With all the changes in popular music over the decades, the stereotypes about being…
- Posted on Mar 22nd 2012 2:30PM by Robert Ham
In Music We Trust
"I woke up in a hotel room in Tacoma, Washington, and the shameful events of the night before were finally coming back to me," Shubaly tells Spinner. "I was listening to voicemails saying, 'The manager at the bar said you broke this table and Doug's going to have to pay for it.'"
The 35-year-old musician pauses to catch his breath, reeling a bit from the memories of that fateful night.
"I remember watching this documentary about Evel Knievel and he was talking about how he noticed that after a while, the applause was louder when he missed the jump than when he landed the jump. I realized that people weren't going to be satisfied until I was dead."
Sober for two years now, Shubaly's prospects have improved in leaps and bounds since he finally decided to put down the bottle. He's written three wildly popular Kindle Singles for Amazon, including 'Shipwrecked,' a hilarious and harrowing non-fiction tale of getting marooned on a Caribbean island, and a tragicomic modern love story called 'Are You Lonesome Tonight?'
Shubaly's music career is on the rise, as well. He is gearing up to release his third album -- the pointedly titled 'I Can't Drink' -- this summer and just recently debuted a new song 'A Death in Greenpoint' on the website for Wreck Room Records. Available for free download, Shubaly also made a video for the dark, bluesy track featuring a very familiar face playing drums: 'Entourage' star Adrian Grenier.
"In '98 or '99, he was just one of the heads hanging out," Shubaly says of his famous friend. "He played drums in a couple of bands and lived in a crappy apartment on Grand Street. But when I was bar backing and living in bars, Adrian was working on his craft and hustling and working very hard."
Wreck Room is a venture that Grenier started up to support his musical efforts and those of his talented friends, providing them with studio time and an outlet to get their music heard. "He's grateful for his success and he realizes that not everyone has had that success," says Shubaly. "He wants to get back and make a contribution."
But is it a blessing or a curse to have such a famous benefactor?
"Inevitably a lot of Dogstar jokes get made," Shubaly says, referencing Keanu Reeves' ill-fated attempt at rock stardom. "This is the thing: I don't know Adrian as an actor. I know him as a friend and fellow musician. He was one of the drummers that was available. If his putting his name on it makes it so people listen to my music who wouldn't otherwise, then great. If people are going to write me off because of my association with him, then f--- 'em, I don't need those people. He doesn't need those people. I've lived most of the last 35 years not being thought of at all, so if people think of me as a novelty, that's a huge step up."