Stacking The Deck with The Dales

Stacking The Deck is a feature exclusive to Adam’s World where I bring packs of 1991 Pro Set Superstars MusiCards to artists, and we discuss who they find in each pack. 

When The Dales hit the stage with their gorgeous three part harmonies, and music that dances between the genres of Americana, and vintage rock, you can almost feel the California sun from where they hail.

The trio of Drew Lawrence, Jacqueline Tozzi, and Preston Pope (photo: L to R) have an ever-growing catalogue of songs – both as a group, and individually, with Lawrence having penned tunes for a litany of artists – and that catalogue grew again last fall when they released their second full-length album, Multi Trick Pony.

The album was recorded at Bear Creek Studio outside of Seattle, WA, with producer Jerry Streeter (Brandi Carlile, The Lumineers), who also produced their full-length debut, Marie.

During the current year the band has been touring in support of Multi Trick Pony, and in addition to their original songs, their live sets have included covers of everything from Fleetwood Mac, to Grateful Dead, to Toto.

I caught up with The Dales before their recent show at Rockwood Music Hall in NYC to open up some packs of MusiCards, and the artists we found sparked conversations about mosh pits at Primus shows, potentially catching a spit filled memento at a Blues Traveler concert, and crushes that may surprise … well … everyone!

If you’ve ever wanted to be a fly on the wall while a trio of amazing artists talked about music, this one’s for you!

We have to start with Primus, because I did not expect such a huge reaction when you pulled Primus. 

Jacqueline: I have a deep love for Les Claypool, and I’m a little bit of a secret metalhead. Not a secret metalhead, but I love doom metal, and stoner metal, so I’ve seen Primus a few times, I’ve seen Les Claypool on his own a few times, and yeah, I just love some good stoner metal.

Did you guys know about this? 

Preston: Oh yeah.

Drew: We know about her stoner metal.

I saw Primus in the late ‘90s in Seattle, at KeyArena, and it was maybe the most intense mosh pit – actually, I think the Chili Peppers around that time, their mosh pit was maybe #1. There were people shooting 40 feet in the air. Literally, these people were just being launched – but the Primus mosh pit was one of the most intense mosh pits of my life.

Also, “Jimmy was a Race Car Driver” is kind of like a little bit of a theme song that’s in the back of my head all the time.

Preston: I’m the square of the group. I was never major into Primus, but for me the visual part of it, their videos, and just that out of your mind bass playing … I never bought a record, but anytime it was on TV I was glued to it.

And as soon as you hear that bass you know it’s them. 

Preston: Exactly. There’s no mistaking it.

So when are you guys covering a Primus song?

Jacqueline: Oh yeah. Something off Green Naugahyde, maybe? {laughs}

I know it’s not from that album, but if you guys break into “Wynona’s Big Brown Beaver” tonight I will laugh my ass off. 

Preston: That’s classic.

Remember how mad Wynona Ryder got about that? 

Jacqueline: I don’t, but she did?

She was not thrilled with that song. 

Drew: Was it really about her?

I’m not sure. 

Jacqueline: Wynona’s not a name you hear often.

Drew: It’s like when they say (Toto’s) “Rosanna” wasn’t written for Rosanna Arquette. It’s like, wasn’t David Paich dating her? Of course it’s written about her.

It’s like (claiming) “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” is about a picture that this kid drew. I mean, c’mon, fuck you, seriously. {laughs} Don’t patronize us.

Bonnie Raitt

Preston: I remember being attracted to her ...

Jacqueline: {giggles}

Drew: Preston’s a reverse cougar here.

Preston: She was a cougar when we were young.

Jacqueline: She still is!

Preston: But just the voice, and playing the guitar, for me … she was … I mean she is sexy.

Jacqueline: I’ve always wanted to cover “Thank You.” Not cover, but just try it on my own. We do “Angel From Montgomery,” and her rendition of “Angel From Montgomery” is phenomenal.

Drew: I’m doing a TED Talk this fall, and “I Can’t Make You Love Me” is one of the songs I cite in the talk as one of the best songs ever written. Bruce Hornsby on piano, the lyrics, the imagery, the emotion of that song …

Preston: It’s flawless. It gives me goosebumps.

