Zaano is a collaborative Alternative Rock project lead by Los Angeles based singer, songwriter and producer Brandon Zano. The band made their professional recording debut in 2017 with the full length album “Prequel.” Since then the group has released a remix EP and four subsequent singles.
“I Do What I Want” is the latest single from Zaano, released worldwide to all major streaming services on February 8, 2022. The track is the band’s first new music since their critically-acclaimed, all-star, Pandemic benefit track “It’s Gonna Be Okay.” It is the lead single from the group’s forthcoming EP “The Salton Sea.”
Riding on a chilled Indie Rock groove, ethereal guitars and ambient synths create a mellow West Coast vibe. Meanwhile Zaano delivers a laid-back meditation on his ‘let the chips fall where they may” life philosophy. On the track he is joined by a group of A-list musicians including; drummer Brett Weir (ex-Downplay), bassist Tom Davis (Nebula), vocalist Lindsay Manfredi (Cold), vocalist Hanna Searl, keyboardist Joel Stites and multi-instrumentalist Breyer White who also shared production, engineering and mixing duties.
The song’s video was written and directed by Zano and cameraman Zack Shada. The short film stars Perry Polito as an anti-social boozer on a bender. Along the way he encounters a series of innocent bystanders played by actors Richy Mike, Taylor Chapman and Lacey Magee, all of whom are friends and neighbors of Zano.
Check out Zaano’s “I Do What I Want” video below. You can also hear the song on the Deep Indie Dive playlist or listen on your favorite streaming service. We had the chance to chat with Brandon about Zaano, “I Do What I Want” and the upcoming EP “The Salton Sea.” Check out his answers to our 8 questions below. Follow the links below to connect with the band and get in the loop on all of their new music to come.
8 Questions with Brandon Zano (Zaano)
Where are you from?
Most of my family and I are all from Detroit, Michigan originally. My dad had a job where we moved around a lot, so I lived in a lot of different places. I ended up in Cleveland, Ohio for high school, which is where I stayed for about 20+ years after that. So, Cleveland is definitely my home but I’ve lived in LA for about a quarter of my life now.
How long have you been making music?
I started really getting into punk rock around 15 years old. So, my best friend down the street and I started a band together. He got a drum set and I got a guitar and that was pretty much the start of everything. I never looked back after that. So, that would be about 27 years I’ve been playing music?
Who are the musicians involved in your project?
Oh geez. It’s kind of a long story but I’ll try to keep it as short as possible.
The last record I did was a three-piece (which I haven’t released yet) and, for the most part, was done with me and our drummer Brett. For this record, I wanted to do something different so I got a lot of different people involved to have more of a “band” feel. The first person I called was Breyer White (who is an amazing up and coming producer). He was in a band called “Servant/ Servant/ Slave” with another guy named Jesse Smith (ex- Zao), who I had been really good friends with for a long time, and actually produced a record for in 2015.
So, I got them involved and then I called up our bass player Tom Davies (Nebula), who had just recently moved to Joshua tree, to see if we could do the recording at his studio. After he agreed, our long-time drummer Brett Weir flew in and we all went out to the desert for a week to see what we could come up with. We got two songs tracked and written there, then we came home and continued to write and record the rest of the E.P. in my studio in Hollywood. We, then, enlisted my best buddy Lindsay Manfredi (Cold) to do some vocals and brought on Joel Stites to add keys, which changed EVERYTHING.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
As a producer, obviously, my musical influences are all over the place. The first person I can really remember freaking out over is Michael Jackson as a little kid and as I got older more punk and hardcore stuff. I’ve always been more of a “Rock” guy, but always loved artists spanning from Bjork and Portishead to A Tribe Called Quest and a lot of 90s R&B. That, to me, is the best decade of music all around. But anything that is “sexy” or has a hard-ass groove is where I’ve been at for a long time now.
What is your greatest non-musical influence?
Probably alcohol and pot ha ha. I’m a California dude for sure.
What inspired you to create this project?
As I said before, we did a record a few years back that I haven’t released. At the time, I had just moved back to LA and it took a long time for things to click. So, at that time we wanted to write a really aggressive “Dance Punk” record. But after I’d been here for a few years and settled in, I decided I wanted to do something a lot less aggressive. Something you can put on when you just want to hit a bowl and chill.
What are your plans for the future (musically)?
Next, I have a cover coming out for the song “I Only Have Eyes For You,” by The Flamingos, which I’m really happy with. I’ve loved that song since I was a kid and it just felt like the right time to do it, since it fit the vibe so well. After that, just finishing the final mixes for the rest of the album, Salton Sea, which will be out sometime probably mid- summer. I’m also really busy producing/ co-writing with other artists in my “baby studio,” which makes me so happy.
Is there anything else you would like to say?
We did a sick video for “I Do What I Want” that I’m so stoked about. I wrote and directed it and My chick Selena edited it with our friend Zack Shada, who handled the camera. The main actor is my good friend Perry Polito, who absolutely killed the roll. All the actors actually live in our building in Hollywood and we shot it in and around where we all live. It’s on our YouTube page. Thank you so much for the interview!
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