Shooting the breeze: How did you get started in music? My grandma bought me a little toy drum set when I was like three. I took drum lessons for two months, got frustrated with that, and took it back up seriously in eighth grade when my friends needed a drummer for a band. They saw me drumming on the desk and said, "Hey why don't you try our drum set, we got one." I took clarinet lessons when I was in sixth grade until eighth grade. That was my first formal music training. I took bass lessons from an excellent, excellent teacher named Mike Kelly. I feel like the clarinet lessons taught me the formal side of music, how to read, stuff like that. Mike taught me how to fit into the club scene, how to be able to play, how to improvise. But mainly I learned from my friends, my band mates. STB: What instruments do you play? BR: Drums, bass, guitar and clarinet. Drums first, definitely. STB: Who were some of your influences on your music? BR: Dave Matthews, Carter Beauford, the drummer for DMB; Red Hot Chili Peppers; Brian Blade, he's a jazz drummer; the Fugees; I got into Michael Franti and Spearhead for a little while. Jack Johnson I just got into. Victor Wooten, excellent bass player, one of my biggest inspirations. Bob Dylan, Bob Marley - the essential Bobs. Those are the ones off the top of my head. I liked Michael Jackson when I was five. STB: Where do you find inspiration or subjects for your songs? BR: I guess primarily when I first started writing it was because of women, you know, love songs here and there. But then I've noticed a trend even when I'm not writing about women I'll write about stuff I'm slightly uncertain about and then I'll try to work it out in a song. Whether I worked it out or not, I'll feel better afterwards. So I'll generally write from uncertainty, I'll try to put in on paper. STB: What is a typical week like for you, performance-wise? BR: The beginning of the week is trying to get the e-mails out in time for the weekend, trying to get people out to the show. Lot of phone calls, lot of trying to make all the mandatory musical stuff happen soon enough to get people at the show. So marketing is my main concern. But if I'm not playing a show where I'm doing my own songs, I'm playing a jazz gig. I'm in a group called Four Guys From Reno. We've been playing jazz - restaurant jazz - every weekend for a few years and that's kind of my bread and butter. So whenever we don't have another show we play jazz gigs. STB: When you play your shows is it just you or do you have a couple of regular band members? BR: I have some regular band members, but I play a lot solo. I play duos along with another songwriter Justin Farren, and also I play frequently with this band called Home at Last. They're a band out of the Bay Area and I'll join them onstage occasionally play some of my songs, play harmony on theirs. STB: Can you talk about your songwriting process? BR: I have two distinct processes. One is when I write a song on the bass guitar. Just, logistically, there's not as many strings; it's not as full of a sound. So when I play bass, I try to do a lot of tapping and slapping to incorporate that into my writing, make it a full sound. So I'll spend a lot more time on the bass. Usually the lyrics and music come together at once. Really, it's like anything else; just kind of learn as you go. It's a can of worms I can't put my finger on it. One of the main benefits from listening to this album is the ear candy, played by the team of musicians that have grown with Brian like brothers over the past several years. Andre Fylling (keyboard) and Sam Phelps (bass) have a jazz group with Brian (on drums) outside of his solo ventures... They call themselves the 'Four Guys From Reno (voted best jazz group in Sacramento in 2004, 2005, and 2006),' and their instrumental efforts accompany Brian's voice on ''Relle Belle' and 'Candyman,' two of the most lively and gelled tracks from Dreaming Seed. Justin Farren (voted Sacramento's best folk artist in 2006) on acoustic guitar also joins Brian on some of Dreaming Seeds funkiest, most organic sounding tracks ~ 1, 2, 5, 6, 10, 11 and 12. Highly recommended... While you're on CD Baby, check out Justin's self-recorded/released album The Sound of Flight (supported by Brian on drums), and you'll hear thoughtful, groovy acoustic music that reminds you of yourself. Thank You! "Not the energy of a person, or that of an animal, has ever inspired the deep truths that Buddhists speak of within me like that of Brian Rogers"... Billy Guilfoyle.