One-of-a-kind Little Rock band DOT is back in Fayetteville this Saturday, April 21. The 3-piece group is Jordan Wolf, Melanie Castellano, and Correne Spero. Their experimental sound is kinetic punk, free and alive. Think of a midwestern DIY version of The B52s.
Jordan, and Melanie were in the late 2000’s era Fayetteville band Color Club, which is one of my favorite Arkansas bands. Their shows at the Delicious House and Lightbulb Club are memorable proof that music can be anything you want it to be.
Who: Broncho / Ishi / DOT
When: 9 p.m. Saturday, April 21
Where: Smoke & Barrel Tavern, 324 W. Dickson St.
More: See the Facebook event
How did DOT begin? Can you give us a brief history?
DOT was born in a clamshell at the bottom of the sea during the summer of 2015 in Little Rock, Arkansas. Melanie and Jordan had been in a band called Color Club which formed in Fayetteville, and Spero was leading a band in Little Rock. When Color Club’s drummer moved away we joined forces to create DOT.
What have you been working on lately?
We’ve been recording an EP that is almost done, playing shows, learning some Lou Reed covers, planning a video, writing new songs, planning a new merch line – all the band things. Plus planning a songwriting summer camp for girls called Trust Tree, snacking on heavy hors-d’oeuvres and planning the activity schedule for our next DOT slumber party. Invite only.
What’s the last book or film that influenced a DOT song?
The following movies, TV shows, and books have directly or indirectly influenced everything we’ve ever written: The First Wives Club, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, When Harry Met Sally, Crossroads, Mermaids, Hidden Figures, The Crown and RuPaul’s Drag Race.
Books: Bachelor Nation (Amy Kaufman), I Love Dick (Chris Kraus), Summer Sisters (Judy Bloom), Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl (Carrie Brownstein), the entire Trixie Belden Mystery Series, Courage is Contagious (collected essays about Michelle Obama), The White Album (Joan Didion)
What’s happening in the Little Rock art and music scene these days? Any recommendations?
There are some amazing women making music and art in Little Rock right now who we are really psyched about – including but not limited to musicians like Dazz & Brie, Bonnie Montgomery, Kami Renee, Hope Dixon, CC Mercer, the Wildflowers, Bijoux, and visual artists like Sally Nixon, Sara Reeves, Heather Canterbury, Elena Petroukhina, Jenn Perren, Ering Lang aka “Arkiestyle”, Stacey Bowers and so many more!
Also did we mention Matthew Castellano and Brian Wolf?
2/3 of DOT was in Color Club. How did 2000’s era Fayetteville help shape your music?
Fayetteville was the birthplace of Jordan and Melanie’s musical collaboration. We started our band first Tippy Canoe in 2006, and being in Fayetteville exposed us to different touring acts and diverse musical genres. We were lucky to have a lot of support and that has influenced us a lot to feel free to experiment, which is something we carry into DOT. We believe in being weird and free and doing what we want.
What’s the last record you bought? Since almost everything is available to stream, what makes a record something you need to hold?
Melanie: The Pac Man album – I have an extensive collection of old children’s records.
Spero: The Byrds Sweetheart of the Rodeo. I had a copy and lost it and was devastated and asked for it again for Christmas, so that’s kinda like buying it, right?
Jordan: If you stack up enough records you have a bedside table.
Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Usually two of us are onstage, one of us leaves to go find the third one, the third one comes back before the second one returns, the one who left decides to take a last-minute shot at the bar, one of us from the stage then goes to join them. One person stands on the stage calling for the other two into the mic and then decides to go to the bathroom. And then we start the whole process again. Just kidding, we’re totally profesh.
You’re playing Saturday, April 21 with Broncho and Ishi. What can we expect at the show?
Get ready to blast off into the DOTosphere and get down to songs about Melanie’s cactus, a Party Cat, hilarious ghosts, and the song of the summer.
What do you look forward to doing in Fayetteville?
We look forward to sharing the stage with Broncho who we think are rad.
Spero: I’m staying at the Chancellor Hotel for the first time because it’s my birthday and I hear it’s fancy.
Jordan: I look forward to seeing Soul of a Nation at Crystal Bridges, going to the the Farmers’ Market, and seeing my old school BFFs.
Melanie: Chillin with my peeps, and tap dancing at the Smoke and Barrel.