Rome Ramirez Says New Album is Simply 'Sublime'
Marc Thomas Kallweit
Rome Ramirez, who currently sings and plays guitar with Bud Gaugh and Eric Wilson in the hybrid outfit Sublime with Rome, is fired up. Even if it is early in the morning.
After returning from a triumphant Lollapalooza show in Santiago, Chile, the 22-year-old singer-guitarist is back in the studio. For the last month and a half, he and the band have been finishing their new album, which will be released later this summer.
"It's been amazing working with these guys," Ramirez recently told Noisecreep from the Sonic Ranch in El Paso, Texas, where they've been recording. "It's like this: I'll hit them with an idea, then they work their magic, making it more 'Sublimey.' By the end of the song, you'll hear that sound, that haunting rhythm, that Sublime feel. It's very exciting when that comes together.'
The groundbreaking Southern California ska-punk trio, originally formed in 1988, seemed to be finished after original lead singer Brad Nowell died from a heroin overdose in 1996. However, in 2009, Gaugh and Wilson decided to light up the band once with Ramirez handling the vocals.
Not bad for a then-20-year-old who cites the band as one of his favorite while growing up in Northern California.
"Led Zeppelin, Public Enemy, Beastie Boys, Primus -- I listened to lots of things growing up. But especially Sublime," he said.
Sublime with Rome are also about to embark on this summer's Unity Tour, joining up with 311 for what Ramirez says will be the ultimate summer party. Previous Unity tours have featured Snoop Dogg, The Offspring, Matisyahu, The Wailers, and The Roots.
"Every show will be an uplifting experience," said Ramirez. "That's the trademark of a Sublime with Rome show. It's like an escape from all your troubles, a chance to leave all the bad with the security guys at the front gate, and then enter the world's biggest, best tailgate party. That's the common theme. Have a good time. And that's what 311 brings to the party too, so it's gonna be a crazy summer."
Any concerns Ramirez had about fan acceptance when first touring with the band were quickly put to rest, he said. "The band's history means a lot, and I really was hoping the fans liked what I brought. So far, it's good. Wherever we have traveled, there's been a lot of love."
Ramirez also has good words or his good friends the Dirty Heads, currently in the midst of their first national headlining tour. Last summer, Ramirez collaborated with the reggae rockers to produce the smash hit 'Lay Me Down.' "They're selling out everywhere," Ramirez laughed. "I couldn't feel better for my brothers."
In the next year or so, Ramirez plans on cutting a solo LP, but for now he's focused on finishing the new Sublime with Rome record and playing live shows with the band.
"It's just amazing what's happened with me. I'm very excited. And I'm anxious to share this new music both on the CD and live this summer. Come on out, people. Come on, out."
For tour dates and other information, check out http://www.sublimewithrome.com.
Check out these exclusive photos of Rome in the recording studio:
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