It’s Halloween Eve again this year and once again no great pumpkin interviews, not one physic responded to my requests for interviews…I don’t get it. But it is what it is. so once again, I am running Kevin Books interview I did back in 2009. Enjoy…maybe next year someone will step up to the plate? Where is Ms. Utley when you need her??
1. Hey Kevin, welcome to Kickacts.com. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Born July 1965 here in good ol’ Henderson, Ky. Started playing guitar at 7. My Dad bought me a hollow-body Kay guitar and brought it home. I started playing along with a Mel Bay 45 rpm on a little record player that taught you how to tune.
I didn’t have any records but my older sister did, so I snuck into her room and got KISS’s first album from her stack. I hid it under my bed and started playing it every single night after supper…and I mean every single night for about a year. My parents thought I was masturbating up there in my room all night long…but I wasn’t. What I was doing though was playing the bass lines on the guitar and I didn’t know it…
I finally got the courage to call my parents in to listen, and the first thing my mom said was..”You’re playing the bass lines…”"You need a bass”…I had no idea. Back then you didn’t have MTV or the internet, so I only got to see pictures of bands once a month when all the music magazines came out…Creem, Hit Parader, Rolling Stone…etc…And I wasn’t allowed to have those magazines in the house, period.
So when I got a Bass…it was all over. I never came out of my room after supper again until I was about 15. I had been stealing my sisters records and recording them onto a cassette player to learn them…all the classics..Led Zep, Sabbath, Kiss, Rush, Ted Nugent but I also was playing stuff like Ohio Players, Billy Preston, and KC & the Sunshine band…I couldn’t get enough…so that had everything to do with my style today.
After graduation I started playing on the road..went from MACH, to a band called HOT ICE, then moved to Nashville and played and toured with a band named “London Angel”. That was in 1986. We played from Buffalo, NY down to Florida and from Memphis straight over to Myrtle Beach, SC and all points in between.
I’ve played in 31 states and had sex with women in every one of those states…I’ve stimulated the economy in my own special way.Then it was back home in 88 when my son was born. I didn’t wanna be one of those fathers. I wanted to raise my boy.I knew I could make money right here at home, that’s how Chet & the Molesters got goin..we actually changed the way bands played and how much they got paid for sure…we had the biggest and the best sound and lighting…like any “road” band that came into town. And when we filled a place with as much shit as we could…we made room for more…We were the hottest band in town for a while and made some bars and ourselves alot of money.
2. You play bass guitar in the band “BSR”. Tell us about the band and who is in it and the website address you guys can be found at.
Right now, It’s me, Brad wireman, and the newest guitarist in the band, Eric Smalley..
Brad and I haven’t had much luck with guitarists. It seems that every guitarist that we’ve played with is a big flake in some way or another.
The only guy that ever fit perfect was Jimmy Powers, and we played so much a few years back with him in the band that he actually got burnt out and semi-retired…He’s a fantastic guy and is always there when we need him. Luckily, guitar players are a dime a dozen and we seem to get lucky with these guitar slingers from Louisville…
Eric is a great player, has a great attitude and fits in perfect with the direction and type of material BSR is doing. We book gigs no matter what and no matter who the guitarist is…fuck em’…It’s a business too. We don’t take guitarist’s feelings into consideration when it comes to booking gigs…they can be replaced, usually in one phone call.
3. What type of gear do you use?
I only use a Sansamp RB-1 and run direct. No amp, period, I hate bass amps and big-ass bass amps bleeding all over everything on stage when trying to mix and get a good clean stage volume and mix out front. I mix from stage and it’s way better on monitor mixes and stage levels. Don’t believe what you hear about trying to keep up with loud drummers…it’s ALWAYS the bass player or guitar player that thinks they need a full stack to play a local gig…but that’s only my opinion.
Before the Sansamp, I only used a small Gallien Krueger MB 150 that I could fit in my lap. I get hooked up in about 20 seconds. Beautiful …
4. You guys are currently working on a new CD. Tell us about it.
It’s actually a cursed project as far as I’m concerned…it’s about the third time we’ve recorded some of the same songs and every time we record it, a guitar player flakes out and quits…Don’t get me wrong, I’m proud of the songs and they sound fantastic.
