Welcome to our inaugural “UnCovered” interview, yet another new And Justice For Art series wherein we discuss with bands the cover artwork of their hot new albums and singles. Enter Las Vegas, NV hard rockers Adelitas Way and their latest single, “Ready For War (Pray For Peace)” (buy it RIGHT HERE). Released on September 30th, 2016, this 3:30 rocker of a tune features artwork loaded with meaning and lead vocalist Rick DeJesus hit us up to discuss the art’s concept, creation and symbolism.
What was the inspiration for the “Ready For War (Pray For Peace)” single cover artwork?
DeJesus: I wanted to show the symbol of a father who prepares to do anything he has to for the freedom of his family. It also represents the officers and soldiers who have so much to lose – yet they risk their lives every day to keep our country safe, and make it a better world for our children.
The new single cover is cool. Tell us about the artist and how you found him/her?
DeJesus: Hayden has done our best artwork of our career, he worked with us on our “Bad Reputation” single artwork, our album Getaway artwork, and now the “Ready For War (Pray For Peace)” single – he’s amazing! He gets our vision and helps translate it into the terrific artwork you see.
Please elaborate on the medium(s) used when creating the art. We’d love to know how the artwork was created.
DeJesus: I explained my vision of the song to Hayden – he then formed the image you see – his process of imagining and then implementing our vision is amazing to watch. I wanted the emotion of what our soldiers and police officers feel as they are out in a battle zone or on patrol – risking it all every day to keep us from harm.
What were the partnership’s dynamics like? For example, was a specific look given, or did the artist have full free range?
DeJesus: I like to tell the artist what the song or album means to me, in detail. Then I let the artist run with it and create in an unrestrained manner. Once the artist gets back to us with a few ideas, I like to do the little changes to make it perfectly speak to the audience. It’s been a wonderful collaborative process.
With the increasing popularity of digital music, most fans view artwork as just pixels on a screen. Why did you feel the artwork was important?
DeJesus: Everything is important to us…. Forgetting the small details is not wise when you care so much about your music and band. So, we try to put effort and focus into the artwork as well, so it best represents the music that we’ve put our hearts and souls into.
When people look at the single cover artwork, what do you want them to see/think?
DeJesus: I want them to understand what I wrote the music about and have an image of that – I want them to feel and understand the powerful emotions behind the song.
Have any favourite music-related visual artists?
DeJesus: Five Finger Death Punch has a guy who really nails what the band is all about, he really gets to the heart of who they are. Iron Maiden has also always been stellar with their visuals.
What are your thoughts and/or the pros and cons about digital art versus non-digital?
DeJesus: I think we’re like everyone else in the music business these days – you have to adjust to the times and deliver whatever people want, and are using to consume the music.
What do you think are some of the cover artworks that have translated best/worst onto t-shirts and other merch?
DeJesus: Iron Maiden has always done a fantastic job in translating their artwork into merch; so has Five Finger Death Punch. I really like a lot of the items that Megadeth has put out as well – really great stuff!
Check out the song “Ready For War (Pray For Peace)”
11/22 – The Paramount – Huntington, NY
11/23 – The Wonder Bar – Asbury Park, NJ
11/25 – Claddagh Music Hall – Lawrence, MA
11/27 – Jergel’s Rhythm Grille – Warrendale, PA
12/01 – 8 Seconds Saloon – Indianapolis, IN
12/02 – The Apollo Theatre – Belvidere, IL (w/Scott Stapp)
12/03 – The Machine Shop – Flint, MI (w/Scott Stapp)
12/06 – House Of Blues – Chicago, IL (w/Scott Stapp)
12/08 – The Pub Fountains – Sugarland, TX (w/Scott Stapp)
12/09 – Alamo City Music Hall – San Antonio, TX (w/Scott Stapp)
12/10 – Clicks – Tyler, TX (w/Scott Stapp)