Artist Spotlight - Dizzy Bridges

"When I'm hard up for material, I'll force myself to write to get the ideas flowing."

What is your name?
Skyler Gonzalez

Where are you located?
Cedar Valley, Iowa

What is your artist's name?
Dizzy Bridges

How long have you been writing music?
I've been writing music for a long time. Since I was 11 or 12, I'm 27 now, so a good 15 years.

What inspired you to start playing and making music?
I picked up the trumpet for a middle-school ensemble in the fifth grade, and we were assigned to play a brassy rendition of "Hey Jude." I remember my dad had a ton of Beatles CDs and I just fell down the rabbit hole!

My father made a point to tell me that Lennon and McCartney were songwriters, first and foremost. They had all the control because they WROTE the damn things.

Then he pointed out other songwriter music to me. The one that blew me away was "Yankee hotel foxtrot" by Wilco. Hearing that when you're 11 years old?? It was game over.

I loved how all the sounds on that album spiraled around each other so chaotically, but somehow it all made sense in the eye of the storm. That's what got me started – thanks, Dad!

What are your favorite artists or other artists that inspire you to write music?
When I started the Dizzy project after graduating college, I was big into St. Vincent, Tame Impala, and Spoon. Spoon's probably still my favorite group – Britt Daniel is an underrated talent. I recently got Dr. Dog, Lake Street Dive, and Andy Shauf in frequent rotation. Andy is a generational talent, a one-in-a-million kind of songwriter.

How would you describe your style of music?
I started down the "psychedelic rock" route in my early twenties, but I think I'm probably mellowing out bit by bit as I approach 30 (hah!). I aim to make poppy, accessible melodies that sound like they have always "been." But I also like adding little swirling (or"dizzy," if you will) embellishments to try and catch the ear.

How is your personality reflected in your work?
I'm a daydreamer by nature. At its most challenging, some Dizzy Bridges music can have intentionally overstimulating elements that illustrate what's going on in my head when I get overwhelmed. The arrangement textures I choose are imaginative, reflective, and dreamy. I occasionally get a kick out of surprising or disorienting the listener. It keeps you on your toes and keeps things interesting.

Describe your creative process when you write new music.
There's no one way to write a song! It will differ every time you pick up a guitar or sit at a piano. For some songs, I'll start with just a compelling title. Other times, I might improvise a melody in the shower and then somehow remember it. When I'm hard up for material, I'll sit down and force myself to write to get the ideas flowing. Even if it's terrible, it's good practice, and maybe something shakes loose the next day.

When it comes down to recording music, though, I have to record the song at its most basic level (just the chords and melody) and then listen to that basic track OVER AND OVER until new parts start to pop out and "suggest" themselves. Then I become a hermit until the song is done. So, to answer the question, the creative process is usually a grueling labor of love.

What is the name of your latest releases?
"Love Songs, Odes, and Other Musings"

What was the inspiration for that release?
I started recording it during "deep-covid", living alone, and losing my mind a little bit. I mean, I was pacing around my apartment and talking to myself and stuff – not good. So, I started making this music as a means of self-soothing. The inspiration behind the release, or the elevator pitch, was just "gentle music made during a rough time."

Can you tell us any behind-the-scenes stories about writing or producing this release?
The story behind "Without the Words" is pretty fun. The lyrics are "Alice in Wonderland," sort of pastiche, so I recorded dishes clinking, teapots clanging, and water dripping for the percussion sounds. I like to picture these sounds as the Mad Hatter's makeshift drumkit or something. It's a little corny but a lot of fun to listen to.

What are you currently working on?
I'm working on two side-by-side albums that serve as companion pieces.

The first one I have the most fleshed out will explore how any person's relationship with time constantly shifts. Time dilates, but time also condenses. We get nostalgic; we feel regret, we get impatient, we feel anticipatory, we feel time blur and bleed together.

There's a lot of good time-related fodder out there for lyrics, and I've had fun with a couple of simple rhythmic devices that sort of underline those ideas. Go check out Carlo Rovelli's theoretical physics-for-dummies book "The Order of Time", for a good idea of what the music will be about. It's Carlo Rovelli + Spoon.

The companion to that will be in that same ballpark and explore our relationship to "space"(places/travel/distance/emptiness/fullness). It's a little less fleshed out, but it might be a bit more linear and conceptual because "playing with the sense of time" is not a focus here. I'm toying with the idea of it being a more straightforward collection of story songs, having to do with that "space" theme.

So, a Time + Space duo piece is coming to a theater near you in the next few years.

enchanting music for disenchanted people

Dizzy Bridges
Love Songs, Odes, & Other Musings

pop / psychedelic rock

"gentle music made during a very rough time"

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