ABQ Green Room
Zia Zine Issue 1 September 2018
By Maggie Cooksey
The evolution of this project has progressed more than I imagined in the past couple of months and I feel it necessary to take this more seriously than I ever intended. I’ve met many people on this path and it only makes me feel like your spirit is living vicariously through me. This issue goes out to my mother, Erika, because the passion you had for others burns brightly within me. You always wanted to hear the stories of others and you were familiar and accepting with almost every walk of life. It wasn’t about preference, status, personality, It was about having a good time with others that had the same idea in mind. These were people that were part of your life for the whole ride. Regardless of how short it was.
I never imagined myself being such an embodiment of you, especially after you being gone for so many years now. So many people would tell me that I either looked just like you or had your personality. Something I denied while growing up. I can’t believe I discredited being just like one of the most incredible people in my life. I refused to accept the things you enjoyed and denied your greatness only because I was so naïve and poorly impressionable in my young age. Every friend I had growing up would always say, “Wow, your mom is so awesome!” and, regretfully, at the time I failed to see that. It was foolish, and I feel like the only time I was able to express my regret about that was when you weren’t even conscious enough to hear those words. But I mean everything I said that day. I love you so much, and I can never take back who I was then. The only time I remember expressing such emotion was when I was on a heroic dose of mushrooms. You laughed at me, but it was because I was an emotional puddle of ooze. I kept you up all night - such a memorable night for me. We were never in the right place to truly express how much we meant to each other, other than the summer before your passing. No words, the only gesture I could put forth was spending quality time with you.You were sober and it was a genuinely positive experience. It kills me that those are the only valuable memories I can cling onto. But I hope you know that I’m doing what needs to be done now. And It’s the most incredible experience. Being just like you is the thing I’m proudest to be. Not the person I was when you were alive. But many great things always come a day late. Or in my case, years late. I just wish you could see this now. If you were here, who even knows if it’d be the same thing. Either way, This is the fate that’s been pitched to me. And I hope I can embody your true transcendence.
“If we burn our wings flying too close to the sun If the moment of glory is over before it's begun If the dream is won though everything is lost We will pay the price, but we will not count the cost” -Rush: “Bravado”, Lyrics by Neil Peart.
P.S. Fuck Philip John Clifford. Thank you for never being a part of my life. I never want to know what aspects of your personality I embody, and If there’s a hell, it’s the acknowledgement of that truth. And a huge fucking thank you to: Herbert & Patsi Grossman, Doug Langholf, Steph Hewitt, Shaun Grossman, David Sanchez, Roy & Carolyn Sanchez, and family. Thanks to my Podcast Co-Host, Isaac Flowerday. My dear friends, old and new, Alex Sizemore, Monique Lucero, Jesselee Armijo, Cristina Rose, Kenneth Fender, Sean Chavez, Steven Gonzales, Anthony Garafalo, Shannon Osborne, Darren Britt, Angie Thrace, Ben Trent (1988-2017), Krystin Kurtz, Not Mike You, Mike Trujillo, and anyone else that has contributed to this zine or my life in a positive way. Love and thanks to you.
A QUARTERLY PROJECT ISSUE I, SEPTEMBER-NOVEMBER
Welcome to Zia Zine, an independent project, created for the love of musical performance and other forms of art! This project's evolution began over a couple of years ago, mostly in the form of jokes and hypothetical toss-around ideas. After some time, the joke was over, this project really called to us and demanded our attention. It became apparent that this was something that NEEDED to be done. We were losing touch with ourselves as artists, and we needed to pursue the local scene that we’ve always been passionate about. Before this, life became a series of weekly deadlines and only a little bit of fun in between, which desperately needed to change. Attending local shows and embracing DIY culture has always been important to us. We've also been artists for the better part of our lives. Exposure to other zines only amplified the desire to create our very own. We wanted to encapsulate our experiences into a quarterly publication. Of course, diving into the influential aspects of drug culture downtown can only have its kicks for so long. It became time to make ourselves useful. We had very little knowledge about zines and making them. But it became effortless, It's just artistic freedom and basic use of a copy machine. The rest is what you make of it. What greater start than covering the under-exposed Albuquerque music scene!? The time for this has become ideal and we can't wait to see where this takes all of us! We found this to be the best outlet for now, and we dream that it falls into the right hands and that others can enjoy this project as well. It's also worth mentioning the importance of the title we decided upon.
