Dane Drewis
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Dane Drewis

Hermosa Beach, California, United States | SELF

Hermosa Beach, California, United States | SELF
Band Rock Funk

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Press


"Ink 19"

At first listen I thought this was a crossover Latin Rock disc, particularly with the band originating in the central valley of California. Hispanic influence lurks under these mature yet macho rock songs, and if nothing else it shows multiculturalism can work. "Pasatiempo" open the record with an arrangement recalling Carlos Santana -- stellar guitar solos and brass over a galloping drum and rhythm section. The clever arrangements and lyrics that alternate between sexy and lonely are a perfect set up for the centerpiece of the album, "Where the Palm Trees Grow." The singer (Dane Drewis) gives us a ballad of a trip to Mexico, with a sexy hitchhiker that ends up as an idyllic love story. This is a clear contender for an Easy Rock Station hot rotation, and does best what a good pop song should -- take an emotion, and amplify it. Cuesta Drive is a real gem; get over to you local hipster record shop and demand they order it for you. - Carl Gauze


"Evolution of Media"

I've never been one to be labeled as "sophisticated". I fear I eat far too much fast food, watch cartoons too frequently, and don't drink enough cocktails with little umbrellas in them for that. However after listening to Cuesta Drive's Where the Palm Trees Grow that all changed. In eight tracks style and class had all been thrust upon me, and I was loving every minute of it.

What is perhaps most impressive about Cuesta Drive's songs is that they are clearly drawing inspiration from outside their genre, yet manage to maintain a catchy pop feel. In most songs, such as "Pasatiempo", "Mary Anne" and "Smooth it Out" pop melodies are infused with smooth jazz, creating a refreshing and even daring new sound. The melodies are original and unexpected, unlike anything else on the airwaves these days. Other songs, such as "Where the Palm Trees Grow" (a personal favorite) have a laid-back, reggae-inspired sound. It establishes a mischievously sexy ambiance, practically forcing the listener to slowly swing their hips to its seductive beat. Still other tracks, such as "All Along", are reminiscent of show tunes, but certainly not the sort of show tunes your Grandma sang to you as a child. Keeping consistent with the band's theme, these would be by far the most flirtatious show tunes I've ever heard. No matter what type of music they seem to so effortlessly blend with their already captivating pop melodies, Cuesta Drive maintains a suave sort of sophistication, leaving the listener to feel ten times more in vogue then they did prior to listening to the album.

Cuesta Drive manages to achieve what so few people are ever able to achieve in both art and life: balance. They so successfully combine a broad appealing pop sound with more obscure and adventurous genres, creating an absolutely dynamite combination. Whether you’re a fan of pop, blues, jazz, show tunes, world music or funk, Cuesta Drive's Where the Palm Trees Grow is guaranteed to appeal to you. - Cassandra Brown


"Chico News and Review"

Since releasing their first CD more than three years ago, Cuesta Drive has been so busy playing their music that they seemingly forgot to record any new tracks. However, after hearing this sophomore release, it’s apparent that the time was not wasted. In Sacramento, Cuesta Drive is a safe bet for a high-energy show fueled by rock and soul. Distractions is inspired by, if not born from, this nightly stage presence. If their first CD was what you listened to on your way to a summer party, Distractions would be the live music you were looking forward to upon arrival. Solid guitar riffs and a definitive rhythm lead the show, but subtle (and subtle is the key here) soul and funk influences keep it moving. Songs like “Wild On” and “Rollin’” recall the open genre of ’60s and ’70s rock ’n’ roll, one that embraced soul, funk and the blues. Led by Dane Drewis, Mike Camilleri and Tim Diedesch, Cuesta Drive loves to throw a few curves (hip-hop vocals on “Slightly Off,” for instance) but it’s always a ride worth taking. - Matthew Craggs


"Sacramento State Hornet"

...The album provides a dynamic sound of smooth vocals, textured guitar riffs and a rhythm section that gives the music a jazz or funk edge. The band is not afraid to explore the soundscape with lengthy solos such as with the song "Smooth it out," featuring a jazzy saxophone number.

Overall, the album's sound positions the band in a time warp. It employs classic rock and funk styles but infuses them with modern-themed lyrics. The title track has the vocal and lyrical stylings of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, but has a searing guitar solo reminiscent of Santana.

The songs on "Where the Palm Trees Grow" revolve mainly around topics like women and being young - evolving from life experiences...." - Karen Balmes


"Playing Favorites"

http://submergemag.com/featured/don%E2%80%99t-get-distracted/524/

By Jonathan Carabba
Photo by Sam Hayashi

Sacramento’s own rock/pop/funk outfit Cuesta Drive is gearing up for the release of their sophomore album, Distractions. The diverse 15-track record is surely something to be proud of and lead singer/guitarist Dane Drewis confessed it was tough to choose his favorite track. “I have to admit, we have had a really hard time picking our single,” Drewis recently shared with Submerge.

