Dog Party’s Sister Duo Dish it Out

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli

Who better to interview this pair of sisters in the popular Sacremento band Dog Party then Lynette Gillis, one half of the Toronto outfit Sister (made up of the Gillis sisters). Lynette asks the girls about their affinity to indie and punk music, talks about Lucy’s drumkit score in first grade, and how the Sacramento scene responds to the teenage talents.

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli

Name: Gwendolyn Giles

Age: 15

Hometown: Sacramento

Lives in: Sacramento

Current Bands: Dog Party, Little Medusas

Favorite Subject in School: Biology & French

Hobby: Skiing, running, cross-country, soccer, arts, filming/editing videos.

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli

Name: Lucy Giles

Age: 13

Hometown: Sacramento

Lives in: Sacramento

Current Bands: Dog Party, Little Medusas

Favorite Subject in School: Painting

Hobby: Painting, arts, skiing, soccer, running, photography.

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli

Tom Tom Magazine: What grades are you in?

Gwendolyn Giles: 10th grade

Lucy Giles: 8th grade

Lucy, how did you start playing music?

LG: I’ve just always wanted to play the drums, and when I was in first grade, my parents got me a drum set at a garage sale. It turned out to be a complete vintage Ruether kit – we have since upgraded all of the hardware, and I still play that same kit.
How does being in a band fit with being in junior high/high school? Or does it? Can you play in bars?

GG: Yeah, we make it fit. We try not to play shows on school nights, but we find ourselves breaking that rule a lot. We love to play with cool touring bands and many local bands, so when those opportunities come up, we usually say YES! We used to be able to play bar shows in Sac, but that stopped a couple years ago. We have played bar shows in Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada.

How do you describe the Sacramento music scene?

GG: Sac has a thriving, super supportive music scene. There are so many talented bands, I don’t know where to start!  Kepi Ghoulie, who was in the Groovie Ghoulies, and Agent Ribbons (moved to Austin), Ganglians, Lite Brite, Sister Crayon, Middle Class Rut, and tons more.  We have always been treated with a ton of respect, even though we are younger then most. We love it.

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli
Are there a lot of girls in the scene, both going to shows and playing music? Are there other bands in the scene your age?

GG: Not as many as there should be. There are a handful of bands our age, but most of them are guys.

What is the best show you’ve played?

GG: The Concert in the Park series in Sacramento is really fun because the turn out is over 4,000 enthusiastic music fans.  Another fun show was opening for Best Coast in Davis because we like their music and they were at the top of College radio charts so there were lots of people there, and they were really enthusiastic. We also like house shows because the people are more high energy and easy to interact with.
Is the song “Chihiro” about your pet rabbit? (It reminds me of being fourteen years old playing in Plumtree and writing the song “Dog Gone Crazy” about our dog who went crazy).

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli

GG: It’s about our friend’s rabbit. Another teen band wrote a song about our dog, so we decided to write a song about their rabbit!
You list current bands on the “Bands We Love” section of your website: TV on the Radio, Dum Dum Girls, Shins, etc. Have you seen some of these bands play live?

LG: A few years ago, I saw TV on the Radio, and that was really cool. Yeah, we like those bands, but my favorites are the Ramones, the Groovie Ghoulies, and punk bands like that. The Groovie Ghoulies are really inspiring to me and they had two female drummers 🙂

What excites you?

LG: THE RAMONES!!!!

Dog Party Best Girl Drummer Tom Tom Magazine Sister Band Stefano Galli
Best part of playing in a rock n’ roll band?

GG: Getting to do what I love most, and share it with others.

LG: I get to have so much fun! I get to be creative and travel all over- see new places and meet new people.
Do you want to go to university or do you just want to play rock n’ roll?

GG: HA!!! Both. We love Rock & Roll, but we also place a high value on our education. We are used to juggling a lot at one time because we are also athletes. Unfortunately, we will have to make some of those decisions when the time comes.

Interview by Lynette Gillis

Photos by Stefano Galli

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