The folks here at Zia Zine find it extremely notable to mention that our name is not simply a catchy title. The Zia is a very prominent symbol. It is a representation of the Sun, originating from the indigenous Zia tribe of New Mexico. The four lines that cross, emerging from the center each represent the following:
-Stages of life
-The periods of each day
Us locals may only see it as a sun symbol, or as the symbol represented on our state flag, but It holds great importance to indigenous tribes and New Mexicans alike. another significant facet of the Zia symbol is recognizing the sacred obligations one must develop. Something we hope to strive for and live by.... Strong body, clear mind, pure spirit, and the devotion of welfare to others. With that said, please enjoy our first issue!
-The Zia Zine Team
INTERVIEW WITH KRIS KERBY OF ICUMDRUMS
JULY 5TH, 2018
It was a pleasantly humid afternoon, and I decided to leave work pretty early. Once I made my way downtown, heavy drops of rain were falling intermittently. Great, because I forgot to water. It was a relief from the obnoxious July heat.
Pre-interview music on the way: Pailhead, a group recommended to me by the owner of Astro Zombies.
I showed up at Sister a little early and attempted to strike up some small talk with the bouncer about a flyer on the counter, to no amusement. The ad was a really nicely designed decal for Kactus Kids, an art show with Sam Flores & Mike Giant.
Kris comes out of the kitchen. He had me waiting for a few minutes, which is fine, it gave me just enough time to get settled in. Him and I grabbed a booth for a quick interview...He was in the closing hours of his shift in the kitchen. He's leaving New Mexico soon, so I feel like I was in the right place at the right time. I don’t know how I find myself that lucky....
For those of you unaware of the excellence of ICUMDRUMS, the best description I’ve come across is a "One Man Percussion Apocalypse." A crushing, intensity-fueled concoction of distorted and layered sound. Catching him live is a special treat. Not only is Kris great to talk to, he's also got an incredible performance to bear witness to...
ZZ: What are some of the most influential/interesting &/or supportive artists that you've worked with?
KK: Black Pus (aka Brian Chippendale, from Lightning Bolt) is a number one influence, for sure. Raven Chacon, really inspirational guy, helps me out a lot, too.
ZZ: I notice you've been doing a lot of covers lately. What covers did you enjoy the most?
KK: I guess the easiest cover I just did was that Pantera one (title track of their album, The Great Southern Trendkill). The one I enjoyed the most was probably Queens of the Stone Age ("Song for the Dead," from their 2002 album, Songs for the Deaf. He's also covered The Mars Volta, At the Drive in, Leeches of Lore, and others.)
ZZ: Do you have another album in the works?
KK: I guess...Not necessarily an album, but I'm trying to make new music often, and making music right now, so....
ZZ: Awesome, so how do you feel about the reception for Castle (2017 ICUMDRUMS album, available on iTunes, Spotify, and probably other streaming services - I also saw a few copies of his cassette available at Arise Music & Coffee downtown) what kind of feedback do you receive?
KK:......I thought it was good (laughs) I was just talking about this the other day, I haven’t got any negative feedback, and I really wish I did...I want more critical reception....
We briefly discussed seeking growth, and how getting pure rave reviews aren’t necessarily a good thing...even a small nudge of criticism can lead you in a different direction, while not throwing you off course!
ZZ: What's your favorite track to perform live?
KK: "Castle," the title track, it’s the easiest one to do.
ZZ: So I've seen you play at Gold House and other venues, Considering most of your performances are entirely solo, (a really impressive sight) how do you add effects? Do you produce those sounds yourself?
KK: Yeah, I do everything live, so nothing is backtracked, I run a contact mic from my bass drum, out to a synthesizer, and then out to guitar pedals, which is where I get all the crazy sound from. I mess with the guitar pedals live, adding delays and stuff.
ZZ: So where do the vocals come from?
KK: Oh yeah, I try to sing, (Lilah Rose also has vocals featured on the album) But I also run a contact mic through my bandanna, into delay pedals as well. It's better, so I can hide my face.
ZZ: Any upcoming stuff we should keep an eye out for (As far as your music career)?
KK: There's some albums that I recorded recently that are going to come out soon, I just recorded some stuff with Monica Demarco.
ZZ: I know you did a European tour with Russian Girlfriends and also filled in for Prism Bitch. Will that happen again? Would you tour with them again?
