The Minus 5's Scott McCaughey Talks Baseball, Uncle Tupelo and Trusting Your Friends

Categories: Interviews

Vivian Johnson
The Minus 5
At the end of our talk, Scott McCaughey -- founder of the Young Fresh Fellows and the Minus 5, once-upon-a-time sideman in R.E.M. and veteran clutch hitter with the Baseball Project -- expresses some disappointment that this interview is even happening at all.
"Hey, it's opening day in St. Louis," he says. "Why aren't you at the game?"

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Sex and the Symphony: Ben Folds Explains Why Orchestral Music is the Best Aphrodisiac

Categories: Interviews

Press Photo
Ben Folds

Ben Folds has a notion that may help orchestras around the world draw new ticket buyers.

"People, this will get you laid," the renowned alt-rock pianist declares.

Folds, who performs with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra April 12 and 13 as part of its Live at Powell Hall series, has made his respect for orchestras known throughout his career. But this idea of chamber music leading to sexytime is new to us.

"It's the best place to take anyone on a date. It's perfect," Folds insists. "It's not loud as shit, you're not talking over each other, you're seated and you can make a move under the program sheet.

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Talking with Joel Hodgson About Mystery Science Theater 3000's Iconic Music

Categories: Interviews

Michael Kienitz
Joel Hodgson
Our favorite cult comedy about robots in space riffing on cheesy movies recently celebrated its silver anniversary. That's right, it's been 25 years since Mystery Science Theater 3000 hit the airwaves, and recently, archivist label Shout Factory released the 29th volume of episodes from the cult-favorite show.

We spoke to creator and star Joel Hodgson about its classic music moments, from its iconic theme to the best Christmas song ever written about Road House.

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Guttermouth Frontman Mark Adkins Loves Playing Punk and Talking Shit

Courtesy of Guttermouth
On a Tuesday afternoon, Guttermouth front man Mark Adkins is laying in bed, slurping down a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats, and talking about how boring it is living in San Juan Capistrano, California, how he's itching to get the band back on the road at the end of this month. "There's a sense of normalcy being on the road," Adkins says, his voice gruff from sleep, having been rousted out of bed for the interview. "Even when I am home, I take off to Tijuana or Rosarito just to get out of here. It gets really boring."

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Oneohtrix Point Never on Gimmicky Visuals: "Electronic Music Has a Built-In Shame Aspect"

Categories: Interviews

Photo by Timothy Saccenti

Trippy visuals and live music go together like drugs and rock & roll -- or BPMs and EDM.

In the beginning (the '60s, when else?), there were Ken Kesey's Acid Tests featuring San Francisco's Grateful Dead and full-on psychedelic film projections splashed across the walls like shamanistic flower-power visions. Meanwhile, on the East Coast, Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground, with more than a little help from Andy Warhol, debuted their own distinctly NYC brand of multimedia spectacle, complete with black turtlenecks and the Exploding Plastic Inevitable.

Fast-forward to the digital age and Daniel Lopatin, composer and founding member of Oneohtrix Point Never, is sure to distinguish his live show from this vast, video-saturated recent history of the concert.

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DJ Paul On Why He's Bringing His Dead Brother's Casket on Tour

Categories: Interviews

DJ Paul Booking
DJ Paul of Three-6 Mafia / Da Mafia 6ix

While the most famous member of venerated Memphis hip-hop act Three 6 Mafia, Juicy J, has gone solo, the group is carrying on without him, now calling itself Da Mafia 6ix.

And that includes not just the living members of the group, but the spirit of a dead one as well. Recently DJ Paul announced that the casket of his late brother Lord Infamous -- who died in December of heart failure -- will accompany the group as it travels from Tennessee to Washington on its current tour (arriving at Mad Magician on Thursday, March 27).

In advance of the show, we spoke to DJ Paul about topics including, um, why?

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Gary Numan Once Had a Job So Terrible It Nearly Killed Him

Categories: Interviews

Courtesy of B.B. Gun Press
Gary Numan
Sadly, many people may only know Gary Numan for "Cars," his surprising, off-the-wall hit from 1979. Yet Numan's four-decade-long career belies any classification as a one-hit wonder. Indeed, some of Numan's best music came immediately before and after he made "Cars." Taken together, Numan's catalog makes him one of the most influential figures in electronic music.

Communicating via e-mail while on tour in Europe and in anticipation of performing at the Firebird next Wednesday, Numan spoke to us about almost dying while doing the worst job he ever had and the amazing continued popularity of "Cars."

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People Feel Very Cozy Inside Amy Schumer

Categories: Interviews

Photo by Matthew Peyton

Between releasing standup special Mostly Sex Stuff on DVD and Blu-ray, debuting the first ten episodes of sketch/standup/interview series Inside Amy Schumer and announcing a 33-date national theater tour, comedian Amy Schumer had one hell of a 2013. There was also the matter of no less than Judd Apatow agreeing to executive produce and direct her script for feature film Trainwreck, in which Schumer will also star. Calling from LA, where she's up to her neck in pre-\production, the 32-year-old seems poised to have an even bigger 2014.

While the film won't begin shooting until mid-May, the second season of Inside kicks off Tuesday, April 1, and features comedic guest stars including Janeane Garofalo, Reggie Watts, Michael Ian Black, Patrick Warburton, Jon Dore and Mike Birbiglia. Schumer will also perform at the Peabody Opera House on April 5.

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Mysterious Experimental Music Legend Jandek Comes to St. Louis

Categories: Interviews

John Pham/Flickr
There are two distinct eras to Jandek, an experimental-music project revolving around a Houston, Texas, musician and songwriter who — though it has never been officially confirmed — most people generally agree is named Sterling Smith. The enigmatic performer arrives in St. Louis on Friday to play a gig with two local musicians who've never met him and have no idea what to expect.

The first era, beginning in 1978, was the reclusive era. During this time, Jandek released more than 70 albums on the Corwood Industries label. Each was packaged as simply as could be: a washed-out or blurry photograph on front, a track listing and mailing address on back. The songs were desolate, arid, often ramshackle. If you gathered a group of cave-dwellers who'd never heard modern music, vaguely described the blues to them and assigned them to make their own records, the results might resemble the most compelling Jandek offerings.

See also: Here's Why Jandek Coming to St. Louis is a Really, Really Big Deal

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Comedian W. Kamau Bell Wants You to Join Him Around the Campfire

Categories: Comedy, Interviews

Matthias Clamer

In this week's print edition we interviewed W. Kamau Bell, a standup comic who is back on the road after FX cancelled his show Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell after just two seasons. Bell is a man of many well-chosen words, and it was impossible to fit the entire interview in the paper. He explains the source behind "AMURI-CAH's" way of thinking and how his standup tour is one way to spread a different line of thought.

W. Kamau Bell will be in town this evening to perform at Blueberry Hill's Duck Room. Doors for the event are at 8 p.m.; seating is limited and on a first-come first-served basis.

See also: W. Kamau Bell May Have Lost His TV Show, But He Hasn't Lost His Edge

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