Huntington Beach, CA’s Pacific Dub has been spreading love and positivity in the reggae-rock community with inspiring lyrics, catchy love songs and soaring choruses for over a decade.
Pacific Dub dropped a new single “Live That Way” today across digital platforms that has more feel-good vibrations and a healthy dose of that P.M.A to help pick listeners up during the hard times.
The Pier.org sat down with Pacific Dub’s own Colton Place (Lead Vocals/Guitar) to discuss the band’s new single “Live That Way”, what it was like working with Kyle Ahern (Rebelution) and Lauren Johnson (Bikini Trill), and how they survived the pandemic by dropping new music.
Coming out of the pandemic Pacific Dub stayed busy the entire time releasing new music. How did the pandemic change things for you and the way you strategize the business side of things?
Colton Place: Our full-length album “Million Pieces” was 100% a byproduct of the downtime that came as a result of the pandemic. I personally am so grateful for the perspective that we gained from being able to take a step back and reprioritize when we were all forced to slow down. We were able to focus solely on new music and a new process for writing and recording. For me, it was a much-appreciated breather that allowed us to come out with our first full length album since 2018.
Tell us a bit about this new single “Live That Way” and how the song came together?
Colton Place: In 2021, we had the opportunity to fill in on Rebelution’s summer tour for a few weeks. I was able to connect with Kyle and he mentioned that he had some demo’s that he’d been working on and was interested in sending them over for me to check out. I spent the majority of my time driving the van only listening to these demo’s and recording melody and lyric ideas with my phone. The demo that he wrote that turned into “Live That Way” was the first on that jumped out to me, and I wrote almost the entire song while driving through Northern Idaho and Eastern Washington. I’ve always loved the natural beauty of that part of the country, and that coupled with the music Kyle wrote was really inspiring to me.
You co-wrote “Live That Way” with Kyle Ahern from Rebelution. Tell us about the first time you met Kyle Ahern from Rebelution and how you developed a friendship, and how it evolved into writing songs together?
Colton Place: Kyle had been on my radar for a while because I’d heard some of the songs he’d produced over the years, and he’s such a talented musician. Because of the nature of the tour in 2021 being in a bubble, we didn’t have a lot of time to hang and write, but I loved the songs he sent over and we corresponded via text and email as i would send him my ideas for lyrics and melodies. I hope to have more opportunities to work with him in the future, and hopefully get in the studio together and be able to make some music from scratch.
Lauren Johnson of Bikini Trill designed and created the artwork for “Live That Way”. Tell us who came up with the concept and what’s the story behind the art?
Colton Place: We collaborated in the beginning and I let her know my vision for the yin yang concept of the art to correspond with the message of the song itself. She took it from there and sent me what might be my favorite album art we’ve ever used. The final version that you see is actually her first draft. I loved it so much, there was no need to see any other edits.
Pacific Dub has been around for over a decade now. What is one thing that you know now that you wish you knew back in those early days?
Colton Place: I wish I would have taken more time to stop, look around, and appreciate what we were doing. We came up when the genre was still very small and close knit, and had opportunities to tour and play shows with the scene’s heaviest hitters. We had the unique perspective of being able to watch the bands that came before us grow the genre and bring the new style of reggae to a completely new audience. I personally am always so focused on what’s next that I tend to overlook what’s happening in the moment. My advice for any young bands is to always appreciate the process. The bumps in the road and adversity that you overcome in your early days helps to shape you and build character for the next steps in your life.
What’s next for Pacific Dub?
Colton Place: New music, new tours, more shows. Can’t wait for 2023!
Interview By: James Wright
Photo Credit: Sam Scarce