KK: I would definitely play with both bands again. Though Russian Girlfriends only have me playing, you know, IF they need me, and they also have somebody else right now.
ZZ: I see, you only fill in when they absolutely need you, that must be challenging, I mean, how do you fill in those shoes.
KK: Yeah, it's terrifying sometimes, for that European tour, it took me about three months to work on those parts. That drummer (Sasha Horn of Russian Girlfriends, currently touring worldwide with Exhorder) is insane, definitely one of the best drummers in town. I STILL couldn't get his parts right, I improvised to make it the best I could.
ZZ: What other bands have you played with, aside from the groups we discussed?
KK: Well the one with an album coming out is called Cthulha, I’ve played with Sabertooth Cavity (Post Punk Prog band, disbanded in 2012), Knife City, Sean Lucy, Less My Heart Dies, Death for the Well Dressed, Lilah Rose, Leeches of Lore, & Tenderizor.
ZZ: Artist you like that you'd care to share with us?
KK: I'm in love with True Widow right now. And I love Chelsea Wolfe, She's great.
(I let him know about the band before her Solo career, Red Host, Chelsea is also playing a show at Sister with Russian Circles, Sunday September 30th.) Kris and I continued to talk for a while, I asked him about being under the influence during shows, he says a couple beers help to get the nerves down, and that’s about all he does. Back in the Sabertooth days, he told me he would enjoy getting really stoned, we talked about how these days, it’s not a preference. however, at the time it was a lot of fun. Though it was a short interview, it was nice to talk inside Sister with an unexpected techno beat in the background, and a little bit of rainfall. He told me that him and his gal Lilah Rose are going to be moving soon. I hope to see them again before they go, I also hope to catch Prism Bitch & ICUMDRUMS again someday in the future. Best wishes to him!
INTERVIEW WITH MIKE GIANT JULY 7TH, 2018
The inspiration for this all sparked after Emma's interview with Kris Kerby. The flyer she mentioned was for "KACTUS KIDS," a show of new works by Sam Flores and Mike Giant. For those of you unfamiliar, Mike Giant is an American Illustrator with a vast background in graffiti & tattoos. His most common style consists of black ink, a craft that he has mastered flawlessly. Whether it be on blank paper or illustrated over his own photography. Albuquerque's subculture of skating, hip-hop, & punk, have contributed to his visual aesthetic, as well as Mexican-American culture, such as papel picado and low riders. Even with that much subject matter, Mike seems to draw inspiration from many different cultures. He grew up in this town through the 80s/early 90s. He now lives and works in Boulder, CO. I contemplated doing this interview and couldn't imagine it happening. Finally, the day of, I decided to go for it. This was after a day of comic/record browsing, scored some Garbage Pail Kids, an issue of Fluke Fanzine, and put a Carnivore record on layaway. I was at home for a while brainstorming questions over a beer. I made my way to All Is One Tattoo around 6:30... early because I can’t seem to retain my impatience. Plus, I thought I'd catch Mike before the crowd filled the shop. He didn’t arrive until almost 8pm.
Pre-Interview Soundtrack on the way: Orc by Oh Sees. Animated Violence always puts me in a good mood.
I sunk into the background immediately on arrival. Seemingly uncomfortable, as I usually tend to be in these kinds of environments. The shop was FILLED with people, and more importantly, filled with incredible prints. So many gorgeous, clean cut pieces of original work from both Sam and Mike. I was reading a Jan/Feb Smithsonian issue about Vietnam 50 years after the Tet Offensive and The Beatles visiting India. While reading, someone accused me of being a hipster, so that was nice...as if I wasn't already uncomfortable. I overhear that Mike went out for a break. Finally, a chance to bug this guy. I approach him for a quick interview and he was surprisingly receptive! It only goes to show that the mind is a very intimidating tool if you let your insecurities get the best of you. I always expect the worst, even though I've never been hissed at for any simple request.
MG: You caught me at a good time, I just smoked a joint.
ZZ: Good! I was hoping I'd catch you at the perfect time...So, what blossomed the idea to collaborate with Sam Flores?
MG: We've been friends here in Albuquerque since we were teenagers, He lived right down the street here. But we've never shown art together in town. Even though we've known each other for that long.
ZZ: Okay, so you guys have presented work elsewhere?
MG: Yeah, we've shown our work together in Tokyo, San Francisco, Denver, a few other places.