We decided to record two different ones this time too, so it’s sounding real good. It was all done except for vocals, but now I’m gonna record over the guitar parts and let Eric have his way with them. It’s been a long time coming and actually has cause writers block for me. I’ve had a very hard time being able to write new material with these songs stuck in limbo…it will be out by summertime hopefully and you won’t be disappointed.
5. Do you have any “greatest gig” stories to tell?
I tell ya, all the stories and things you hear about bands on the road and gigs and groupies back in the 80′s and early 90′s?? It’s all true, and I lived it. All of it except the drugs part. I’ve never been into drugs. I had the most fun anybody could have…I just wish there had been digital cameras back then. I have very, very few things to remind me of those times.
They were all great gigs. Every one of them…except one.
6. And in the same vein, got any “worst gig ever” stories to share?
Yeah, In 1987, we played in York, Pennsylvania at a place called “The Cracker Barrel”…that’s right…the restaurant..
I guess that’s were it originated from, I don’t know….well, it had a bar in it, so needless to say, we came out blasting with our smoke and flash bombs while Grand-ma and Grand-pa were trying to eat their “all you can eat fish”…We played all of about a song and a half when they ran up to tell us to stop, they thought we were a country band.They told us to leave, and didn’t pay us…as we walked out I threw and kicked over about twenty of the rocking chairs they had outside…(they had those back then on the porch too…weird). I threw two of them into the road and a big semi crashed through one of them and jack-knifed right in the road…we took off. I remember people all lined up in the windows staring out at us as we ran by flipping all of them off…they were as horrified of us as we were of them.We were broke and had to sleep on the side of the road in the truck going to the next show in Allentown.
7. I ran into you a few years ago at the DMV in Henderson. At that time you said you were done playing. We all get that feeling every once in a while. But here you are playing out again. Music is a drug that can’t be refused for very long. What did you do while on hiatus and what brought you back?
The money you make in a three-piece band is awesome, period. That’s it. The money…
The older you get, the easier it is to get with guys you like and can make money with…Brad and I have played together for about 8 years now.
8. Who are your heroes and what inspired you to take up playing?
Gene Simmons was my first big rockstar hero type…I wanted to spit blood and breath fire. If you listen to bass now days, they don’t walk up and around the melody. Simmons had some really bad-ass bass lines in those old songs.I was into Geddy Lee and Bootsy Collins too, because of his star sunglasses.
9. Do you have any other hobbies other than playing Bass guitar?
I am an eBay whore…I’ve been selling full time on there since 2001. I’ll sell anything and everything, including your mom. I’ve made more money on eBay than any job I’ve ever had and I’ve done it all…from laying carpet to being a mail carrier for the USPS. My parents and I have bought and sold antiques all my life in antique malls, auctions..etc..so
eBay is just a natural for me because I know what sells and what doesn’t. I’ve also collected comics since I was six. I have a huge collection. I own just about every major key comic book from 1962 on. I hope one day to own Superman #1 which is worth about 125,000.00. I have every issue of Spiderman going back to the very first one “Amazing Fantasy 15″ back in 1963…look those up and see how much they’re worth…*wink*…I’m retiring off them. The great thing about certain antiques and collectibles is that they are recession proof…like gold.
10. # 10 is called “Shout it Loud”. It’s were you get to talk about whatever you want to talk about. So go ahead Kevin, and “SHOUT IT OUT LOUD”!