Jacqueline: I have goosebumps, too.

If you’re in the right, or I guess technically wrong place it can really rip your heart out. It’s one of those songs. 

Group: Oh yeah.

Is your TED Talk on things that breaks our hearts? 

Drew: I guess there’s some heartbreaking in there.

Preston: When is that again?

Drew: September 23rd.

Why do you think we, as people, are so attracted to songs that make us so sad? 

Jacqueline: It doesn’t make us feel like we’re alone.

Drew: I say that in the talk!

When you can create that deep, raw emotion that others are going through, they feel like someone else is there with them going through the same thing. It brings people together.


Going from one, I guess powerful cougar, to another, we have Cher. Does anyone care to share anything about their youth? 

Preston: I remember seeing the music video where she’s in a …

“If I Could Turn Back Time.” 

Preston: Yeah, and thinking … I was too young to understand, but even then I was like, “Can I watch this?”

Jacqueline: I have always wanted Cher’s abs.

Also, her rendition of “Crimson and Clover” with Elijah Blue Allman, I fucking love that version of “Crimson and Clover!” That gives me an eruption of chills, and it was in A Walk on the Moon, and that soundtrack was one of my favorite albums when I was younger that my parents always listened to.

Drew: I’m gonna go with “Believe,” because I’m a big fan of artists that are able to reinvent themselves late in their careers, and have a big hit when they’re in their 50s, or 60s.

And she was enough to make David Geffen think he might have been straight. They dated for 18 months.

That’s a powerful woman right there.

Blues Traveler

Preston: I had (one of their albums) on tape, my dad got it for me. I remember when I first played it I was like – what am I listening to? The harmonica … I started playing guitar, and when you learn how to play guitar you want to play every note as fast as you can, it’s the coolest thing in the world, and then there’s this guy who’s playing the harmonica faster than you can imagine, and it just blew my mind.

And he’s still got it. 

Preston: He rips.

Drew: I will give (John Popper) credit for writing a song about songwriting, and actually making it a hit (“Hook”).

“The hook brings you back,” and it’s actually a great hook. That’s as ambitious as putting out a Greatest Hits album of unreleased material.

It’s like – we’re gonna write a hit called “Hook.” It better be a good hook.

Preston: It was.

And he does this thing (live) … he has this stage box with all his harmonicas in a case, and for every song he throws (the harmonica he just used into the crowd). If you’re in the front … if you’re standing in the middle, you’re gonna get a harmonica, which is gross, but also cool.

I was gonna say there’s a gross factor there since he just spent three and a half minutes spitting into it. 

Jacqueline: Catching it, spit just flies out of it.

Tone Loc

Jacqueline: Tone Loc … looks hot there.


Jacqueline: He’s in Venice, for sure.

The Bonnie Raitt, Tone Loc comments I was not expecting. 

Drew: And I’m Cher, so it’s a creep-fest all around. {laughs}

Preston: Growing up, my cousins and I, and my sister watched Ferngully. Actually, now, you look back, and it was a pretty radical environmental message, and Tone Loc voiced Goanna.

Jacqueline: Yeah, and “Funky Cold Medina” was dope.

Drew: He was (also) able to take a hook that had pretty much been retired, “Wild Thing,” a hook from back in the ‘60s, and make it so fresh that it didn’t seem like he was rebooting a hook, it seemed like it was a new “Wild Thing.”


Drew: I grew up in Seattle.

It’s not Soundgarden, but one of my favorite songs of that entire era is “Hunger Strike.” Chris Cornell, and Eddie Vedder, and the two voices aren’t competing at all, they’re both just amazing on their own.

Every time I go skiing, which is quite often, that’s the song I put on on the way to the mountain. It’s like my big theme song.

Those big high notes at the end, Chris Cornell, holy shit.

Preston: I had the cassette tape of Superunknown, and I had my Walkman playing it nonstop. I learned every single guitar note.

Jacqueline: So you can put this in the category of gorgeousness – Chris Cornell, such a babe. Major crush.

For more of The Dales, check out


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