ZZ: Have your architectural teachings from UNM brought anything to your current style? (Mike left UNM during his studies to design graphics for Think Skateboards in San Francisco. Something I was unaware of until after this interview.)
MG: Hm, not so much. Because the way I learned how to draw was independent from architecture studies, and even the way that I draw buildings now, is more informed from illustration background other than the architecture background. But I'll still sketch architectural ideas down in my sketch books sometimes. If something comes to mind, I'll just put it away. I'll have an idea for a building or something...I'll write those ideas down but then I go back to my drawings and do what I usually do.
ZZ: I notice you use a lot of different mediums. Are there any mediums that you have yet to use, that you are curious about experimenting with?
MG: Sculpture. Metal sculpture would be interesting. Also, automotive customizing, learning how to bend metal and create custom cars...Something I grew up around here in Albuquerque with the low riders and stuff. Y'know, I'm a little older now, I have a little bit more money, and I could get a piece of junk car and afford to throw some money at it or try to do something with it.
ZZ: I've also noticed that you've used a lot of inspiration from your personal collection of art from Acoma pueblo. (MG: YEAH!) What draws you to that style?
MG: Well, how I draw black & white, on one level, it's really simple, the craft and technical quality of their use of yucca brushes, and the depth of the black ink, y'know, I have a lot of love for that, and again, just growing up around it. Like, we'd go to Acoma all the time when I was a kid.
For this interview question, I brought something with me that I knew Mike would appreciate. A drawing done by Acoma/Hopi descendant Merrill F. Quannie. An incredibly bright Southwest artist that passed away in 1997. His art consists of cultural and mythological symbols of the ancient Mimbres pueblo. these symbols are surrounded by Intricate line work and incredible geometric patterns. I acquired these original prints from my mother. Mike was very curious, he loved the piece, "Mimbres Doe." He showed me the Acoma Quail tattooed on his arm. He noted the "trippy" line work and admired the dimensional perfection. I appreciate that he moved it in a few angles to observe the lines that embossed the paper where Quannie drew the subject and lines originally. An element that a print does not provide. He thanked me for bringing it.
ZZ: Are there any recently discovered musical artists that you'd like to share with us?
MG: Tobe Nwigwe (Nigerian-American Rapper from Houston Texas), he's dope, I don't usually...I don’t know, rapping's a thing...something’s got to be really special about it, for it to stand out to me. Yeah, check him out. He's on a fine art level too, with his presentation. Everything is a little different about dude, and I think he's about to blow up, big time.
ZZ: Alright last question, what inspired the idea to do a sticker or a decal style ad advertising for the event tonight?
MG: OH! That was Delano (Delano Garcia, an artist at All Is One Tattoo in Albuquerque). He was able to trade a tattoo for the printing of the flyers and the guy said he could do it on stickers. Delano was like, oh yeah, sure, go ahead. (I told him I found the flyer at my first interview, to which he said, "Oh yeah, that's fresh!".... Oh Mike...) And you know, people like to keep the flyers if it’s a sticker, its perfect for that, you can just put it on something, keep it. You know?
Mike and I then discussed slapping stickers on streetlights around town. and I joked about contributing to that. What can I say? Mike Giant, a genuine humbled artist that treats his fans like gold. Even the weird ones. Bless his wonderfully creative heart.
INTERVIEW WITH EDDIE BREWER
JULY 13TH, 2018
I didn’t really have a chance to write down my experience due to some rainfall...Man, it feels like the weather was delightfully crummy the past few weeks. Anyway, it shouldn't be hard to recall the events of this night, it was quite memorable. Before my little adventure, I treated myself to some dinner at my all-time favorite Vietnamese spot, Mr. Pho (Northeast corner of Montgomery & San Pedro). Their food is quite tasty, and the service is on point! I got home and polished up quickly, yet I was still somehow late. Something that bothers me greatly...
Pre-Interview Song: Candle's Getting Shorter by The Gods. The drive to Tractor was less than 2-1/2 minutes.
Upon arrival, the place was packed. My friend Ian later explained that this is usually not the case. This night was special, Tractor was serving cocktails for Gin & Jazz at the Wells Park location. Standing room only, Eddie Brewer & The Manic Episodes were already well into their set. The live jazz created a comfortable atmosphere, regardless of the capacity of people.
