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Gutbucket Bursts Out
By Ben Ohmart
(more articles from this author)
2001-03-25
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You can tell by the name of the band that Gutbucket is a free-standing foursome of instrumental jazz intellect, spouting high-energy excitement thru the streets of New York. When I caught up with them, fresh from the bathroom floor, where they're promoting their new Insomniacs Dream cd, collectively the conversation went thusly.

[Ben] Why do I like this music? I don't understand.

[Gutbucket] 'Cause we rock and we're sexy as hell.

[Ben] Do you believe in the god Piano?

[Gutbucket] Yes, there's a little bit of the lord (TM) in all of us....

[Ben] Have you been approached by any labels yet? What label would you Like to be on (and I don't mean Jack Daniel's)?

[Gutbucket] We've been approached... but the advance from Sony wasn't big enough -- and we wanted to do this one ourselves. There are a lot of major labels that should take us (!), like Atlantic (they put out Cubanos Postizos, for instance), Matador, Touch 'n Go... also a lot of great smaller jazz labels like Arabesque, Justin Time, Koch, Winter & Winter. We'd love to be on any or all of them.

[Ben] However did you guys hook up?

[Gutbucket] Mixed doubles at the country club.

[Ben] Does Ken Thomson's sax ever bring geese into the club?

[Gutbucket] No, but it does fly south for the winter sometimes. Then Ken has to go get it, it's a real pain in the ass.

[Ben] What's your plan for world domination?

[Gutbucket] We'll talk to the shareholders and get back to you....

[Ben] Is there a lead in your group or are you all equal among women?

[Gutbucket] We're all leaders -- there are 4 strong personalities but we work best as a collective.

[Ben] Who the hell is that screaming thru the cd? Why??

[Gutbucket] Oh. That was the guy in the cage. Umm... next question?

[Ben] Always wanted to ask jazz masters this question. Your titles. Now - do they Really have anything to do with the music within? If so, explain one Please.

[Gutbucket] It's like titling a story that has no words -- the title still relates to the story. It's worked in different was for us -- For "Song of Seasickness," Eric wrote the tune to the title, the title came first. "Insects" was inspired by the sounds of the cicadas in Clayton, Missouri. According to Ty, they sounded like a house-techno jam and that got him thinking.... One of our favorite titles is "Dry Humping the American Dream" -- you'd have to hear that to get it, though...

[Ben] Now that you're loved by NYC, how are your egos feeling? Are you propositioned nightly?

[Gutbucket] It's great to see folks in New York coming out to see shows again and again -- it seems like we don't have nameless faces in the audience, and we've gotten to know some cool people. It's also fun to get to talk to folks about our music (among other things) as well as play it. Although, after Eric made the centerfold in "Better Homes & Gardens," the band dynamic has kind of changed.

[Ben] What's your best fan story?

[Gutbucket] The guy in Wurzburg, Germany, who loved us so much that he jumped on stage to dance with us, then spat on Ken and Eric. That's not the usual response to our shows, though generally we encourage (and usually start) everything from audience percussion jams to interpretive dance to shouting contests to toast catching.... Though this guy was impressive -- he never once spilled his bottle of wine.

[Ben] Best backstage story?

[Gutbucket] Berlin, Germany. "This is what we eat around here," said Assi of the Jazzkeller. Ken guessed it was crushed peanuts and margarine (you know, peanut butter) -- only after Ty ate 3 pieces did we discover the much-loved German hog fat & crushed onions on bread.

[Ben] Is you is or is you ain't my baby?

[Gutbucket] ... Nice work if you can get it.

[Ben] You guys seem to have a lot of FUN with your music. Assuming you're not all pretentious farts, do you find too much posturing and swelled heads in the music biz today?

[Gutbucket] There's actually a really great community of musicians in New York -- many of whom don't hesitate to help others, and we're grateful for it. The industry encourages us to compete with other musicians, and we're trying to find ways to avoid that pitfall.

[Ben] How's the marketing gameplan going?

[Gutbucket] We spend a lot of time making all our shows fun, writing new material, and working hard -- our best marketing so far has been word of mouth (oh and the free shampoo samples). Though we haven't been exploiting sex as much as we could....

[Ben] Where will you be gigging soon? Ever thought of an internet broadcast so that the rest of the world.?

[Gutbucket] Next gigs: Wetlands (NYC), Thursday March 22. Living Room (Providence), Thursday, March 29. Makor (NYC), Thursday, April 5. Please check out http://gutweb.com for the latest dates -- also, we have tons of mp3s, video clips, and pictures up on there -- and you can get on our mailing list and/or listserv. (You can also get "Insomniacs Dream" on there.)

We've done webcasts at the Knitting Factory a few times, and we just did a show on radio WFMU that will soon be archived at wfmu.org. How many people listen to webcasts, though, do you?

[Ben] Anything else, kids?

[Gutbucket] They dissed us at the Grammys -- again!

Thanks, Ben!

www.gutweb.com

Related MusicDish e-Journal Articles:
» gutbucket - Insomniacs Dream - Gut Records (2001-03-08)
» Gutbucket - Without Condition (2000-03-29)


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