Adelitas Way’s Rick DeJesus Discusses ‘Stuck’ Album, Tour With The Pretty Reckless + More
Adelitas Way are bracing for something big. Frontman Rick DeJesus has a lot of faith in the band’s upcoming album ‘Stuck’ being one of the biggest works of their career. The rocker spoke with ‘Loudwire Nights’ host Full Metal Jackie about the creation of the ‘Stuck’ album, what the title means to him and he also discussed his band’s upcoming dates with The Pretty Reckless. Check out Full Metal Jackie’s chat with Adelitas Way’s Rick DeJesus below.
With us on the show tonight, Rick DeJesus of Adelitas Way talking about the new record, ‘Stuck.’ Rick, the first album introduces the band and the second establishes them. The third is usually a best indication of what a band is all about because they can branch out. What does ‘Stuck’ reveal about Adelitas Way and what you’re really all about?
I think every band wants to go back to the roots of music. For us, we really wanted to go back to what we think is one of our strongest assets, which is our live show. We wanted the record to sound very organic, very practiced. Great musicians were in jam rooms and they were playing together and they were feeling each other out, coming up with great riffs and feeding off each other. We tried to do this as much as we could on this album.
There’s also two sides to every story. I’ll be honest and tell the truth, the music industry is shrinking so you feel you have to compromise records a little more to make everybody happy. You can just tell everyone, “Screw off we’re going to do exactly what we want,” but I think in the grand scheme of things with ‘Stuck,’ we won a lot of battles.
On the songs we compromised on with the record company and the powers that be to — they want hit songs. I think everyone left the record process satisfied. We got to jam on the record as live as we wanted, as much as we wanted. I think the label feels confident that they have a couple of songs that they can really reach — I want to reach the whole world. Every band wants to be the best band in the world, I’m no different. I really think sometimes, it’s good to balance out your artistic side as well. We really wanted to fulfill this on this record.
Rick, what surprises you the most about the way the album turned out compared to what you might have expected when you first started writing songs for ‘Stuck’?
I think the thing that was the most frustrating and gratifying in the end was the band had been jamming for 7-8 months in the jam room, nonstop. We felt great about where the record was but the label was kind of like, “Look, this is an album that defines you guys. This is an album that’s really — we still believe you guys can be the biggest band in the world.” They really pushed us to continue to just hone our craft so the record was … when we had the record where we wanted it, we were happy with it. We were pleased. They were like, “Guys, there’s great songs on this thing but we still have the vision of you guys doing what no one thinks you can do. We think you can sell a million records. Let’s complete this album, let’s push the extra mile.”
We ended up doing that and getting a song out of it called ‘Drive,’ which I think is one of the best songs on the record. And when I look back at that song, it’s very gratifying to see that it did come in the later stage of the process. It just shows you, any time a great song can be born. For any artist that feels, “No, that’s it, I’m putting my foot down, I wrote 13 songs.” Sometimes it’s OK, it’s not awful to listen to your label and try to write an extra song or two. I got one of the best songs I’ve ever written in my career out of just being pushed a little harder. Overall, I’m still very happy on how versatile the record is. There is a lot of our soul on this album. A lot of, me, my guitar player, my drummer, my bass player just bleeding on a record.
Rick, how has your role as a communicator changed since the first album?
In the beginning, you’re very honest. You’re not thinking about anything except about just how much heartache you have or how hurt you are. Or how something is affecting you mentally. I still write to free my soul from things that I battle with. But now, when I write records — I never really get why I’m writing but after the fact, after the first few words are blabbered out of my mouth, I feel like my title tracks, the songs that really mean the most to me, they come from the soul. I can sing the words. Sometimes the first word I sing will be that the name of the song. Or, I’ll sing a chorus first by accident. I don’t even know where it’s coming from, it’s coming from the feeling.
I think that when you know you’re connecting with so many people, I have people who have my lyrics tattooed on them. I have people who, they listen to every word I say and they have to believe it as much as I believe it. I make sure everything I write cuts deep in myself or cuts deep through myself when I think about the eyes of someone I know or something someone is going through that’s painful or happy. Love feels great. When I write about love, I try to channel in love that I see — my daughter, my wife, my family. When I tap into pain, I just want people to connect. I want people to know that I’m there with them. We all go through these times. You know how it is, sometimes you’re just sitting there having a rough day, some stuff goes bad and you need to know there’s someone else that’s going through what you’re going through so you can overcome it.
Rick, does the title ‘Stuck’ refer to recording the album in a cabin in the woods outside Nashville?
There’s a greater meaning. I think it’s the overvaluation of — sometimes you hit a point in your life, usually its when you’re 18, 19, 20 — you’re 25, sometimes your 35, sometimes you’re 45 when you hit a point in your life where you either realize things just aren’t where you want them to be or you realize your value and that you’re better than — and you feel stuck in the mud. ‘Stuck’ is an overall evaluation of just what you’re capable of.
I think a lot of people settle for being stuck in the mud. Or a lot of people get stuck and they let themselves sink. I think the reality is, you can really do anything you really want to take and work for, you take it. ‘Stuck’ is about taking what we want. The whole record is about us coming out and doing something fresh and making our place in rock and roll and the beginning of Adelitas Way really starting to become a great band. I think this is a good first step towards us heading in an elite direction.
Adelitas Way is going to be touring with The Pretty Reckless. It’s pretty cutting edge in terms of what’s happening in rock ‘n’ roll. Rick, what excites you about that sort of tour knowing you can really make a real impact on people?
I think we’re two of the best rock ‘n’ roll bands that people are falling in love with right now. I think when people mention bands that can save rock ‘n’ roll, we’re in the mix and so is The Pretty Reckless, so is Halestorm. There’s just a couple of bands that can really come in and bring fresh blood, and make the genre just have fresh sounding records and get some love back to it. I think The Pretty Reckless is in that category.
I think everyone tries to always throw the ‘Gossip Girl’ thing in, but I’ve seen this girl [Taylor Momsen] in action. I’ve met her a couple of times but the reality is that she’s talented. She’s talented and writes great songs. She’s a great performer. I’m looking forward to going out there and just putting on a great rock and roll show for the fans. Also we’re still coming to take what’s ours. There’s a whole new fan base we want to hit on that Pretty Reckless tour and we want to show them why they should be watching us in concert and why they should be listening to us. We have to go there every night and show them what makes us special.
Thanks to Adelitas Way’s Rick DeJesus for the interview. The band’s ‘Stuck’ album arrives in stores July 29. You can pre-order it at Amazon and iTunes. And look for Adelitas Way on tour at these locations. Tune into Loudwire Nights With Full Metal Jackie’ Monday through Friday 7PM through midnight online or on the radio. To see which stations and websites air ‘Loudwire Nights,’ click here.
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