The Vim Dicta

The Vim Dicta
Interview by Victoria Joyce
August 21, 2012

One of the highlights of this year’s 2012 Sunset Strip Music Festival was most definitely a local LA band called The Vim Dicta. (Where’d you get that name??! We asked that.)  We got the chance to chit chat with this amazing trio and get their impressions of this 8-stage, 59-band, 9-Food Truck, 10K fan tribal gathering a day or so afterwards. 

The Vim Dicta is: Cori Elliott on lead vocals and guitars, Matt Tunney on lead guitar and vocals with David Halicky on drums. They punched in our number and put the iPhone on speaker and this happened.

SugarBuzz: First things first: How was the SSMF experience for you?

Cori: Insane! I was sick before we started and afraid I would get sick on stage – really freaking out- but as soon as we got on stage it was amazing.

Matt: I enjoyed the heat! I like to sweat and the unlimited supply of Monster drinks backstage.

David: The experience was awesome – we got respect from the venue and seeing all the bands and being exposed to that crowd.

Cori – It was awesome! It reminded me of SXSW, with the outside and inside stages with bands that had been around forever and new bands starting out, trying to get to the top.

SugarBuzz: Aside from the inevitable scheduling issues, did you enjoy it?

David: At first we were “oh no!” But we quickly we got with the flow. It was kind of hard to believe it would be on time anyway. Obviously it was not stressful. We were behind and then we played. So it was all good.

Matt: It gave a chance more people to hear us – like 20 more heads because we were 35 minutes late.

SugarBuzz: Do you like playing outdoors in daylight? Or do you prefer the dark of a club?

Cori: I personally prefer a club. It’s cool when you’re indoors, first of all there’s air conditioning! And I prefer the intimacy of the club. It’s more intimate and with the lights, you get more into it.

David: I agree with Cori. Inside is more intimate. The energy, the sound levels, the lights. the energy is more dense, closer in. As opposed to being outside where the energy goes out everywhere. The sound goes off into the sky. It’s less dense. The short answer – I prefer inside.

Matt: If it’s an American Fest – outside. If it’s in Europe – inside a dark club. I want American sunshine!

SugarBuzz: SSMF 2012 was so huge with 69 bands-was it overwhelming?

Cori: Yeah, it kind of was. It was our biggest gig yet. And especially seeing our name on the billboard on the side of the Key Club. You kind of had to live up to that. In the moment it was not too bad. In reality it was totally cool.

David: It was overwhelming but in a good way. Especially after playing SXSW! It was ten times the people.

SugarBuzz: Did you discover anyone new? Old friends? Heroes?

Matt: I saw one of my heroes – Robby Krieger (The Doors). I was a little disappointed when The Doors played with Marilyn Manson. It felt like I was in The Doors movie – like the scene with the crazy hippies dancing around. I thought more people should have been doing that.

Cori: We ran into a band that we met at SXSW – The Stone Foxes. They played inside the Roxy. We joined them for a sec behind the stage. Really great.

David:  The Doors, Zac Wild and De La Soul killed it. It was such an LA crowd and he was teasing them to dance and move.

Cori:  The Doors made the night or the remaining Doors, I should say.

SugarBuzz: I noticed a most of bands we saw were fronted by or included women (including The Vim Dicta). Do you think this is significant?

Cori: I think it’s awesome and definitely significant. It’s about time and we have just as much to offer. It’s awesome that there’s more women. But I don’t approach it thinking that “oh,  I’m a girl.”

David: I think that it’s amazing. I love women and respect them. I never felt there was a line in the rock world. I love it.

Matt:  I had an extensive conversation with four musicians from the Midwest about the same topic – they were like – I can’t believe how many women are playing music out here. Isn’t it this way where your from?  No it’s mostly guys. All my favorite rock is mostly feminine.

Cori: I think that women in Rock brings a sexual tension which is what Rock and Roll is all about in the beginning.

David: How can a male Rock band be reealy sexy when its all male. How do you present sex in a real way?

SugarBuzz: Where does a Vim Dicta song come from? Is the music first and the lyrics fall in place?

David:  We write the music off the top of our heads, Cori will come up with a part and Matt will come up with a part. It’s a real  collaboration. Cori will do the lyrics part. I like the way she writes lyrics.

Cori: I really prefer writing with all of us in the same room. It’s more honest. I will record something on my phone and keep working on it until it becomes what we want it to be.

Matt: I inject myself in when I can.

SugarBuzz: What cover songs would you do or consider? Why?

Matt: One we did was “Foxy Lady.” We work the male female  chorus and it gives it a whole new meaning.

David: We want to do “American Band” by Grand Funk Railroad –  because of the cow bell.

Cori: Maybe a Beatles song.

SugarBuzz: Where did you get the name Vim Dicta?

David: We used to be called Film Noir. And friend said try a Ouija Board for  answers. We got the letters VIM so we scrambled up the letters and Vim Dicta has all the letters of our combined names.

SugarBuzz: Do you love LA?

David: We love it!!

Matt: I love it. LA is tolerable if you have someplace like Austin to go to. I love the diversity, the culture. I grew up here and it’s made me multicultural. I know a lot of other people and they know me. There are pockets that are really cool. LA is good for the little communities for artists.

Cori: There is a good music community in Silver Lake and Echo Park and they support each other. It’s very DIY. It’s just like really hard to build a fan base because there are so many bands. A lot of people here are actors and its hard to get people to go to your shows. we’ve played a place called Leimert Park, near South Central in a club called Bananas. It’s all Hip Hop and the reaction was amazing. They were into it! We ran out of eps (to sell) and a lot of those kids have come out after that. It was interesting, kind of different.

SugarBuzz: Any last words?

Matt: Look forward to hearing more from us. We have a song on the TV show “Sons of Anarchy” on September 11 called “Your Man.”

SugarBuzz: We love that show!! With the possible exception of Breaking Bad it has the hippest and best music!!

Matt: I’ve seen every episode.

Check out The Vim Dicta on FaceBook, BandCamp and coming soon to the FX Network.