Editor's Note: The Vim Dicta is one of three finalists in L.A. Weekly's Best Live Band contest, with a winner to be chosen later this month by our panel of experts. Read about our other finalists, Mars and the Massacre and Yoya.

Our third, and final, best live band finalist are the groovy, psychedelic, hard-rocking The Vim Dicta.

They're doing well for themselves, having contributed a song to Sons of Anarchy, and picked up a number of equipment sponsors (yay, free gear!). You can check them out in our original video, below. 


It all started when Cori Elliott met Matt Tunney at Coachella 2010. Elliott (lead vocals, bass, rhythm guitar) had been writing folk songs alone in her bedroom. Since relocating from Austin, Elliott was searching for someone to write with.

“He brought another musical side out of me,” Elliott says of lead guitarist Tunney, who was mentored by master guitarist Leo Nocentelli of power funk band The Meters.

“The backbone of my guitar work is funk,” Tunney says.

They came together, and, through a long and complicated process, decided to name themselves The Vim Dicta. “I thought 'The Vim Dicta' was very strong, strange and mysterious,” says Elliott. “They are also Latin rooted words meaning 'energy' and 'factual statements,' which in some ways goes with our music.” 

While touring in New York with a drummer who wasn't working out, Elliott and Tunney put an ad up on Craigslist titled, “Serious Opportunity, We Don't Have Time To F*ck Around!” 

They weren't kidding.

Burned out on the nearly 30 gigs a week he was playing as a freelance musician, drummer Chris Infusino responded. When the Vim Dicta's manager called him the same morning, he figured they would set up an audition a few days later. Nope. “We're filming for Live On Letterman tomorrow,” he was told. “I'm sending a car to pick you up in 40 minutes.”

Infusino's personal progressive rock influences were thrown into the mix with Elliot's folk and blues leanings and Tunney's funk background.

“We all gelled amazingly immediately,” Infusino says. “Our first time playing was as if we'd been playing for 10 years.”

It's this compelling collision of musical worlds that makes the Vim Dicta one of our finalists in the Best Live Band contest. They've got a strong, mysterious energy (suggested by their name) that Elliott believes draws in audiences.

“We are a very 'feel' oriented band,” she says. “We love the idea that the same song will be different every night.”

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