Brett Dennen stopped by our studio to talk grunge, share Stephan Jenkins stories, and play new songs “Already Gone” and “Lets” off his latest EP.
No Name: Are you a fan of Devo?
Brett Dennen: I do love Devo. I met Mark at one of those parties, and he was brilliant but quiet. I said hey, man, you’re amazing, can I say a couple things to you? And he was like “nope.”
NN: That was “Gates of Steel”…I’m getting a little choked up. Are there any songs that make you cry?
BD: We’re going to play some Van Morrison and I listen to him constantly because he evokes something in me that makes me want to cry and dance and make love all at the same time. I don’t know how he does it.
NN: Have you ever written a song (like that)?
BD: Very recently. I’m working on a song right now where the first line is “when his father dues, that’s when he falls apart,” and I just can’t even get any further than that.
NN: I consider you, because you went to Santa Cruz, a Bay Area local.
BD: I live in Marin now. To be a part of the music tradition makes me very proud.
NN: If you’re a local dude, you have a Third Eye Blind story.
BD: Stephan used to live in this guest house behind this mansion up in the Marina, and they would have these wild parties. They would throw these Beatles parties and play Beatles all night and he would be the ringleader and he wore a quilt. I open the door and he’s on the drums saying “pick up a guitar!” “Get on a mic!” He’s a genius.
NN: Do you find that people are surprised that you have such passion for grunge?
BD: I’m so lucky that grunge, and Metallica, was coming out when I was getting into music. It’s incredible songwriting. If anything, I want to be a good songwriter. So to have bands like Soundgarden and Pearl Jam to look up to…those are two of the best songwriters ever.
That was church for me.
Catch the full interview with Brett above.