Tell us about your tour vehicle.
Our tour vehicle is a 1999 Yukon, which replaced our old 1999 Yukon, because we have fallen in love with this beast, its interior, and the fact that you can get four big guys, drums, bass, and two guitar amps and luggage in the back. It’s a miracle vehicle. 180,000 miles, 17 mpg, no repairs so far, no breakdowns. Our last Yukon could fill a book, 250,000 miles worth of stories and breakdowns.
How do you eat cheaply and/or healthy while on tour?
Waffle House. Cheap, and health is a mental construct.
How many strings do you break in a typical year? How much does it cost to replace them?
Strangely, I hardly ever break strings, which is strange because I consider myself a basher with crude self taught technique. The cost of guitar strings is the same as it was in 1975. This is a strange and never commented on phenomenon. They don’t want us to talk about this.
Where do you rehearse?
We rehearse in each other’s homes and studios. Do we miss the nightmare of giant rehearsal halls filled with terrible bands rehearsing at earsplitting volume, the sense that you’re just another drone reaching for a goal that only the greats like Bono reach? Yes, we miss it terribly.
What was the title and a sample lyric from the first song that you wrote?
I woke up this morning
With the wingtip blues
Yes I woke up this morning
With the wingtip blues
Looks like they’re gonna be my
swear to God
Describe your first gig.
Kerkhoff Hall coffee house, UCLA, my folk duo the Flatpickin’ Fools. I was terrified. I’d only been playing guitar for a year.
What was your last day job? What was your favorite day job?
My last was also my favorite, doing research for a documentary group that produced History Channel shows. I miss the people and the brain stimulation,but not eating at Quiznos every other day is probably a good thing. Interesting thing about day jobs, they keep you grounded. I’ve just been doing music for the last 6 years, which I’m grateful for, but it can get weird not having a regular schedule.
How has your music-related income changed over the past 5-10 years? What do you expect it to look like 5-10 years from now?
It’s gone up steadily, despite the collapse of a population that buys music. I can’t picture what it will look like in a year, let alone 5.
What one thing do you know now that you had wished you knew when you started your career in music?
Never turn down a gig, jam session, anything. Do it. It all makes you a wiser musician and person.