Well, I’m glad I’ve been able to have fun, make money, and enjoy playing music in spite of all the drama, whiners, flaky-ass musicians and coat-tail hangers that infest the music business…even on a local level. It takes a lot of work to be able to keep something going for over a decade. Even a rock band… I’ll put our resume’ and list of accomplishments up against any band, anywhere. I’ve done it my way and I’m proud of it. I have plenty of friends out there and they know who they are, so I won’t have to use this space to kiss any asses.. I’ll pat myself on the back right here instead…and Brad’s back too. Oh and I love working at the Guitar Center…all the bad things and stories you hear from ex-employees or whatever stem from laziness and not knowing how to hustle and make money. You have to depend on yourself in life and not somebody else, and that carries over into how you live your life everyday and your job or jobs. To me, I have three jobs, eBay, BSR and the Guitar Center and I have a ball at all three…I worked hard to get it this way and I love my life.
1. You and I are no longer in our 20′s or even 30′s and still like to rock but never pulled off the “Big Time”. Got any advice for the young cockstars that are currently hanging out at the Guitar Center everyday hashing it out on the free gear Guitar center provides?
What’s funny is all the snorting and roaring the singers do now…I don’t get that. BUT it’s been done before way back in the late 80′s early 90′s with Pantera, so it’s nothing original. I hear the exact same guitar riffs everyday coming from those young guys…and when you ask them to play a twelve bar blues lead in B flat, they look totally confused and don’t know what you mean.
It has nothing to do with the Guitar Center at all, it’s the fact that kids now don’t actually “listen” to the recordings like we had to in the old days to recreate what the bands were doing…they don’t spend time “listening” they just pull it up on youtube or their iphone or whatever…it’s electronic overload..they get it half way, then start hashing it out their own way and it sounds wrong…no patience in the “I want it right now” world. There are some very talented younger musicians out there though and you hear those guys too in the store. My son is one of them.
2. You guys opened for Motley Crue Back in the 90′s during their “We’re Clean Drug & Alcohol free” period in the band. Got any backstage dirt of these Mofo’s? I need something on them considering I got kicked out the Executive Inn in 1983 for banging on one of their hotel room doors when they were on top of the rock world.
Not really…They sucked ass then, and they suck ass now…we smoked them that night. The lead singer from Laid Law, the second opening band, said we should’ve been signed right then on the spot..Motley Crue has never impressed me…they were in the right place at the right time. I knew we were gonna smoke them, and we did. They were all standing off to either side of the stage watchin us while we were playin…they knew we were good too.
SUPER BONUS FROM THE EDITOR”S PHOTO ALBUM: I save everything and I happen to have one of Mach’s old business cards, slightly burnt from our house fire back in 1989. … :)
Special thanks to Kevin for playing a long … Great answers from a great guy …
chuck geeShare on Facebook
Special Kickacts thanks goes out to Amanda Blide for interview with Planet Booty!
Welcome to Kick Acts. Tell us a little about yourself and your band and were you can be found at on the web.
Howdy. I’m Nathan Germick, co-creator of “Planet Booty” with my brother Dylan Germick. Originally we’re from Northwest Indiana but have since landed in the San Francisco Bay Area. Planet Booty started as a concept album but has since evolved into a 6-piece electrofunk ensemble.Share on Facebook
1. Welcome to Kick Acts. Tell us a little about yourself and your band and were you can be found at on the web. My name is Bret Mitchem. I am a starving artist, musician and writer. I have no qualifications for any of these but I never let that deter me. I have been playing in bands for many, many moons. Including Ugly Babies, Space Cake, Forkskin, menSana, 2G, Gorilla Monsoon, 138, Calling Corners, and Goldy lockS.
2. Who are your musical heroes, influences & why? As a child, KISS was pretty much my whole life. They planted the seed of wanting to be onstage and rock out for people. As a teen, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and specifically Flea inspired me to a new level bass assault. A few years later I discovered GWAR, who continually inspire me to be creative and to carve a path of originality.
3. Do you have any advice for someone just getting started in playing music? Any pitfalls they should avoid? Playing music is probably the most pure joy I have found in life. It is a complete cathartic and creative release for me. If you feel it in your soul like I do, then by all means live your dream! But making a living at this is an extremely difficult task to pull off. It takes much more than talent or good looks. It takes endless devotion, sacrifice and a whole lot of luck to be successful. But I truly believe that anyone that sets their mind to a task can and will eventually accomplish their goals.
