Ones To Watch at Summer School: Q&A with Jacuzzi Boys

We caught up with Miami rockers Jacuzzi Boys at Summer School after a blistering set at The Ace Hotel. We spoke about their upcoming album and other exciting things they have coming up. If you haven't yet, you can hear and grab a free download of the title track off their Happy Damage EP, out on September 18. 

Ones To Watch: What music do you like to play when you DJ?

Danny: It leans towards rock and roll stuff but anything is fair game really. I play some R&B stuff, some disco stuff, hard rock, hip-hop. It's all good. As far as a certain track that really gets the party going, I'd say Boz Scaggs "Lowdown" is a go-to of mine, for sure.

Ones To Watch: What did you play growing up and how did you all come together?

Gabriel: I went to high school with Diego, we wanted to start a band after getting into New York Dolls. We met Danny through our mutual friend, who is our tour driver now. Me and Diego got our instruments at the same time and learned them. 

Danny: I started playing guitar maybe sometime in junior high, not so seriously. It kind of just continued from there, on and off. I played in a band in high school for a while, then I started playing drums with friends, and now I play bass.

Diego: I got my instruments with him. We just started playing, I don't know how to play anything still. I can barely play drums… but it works out.

Ones To Watch: You are coming out with a new the Happy Damage EP this September. What can you tell us about it?

Gabriel: I don't think it differs really. It sounds more how we sound live. I think it's very us and still in line with what we've done in the past.

Danny: I guess it probably sounds a little less - I hate to use the word - but "polished" from the last two records. It's a little more straightforward, just acting like a three-piece band as opposed to getting too experimental with studio stuff. But it's still rock and roll stuff: loud guitars, loud drums, loud vocals. I guess it sounds more like a live experience as opposed to a contained studio thing.

Ones To Watch: What do you hope new and old listeners will take away from it?

Danny: Ultimately, any sort of good time. If someone's feeling bummed out and the music makes them feel better - cool. If you're already feeling good and the music keeps it going - cool. We're not trying to bum you out.

Ones To Watch: What artist do you think is a Ones To Watch?

Danny: There's a really cool band in Nashville, Tennessee called Savoy Motel. They haven't even released any new music, but they will soon. They're really cool and they're friends of ours. I'd say they're Ones To Watch.

Ones To Watch: What do you have coming up next?

Danny: We have the EP coming out in September and then we're wrapping up an LP right now which will hopefully be out early next year. Then hopefully a lot of touring. I feel like it's been a while since we've done proper touring. Then we'll see what happens.

Ones To Watch: How did you get inspired writing your new album?

Danny: We're all from Miami, we're recording in L.A. It was kind of a totally different recording experience than the past ones. In the past we showed up with what songs we had, would go right in and record them - okay we're done. This has been much more like go work on songs, take a break, go back. Being away from home and essentially living in a different city. So it's been inspiring, new experiences every day, essentially.

Ones To Watch: What differences between Miami and L.A. influenced the record?

Gabriel: I think Miami and L.A. are similar, but we always say L.A. is like Miami but on steroids. We've been staying downtown and walking around and seeing all kinds of weird people. It kind of makes its way into the music, maybe.

Danny: Yea, a lot of new faces - whether strangers on the street, meeting friends, friends of friends. You know in Miami you know what to expect, but there's been this new sense of discovery. Like oh, I haven't seen this before, I've never been to that place, this bar. Feel re-energized.

Ones To Watch: What's your favorite discovery spot in L.A.?

Danny: I've been going to the Comedy Store in Hollywood. I've had some of the best nights I've had in L.A. at the Comedy Store. I've seen so many big names like Bill Burr, Marc Maron, the list could go on and on. But someone I'd never seen much of is Joey Diaz. He's a Cuban from New Jersey and he kills me. I cry watching him. I've seen him 3 times, he's great.  

Photo: Asheleigh Cherie, Instagram