'Warming The Hearts (And Legs) of America, One Person At A Time!'
“Hey … do you know the words to Bobbi McGee?”
Through a haze of woodsmoke and woozy late night chorus, she almost didn’t hear the question. But for some reason Marti Dodson sat back down at that campfire four years ago and made a new friend.
At the time, Marti was a college student at Ohio State University, where she sat in the back of her classes writing songs instead of taking notes. She brought the words to life on the rooftop of her broken down apartment building, playing around with a cheap guitar and a beginner’s chordbook.
One summer night she ended up at a campfire party hosted by a local musician. Self-conscious around the group of professional players, Marti was sitting quietly, listening to an incredible guitar player she had just met named Pat Buzzard. It was almost time to go home when Marti’s girlfriend piped up, “She can sing”!
Before long Pat and Marti made a musical connection that outlasted the campfire and forged into a deep friendship. When the duo headed into the recording studio to put down some of their songs, they contacted a local drummer to help them out with the recording process, and that’s how they met Dak Goodman.
They knew there was something special about the music, so the friends decided to start a band. They booked a show and borrowed a bass player from another local band before it occurred to them that they might need a name. Ideas were tossed around, but nothing felt right to the group. Then one late, delirious night at the studio, Marti was doodling on a blank notepad, illustrating a comic strip featuring the three of them as bungling superheroes. The title of the comic strip? “Saving Jane”.
The band recruited a lead guitar player and began recording an album. Fans were drawn in quickly by the witty, snarling lyrics and emotional vocals, and Saving Jane’s popularity continued to grow. Bass player Jeremy Martin joined the group in 2002, and with the recent additions of keyboard player Joe Cochran and guitarist Mike Unger, the lineup is complete.
With their October ‘05 debut full length release, Saving Jane begins their introduction to the world. Armed with their title track, “Girl Next Door”, a defiant female anthem from the girl who never gets the guy, SJ is ready for the world.
If you’re looking to get your heart broken and super-glued back together with a few hours worth of music, Saving Jane is the band for you!
Chatting recently with Saving Jane's Marti Dodson, I first wondered what it was about her legwarmers that Saving Jane's fans loved so damn much?! "Legwarmers, baby - they're the fashion wave of the future! Sassy AND functional - who could resist? In fact, are you legs cold right now? 'Cause I could send you a pair ...!"
Going back four years and what do you honestly remember about that moment around the campfire when Pat Buzzard asked you, "Hey, do you know the words to 'Bobbi McGee'?" "Oddly enough, I remember almost everything about that night - maybe my little brain realized that something special was happening. I didn't know very many people at the party, and Pat was one of the first to come up and say hi to me. Later that night, as he was playing and singing for the crowd, I wanted to jump in so badly I couldn't stand it, but I'm a little on the shy side. So when I got the invite to sing along ... well, you know the rest."
And did you (know all the words to 'Bobbi McGee')?! "I knew about half of them at that time ... since then, I've learned them all! I think we ended up playing Eagle Eye Cherry's 'Save Tonight' instead!"
With an album title such as Girl Next Door, I'm wondering if you portray that image or if you're something a little different?! "That's a tough one. I think almost every girl has a little bit of "Girl Next Door" inside-that sweet, silly, sometimes-awkward little girl feeling. You can cover it up with makeup or bravado, but the truth is it's always there, so I figured I'd just throw mine out there for the world to see."
This new album of yours is remarkably fresh, so how easy (or hard) was it to steer clear of writing one that tripped over the same old same old, both musically and lyrically? "Well, first of all - thank you! The songs are kind of a picture of my last several years. I've been in a constant state of evolution, still am, growing and learning from my experiences. I think that helped me write about all kinds of different topics, because every time I get emotional about anything, I hole up in my bedroom (or my car, or my backyard) with a pen and paper."
"Musically, we had the opportunity to work with some excellent producers who really felt the pulse of what the music was about, and reflected that in the production of the album. And I've been writing with the guys in my band for a long time - they know me, and they know what I like and what I want when I bring them a song."
Taking some thoughts from your new album, please answer these questions as honestly as possible!
'Who's Cryin' Now?' - When was the last time you cried ... and why? "I'm the world's biggest wuss, so I won't count the little teary-eyed kind of stuff 'cause that's pretty much daily. The last time I really bawled it out was right after performing at my old high school. It was such an emotional experience - there were old friends there, former teachers, kids who attend the school now - and to see all of them really believing in me and supporting me was amazing. Oh God, I'm gonna cry right now. Next topic!"
'Sleep On It' - Do you have any recurring dreams/nightmares? "I don't really have any recurring dreams. But once when I was seven and I had a fever, I dreamed that pirates were attacking me from my bedroom ceiling. I still remember that. Stupid pirates!"
'Don't Stop' - With everything that has occurred in your life, what one thing comes to mind that you wish at the time could have gone on for ever and a day?! "Ooh - It would have to be the first kiss between me and my honey. It was a feeling I'd never had before, and I just knew I was onto something good! Although, on second thought, kissing forever might make your lips chapped!"
So, do you still see yourselves as "... bungling superheroes" re: your doodled comic strip, 'Saving Jane'? "Absolutely! We are the band version of Murphy's Law - anytime anything could possibly get screwed up, it happens to us. It's been going on for so long now that we just find it hilarious."
What cheesy '80s song would you love to cover today if asked ... and why?! "All of them! I LOVE cheesy 80's music ... if I had to pick just one, it would be 'Faithfully' by Journey. I think I could probably release a dual album of me doing cheesy 80's covers, though!"
If you were asked to record a single for charity, and had to choose 3 other known hi-profile musicians to aid you in the project (and using no one from your band!), who would they be, what instruments would they play, and what would the name of the NEW song be?! "Such good questions! Gavin DeGraw would play piano and sing, Steven Tyler would play harmonica and purse his pretty lips (yum!), and Billy Joel would write the song - and maybe challenge Gavin to a piano duel. Our charity would be underprivileged youth ... and we'd call our song 'Saving Jane'!"
Lastly, I like Penguins ... do you?! "Penguins as in little birds that live in cold weather, or guys in tuxedos? In either case, the answer is YES! Maybe we should send those penguins some legwarmers?!"
Interviewed by Russell A. Trunk
If you would like to win an AUTOGRAPHED copy of Saving Jane's brand new CD, just answer this easy question: Which state do Saving Jane hail from?
Send me your answers and if you're correct you'll be in the running to win one of these great new and AUTOGRAPHED CDs! Just send us an e:mail here before December 14th with your answer and the subject title 'SAVING JANE SIGNED CDs' to: email@example.com
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