We had the good fortune of connecting with Clint Rater and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Clint, what habits do you feel helped you succeed?
Any day that I’m not working my day job at the vet clinic, I get up early, feed my kitties, brew coffee, and work on music. Whether that’s writing, recording, listening, promo, etc., making strides to create is my favorite habit. Now that I’m at the helm of my solo project, Danara Pel, I have more freedom to express myself and it’s very liberating to work on my own schedule. Now I can spend as much or as little time as I want creating new things and THAT is probably my best habit for success.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’ve been playing in bands since I was 15 and while many of those experiences were the most fun I’ve EVER had, I never felt that I could truly get my feelings out through the music I was making in those projects. Now that I’m releasing my music through this new outlet, I can show the world who I am while coping with life’s tragedies and triumphs. To me, the whole point of art is to make something accessible and beautiful out of pain and banality. When you play my songs, that is 100% me coming through with all the imperfections, scars, and rough edges you most likely won’t see no matter how long you’ve known me. Danara Pel is a conduit for my fears, regrets, joys, and laments to be shared with the world through as many genres and styles as I see fit. No limits, rules, or expectations to be met. Just me, my collaborators, and everything I’ve ever felt poured onto warm tape and served with a side of pop sensibility. When I was a youngster, I’d stay in my room for hours with my headphones on but I was never alone. Everyone from John Lennon to Ann Wilson and The Isley Brothers were my companions. They were teaching me and helping me. If I can do that for ONE kid in their room with their headphones on, I will die a happy man.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
First of all, I live in the heart of beautiful Montrose so we would spend the first few days visiting the Menil Collection and park, spending sunny afternoons at West Alabama Ice House ( until midnight when we’d move across the street to TK Bitterman’s ). I’d want to show them the prairies of Katy ( my hometown ), the industrial excitement of Francisco Studios, and while we are on the east side, we would definitely hang out at Moontower, Bohemeo’s and go see a Dynamo or Dash game at BBVA Compass Stadium. A dinner at Rudyard’s followed by a live performance would be choice especially on a cool evening. Real Tex Mex would be an absolute must. We would definitely spend one of the days feeling bougie in the Heights. Most likely hanging out on 19th street at Vinal Edge and Boomtown Coffee before going down to White Oak Bayou to look at the skyline. Most importantly, I’d want to show them that Houston is diverse and that’s what makes us great. A drive down Emancipation and a stroll on the campuses of UH, Rice, TSU, and St. Thomas would show them that we are a cultured and inclusive city. And of course, we would be listening to KTRU Rice Radio the whole time. One of Houston’s many treasures. I know I’ve left a lot out but that only goes to show the VASTNESS of this incredible city. What makes it the best though? The people. Houston has every type of person you could imagine and we have always had each other’s backs. Y’all come back now, ya hear?
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many people that have helped me along the way and this seems like a nearly impossible question to answer! That being said, I’ll list some of the artists that have shown me support and inspiration through friendship and love: Daniel Johnston and The Johnston Family Jody Seabody & The Whirls Funeral Horse Imposterboys Lotus Affair Cellars Jessi Bowman Artificial Head Records Meow Mew Recordings Jon Black My apologies to any I neglected to mention. I love you all.
Jessi Bowman Bobbie Sue Schindler