The Dig comes to Pittsburgh

By Larissa Gula

The Dig

Mr. Small’s

March 20

8 p.m.


(412)… The Dig

Mr. Small’s

March 20

8 p.m.


(412) 821-4447

Rock ’n’ roll isn’t all parties, girls and booze. In fact, sometimes it’s Ramen noodle dinners and part-time jobs. New York rock band The Dig can tell you that.

To stay afloat and keep making music, the band resorted to having yard sales, teaching music lessons and pedaling merchandise to get the money to record its album.

But despite financial obstacles, The Dig put out its album and made it on tour, during which it will stop in Pittsburgh tomorrow night, opening for Portugal. The Man at Mr. Small’s Funhouse.

For The Dig, opening for the popular alternative band is a great opportunity to get its name out there.

“It’s a big challenge,” guitarist Emile Mosseri said. “We were playing in New York for years, and we’re still always working to build our fan base up. There’s so many bands out there. It’s a big challenge. We’re starting to branch out more and play all over the country. You tour with great bands who attract people. We have to pick people up one at a time, but every time you play, you get your name out there. We’re just starting to be part of these tours and great shows.”

New York’s music scene and the band members’ growing up listening to Nirvana, Talking Heads and Dave Matthews made a notable influence on The Dig’s music. The band’s new album, Electric Toys, puts a contemporary spin on its influence from its early ’90s predecessors.

The Dig is made of band members David Baldwin (guitars and vocals), Mosseri (bass and vocals), Erick Eiser (keyboards and guitar) and Jamie Alegre (drums).

Mosseri said he loves the upcoming record, on which half of the recorded songs are stories that “are not autobiographical, but experiences and some imagination” combined.

Touring and playing in a new place every night has become Mosseri’s favorite part of band life. Being on tour also allows greater support for The Dig overall.

“The more we play, the more we have a chance to sell a CD and T-shirts,” Mosseri said. “We’ve been able to keep our head above the water by selling merchandise. People and fans support us.”

But whether its pedaling tunes, merchandise or old lamps to make ends meet, The Dig isn’t in the music business to make a fortune.

“You try to make as much an impact as you can to have money for gas and BLTs,” Mosseri said.

Even if money is tight for The Dig, music is in the members’ blood.

“It doesn’t seem like there’s ever an option for anything else,” Mosseri said. “We’ve always been playing, so I don’t think anyone has any other plan or knows anything else.”

While on tour, The Dig is recording an EP for future release, using works the band composed on the road.

“We’re recording in motels,” Mosseri said. “Any city we’re in [for] two nights, we get some equipment to record in the rooms. Hopefully by the end of the tour, we’ve have six or eight EPs of songs we’ve been writing.”