Brooklyn rockers The Dunnie Bobos are a four piece band making a dent in the local music scene. Last week I caught their Northside Festival showcase, where they played at one of my favorite Williamsburg locales, The Charleston. The room was packed for their bluesy rock set, which was appropriately blaring.
The band recently released a single and video called “I Don’t Know Yet” along with a b-side “Didja Didja” plus a bonus outtake/demo called “Take The Bus”. Take a listen over on their Bandcamp.
Lead singer/guitarist Kevin Rochford answered a few questions about the multiple layers behind the Dunnie Bobos name, life in Brooklyn, and their full length debut album, scheduled for release this fall.
SoundDessert: What’s the meaning behind the name Dunnie Bobos?
Kevin Rochford: I’m not sure what it means at this point. My old man said “bobos” a lot, called us bobos, meaning like knuckleheads or birdbrain. I’m pretty sure it’s spanish for “idiots” in addition to that. It was also a slang term amongst friends for cigarettes. Dunnie bobo used to mean a Dunhill cigarette. It puzzles people as a band name and we constantly have to sound it out and spell it for confused aunts and uncles and people after shows. We’ve considered changing it but its kinda there to stay at this point. It’s useful in that you never have to worry about a URL or online username social media handle type thing being taken. Lately I’ve been lying and saying it was the original band name for The Who.
SD: You’re based in Brooklyn, anyone natives? How did the band form?
KR: No, we’re all transplants. Ross Fuentes (bass guitar) is from Atlanta, Alex Ramirez (drums) is from Tampa, I’m from (Southern) New Jersey and James Armstrong (lead guitar) is from Scotland, but has lived in all kindsa exotic locales including the Middle East and Alabama.
The four of us have been together almost two years now. This project has been through a myriad of lineup changes and hiatuses going back several years. James and I have been constant members, and Alex and Ross we met through the nightmarish process of looking for band members through classifieds. We actually met through Craigslist, one of the rare Craigslist relationships that hasn’t ended in a sex crime or a murder.
SD: What was your vision when recording the debut?
KR: For the single, “I Don’t Know Yet” we really just needed something done quick. We had a demo of the song and our friend Dave wanted to do a music video for it. So we recorded it in Queens one day at Ross’ friend’s work studio. We did it on the cheap and extremely haphazardly, which is why we decided if we were gonna do a full-length that we needed to bring in someone “more profesh”
SD: How did you come about working with producer Kevin S. McMahon (Real Estate, Titus Andronicus)?
KR: After an obscene amount of correspondence. He’s a rightfully busy guy. He’s worked on some really good records. He was recommended by a friend. I didn’t know Marcata still existed. Apparently he moved all that stuff upstate and runs a studio in a massive barn with 40 ft ceilings.
SD: You’re starting to play shows in the NYC area including, most recently, the Charleston for the Northside Festival. Where was your first gig? What ensued?
KR: Well we’ve been playing small shows around town for quite some time. I can’t really recall what the first gig was or where it was but I’m confident that it was underwhelming and mediocre. Maybe it was at Arlene’s Grocery, where dreams go to die.
SD: The band runs its own (quite humorous) blog titled Boboage. What are some “boboage’s” the band lives by?
KR: Tumblr is a really fantastic time waster. You can find the greatest shit on there if you follow the right blogs. I run that Boboage page and I’m mainly into gifs, ironically funny photos, old cars, Bill Murray, Jack Nicholson and The Big Lebowski.
James also runs a cool Tumblr that showcases these sorts of web gems.
SD: Your bio says you “enjoy almonds and domestic light beer”, what are some other things the band loves?
KR: Long distance running and math
SD: What’s the best thing about the Brooklyn music scene? What local artists are you currently digging?
KR: Not really sure. I don’t really find it to be a scene, more like what seems to be 10 million bands competing to get noticed. I remember when I moved up here being kinda jaded at all the weirdo laptop/knob rock bands. It seems like that’s on the wane now though and there seems to be some cool guitar bands playing around. James and I play in another band called Los Encantados that is really catchy and fun, and we’re also good friends and big fans of Oh No! And The Tiger Pit. Those are the bands we’re really friendly with and support.
SD: What’s your favorite hangout in Greenpoint, Brooklyn?
KR: I would definitely say The Diamond
SD: What do you plan on spending the most time doing this summer?
KR: Rehearsing our songs a lot, playing shows, and complaining about the heat.
We’re going to be releasing a couple special singles as well, pre-album release, so be on the lookout for those.
For details on The Dunnie Bobos’ upcoming gigs check out their show schedule here.