“So, we decided to let the fans decide,” he continued. “We want them to listen and e-mail, Myspace or text us with their favorite choice.”

So, Sacramento, here is your chance to put your two cents in and let your voice be heard. Cuesta Drive will officially release Distractions on Saturday Dec. 27 at Marilyn’s on K. The show starts at 9:30 p.m. and the $15 cover charge includes a copy of the new record. After you cure your hangover the next morning from a fun-filled party night, listen to the CD in its entirety, choose your favorite track and let the band know! You might just hear your choice on local radio stations and think to yourself, “I chose that one!”

Despite his busy schedule getting ready for the release show, Submerge recently caught up with Drewis to talk about some of his favorite (and least favorite) things in life. Be sure to check out www.cuestadrive.com for more details about the band, tour dates and links to buy their music.

Favorite records of all time:
1. The Beatles: I’m not going to narrow it down to a single album, that’s not fair.
2. Songs in the Key of Life – Stevie (the 8th) Wonder of the World: His genius and talent drop my jaw on a daily basis. I still can’t believe someone can have so many incredible pieces of music.
3. Thriller – Michael Jackson: In today’s world we lose track of the art of “albums,” myself included, because of MP3s and song downloading etc., so you rarely sit down and listen to an entire album from front to back. Thriller is amazing; even today’s generation would think that it’s a “best of” compilation, but it’s not. That album was and still is that strong.

Favorite concerts you’ve attended:
1. Steely Dan: Holy jeez, some of the most ridiculous musicians I’ve ever heard/seen in my life. I think it’s cool as hell that the old guys still throw it down.
2. Tower of Power: My dad raised me on East Bay Grease, among other things. But seeing Tower play live, from a musician’s standpoint, it doesn’t get any better than that. They are what every band’s chops should strive to be.
3. Amos Lee: I just recently started getting into him. I do have to admit Mike [Camilleri, Cuesta Drive guitarist] introduced me to his music over a year ago, but I wasn’t quite ready yet for some reason. I went recently to see him at the Fillmore and he blew my mind. His songwriting and vocals are so strong; I don’t think I blinked, just stood there mesmerized for the entire show.

Least favorite concerts you’ve attended:
1. I don’t think I’ve never been to a concert that I severely disliked. If that happens, I usually find a way to distract myself. I’m pretty picky when it comes to choosing concerts, and even if it is not what I was hoping for, I always can focus on something else like the sound engineers, lighting, stage crew etc; that stuff always interests me.

Favorite shows you played in ‘08:
1. Crawdad’s on the River on Memorial Day weekend: This is our second year in a row doing it, and the crowd is wild. The show is always great because everyone is feeling good and ready to party, all we have to do is plug in.
2. Our bass player was out of town for a couple weeks this summer, so we had a string of about five gigs with my dad on bass. He’s a guitar player by trade, so bass was relatively new to him, but he did an incredible job. Jamming on stage with my dad for those shows was something I will never forget.
3. Marylin’s on K, Thanksgiving weekend: This was our “pre-CD release show” and it turned out great. Tons of people came out to support and it was the first big show for our new drummer Jason Weed. We had been on a little hiatus while finishing up the new album, so it felt really good to get back on stage and turn up. I’m pretty sure the crowd enjoyed it as much as we did.

Favorites things to write songs about:
1. Love or lack thereof: Someone the other day told me we are like Romantic Funk Rock (haha), which made me finally realize that most of our songs are based on females. At first I thought that was a bad thing, and that we needed to start focusing on other topics. But you can only write about what you’re feeling at the moment, you have to capture the “now” inspiration, and for both Mike and I, that’s what comes out.
2. Miscommunication.
3. The trials and tribulations of getting through everyday life: That may sound cliché, but it’s the truth. Give the album a listen and you can decide for yourself.

Favorite things to do in and around Sac:
1. Playing shows is our favorite thing to do by far. I don’t think there is anything else we would rather be doing. I like to get out and play/jam every night if possible. I try to invade local open mics and sit in with people whenever they let me.
2. Drink profusely. Is that bad?
3. Barbecue in the summer: Nothing like sitting around on a lazy Sunday with friends, not having a care in the world. We definitely did a lot of that in San Luis Obispo, and if things go right, we’ll never stop.
4. I love to golf, but haven’t found enough time lately.

Favorite local watering hole:
1. The Dirty Bird, baby: I used to live about 50 yards from Club Raven. Big ups to Jimmy and Brad!
2. 2me is my new watering hole. Can never go wrong there.
3. Old Ironsides: I love going to open mic night with Lare Crawley and listening to him entertain the crowd. Good times.