I ran into Jeremy McDonald, who records a lot of Eddie's projects at his very own analog studio, Hot Damn Records (the only remaining analog, tape and tube operated recording studio in NM). His contributions are enormous. He is currently working on recording/producing a country album for a band him Eddie just recently started up. It's always a pleasure to run into Jeremy. His vintage aesthetic is really something. Not only his style of recording, but also, the vehicle he drives, and his choice of attire. Him and I took a seat outside, the band was still visible, and the noise level was perfect for some light conversation. The rain started up and honestly, I didn't mind at all. I noticed that Eddie's band was missing Steve Wild, their stand-up bass player, filling in this evening was Stella Martinez of Gunsafe, I was introduced to her during the interview. Eddie's set lasted from 8-10pm, afterward, I was able to record him in my longest interview yet! Spanning over twenty minutes....
ZZ: How many music projects do you currently have going on, and what are they?
EB: So, I've got The Despots, which is my longest running group, We're Punk Rock, Rockabilly, Surf, Jazz, Country...a blend of a lot of stuff. Then Eddie Brewer & The Manic Episodes, which is just straight Jazz and Swing music...Sinatra, Chet Baker style... And then there's Coach Gun (with Female vocalist, Margarita Wild), I just play piano in that one, vocals for the other two. I've also got The Atomic Rangers, which is a Honky-Tonk Outlaw group, that's my newest project.
ZZ: I guess that kind of answers my next question...How would you describe your style?
EB: It's all over the place, but I enjoy it because I like learning new things.
ZZ: So, you're pretty much open to any kind of style or sub-genres that are related to what you previously mentioned?
EB: Yeah, I really like Jazz, and I've been studying it for a while. I love it because it teaches you theory and experimentation, so you can learn and harness it. It helps to take off with writing. That's also why I love country. If you study it a lot, it’s actually more complicated than it seems. With jazz, I've learned how to improvise, and country has taught me to be disciplined with timing. I've also learned a lot working with other people, I mean, When I got into The Atomic Rangers, I learned a lot from those guys. It helps me discipline my musical tools.
ZZ: Tell me about one of the first songs you remember writing.
EB: Actually, one of the first songs I ever wrote was a teen angst jingle called "Conniving Whore" and it was about my ex, it was like a three chord song. I played it for her. She was pretty pissed. She still liked me afterward, which was weird...
ZZ: That's lovely and poetic. I admire your bravery. Moving on, where does most of your inspiration come from?
EB: That's a tough one, I think when I was younger, I always tried to imitate Sinatra and Elvis, my two favorites. Just hearing those jazz songs, it seemed so technical and complicated, but after learning it, I realized, this is just fun! It's funny because I used to hate country. I thought Country meant stuff like George Strait, But then I discovered artists like Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis, to me, that was real country, and I learned that Elvis was inspired by Eddie Arnold, who's a Honky-Tonk artist from the 40s.
ZZ: So it's more deeply rooted from the country you discovered later on, not the stuff you heard on the surface, like radio, or TV?
EB: Right, this older music, it's like a gold mine of early Rock'n'Roll. I mean [Elvis's] "Love Me Tender" is a waltz, and that style is usually integrated into country, that's the cool thing about Rock'n'Roll, I mean, everyone thought the 60's was the time for that, and it dates before that, there was Chuck Berry, and he's totally pre-Beatles. Sun Records, they were bridging the gap between African American and white artists. (To learn more about this, check out Solidarity-us-org, there's an article about Sam Phillips and Sun Records.) They were combining blues with country because they thought "We don't care who you are, we'll hire you if you’re good." (Eddie and I continued to discuss how Sun Records helped predate the equality movement of the 60's with their desire of recognizing talent from all aspects and the integration of black and white musicians. We also briefly discussed how some early artists from the 30s & 40s had stage antics that predated the intensity of artists such as G.G. Allin.) Jazz is more punk rock than punk rock will ever fuckin' be.
ZZ: When did you start playing music?
EB: I started playing piano when I was four, I've had the same teacher for 21 years. I started guitar when I was ten. I always sung when I was younger, but I didn't really start singing in front of people until I was about fourteen or so. And yeah, I play other instruments as well, but not as well. Though I've been playing banjo since I was eighteen...a little bit of fiddle, violin, some harmonica. I usually stick to what I'm comfortable with.
ZZ: For any of your groups, what would you say are your most primary lyrical themes?
