The Fremantle Heritage Festival closes with Mambo Nights #3, starring The Domnicks and Mambo Chic plus DJ and dancers. BOB GORDON checks in with vocalist/guitarist, Nick Sheppard, to see what’s happening in the world of The Domnicks.
The Domnicks are closing the Fremantle Heritage Festival and are happy to be doing so. Like many of us, they have their own special relationship with Freo.
“Well half of us live there,” Nick Sheppard says of vocalist/guitarist, Dom Mariani and bassist, Howard Shawcross. “We have always played Freo, and been really well received there. Clancy’s, The Norfolk, The Newport, Mojos, The Orient, West Coast Blues N’ Roots – we’ve played ‘em all!
“So Fremantle has played a big part in our development musically, and also financially; the money we earned from the gigs helped pay for both our records. I think the same could be said of Perth in general; every one has been really supportive and encouraging. It’s just really great that Freo has its own identity.”
It’s coming up on two years since The Domnicks released their last album, Super Real. There’s plans afoot for a new release.
“We’re taking our time, hey?” Sheppard says. “We are just finalising dates to record, as it happens. We took some time out – about a year, actually – to get on with life and its rich tapestry. So we’ve been getting back into playing and writing recently, and have got some great new songs to put out. We’ve also been re-evaluating how we approach the studio, so I’m really excited to get back in there!”
The four members of The Domnicks – also featuring drummer, Marz Frisina – are all hugely experienced, but also in very diverse musical areas. The impact of that on the whole band experience and their collective ability to perform and create is profound.
“I think experience is a very underrated commodity in popular music,” Sheppard says. “Our collective experience gives us all reference points to work off when we are writing and performing.
“For example, recently we’ve been working up a cover of Don Covay’s Sookie Sookie. As I’m a big jazz head, I’ve appropriated a horn line from Grant Green’s version of the same song; it works a treat!
“Music is endless, so listen! Don’t restrict yourself to genres. Don’t stop checking out new stuff, or old stuff. A good song is a good song is a good song….
“Where the magic happens for us is where diversity collides. When the sum of us equals more than our separate parts, both as writers and performers. And, as I’ve said before, teamwork is everything!”