Beyond the Boys’ Club is a monthly column from journalist and radio host Anne Erickson, focusing on women in the heavy music genres, as they offer their perspectives on the music industry and discuss their personal experiences. Erickson is also a music artist herself and recently released a new single, “Scars,” with Upon Wings. This month’s piece features an interview with singer Dorothy.
Dorothy (full name Dorothy Martin) has crafted the album she always wanted to create with Gifts from the Holy Ghost. The set highlights Dorothy’s powerful, emotive vocals, as she sings about breaking free from oppression, saying farewell to demons and maintaining power in an uncertain world.
The name of the new album is inspired in part from a wild experience Dorothy had on a tour bus three years ago. After her guitar technician had an overdose, Dorothy started praying for him to make it through. While they believe he temporarily died, the technician was brought back to life. That experience and brush with divine intervention provided the early inspiration for the songs on Gifts from the Holy Ghost.
Gifts from the Holy Ghost will arrive on April 22 via Roc Nation. Today (March 24th), Dorothy announced the full track list of the set and shared a new single, “Black Sheep,” which can be streamed below, along with first single “Rest in Peace.”
Dorothy recently kicked off an extensive US tour that runs through a May 27th gig at the BottleRock festival in Napa Valley, California. Tickets for her upcoming shows are available via Ticketmaster.
Ahead of the release, Dorothy checked in with Heavy Consequence for the latest edition of “Beyond the Boys’ Club,” discussing the new album, her experience as a woman in the heavy music world, and much more. Read the interview below, and pre-order Gifts from the Holy Ghost here.
Congrats on your upcoming album, Gifts from the Holy Ghost. Tell me about the story behind the lead single, “Rest in Peace,” and why you chose to release it as the first taste of the new album.
It’s the first single, and I had the incredible honor of doing that song with Scott Stevens of Four Horsemen. I usually co-write everything, but for this album, I took a couple of songs from other writers that were all finished, because they were so powerful. I did the vocals in one day in a studio in Los Angeles and felt it was a strong performance and a good song to lead the album.
What’s the meaning behind the title Gifts from the Holy Ghost?
The way I have interpreted it myself – and everyone is free to interpret it any way they want – but it sounds like a breakup song to me. It sounds like someone talking about a relationship. But, for me, being an artist in recovery, it also felt it was a F-you letter to my alcoholism. It’s like, I’m done with this battle and dark season and struggle and am going to bury it in the ground and grow and become stronger for it. It’s one of those songs that you can make your own. It means so much to different people.
What has the fan response been like to the first single?
It’s been awesome! People have been calling into radio stations saying how much they love it. It’s really good getting a lot of support from radio, which is very nice. I’m so very humbled by the response.
How would you say this album differs from what you’ve released with the band in the past?
I think on this album, it was at very strange time. We had 2020 happen, and it’s been so long since I had put out music, and I felt like I was falling behind a little. But, I didn’t let that year stop me. I was safe about it but got together with different guitar players and friends of mine and producers and songwriters, and we started compiling this album. I didn’t really have a lot of input from external sources.
How would you describe the overall musical style of Gifts from the Holy Ghost?
I followed my intuition and leaned more into hard rock. It’s an eclectic album with a lot of great writers on it. Some of the best songs came at the last minute, like “Rest in Peace” came at the very end as we were wrapping up. My intention for this album was to bring hope and light and inspiration to people but but also make a really fun rock ‘n’ roll record and do it my way.
You do have such an eclectic sound. Who are some of your early musical influences?
There are so many, really. Michael Jackson. The Rolling Stones. Aerosmith. I always really loved classic rock blues. I grew up singing jazz and country. I’ve listened to everything. I love the ’90s and ’90s West Coast Hip-Hop and ’90s grunge and alternative. I wanted to absorb all the music I could.