Favorite movies:
1. Dumb and Dumber: Comedic genius. Anyone who is friends with us on Myspace knows I quote it regularly.
2. The new Batman: Awesome….except when he talks.
3. Forgetting Sarah Marshall: I wish Aldous Snow was real.

Favorite TV shows:
1. Entourage: But I don’t have cable so I’ve watched season one on DVD about 20 times.
2. 30 Rock: Genius.
3. I know Mike wants me to say It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and he’s right, that shit is funny.
4. Flight of the Conchords: It’s business time.

Favorite gifts you’ve gotten for Christmas:
1. Uggs: Say what you will about a guy in Uggs. Just know this: It’s like foot sex.
2. My 1982 Gibson 335: My dad bought it the year I was born. It has yet to be showcased at a live show. I want to make sure I’m worthy of it before I bust it out. That guitar is an absolute masterpiece, sonically and aesthetically.
3. My Vintage pre-CBS Fender Vibrolux amp: My dad held on to it for a long time and gave it to me last Christmas. I’m afraid to play it, because it sounds so good and everything inside is original. I’m kind of afraid to wear out the original tubes you know? You can hear it all over Distractions, it’s pretty much on every song somewhere.
- Submerge Magazine


"Rock & Soul Album Review"

When bands split and members go solo, an uneasy feeling usually settles upon the fans. Well, breathe easy, lovers of Cuesta Drive; frontman Dane Drewis’ first solo CD hits the speakers with a rocking sonic boom and acts as a transitional piece of work. Six of the 13 tracks are from Cuesta Drive’s Distractions, and the rest are new songs in which Jason Weed joins on drums and percussion and Drewis’ father, Dale, adds bass and vocals. Some of the best songs off Distractions appear—notably “The Lick” and “Temptation”—but Drewis’ solo work overshadows his former band. “Full of It” exemplifies the funky rock that dominates Northern California, a sound that would envelop a dark coffee shop or thrive on a sunny beach, but the standout track is “Friday Night.” It’s poised to become an anthem for people who work hard and play harder—the perfect love letter to those of the working class who never skip the bar after a long week. More important, it’s evidence that the presence of Cuesta Drive hasn’t disappeared. The song has the power and hook to send half-smoked cigarettes hurling to the ground while their owners leave behind the hot summer night and dash into the bar to join the party. - Chico News & Review


"Dane Drewis Delivers"

http://www.sacramentopress.com/headline/26181/Dane_Drewis_Delivers


On Friday, April 30th, Dane Drewis delivered a solid performance at Harlow's. The show was a CD release celebration for "Rock & Soul," appropriately named to reflect Drewis' colorful style that includes everything from Motown to Jazz, Reggae to Rock. Indeed, music is in his blood. Mere seconds into his opening set, the audience began to light up, move in closer, and smile. If you haven't heard of him, and if you haven't heard his music, a simple exploration of his website will provide you with all the information you need.

To say the depth of Dane's musical conversation with audiences is rich and diverse is an understatement. Flanked by his father, Dale, on bass, and supported on stage by vocals from his mother, Janet, and sisters Janel and Deena, Dane's story reads like a post-modern Partridge Family. Perhaps one day he'll have kids of his own, and there's little doubt they'll be born virtuosos. In fact, the Drewis mastery of music is in at least its third generation. Dane's grandfather was an accomplished classical composer.

As Dane heads out on the road for a series of regional performances, representatives of show promoter SBL Entertainment said that Dane's next show is up in Portland, Oregon. Unfortunately, no future show date for the Sacramento area has been announced. Images from the show tell the story best. Dane's next Sacramento show will certainly be a must-attend event.
- Sacramento Press


"Rock & Soul Album Review"

http://www.indiemusicdigest.com/Dane%20Drewis%20CD%20Review%20on%20IMD.html

Artist: Dane Drewis
Album: Rock & Soul
Label: Independent Artist
Website: www.danedrewis.com
Genre: Psychedelic Rock, Funk
Sounds Like: Santana, Player, Toto
Technical Grade: 10/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 10/10
Commercial Value: 9/10
Overall Talent Level: 10/10
Songwriting Skills: 10/10
Performance Skill: 10/10
Best Songs: Get Level, Tattoo, Speed Bumps
Weakness: Marketability, Commercial Value

CD REVIEW:

Singer, songwriting, guitarist Dane Drewis from Sacramento, California releases his debut CD “Rock & Soul” in the spring 2010. This is his debut release.

