What is your name and role within The Dreamboats?
My name is Johnny and I’m the drummer in The Dreamboats
ALL MEMBERS NAMES:
Ritchie Hummins – Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
Bryan Fliggers B. Lewis – Lead Vocals, Bass Guitar
Matt Best – Lead Guitar
Johnny G. Wiz – Drums, backing vocals
Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like there?
We are based out of Mississauga, Ontario (Canada). Mississauga has an ever-growing music scene of all genres. Being so close to Toronto, it was very common for Mississauga bands and artists to say that they were from Toronto. However, with the growth of our city over the last 10 years, there’s been an abundance of artists in all genres that call Mississauga their home. Although there may not be as many iconic performance venues/clubs compared to Toronto, there is a strong sense of community in the arts scene in Mississauga in general, and everyone comes out to support one another.
How would you describe your sound?
Our sound is heavily influenced by 50s and 60s era rock and pop, mixed with modern production techniques. Our music has, what we like to call, a “subliminal nostalgia” to it.
Who influences your sound?
All members of the band are inspired by different artists from the 50s and 60s. Collectively though, we’re big fans of early Rock n’ Roll artists like Chuck Berry, Ritchie Valens, Little Richard, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis– as well as late 50s / early 60s pop and rock artists such as Dion, Neil Sedaka, The Everly Brothers — and of course, we have a major soft spot for early British Invasion Rock and Roll….we love The Beatles! This all comes together to form the backbone of our sound.
What equipment do you use?
I use a red Pearl Session Custom maple drum kit. It was my first “real” drum kit, and has taken a serious beating over the years (no pun intended). The rest of the band makes fun of me because they’re covered in scratches and, admittedly, aren’t the prettiest sight, but they’re my babies and they give me my signature sound. They also act as a spring board for Ritchie to jump off of, mid set! …hmmm that might explain all of the scratches.
On September 8 You’ll be headlining the Rockabilly night at the Horseshoe, what do you have planned for this show?
Yes, we’re headlining September 8th at The Horseshoe Tavern! This is going to be a great night, showcasing some of the best “retro” acts in the Greater Toronto Area. The night kicks off with a retro dance demo by Black Cat Boogie Dance Co., followed by rockabilly group, The Greasemarks (who always seem to moon us at every show), followed by viral sensations, The Surfrajettes, and then us! There are also vendors selling vintage inspired clothing (Rosie the Rebel & Rebel Love Clothing), plus a pop-up vinyl shop (Vinyl Vault). It’s gonna be a blast!
How do you prepare for each show?
We like to craft setlists that fit the vibe of each show. From there, we run the set a few times on our rehearsal day and try to come up with ways to outdo ourselves from the last show. The night before, we usually have an epic group-text debate on what matching suits we should wear for the show. And, of course, right before the show, we have our “vocal warmup” tradition in the dressing room…which usually includes us passing around a bottle of the finest bottom shelf whiskey we could find.
How did The Dreamboats form?
The Dreamboats formed out of a genuine love for this era of music. Our parents listened to this music, so we heard it a lot growing up. We were all big fans of movies like ‘La Bamba,’ and ‘Back to the Future’ as well. A few friends got together one day at a rehearsal space in Toronto for fun, and the only songs we all knew how to play were old Beatles songs. The next day, I got a call from Ritchie asking if I wanted to start a band, playing old Beatles songs mixed with some of the songs from the ‘La Bamba’ soundtrack… I said sure! It was the band I was born to play in. We started by buying matching vests and playing a few club shows in Toronto, playing all oldies covers. The young crowd loved it. We then started to write our own music in this genre, and we found our niche.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
I’ve been really getting into other artists with “retro” vibes. Some of my favourites are The Kaisers, JD McPherson, Leon Bridges, and The Cactus Blossoms.
What do you have planned for the remainder of 2018 going into 2019?
We’re headed back to California for the entire month of October 2018. Some cool gigs include the Civic Centre Amphitheatre in Palm Desert, followed by a Pinup Pageant in Las Vegas, and a weekly residency at Draughtsman in Palm Springs. We’ll also be releasing a new EP that we recorded in Cathedral City, California back in Feb 2018. We’ll be doing subsequent touring in 2019 for our new EP in California (February 2019), and Europe (May 2019)
Favourite food and place to hangout?
My favourite spot to eat AND hangout would be TILT in Toronto. The place has all retro arcade games, a wall of pinball machines, and the best poutine in the city! (Poutine is fries, cheese curds, and gravy… for all the non-Canadians out there)