July 10, 2014 by The Dirt Factory
All methamphetamine jokes aside, living in the Mojave Desert breeds strange habits. Especially during summertime.
Unless forced, desert dwellers typically don’t leave the air-conditioned comfort of home or work during daylight hours. Heat punishes everything. A stroll to the mailbox or even climbing into a car become dreaded tasks. Desert folk become much like the burrowing animals outside their front doors.
But as the sun fades over the western skyline and breezes sweep across the valley, the desert landscape changes. Night brings a welcome respite from Mother Sun. The desert seemingly exhales. And its people celebrate this relief in small ways. The sun-weary emerge from their homes, walk their dogs, watch their children play on the lawn and feel the breeze on their skin.
High Desert band The Ghostmen’s music – especially its new self-produced CD Sun Dazed – is the perfect sonic representation of this desert golden hour.
The Ghostmen join Foxhunt, Castle Pines and Ghosts in Pocket tomorrow night at Frogees Cocktail Lounge in Apple Valley, CA. Showtime is 8 p.m.
The Ghostmen’s Kayla von der Heide kindly answered some questions via email about the ghost of Katy Perry past, the vicissitudes of band life, and casting the band’s yet unwritten biopic.
Q: You haven’t played many shows recently, but you’ve managed to crank out a full-length CD and video for “Come and Go.” What’s next?
Hopefully some more shows, always writing new songs, and promoting a lot! I think this Internet world is powerful, if you try.
Q: Your band’s line-up changed recently? It certainly hasn’t affected your productivity, but has it changed any larger plans for The Ghostmen?
It’s always changing. And no. I don’t let that effect anything. There’s always ways around things, and if you really want something then you won’t let little things like that put a damper on it.
Q: I know you have respect for contemporary artists like Katy Perry, but your voice takes me back to the 90s. Very reminiscent of Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star) and Harriet Wheeler (The Sundays). If The Ghostmen have their own Pandora channel, who are some bands that pop up?
We don’t have our own Pandora channel yet, but I’m flattered by those comparisons! LOVE Mazzy Star. Katy Perry – early 2009 Katy Perry might I add – was just someone that really influenced me to start playing guitar and writing. I was like 16 and I saw her once when she wasn’t that big. She just played guitar and sang amazingly. It pushed me to want to one day do that. I don’t know about her recent material, though. I can’t listen to it.
Q: Being in a band can be expensive, time-consuming and frustrating. Especially in Southern California. What are some things you do outside of the music to keep it all together?
I do photography for work, and I like to take my dog on cool hiking trails and walk around. Writing helps. But I don’t really find being in a band to be that frustrating. I always have fun with the people in my band, and every time we have a show it’s like a nice night out.
Q: Tell me a little bit about how you record your music. Most people I know go DIY. Some go the Kickstarter route and then hire someone. What’s your preferred method?
I think we’ve done it all. It’s awesome to be able to afford recording at a studio, but as for now, I like doing it DIY just because it’s free and we can make it work. We try.
Q: The Ghostmen movie. Who plays each member of your band and why? And Jennifer Lopez is not option. Just because.
This is a tough one. I’ve been thinking about it for a few minutes. I truly can’t decide. Maybe I’d just make it an animation movie. Is that an option?