4. Do you have a greatest gig story you’d like to share? Well, I have more than a few great gig stories. A few would include playing at Mesker Amphitheater, Jimi Hendrix once played on that stage. Also getting to play onstage at the Gathering of the Juggalos with Rev. Fang Gory was a great experience. But most recently I would say playing for the troops in Kandahar, Afghanistan on the 10th anniversary of 9-11 was an unbelievable experience. We caught a Taliban rocket attack midway through the show. It was during band intermission when world class comedian Andy Hendrickson was onstage performing. The warning sirens went off and the crowd of 3,000 plus all simultaneously hit the dirt. Thankfully no one was hurt and after about 45 mins of taking pics and signing autographs in the bunker with folks, we got the all clear. Someone asked me if I was scared to go back up onstage? I replied I was scared that they would not let us. Luckily they did and we did. We got back up and finished the show, even though the huge crowd had greatly diminished by then.
5. On the same token as the above question. How about a “worse gig” ever story. Well, everyone has had their share of “not so great” gigs I’m sure. The kind where anything that can go wrong, does. It is a horrible feeling to be up there, in the zone, only to have your gear cease working for no reason. But shit happens. You just have to know how to roll with it. Also getting drunk before getting onstage is never a good plan, lol.
6. Do you have any other hobbies other than playing music? Collect stamps? Collect hats from off the side of the road? Draw pictures of boobs? I love creativity! I enjoy drawing, designing, painting, printing, writing and doing just about anything that involves being creative. I am also an avid video gamer. I regularly kick ass in the name of the Horde in World Of Warcraft. And still play the occasional game of Worms.
7. What do you think about the present music scene or lack of? Care to address that? I almost always reject present day popular music for no reason other than I hate having anything forced on me. But I have found that if you dig deep enough, you can find truly great music being made at any given time. Especially on the local level. Currently I find myself listening to more and more rap. I can’t get enough Tech N9ne. And as far a current band, I really like Silversun Pickups. I enjoy their albums more and more each time I listen to them.
8. Tell us something about each of your band members that we would not expect to hear… Like their hobbies or something like that… After a very busy year of touring, traveling and adventuring, I am currently taking a few months off to reset. So I am in between projects at the moment. However I would like to take this opportunity to give a shout out to some of my past band brothers and mention their current bands. Everyone should check these guys out: Sideshow Romance, Tenn Pound Hammer, Honey Roy, Old Union, Hen Tooth, Wedge, Gorgantherron. Also shout out to Aegaeon who are about to go on tour again. Oh and Austin Leslie, you beautiful bastard. Wherever you are…
9. Hypothetical situation. You’re stranded on Gilligan’s island and you get to hook up with only one of the girls… Is it Ginger, Mary Ann or Mrs. Howell and why? Ummm, Mary Ann. She was the brunette right? Also while on the island I would await the day that the Harlem Globetrotters arrive so we can get a pickup game going. Curly rules!
10. #10 is called “Shout It Out Loud”. It’s were you get to talk about whatever you want to talk about. So go ahead and “SHOUT IT OUT LOUD”! Ahhh, this question is pretty much the sole reason that I dropped my cherished veil of privacy. I wanted to bring attention to our troops that serve every day across the globe. Regardless of your opinion of the war, we need to support our brothers and sisters who spend years working and living in very difficult environments. At this time of year when familes all come together to enjoy the holidays, so many people have to spend it on the other side of the world, far away from their loved ones. I met so many awesome people on my tour overseas. And I found that a lot of them joined the service for no other than the are no other jobs available in their area. Whole squads of troops would be from the same town. And words just can’t do justice to what they go through and live with everyday. I’m not even going to mention the Poo Pond at KAF, lol. I was very happy to work with the Armed Forces Entertainment and the USO. It was truly an eye opening experience. We should all give thanks to these amazing people. And if you like like to help out in some small way, I encourage you cantact the USO. I know they have some great stuff going on right now. Like the Wishbook and the 10 Million Minutes program. Please check it out.