EB: I guess it really depends on the song. One of our more popular ones, "The Maze," is about loss. I kind of incorporate loss with dark themes, the one that we're releasing with the Manic Episodes, "Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde" is a call and respond kind of bi-polar song. There's another song we have called "Summer's Gone." (This track in particular, I first heard last fall during a Manic Episodes performance at the Railyards market. The song was barely being crafted at that time, but it was intended to fit into their Christmas album "The Naughty List." The lyrics were later refined to be a holiday song.) I love Christmas music...but again, it really depends, I mean me and Danny (both lead and rhythm guitarist of The Despots), I love when we work together, he had come up with something called "Hot Pursuit," and he wanted it to be this really driven song about moonshining, and escaping the cops. So yeah, It's just a lot of fun. I like getting other ideas, and just turning them into something. I'm glad I'm surrounded by talented musicians. Casey, the drummer in EB&TME, is just on point, and Josh Coleman (on saxophone)...and they both sing, and I love that! With the Despots, you've got Steve playing electric and stand-up bass, he doesn’t limit himself. Not to mention we've got Joshua Lee, Honky-Tonk Guitarist, Jeff Wilson on bass. We're working on a lot of originals.
ZZ: I noticed he didn't play tonight and someone was filling in.
EB: Yeah, we had a fill in and she was awesome! That was Stella from Gunsafe. (At that moment, Stella politely interrupted our interview to thank Eddie for the evening on stage they discussed some stage hiccups and how she really looks forward to recording a country song soon.)
ZZ: Your friend is absolutely gorgeous, and talented. Wow.
EB: Yeah, She's in Gunsafe, you should check out her band, she's awesome.
ZZ: Are there any other local bands you'd like to mention? I feel like this interview is all sequencing very nicely...
EB: Absolutely, Gunsafe is great, SharkSuit is awesome, Man High, Sweet Nothin', Michael Moxie, Tyler Brandon's got a bunch of great musicians. There's a ton of talent out here, you can see whatever you want to - Outlaw, Country Pop, Jazz, some raw Rock'n'Roll. (Eddie and I saw Sweet Nothin' for the first time at Moonlight Lounge a couple of weeks before, he excitedly recollected about the group swinging guitars over their heads, and onto the ground, jumping through the drums. Fuckin' cool!) I love Shadowmen, they're great (Jeremy's band) Cowboys & Indian, there’s some good Metal music. Roman, the promoter for the Launchpad, just started Red Mesa. There's Torture Victim....so yeah, you can really find anything in New Mexico. Ugly Girl, 12 Step Rebels. You just got to look a little bit, but it's there.
ZZ: Alright last question, I know that you've been sober for four years, do you notice a difference in your musical performance, now that you've become sober?
EB: Yeah, I mean, I never played out when I was drunk, I would play parties, I'd play piano and stuff, but I'd just be shitfaced by the end of the night. But it was hard for me to really get anything going when I was messed up on drugs because I just didn't really have the concentration. It's hard to concentrate when you're just drunk ALL DAY. Plus, only getting 2-3 hours of sleep, four nights a week. It was just hard to keep things together. I mean, my main drive at that point was music. Most people use drugs to get away from their problems. I was using music to get away from my drug problems. It was a relief to go to piano lessons. It wasn’t just another party to black out at. Ever since I’ve been sober, my music has been working for me. If I was putting 50% into drugs, I wasn’t putting the same amount into music.
Fortunately, I was able to catch Eddie for this interview, right before The Despots kicked off their Psychobilly Beach Party Tour, which spanned through Eastern NM, as well as Central & West Texas. Now that he's back, I look forward to catching his other acts here in town. I've seen them at a variety of venues downtown (Moonlight Lounge, Launchpad, the late Burt's Tiki Lounge). They've also played at venues such as The Sandbar and Little Bear Coffee Co. Eddie has albums available on iTunes & Spotify. EB&TME's Christmas album "The Naughty List" and The Despot's self-titled album. (Self-Titled album also available at Arise Music & Coffee and the merch table.)
Online Interview with Kendoll Killjoy of Glitter Dick
This interview sparked after seeing Glitter Dick at Sister for their reunion show on July 28th. I was able to catch Kendoll Killjoy after the show and we decided the best way to do the interview was through Facebook Messenger. Though catching them live may be a rare opportunity, you’re welcome to enjoy this interview.
