to cover the songs that I wrote and actually have me ever like it. Ya know? It doesn’t matter if it’s good or not, I’m still not going to like it.
During an interview with KLSU, to sum it up, you said that music helped you escape problems when you were younger and it was the start of your music career. How do you feel about schools cutting art programs?
Well I never really went to school so that’s kind of a weird question.
I dropped out as well so I totally get it.
I mean, I think if you asked anyone music is a way for music to express themselves especially those who play. But even for those who don’t play it’s a way for them to cope with shit. I mean, at least anyone I’ve ever talked to that listens to music obviously it helps them no matter what they’re going through so I guess they’re cutting it in schools, I don’t really know anything about that, but I mean that obviously would kind of suck. I guess especially if that’s what you want to do in life.
Do you feel like if you entered the music industry at a later point in your life that things might be different for you?
I have no idea. I mean I guess I’m just glad I got into it at the time that I did. I was talking earlier with Kyle about stuff and when I started Dance, Gavin, Dance there wasn’t a whole lot of bands that had dual singers and stuff and we kind of went over it and, yeah, I’m glad that I got into it when I did because I didn’t set the precedent for the other bands or ‘pave the way’ so to say. I didn’t do any of that but I feel like the time that I started playing music was a good time for me, you know what I’m saying? I got into it right when I needed to get into it because it gave me everything that I needed at that point in my life, when I didn’t have guidance from my parents and shit like that. I feel like the time when I got into music was when I really needed something else.
We heard that your dad was at the show last night, how was that?
It was cool. I mean I haven’t seen my dad in like four, four and a half, years. The last time I saw him was at The Warped Tour in Milwaukee when I was in Emarosa. So I mean it was cool. He came out and, obviously, emotions were a little high but it was nice seeing him and he had his girlfriend there too and she was cool. I just feel like everyone on the tour had a good time meeting him so it wasn’t awkward or anything like that.
Are you planning on trying to see him more?
Oh yeah. I mean, we talk and stuff, we have the same phone plan. I’ve actually been paying his phone bill for the last couple of months. We talk all the time I just haven’t been able to see him because he’s all over the place but he’s retired so I’ll actually be able to see him a little more.
Is there anything that you would like to say before we wrap up? Anything that you want to add about the EP or about the tour?
Pick the CD up, we put a lot of time and effort into it and it’s just setting the stage for the full length so if you want to understand what that’s going to sound like or be about check out the EP. Listen to the songs and if you like it. If you like it, great, if you don’t… what ever just don’t listen to it. I don’t give a fuck.