Without looking up it on the internet, do you know who “Rita Repulsa” and Lord Zedd” are and how do you know? I do not. Sorry.
Should singers and bands also be political too or just make music and keep their opinions to themselves and not go “Bono” on everyone? I think it is a very fine line for artists to express their particular views on politics. On the one hand, most people listen to music for a care free release, and do not want to have someones views dumped in their laps. But on the other hand, artists and musicians are people and have just as much right as anyone else to share their opinions. I think it can be accomplished in a tasteful way. bands like System Of A Down and Rage Against The Machine have made a career of it and remain relevant to this very day. Another great band is MUSE. They have done a terrific job of not only being a top notch rock band, but have opened many minds to various topics the world over.
At what point should someone that hasn’t made it give up on their dream and get over it or should they ever give up? As I said above, If you are doing something that you truly love to do, then that is all that really matters. If you are only in it for superficial reasons: Money, girls, fame, etc… then your path will not only be difficult, but ultimately fruitless. With that said, if you have a dream, NEVER GIVE UP! Fight for it, live for it, die for it!Share on Facebook
where you can be found at on the web.
We are an old school rock and roll trio forged in steel and Los Angeles. Nature hates a vacuum, and there was a black hole, void of the all important dirty, sexy rock and roll. So we came together, forming something much bigger than our separate parts, with the singular purpose of saving your soul through the medical spiritual application of the drug that is rock and roll. We can be located on the interwebs @ www.OurHospitality.com & www.facebook.com/OurHospitality & www.youtube.com/OurHospitalityMusic
2. Who are your musical heroes, influences & why?
We are informed and inspired the rock gods of the past- The Beatles, Hendrix, The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Stones, Ronnie James Dio, The Band etc. We are influenced by Eagles of Death Metal, Nirvana, Weezer, Rush, Andrew Bird, The Beatles, and Led Zeppelin. We are also inspired in general by post-humanism, futurism, dirty sexy rock and roll, sports, and alcohol.
3. Do you have any advice for someone just getting started in playing
music? Any pitfalls they should avoid?
Recording your gigs is a great way to get better. In the heat of the moment, it’s easy to think you sounded great or terrible depending on a crowd’s energy- listening back critically and always improving is the key. Other than that- practice, practice, practice!!
4. Do you have a greatest gig story you’d like to share?
Our favorite gig was opening up for Taylor Hawkins (Foo Fighters) and the Coattail Riders. Taylor is a goddamn rock and roll God, and playing on the same bill as him was an absolute dream. There were lots of cool folks in the audience like Flea, Chad Smith and Pat Smear. To top it all off, Jesus of the Sunset Strip was even in attendance.
5. On the same token as the above question. How about a “worse gig” ever
So far we’ve had an amazing string of great gigs. Wish we had some killer story but the rock gods have been on our side and have blessed us with some kick ass experiences.
6. Do you have any other hobbies other than playing music? Collect stamps?
Collect hats from off the side of the road? Draw pictures of boobs?
Libby and Dash are filmmakers. Libby has her MFA in Directing and Editing from USC, and Dash is an Emmy Award nominated TV producer and an aspiring writer. Phil brews his own mead (honey wine), plays dominoes, and does scrimshaw. We all are really active and believe that hiking, running, and exploring nature is a great way to feed the soul and help inspire our musical endeavors.
7. What do you think about the present music scene or lack of here in the area? Care to address that?
No matter where you are and no matter what scene is around you, you have the power to create and share music with those around you. We believe any opportunity to play live is as important as the next whether 5 people or 300 people are there to listen. So whether a scene is over-saturated with bands or under-saturated with opportunities there is always the chance to be heard, have fun and make a difference.
8. Tell us something about each of your band members that we wouldn’t
expect to hear… Like their hobbies or something like that…
Libby was on the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team staff for the 2010 (South Africa) World Cup and was on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team staff for the 2011 (Germany) Women’s World Cup as a team videographer. Phil brews mead (honey wine) in his apartment. Dash is currently producing a documentary about The Tea Party.