Logging in at just over 43 minutes, the CD kicks things off with “Friday Night” a smooth moving intro piece that serves up funky beat, up-beat vocal melody from Drewis accompanied by inviting jazz guitar, & pop like instrumentation. Track 2 “Together” shifts gears a bit with more driving rock rhythm, funky guitars, & several hooky time changes. Track 3 “Full of It” could almost pass as a Jason Mraz type song while track 5 “Broken Strings” crosses the line into camp fire Reggae territory. As the CD slowly unfolds you will notice a lot of musical variety from Drewis & Co. First his band is pretty much right on queue. His drummer pushes the natural accents well, & his brother Dale delivers solid Bass lines deep within the pocket, & last but not least Dane delivers some rock solid guitar playing. The CD offers a rich melodic vocal foundation, & lush layers of instrumentation. I would classify this music as Poppy, Funk Rock with a classic psychedelic 70’s aftertaste to it... Besides the standard 3 piece rock delivery you will also notice brief splashes of percussion, piano, & saxophone layered within the music. All in all the CD has some truly impressive moments showcasing musical influences like Santana, but also providing soothing 70’s vocal melodies reminiscent of classic Hall & Oates, Player, Pablo Cruise, Chilliwack, Orleans, & do I dare say KC & the Sunshine Band. But getting back to Dane – he can hold his own pretty well vocally as well. He clearly takes some vocal risks on the production indicating to me a strong & confident vocal ability. His vocal abilities work well across the board regardless of what genera he’s in. He seems to cross many musical boundaries successfully. Whether it be R&B, Rock, Funk, Jazz, Reggae Dane seems comfortable within each one. From carefree melodies like "Friday Night" to slower more passionate pieces like “Broken Strings” to songs that let it all hang out like “Get Level”, “The Lick” & “Tattoo” this CD pretty much has it all. I can honestly say "rock & Soul" doesn’t have a weak moment on it. For me the true brilliance of Dane Drewis shines though on his more romantic love songs like “Speed Bumps, & “Friday Night” trust me when I say the ladies will love him for these songs.

Overall the Musical Production sounds very 1977-ish, & comes across as being a bit dated. In fact if Dane Drewis would have released this music say in the mid to late 70's he would no doubt have a few gold records on the wall. Unfortunately it's 2010. & ultimately the aforementioned affects "Rock & Soul's" overall marketability & commercial value. Broken Strings is a great song but it’s clearly too short logging in a 2 minutes & change.

After spending 43 minutes alone with Dan Drewis & Co. it’s hard to find any notable weaknesses. Instead as the CD progressed I became more and more impressed. “Rock & Soul” is a blast to listen to. It’s obvious many will find Dane Drewis infectious, & make no bones about it he’s got X-Factor for the females. There’s not a weak song on this entire catalogue! The musicianship is first rate, the songs are short and sweet musical experiences, and Dane Drewis is a musical Triple threat, as he brings to the table his guitar playing virtuoso, his impressive songwriting, & his amazing vocal sex appeal. Lastly - the playing, writing, and singing abilities of Dane Drewis & his band are amazing. I guess could go on and on all night about Dane Drewis you simply have got to get your hands on “Rock & Soul” to see what I am talking about. It's a slam-dunk.

Cyrus Rhodes

- Indie Music Digest


Discography

Dubious Ruffians – 2003
Where the Palm Trees Grow – 2005
Distractions – 2009
Rock & Soul - 2010

Photos

Bio

Dane Drewis 2010 solo debut Rock and Soul is both incendiary and nostalgic, combining the melodic feel of Motown and classic 70s rock with a vocal style that is described as a mix of Bruno Mars, John Mayer, and Jack Johnson.

As the front man for Cuesta Drive for six years, Dane has developed a commanding stage presence and an exceptional ability to get a crowd on its feet. Born into a family of rock musicians, his guitar playing is reminiscent of the greatsSantana, Jimmy Page, and Stevie Ray Vaughnwith influences from later artists such as Sublime and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. At once intimate and inclusive, Danes music has the power and hook to send half-smoked cigarettes hurling to the ground while their owners leave behind the hot summer night and dash into the bar to join the party (Chico News & Review). His shows have been described as a must-attend event (Sac Press), and the melodies as original and unexpected, unlike anything else on the airwaves these days (Evolution of Media).

After forming Cuesta Drive in college, Dane went on to write and compose three albums with the band before embarking on his solo project. His songs have been placed in ads for Google and YouTube as well as various film and TV spots. Led by Dane, Rock and Soul features the rest of the Drewis familysisters Janel and Deena Drewis on backup vocals, guitars, keyboards and percussion, and his parents, Dale and Janet Drewis, on bass and vocal harmonies, respectively. The Dane Drewis band is currently touring to promote the new release with Dale Drewis on bass/vocals and Jason Weed on the drums.

Band Members