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From the city of Ruston to the city of angels

January 30, 2014

 

St. Marie and Dauzet enjoy returning to perform at bars in Ruston where their journey to success began. – Photo by Devin Dronett

St. Marie and Dauzet enjoy returning to perform at bars in Ruston where their journey to success began. – Photo by Devin Dronett

Paul Harris
Staff Reporter

 

Tiptoe steps usually do not yield extreme gains.

 

Louisiana Tech graduates Mat Dauzat and Heather St. Marie took a leap of faith landing them in Los Angeles, the city of angels, chasing a dream rooted in Ruston. Dauzat said he and St. Marie started playing acoustic shows at a coffee shop on open-mic night.

 

“We would play as a duo before we tried to assemble our band together,” Dauzat said.

 

He said the band was one of the reasons a stage was built at Rabb’s (now Revelry).

 

“The stage was built and we were able to put on some really enjoyable shows while we were here at Tech,” Dauzat said.

 

St. Marie said they wanted to start performing elsewhere and expand their fan base.

 

“We would spontaneously drive out to Los Angeles to go perform at the Whiskey and then have to drive back,” St.

 

Marie said. “It was worth it though because we began to make connections out there.”

 

The connections made there changed their lives, St. Marie said.

 

“On one of those spontaneous trips to L.A., members from Limp Bizkit were present and really dug Mat so when Wes Borland left the band they specifically asked Mat to come audition to replace him,” St. Marie said.

 

Unfortunately, due to scheduling conflicts, Dauzat was unable to meet with them, but they remained in contact. Following graduation, their local band separated and he and St. Marie had to make a choice.

 

“We weren’t ready to give up on this thing so we decided to take that leap, drop everything to move out to California to give it a full shot,” Dauzat said.

 

They got back in touch with their Limp Bizkit contact and an opportunity presented itself.

 

“We arrived in L.A. on a Tuesday and Mat got hooked up with an audition on Thursday,” St. Marie said. “The audition just happened to be an opening for a bass player for Kelly Osborne.”

 

St. Marie said Kelly and Sharon Osborne fell in love with Dauzat’s playing and his look and he was chosen.

 

“So within two days of us getting there Mat is on with Kelly Osborne and left on a world tour three weeks later,” St. Marie said.

 

She said after Dauzat’s world tour more connections were made in the music industry.

 

“We were at a party with the Osbornes and Robert Trujillo (bass player for Metallica) was there, and he introduced us to Shawnee Smith; she was looking for someone that could play guitar and mandolin,” St. Marie said. “We told her that Mat could play both, so she came to check us out.”

 

St. Marie said Smith loved what she heard and took their music to a friend of hers who was producing an independent film at the time.

 

“The movie turned out to be ‘Saw,’” St. Marie said.

 

“They loved our music and asked us to write a song that would be a part of the movie.”

 

Their song, “Killer Inside,” was featured on the movie “Saw III.”

 

“Sometimes I ask myself is this really happening to us,” St. Marie said. “Kelly and I played acoustic guitar together at the Playboy Mansion for its 50th birthday, and after that I am sitting with Sharon Osborne and Anna Nicole Smith thinking how surreal it is.”

 

Dauzat and St. Marie recently came back to Ruston to perform at Sundown.

 

“It’s probably our favorite thing to do to come back to Ruston and play for this town,” Dauzat said. “It keeps us grounded because it’s really cool to come back and play for your friends. We’ve been all over the world, but shows like this are some of our favorites.”

 

Both musicians received graphic design degrees while studying at Tech.

 

“We both have a fall-back plan because of our degrees, but no one has ever really done anything big by taking tiptoe steps, so I say dive in fully to anything you have passion for and pursue it all out,” St. Marie said.

 

Email comments to phh007@latech.edu.

 

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