9. Hypothetical situation. You’re stranded on Gilligan’s island and you get
to hook up with only one of the girls… Is it Ginger, Mary Ann or Mrs. Howell
Luckily for us, we all have different tastes.
Phil- Ginger “she’s a movie star, duh.”
Libby-The Professor “smart is sexy”
Dash – Mrs Howell “older women are experienced”
10. # 10 is called “Shout It Out Loud”. It’s were you get to talk about
whatever you want to talk about. So go ahead and “SHOUT
IT OUT LOUD”!
Rock n roll is here to stay. Plug in and turn it up – if your parents yell at you just pop in your headphones but keep it rolling.Share on Facebook
You know him as “The SandMan”. He can be found at 103.1 on the FM dial. We all have welcomed his voice into our homes, factories, backyard grill outs and drunken naked beach parties. Hell, he was probably there when a few legs have been “tapped” too in some of your backseats. He kicks ass and is above all the others. The # 1 voice on the radio . And…
KICKACTS PROUDLY PRESENTS
1. Mike, welcome to KICKACTS. To the three or four people out there that have been locked in a closet with no radio for the past 20 years. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I have been on air doing radio in Evansville since Dec. 1979. Most of my time has been with 103.1, either as KC103 which it was in the early 80′s or in it’s current incarnation of 103GBF. I have also been the station program director since 1996
2. You have been a part of the # 1 Rock station in this market since its debut as KC103 back in the day. How has radio changed since then?
Technically it’s been a quantum leap. From vinyl to digital. As far as being a dj, it’s still pretty much the same. Try and cut through the b.s. and get the listener back to the music asap.
3. In your spare time, what do you like to do other than radio?
Spare time? That’s funny!! I like getting tattoos, hanging out with chicks, listening to music, watching movies and sports.
4. Do you have any way of knowing how many people call in each time you open up the phone lines for a call in contest?
Nope. No way of knowing that.
5. You are the #1 rated DJ in this area, in fact you are a local celebrity in your own right. Do you get recognized in public with your voice?
Yeah, I do. It’s very flattering. I just consider myself a dude with a cool job.
6. Where is radio heading? Will it all be automated eventually?
In small markets, it is to a large degree. I think people in towns our size and larger still want local air talent who can give them local info.
7. Most baby boomers associate the life of an on air personality to the lives portrayed in the TV sitcom “WKRP in Cincinnati”. Is it anything like that at all? Are there any Doctor Johnny Fever’s or Venus Flytrap’s not forgetting to mention Bailey Quarter’s or Jennifer Marlowe’s?
Oh yeah. That show is definitely based in reality. I’m probably a more hyped up, tattooed version of Dr. Johnny Fever myself.
8. What is the craziest contest stunt you have ever seen in your career.
We had a guy walk down the median on Green River Road in front of the mall in a thong to win concert tickets. That was cool. Attracted lots of attention.
9.You probably have the southwest wing of your house dedicated to rock and radio memorabilia that you have collected over the years. What is the coolest thing you have?
I’m not really too much into saving stuff like that. I do have a few platinum album awards from bands we’ve broken over the years like Creed and Godsmack. I have a few autographed items as well. Mostly it’s good memories.
10.# 10 is called “SHOUT IT LOUD”. It’s where you get to say whatever you want to say… So go ahead Mike, and “SHOUT IT OUT LOUD”!!
Are radio personalities like Howard Stern, Bob and Tom,and John Boy and Billy still relevant today?
Yes. Howard Stern is of course on satellite radio which is fading into the sunset to a large degree. But syndicated personalities have the power to attract big name stars onto their shows, which is something a station in a market our size couldn’t do on it’s own. I’ve never enjoyed John Boy and Billy personally. Too southern…too NASCAR for me. Bob and Tom offer comedy which has universal appeal.
Thanks for giving me the opportunity, Chuck!!
to contact The sandman
Listen live @ www.103gbfrocks.comShare on Facebook