Hailing from New York City's Lower East Side are The Sweet Things. The band consist of four guys and one woman. Dave Tierney (lead vocals and guitar), Lorne Behrman (guitar), Sam Hariss (bass and vocals), Darren Fried (drums), & Liza Colby (vocals). The first time I heard about them was thru their bassist Sam Hariss. He sent me a message one day asking me to listen to something they'd recorded and were about to release a few days later. It was their first single called 'Love To Leave' featuring the lovely and talented Liza Colby. Needless to say as usual I was loving the sound. Anyone that knows me knows I am a complete sucker for that 70's rock sound and they oozed it!! They have yet to drop a full album but they're already shaking shit up over on the east coast and delighting ears globally! So here you have Sam answering a few questions.
LR: How'd you guys end up choosing the name 'The Sweet Things'? Big Martha Reeves fans?
SH : Haha, well yeah we are, but I don’t think that had anything to do with how we settled on the name, Dave thought of it. He’d be the one to ask. There’s no real cool Alice-Cooper-Ouija-Board lie that we’ve cooked up. We just left our first practice and were shooting ideas back and forth. I suggested something offensive and unrealistic, Lorne came up with The Hags, which i still think is really cool. I can see the logo now in Kabel or Cooper Black. Then Dave suggested The Sweet Things, and that was that, it stuck.
LR : In a recent exchange you mentioned you were working on releasing a few singles. When do you guys hope to release your new singles?
SH : So we’re going to be putting out Love To Leave and Cocaine Asslicker Blues with Spaghetti Town Records on vinyl. Pink vinyl, which I’m told has never been done before by any band ever in the history of pressed music, so thats a plus. Our buddy Teddy runs the record company and I gotta say it’s been an absolute pleasure working with him. It’s gonna be our first physical, non-digital release and that is a nice milestone to hit. Last night we had our first of three sessions, in which we’re recording our second single. Two songs, Dustianne and Slather. I couldn’t be more thrilled with how they’re sounding, both of em are just sparklin’. (I'm answering these at a bar and somebody just put Moving On Up by Primal Scream AND The Stones’ All Down The Line on the jukebox and I feel very inclined to give that gentlemen an honorable mention, not all heroes wear capes). Anyhoo… I think the the end game would probably be to put the four tracks on a disc and shop that bitch around as an EP. Hopefully around May.
LR : Any collaborations on them?
SH : We got some reaaally cool peeps helping out with this recording. Ya know, first thing you as say when undertaking something like this is, “Okay, who’s producing this thing?.” It’s a crucial decision, this guy’s essentially joining the band for the duration of the recording. This dunderhead can tell you that any given idea you have is pure shit, which has never been an issue for ME PERSONALLY, but I'm told it happens, haha… Anyways, we threw names around for a couple weeks. We went through a bunch of names, big and small. The problem with some of the bigger guys aside from their price tags is they’re workaholics and either booked or on tour for months on end. But one day Lorne suggested Matt Chiaravalle, who worked with Warren Zevon as well as peeps like Joe Bonamassa, Jane Lee Hooker, and funnily enough Lorne’s old band the L.E.S Stitches, in an alternate incarnation. I was sold and I think everybody else was too pretty much right away, it just seemed right. Low and behold he was available and it all fell into place. The infinitely brilliant Liza Colby has been promoted to a full time Sweet Thing, Dustianne is actually a duet that goes back and forth between Dave and Her. It’s kind of like a Lynyrd Skynyrd Paradise By The Dashboard Light. She’s unfortunately making us all look bad in the process, with all her (ughhh) …talent and professionalism, but as Gene Simmons said in his smash-hit mind bending career highlight, “This must be love, fits like a glove.” Next week we’ve got Rob Clores, of the muddafucking Black Crowes, not to mention Tom Jones and who now plays in Mule Kick with GNR’s Frank Ferrer, coming over to the studio to lay down some piano and organ. Lastly, I can fiiiinally announce that the cover artwork is being done as we speak by Tyla J. Pallas of The Dogs D’Amour. That’s HUGE for me. Dogs are a gigantic influence on my playing, writing, and who are we kidding, the threads in my closet.
Aside from that we’ve got a great support group, my girlfriend Raff is the manager, along with Rik Rocket who was the guitarist in the Toilet Böys, of Wendigo. A company based out of the Lower East Side owned by our friend Wendy Scripps. Wendigo is every goddamned cool thing an institution could be… promotion, booking agent, art gallery, clothes, merch distribution, yada yada yada….. And all three of those guys support the hell outta us, it’s a relationship with a lot of l.u.v. They do a lot for us …Aaalthough I’ve yet to see Raff in a Sweet Things shirt, but she gets a pass cause she’s purrrrdy and she’s me girl.
