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- Posted on Mar 15th 2010 5:30PM by Stefanie Schwartz
How did the band form?
I don't know that this is something Thurston Moore's ever done before. This is something that he put together and he just invited me to play that day, and I'm really looking forwards to it. Thurston's been a very kind friend for many years. Don Fleming's been a good friend for many years. Allison, the drummer from Awesome Color, she's been a good friend since when I actually still lived in Michigan, so even before I moved to New York. J Mascis I got to meet maybe three years ago, so it's exciting to be corresponding with him. I just feel very grateful to be playing with these gentlemen and lady, and to be able to make music with them is a great pleasure.
Can you describe the sound in your own words?
Well, we're just a cover band. Thurston has selected a very exciting list of songs by many different punk and hardcore bands, and we're gonna be performing those. It isn't what I would call a tradition band, nor is it a side project. It's a group of people getting together to perform a specific set of songs we all really love, for this very special party that is happening in Austin. This is not a band as it's traditionally known. This is a specific celebration of a particular type of music that we all really love and feel privileged to get to perform together for this very special musical festival. It's more of an ensemble or an event. Musicians should be able to play together without it suddenly being a band, but at the same time it's hard to really refer to it without giving it a name.
How did you settle on the name Demolished Thoughts?
Originally he was gonna call the band Society's Ills, but then he changed the name -- I think he just thought those words were better.
I see that you're playing a bunch of solo shows as well as with Demolished Thoughts -- how do you survive a festival like SXSW?
It's going to be a very busy trip, and I'm taking advantage of all the opportunities to play for different kinds of people. I've always enjoyed it, but this will be the busiest I've ever been. The important thing is to get as much rest as you can, and it's kind of like running a marathon in that you're not living like this every day, so you definitely want to pace yourself but also push yourself. You're doing a whole bunch, and it's going to be very demanding, but it's a concentrated amount of time. Be prepared to push yourself further than you normally do, and the adrenaline and excitement of the opportunity itself will be enough to give you that motivation.
Is there anybody you're looking forwards to checking out?
I don't know that I'll have time, but I'm very excited to see Gwar. The one thing I've noticed about SXSW is that traditionally it's more rock, but I'm interested to see if I can find more hip-hop or electronic music. To me, the best rap has been coming from the southern regions and the Bay Area, so I'm hoping that will be represented.
Beatles or Stones?
I've probably heard more of the Beatles' music over the years, but ... I can't choose -- there's no reason to choose! It's not that I couldn't do it, but you don't have to. You could have 100 favorite bands, and you can like them all equally.
Who was your first celebrity crush?
I think it was Jo from 'The Facts of Life' ... She was a little tough girl. I liked her because she reminded me of my big sisters, but she was sort of a combination of an older brother and an older sister. She had a lot of male qualities, but she was undeniably a beautiful woman. She wasn't like the other pretty girls on the show, like Blair for example, who was just annoying. Her attitude was all wrong. Jo was someone I could actually imagine hanging out with; her toughness made her more likeable, where the other girls who were more traditionally pretty or carried themselves in a more feminine way. That was more intense and scary to me. Jo also seemed like she was from the city, and I was always into people who seemed like they were from the city.
What's the craziest thing you've seen or experienced on the road?
The craziest experience we ever had on tour was when we had a bus driver who had a drug addiction, and he had to be fired because he was a very dangerous driver. He wasn't sleeping at all during the day, so when he was driving at night he was overtired, and we eventually had to drive the bus for him. The whole reason you hire a driver is because ... I mean, we don't know how to drive the bus! This guy was really incapacitated, and when we fired him he really freaked out! He said "I'm the best bus driver in the world!" We said, you know, we can't keep driving the bus for you, so he stormed off and we were just relieved he was gone. We got a new bus driver and everything was great - until a few weeks later when we got a call from the bus company asking if we'd heard from the driver. We said "What do you mean? We fired him two weeks ago!" They said they hadn't found him or the bus since then, and apparently he'd driven off in the bus and disappeared. They ended up finding him a crackhouse just outside of Dallas, and the bus a few miles outside of that on the side of the highway with the insides completely torn out. I guess it was gutted or salvaged. Um, that was probably the wildest thing that ever happened, which isn't really that wild I guess.
Do you have any vices on the road?
To be honest, I've not really done a lot of the crazy stuff that people do on tour. It sounds fun, but also a little scary to me. During my time I haven't really chosen to spend my time doing that stuff, because here we are with this amazing opportunity and I don't want to blow it and not be able to play shows or do this anymore. What's really important to me is playing concerts and being there with the audience and putting on the best show I can. As far as having crazy fun times, that IS the fun stuff for me -- playing the shows and doing the work, so I try to direct all my energy towards that, so the drama, the craziness, the violence, the danger, the accidents, the sex -- all the stuff that could be fun but very quickly could eliminate your options elsewhere -- those things haven't appealed to me as much.
Do you have any musical guilty pleasures?
No, do you? I mean, how do you decide when to feel guilty about something you like? I figure if I like it, that's a great blessing to have something to like! I could understand feeling guilty if it was something that really harmed someone, and I still did it and felt bad about it, but when it comes to something as fun and light-hearted as music? I mean, music doesn't really cause physical harm to anyone, besides maybe listening too loud and damaging your hearing. If we get pleasure from music, that's just a miracle, and I wouldn't want to question it or doubt it or feel guilty about it.