Gold Dust Lounge was a former bar/lounge that once existed at the Gold Dust Motel on Biscayne Boulevard across from what was then the Playboy Club. During its heyday, the lounge with the flashy name was a late night gathering place for local artists and musicians. Russell Mofsky took the name Gold Dust Lounge for his band because of his love for all things retro, which has inspired its unique music and sound. “I think my music has a pretty identifiable sound that draws on a wide variety of influences including 1970s television, old spy movies, spaghetti western films, film noir, jazz, punk rock, ambient music, surf rock, and world music to name a few.”
This Saturday, June 21, Miami’s own Gold Dust Lounge is celebrating the release of its third album Lost Sunset with a party at the Nest. Lost Sunset is the first studio album recording that the band released on vinyl/LP, CD, and digitally. With songs like “Bunny Yeager,” “Shark Valley” and “Lost Sunset,” the album evokes Miami’s history and culture, making the music a kind of reminiscent love song to the Magic City’s Art Deco era, which remains in the colorful architecture and tropical vibe.
The album is particularly special because it was funded via a Kickstarter campaign last September. The band’s live album Wynwood Bootleg was recorded on the street during the November 2011 art walk, showing the band’s influence and connection to its city of origin and expressing loyalty to local fans. The record was released on CD and digitally. Sirens, the band’s first studio recording is only available via download. I asked Russell a few questions about the band, the new record, and this weekend’s record release party.
Who is Gold Dust Lounge?
Gold Dust Lounge is a bit of a collective. I write all the music and arrange most of it but it is a collaborative process that shapes up during rehearsals and sometimes on the gig. Over the years, different players have come through the band. For the last year and a half the line-up has consistently included Brian Tate on bass and Arturo Garcia on drums. In the near future, I’m looking to expand that line-up with some additional instruments and players.
Is there a theme to Lost Sunset?
Good question! There are definitely musical elements that tie Lost Sunset together as an album. I think that the music serves on some level as a reflection on the process of looking backwards at ones life and path through it. The music is really personal to me, so it’s hard to be objective about it. I can sense themes but I’m not sure if they are apparent to anyone else. I’m always curious to know what other people think about this question.
What are some of your most memorable/favorite gigs?
We’ve had quite a few memorable shows. Last week we played a sold out show at The Hukilau in Fort Lauderdale. That was a lot of fun. I think that the year and a half that we were in residency at The Standard Hotel was pretty special. That experience taught me not to underestimate the power that the environment plays in influencing and shaping music. It’s hard to think of a more beautiful and inspiring location than sunset out by the pool and deck at The Standard. And all those street shows during the height of the Wynwood boom were pretty amazing. Plus, they led to many other bookings such as being the house band at the Aqua Art Fair for four years and multiple trips to perform at the Corning Museum of Glass in Western New York.
What can people expect at Saturday’s event?
This Saturday is our album release show. We’ll be playing songs from Lost Sunset as well as a few new ones. Joining us will be two of my favorite local bands, Shark Valley Sisters and Rat Opera. People who contributed to our Kickstarter will be able to pick up their goods and we’ll have the album on hand on LP/CD as well as t-shirts, posters, stickers, etc. We expect to have a few food trucks as well. Admission is $5. Doors open at 9 p.m. Did you know that New Times named The Nest Miami’s BEST live music venue for local acts just this week? Huffington Post also gave it great reviews. It’s going to be a fantastic event that you do not want to miss!
How can we find you and the band?
On Twitter: @russellmofsky, on Instagram: golddustlounge, on Facebook and Soundcloud, Gold Dust Lounge.
Gold Dust Lounge Record Release Party, Saturday, June 21, at The Nest, 62 NE 14th St., Miami. 786.766.2411. www.thenestmia.com.
Read “Gold Dust Lounge Releases Kickstarter Funded Album” as published on the MiamiArtZine.