LR : Can we expect a full album?
SH : Absolutely.
LR : How do you guys approach the song writing process? Or how do you end up picking what songs you'll cover?
SH: It’s all pretty democratic, you come in with what you come in with. Whether it be lyrics, lyrics and music, or just music… vatevah, you just throw it out and see what anyone else can throw on top. Dave and I have gotten pretty comfortable writing together, one song we did together called Dead Or Worse will probably be one of the next tracks we record. Come to think of it… Darren is our secret weapon, the guy had barely sung three notes at the point when he came in with his first songs and i remember me and Liza’s jaw dropping. One of those songs where it’s hard to finish because everybody feels so strongly about their ideas, too good to settle on any aspect. Lorne’s tracks have done the same thing, I remember a song he wrote early in our career, real Brian James kinda song, and none of us could do it a justice vocally, we just knew it had to sit until we could match the vox with the music he put together. One of the other songs he brought in was kinda the same deal, this one was more recent, but we just couldn’t omit it from the set. It was a total Thunders kinda jive so its become our opening number… kind of like our Pipeline. We’ve all bring songs in, but you know, we watch each other back, musically. Thats were the gold is, when you come in with a song and another band member adds the sweet seasoning on it. Covers will just come from whatever were listening to at the time, I want to cover Older Guys by The Flying Burrito brothers really badly.
LR : You guys have a very 70's based sound. Who are your main musical influences? Where do you draw inspiration from? Especially for the new stuff you're working on?
SH : I think its all relative. Realistically (or, until we sell out, which we intend on doing) it’ll always go back to some combination of The Stones and The Faces and The Dolls and The Black Crowes and stuff. Rooster cuts and big hat bands. But it’s funny, i’ll walk in and Lorne and Dave will be talking about some jazz guy they heard on Marc Maron that goes totally over my head. But then ill listen to a part and go “ohhh… thats where you got that… Now I get it.” I inflict a shit ton of old country on the guys, I probably listen to just as much country as I do rock n roll. Dave knows every song ever written at any given time in any given genre. I find that after we finish a song, it only then can I really hone in on who influenced what. I hear Elton John’s Bitch Is Back and like Killer era Alice Cooper on Cocaine Asslicker Blues, which was the furthest thing from my mind when recording it, ya know?. Slather is a clear cut Faces grab. Dustianne makes me think of Skynyrd and KISS, like Tomorrow And Tonight or Flamin Youth… I can’t pin point any of this, just what I can feel we’ve channeled, it’s all subjective once it leaves the studio.
LR : Do you plan on taking The Sweet Things on tour anytime after the album is out?
SH : Absolutely, in terms of the short run, after we release Love To Leave/Cocaine Asslicker Blues (…again), we’ll do some dates on the east coast. Probably like Boston, DC, Atlanta … and Norfolk Virginia, we LOVE No Fuck Norfolk it's the Berlin, Paris, and Las Vegas of the east coast. The west coast is in our sights for later this year, but I can’t really say much more right now. Only that if all goes to plan, and there’s a lot of ground to cover before we can say anything for sure, but IF all goes to plan, us and another band very dear to us well be eating some of that Fukushima radiation sushi you west coastoids love so much.
LR : Where can folks listen to your music? (I've recently noticed it's not on iTunes anymore for some strange reason)
SH : Yeah that was weird, it should be all back up by March. So yeah, iTunes, Spotify, Amazon … we'll get it all back up there. As for the records they’ll be available at all our shows and for order online, as to where exactly I’m not sure, but well be posting. We pretty much do most of our social media through Facebook right now, the link is Facebook.com/thesweetthingsnyc, we really should be more on top of our instagram, which is @thesweetthings.nyc , and in the wake of these two releases and upcoming tours we will be. All I’ll say though as far as social media is no sponsored posts, those are for classless whores.
LR : What does the future look like for you guys?
SH : Were probably gonna go down like a lead balloon.
LR : Elvis or The Rolling Stones?
SH : Stones. I love Elvis, how can anyone who does this not, but I haven’t laughed, cried, and everything in-between to his music. I don’t listen to Elvis daily. And most importantly, Janis Soprano does not have an Elvis tattoo on her right tit… all three of which are true about the Stones.
So there you have it boys and girls! You can keep up to date thru their facebook page : facebook.com/thesweetthingsnyc
You can also follow them on their various online sites.
Instagram : thesweetthings.nyc
Twitter : TheSweetThings1
Reverbnation : reverbnation.com/thesweetthings