Dan Miraldi has been a favorite here at The Noise Gate, and we’re excited to sit down with the artist.
His new singles, “Alexandra Apocalypse” and “Fireworks,” is a natural extension from Miraldi’s recently released, and quite apropos, EP titled, “Mood Music For Introverts.” That EP consists of minimalist folk tunes that tickle the heart springs, just like the beginning of his new track. However, as the song begins to crescendo, and electric guitars and drums are added in, Miraldi seems to tune in with his former pop self. Hopefully we can all listen to Dan’s lesson which he so beautifully communicates, and learn to let go of things holding us back, opening up our imaginations a bit.
We caught up with Dan on this hot Summer’s day to get the lowdown on his inspirations and aspirations. Find the interview, below.
What was the inspiration behind your single “Alexandra Apocalypse”?
It’s about life during the pandemic and trying to create a connection when you cannot be physically present with someone. It’s about reaching that person emotionally through music to create a shared experience. It’s the first song that I wrote once everything shut down.
When creating the track, what vision did you have in mind and how did you execute the piece?
I actually recorded the song twice. The instrumentation is generally the same in both versions, but I first recorded it at a faster tempo and a key higher. Version two, which I released, is prettier and calmer. I thought it captured the feeling better.
You are known for your eclectic indie sound. How did you discover the type of music that spoke to you the most? The music that you wanted to make and bring into the world…
I started by being obsessed with Elvis and the Beatles when I was in third grade. My journey begins there. I love reading books about rock music history. I just went down the proverbial rabbit hole. I love 1960s and 70s rock. That’s my foundation, but I also try not to totally live in the past. I am selective, but I listen to newer artists as well. I take those more vintage influences and try to frame them through a modern lens. I am influenced by such a plethora of artists that when it’s tied together, it’s in a way that I feel like it’s my voice.
How does “Alexandra Apocalypse” differ from your past releases? How does it flow into the upcoming?
“Alexandra Apocalypse” ties to Mood Music For Introverts which came out at the beginning of March.It’s stripped down and I’m playing all the instruments.Sonically, production-wise although “Alexandra Apocalypse” is generally acoustic, there’s a healthy dose of distortion mixed in which wasn’t on the Mood Music tracks.If I make a sequel to Mood Music for Introverts, this song could be the beginning or the bridge into the next EP.
As both a producer and songwriter, what do you love most about creating music?
I love when the recording is done or in progress enough so that I can hear what was in my head coming to life. An idea that was inside me is now in a sharable form. That is exciting and makes me want to listen to the new recording over and over. It’s very satisfying.
When it comes to overall lyricism, where do you draw inspiration from? Do you write from more of a personal place, or a storytelling one?
I write from a lot of places. Sometimes it is autobiographical. Sometimes I have made the story more exciting than what is was for the sake of a better song. Sometimes the lyrics are metaphors. Other times I write from the perspective of different characters.
What are some of your favorite artists that made you want to create music, and made you passionate about becoming one yourself?
I already mentioned Elvis and the Beatles. Dylan, the Stones, Lou Reed, Green Day, Blink-182, the Beach Boys, CSNY and the Who are titans in my musical pantheon. When I was first writing songs, I was influenced by Ben Kweller, Pete Yorn and Jack White. In the last six or seven years I’ve really gotten into Nick Lowe too. My favorite 21st artist is Grace Potter. I don’t really sound like her, but she’s the best and most under-rated rock singer out there right now.
What does the rest of the year hold for you as an artist?
My goal with music is to uplift people. I am always writing. Having produced Mood Music for Introverts and “Alexandra Apocalypse” by myself, I am getting more confident as a producer. I could see more music in that vein. However, I have rock EP that I recorded in a proper studio last summer. The first of those songs is a ballad called “Fireworks.” That is out now.
With all the protests related to police brutality and racism, last week, I wanted to be able to help. I decided to reissue my political record Love Under Fire and added five bonus live songs. It is exclusively up on Bandcamp and the money I receive from Bandcamp sales I am donating to the Brooklyn Community Bail Fund to help protesters. So far I have raised a couple hundred dollars for the cause. Ultimately, I am not slowing down.