ZZ: What sparked the idea for a reunion show?
KK: We actually hadn’t talked for 4 years, and then just sparingly in the last year. Since I was coming back from China I wanted to do a one-off show for the band (Shore Leave) I was playing bass with overseas, but have locals fill in on the other instruments, and so I asked Magnum P. Nye to play guitar. He suggested it’d be better to do a Glitter Dick reunion show as there were still people who were fans of us around, and so that’s what we did. So, basically it was the first time we were all in the same place since the band broke up, and first time I was back in Albuquerque. ZZ: Do you have more material that isn’t on “Sparkling Richard”? (Dazzling album, BTW)
KK: Thanks, glad you like the album; it is a dazzling display of talent. Yes, I actually recorded almost a full LP’s worth of demos before I left town. Magnum’s been bugging me that we should get around to recording it and put it out, but there’s the money issue: we can’t just eternally sue each other on court TV shows to raise funds… they’ll catch on eventually. So, if some benevolent patron of the arts, or record label, or crazy drug-fueled hobo with deep (and loose) pockets is interested… call us.
ZZ: What Inspired the Glam Punk style?
KK: Magnum and I were in a Turbonegro cover band that was a lot of fun, and I found that I really dug the “mask” and “character” aspect of the glam angle in live music. I was already a fan of things like Bowie and Adam and the Ants etc. so it was a natural progression for me. I also I felt like people in bands take themselves too seriously, and so it was a bit of a reactive choice to stand in opposition to pretentious punk/hardcore/metal bands that take themselves very seriously and claim they don’t have an image, yet there’s clearly a uniform or style or “look” of a band, so we just decided that “image” is inescapable in a live band so it’s better to just be honest about it, embrace it, and make it part of the act. If artifice is inescapable, hang a lampshade on it. The hardcore and punk scenes used to give me lots of shit for not adhering to the dress code, while simultaneously claiming there was no dress code, and I thought it was totally disingenuous. Long story short, the embrace of image is the one honest thing done by a dishonest band. ZZ: What now? Are the members of Glitter Dick going to continue with other musical endeavors?
KK: Magnum P. Nye and Jacques Poppycock play in Russian Girlfriends and are about to put out a new release, and Magnum also started a gimmick band called The Scottsdales. I write orchestral type music on my own time which you can check out (klfortson.com) and I think Suzi de Sade is between projects, but that’s fine as we’re all far more into Dutch quilting these days anyway. ZZ: How do we go about scoring some sweet Glitter Dick merch?
KK: Our T shirts were unfortunately delivered to the wrong state so we didn’t have them at the show, but we will have them, as well as our record (that comes with digital downloads for the non-vinyl inclined) and some patches, pins, and stickers. I guess if you’re interested in ordering anything just send us a message on Facebook (facebook.com/glitterdickmusic) so you can PayPal us and we can ship orders to you. ZZ: What in the fuck are we supposed to do now that Glitter Dick is gone? Has it been gone? Will it be gone forever?
KK: Shit, I don’t know… read some good books, join a kickball league, take up agrostological botany? The options are innumerable. It was supposed to be a one-off show, but we’ve had tons of people asking when the next show is and asking us to not stop, so… I don’t know. The thing is I work overseas so shows will be rare (one per year--maaaaaybe--but don’t hold your breath). We’ve talked about the feasibility of recording, but again, there’s that money thing as we’re all a bit tired of the starving artist shtick by now and don’t want to suffer and starve to put out another record. If people really want it, they can make it happen, but, speaking solely for myself, I’m not going to force myself to eat Ramen for a year and give up opportunities to do other things in life all for the sake of putting out another record—gotta find a balance in life, ya know? Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to do this and only this, but...[sigh], life, ya know? ZZ: Anything you want to let the readers know?
KK: Rock over London, rock on Chicago, free will is merely an illusion based on Cartesian dualism and we are nothing but the sum of our experiences and genetics acting upon an environment. BTW, we just made a music video for the bonus track that comes on the digital re-release of our LP (which is at glitterdick.bandcamp.com, I forgot that's the other place people can buy music)...The idea is to make it viral, like a "Harlem Shake for stoners," and so we want to get a lot of "copycat" style videos... from basic ones of people sitting around smoking while listening to the track, to whatever craziness people can imagine. Feel free to share the video if you do the whole social media thing, or if you have unabashed smoking friends, maybe they can make a video themselves.