Impressing Yourself: An Interview with Dwayne Haggins

by - August 25, 2022

Ever since Dwayne Haggins began recording his music in a studio, he has been trying to make an album that best represents his live performances.

His debut label LP, Call Me Boston, was the first time he felt like he had created an album that was a great example of his live show in a studio setting. The members of his live band became his studio performers, giving the album an even greater resemblance to one of his live shows.

Call Me Boston was also the first time that he didn’t write every song for the purpose of recording. Instead, these songs have been played at many of Haggins' live shows and altered based on how the band feels, as well as taking into consideration what the audience reaction was.

“This one was the longest process of any album I've ever done, but I think it showed that good results happen when you sit on songs and really think about what you want them to represent,” he said.

Learning to sit on songs is something he plans on doing for future recordings, saying that wanting to record immediately after writing a song has hardly been the case for him. For the majority of the songs on Call Me Boston, they began as something slightly different or even completely different, and being able to perform them live for two years before recording them made them even more special.

“I think there's a real psychology in how we play a song and how somebody feels when you play that song,” he said. “If you're not a musician and you're just a big fan of music, sometimes you don't know how to explain the feeling you get. You just know what feels right, and I think as a musician it's your job to figure out what feels right for you and also make sure that is what feels right for the audience. If you are the one deciding what the audience wants, you can be wrong too so you want to make sure you're picking up on that energy.”

Getting the results he wanted was definitely the most rewarding aspect of creating the album, but so was all of the time he was able to spend with his band. The week leading up to the recording sessions was spent together as performers on a festival cruise, followed by an entire week at the studio. It was the first time they had ever spent that much time together in a music capacity and it really helped make for the best music.

While there wasn’t a particular moment in the creation process that he found challenging, Haggins said that every project is challenging in itself.

“You’re trying to impress yourself in a way,” he said. “There are always so many ideas and you're trying to figure out which one is the one that you like the best.”

Setting out to create an album that looks and feels like a live performance gave Dwayne Haggins some real strong takeaways for future recordings. With the backing of Verdict Music, an outstanding set of live musicians and the understanding of how to best challenge himself in the studio, he is fully prepared to release more music into the world.

You May Also Like