Today is the Canadian Country Music Association Awards , airing live from Hamilton at 19:45. The CCMA Awards, as everybody likes to refer as, released the nominees a while back and we were extremely proud and thrilled to see our very own’s Danick Dupelle in nomination for Record Producer of the Year. We were even more excited when we learned he could share a bit of time out of his hard schedule to talk with us.
You see, Nashville-based Danick Dupelle is one of those producer that can tell you quite a bit about the music industry – Beyond being a successful workaholic in the studio, Dupelle is even more famous and recognized for his on-stage alter ego who’s the lead guitarist/producer and songwriter of the grammy nominated band – Emerson Drive
Emerson Drive has been a part of the country music scene since they signed their first record deal with DreamWorks Records Nashville in 2001. The band’s first two singles, “I Should Be Sleeping” and “Fall Into Me,” peaked in the Top 5 on the Billboard charts and quickly became fan favourites – but it was the career-changing song “Moments“ that gave the band their first #1 single in the USA. Since then Emerson Drive hasn’t stopped any activities and touring across the state with star such as Toby Keith and Shania Twain.
That being said, with Emerson Drive still producing new materials and touring generously , it goes without saying that we were more than lucky to get an interview with Danick Dupelle to discuss busy lifestyle and his recent nomination for Record Producer of the year with his works on Tebey’s latest album – Love a Girl.
Within the first few moment of our phone exchange, we already noticed his charismatic, passionate and hard-working personality. First, he was in Nashville, leaving the next day for a show in the state and he was still doing ”Everything in his power’‘ to manage a schedule that would let him attend the year CCMA ceremony this Sunday (Sept. 9th), as he was going to be in Arizona for another show.
D.Dupelle_”[Emerson Drive] plays pretty much every weekend in the summer with all the festivals and fairs. I’m leaving tomorrow night for a town called Charlevoix, Michigan. Going there playing a show, going back to Nashville for a week in the studio. Every time I’m in Nashville , I’m in the studio. Like 7 days a week working on projects.”
My band Emerson drive is just working on the next single right now. Starting a new project at the end of august. Also working on with Tebey on some demo’s. They just got a big hit and we are still thinking about the next record because … you got to get on it quick !
Are you Mainly touring in the US ?
No it’s mostly Canada. Back in the day, when we signed with Dreamworks record and Universal we were playing up to 2010, about 90% in the US and after that we started switching. We started concentrating only in Canada. Everything took a complete opposite turn, like a 360. We went to 95 % in canada… It’s all canadian based… Only one in September in Arizona and one in Michigant !
When did producing first came to mind and became so serious for you ?
Well, It’s not something I had in mind at the beginning. I was busy with the band playing bars and after that we got a record deal. So when I got to making our first record, it put me in a position to be in major facility. Like with superstar like Tom McGraw and Toby Keith and so many other … And I was like ‘Oh My God !’ – Its was almost a drug, I got addicted to it …And After that we got so busy. We didn’t get much chance to do studio’s. The only studio we did are the one we made a record with so.
When everything started slowing down just a little bit, around… 2007 …Well no, It was crazy busy, doesn’t matter! It was crazy until 2011-2012 and everytime I had time off and was in Nashville, my buddy had a studio in town with , Jonathan Cain from the band Journey… he was always ‘‘Man, you should come here you would learn so much !”... And I knew a lot of it already, but you know… so I got in, got my bedroom doing demo.
After that it went on to bigger and better things and now my band Emerson drive bought a building in Nashville … There’s about 30 studios in my street, in the neighbourhood and I got my own mint in producing and songwriting. It’s almost like it been gradually coming more and more and now… it’s almost like When I go out with the band – It’s almost affecting my work because I don’t have time to leave town.. But it’s all good, I love playing live and when I get back home I love being in the studio.. So best of both world
With 30 studios just in your neighborhood, Nashville must be an extremely competitive market. Hass it affected much of the dynamic you have with Emerson Drive or even relation with other artist ?
No, not at all ! I mean there’s so many studio right, so everybody think it’s very competitive, but everybody help each other. There’s no ego – Nobody is like ”Oh my God ! you’r going to use this guys instead of me”. No, everybody is busy, everybody is so busy … Everybody is so busy because there’s so much work. Lately, I don’t have time to write that much, but it’s not because I leave town that I’ll lose my client – They want to work with me ! They want me to cut the song, cut the audio. They want me to write the song, they want me to play the guitar … So that’s how you build your relationship. There no competition, it’s an amazing place. There’s no place like it I would say – Like Nashville, for music anyway… have you ever been ?
XH_No, but we’ve heard so much about it in our interview with Madeline Merlot. She just moved there and she was definitively enjoying every second of Nashville ! [Click to see the Interview with Madeline Merlot]
Ohh Yes, I know Madeline Merlot !! I know Madeline very well, she is very sweet, very talented … She’s awesome !
What about your recording label – Do you have many new promising clients artist right now ?
Yes there’s tons of brand new artists about to break … There’s obviously Tebey and Emerson Drive. There’s also a guy from Saskatchewan and many more new projects that are about to get release, but they are not as established as these two :
There’s this one girl I’ve been working for years and she is about to break. She’s an extremely talented singer. Her name is Liv Charette. She’s from Ottawa but she just got out of Belmont University down in Tennessee and we’ve been working together for four years and been coaching to really come out with a sound for her… So really looking forward for her career to start and we really got something special with her.
Another cool and big project is a guy from Montreal, his name is Matt Lang. He used to be Mathieu Langevin but it’s sometime hard to say in English [laugh]. He’s a french country artist but it’s English – We did everything in English. He’ got a song out now called ”Love me some you’‘ in Quebec and it’s pretty good …He’s got an EP done and a lot of good things happening … So check him out he’s one of our the tops singer, he’s like crazy crazy good.
Don’t miss the CCMA Live from Hamilton this Sunday – September 9th at 19:45