Seasick Steve

1. Is that an old saying: “keeping the horse between me and the ground”?

A: Yeah, it’s an old saying. It’s not mine. It’s just like, you know, “better to have a horse between you and the ground than falling on the ground when you’re riding.” So it’s kind of an old saying and I think it goes kind of like: “the art of riding… the art of riding is keeping the horse (chuckling) between you and the ground.” But for me, it was also kind of just about… I mean, I was out there riding horses last year, and that’s what I´m thinking of it, but it’s also just about kind of… it was about just life, a little bit. Kind of keeping yourself from falling down, you know? Especially me. (chuckles)

2. Like staying humble? Keeping yourself grounded?

A: Grounded, but also keeping yourself from getting hurt, you know, like by being stupid. The world’s a dangerous place, too, so there’s that, too. Like I said in the song, it talks about “the ground’s a hard place to hit”. So for me it’s always been about keeping your wits about you, you know. Kind of…

3. You won´t start fooling around now will you?

A: No, but it’s always just kind of a ”keep things in perspective”, you know? Cause like when you’re riding a horse, especially at night, it’s kind of dangerous, you know? You have to kind of pay attention. And so just because I’m older doesn’t mean I can stop paying attention. And – yeah, it was kind of like that. I want to keep in the game a little bit, and – like you say – be a little bit humble, but at the same time keep your eyes open, and watch out for things. And keep rocking, too. It’s a little bit about rock, you know, stay hard.

4. When “the road is full of holes”, as you put it?

A: Yeah, it’s kind of like that, you know. So, it’s that constant thing of just keeping your eyes open. Even driving down here, you know? Just watching out for everybody, you know? And don’t crash. Keep the car between you and the ground, too! (chuckles) So it’s just a song about being aware.

5. That would have been the perfect promotion stunt for the album though: “Seasick Steve releases album, crashes car…”

A: Yeah, that would’ve been – especially if I had died. Probably would’ve sold a lot more records. When you die things usually pick up.

6. Well, look at Prince and Bowie. They’re probably selling more records now than in the last 10 years of their careers…

A: Yeah. So strange. I thought about that before. You know what, if you just… you know, cause one time I had a heart attack, and I almost died. But then I didn’t have any, nobody knew about me, but I thought: “If that happened now, I wonder if I’d sell more records!” (laughs) I don’t want to have a heart attack again though, so don’t matter.

7. But the grass is greener now?

A: (chuckles) Yeah. But that song is about that you never get satisfied. You know, that’s an expression – I guess you guys have that, too – “just over there it’s going to be better. Just, just – if I could just…” And that’s been for my whole life, so that song really had a meaning for me, you know. And in a way it is the grass has gotten greener. Like all my life I thought: “It’s going to get better if I just, just get over there.” But now it actually has gotten amazing. So it’s almost like the end of the rainbow for me now. But at the same time, you know, it also talks about people who’ve been on the road, you know, you recognize each other a little bit, and you can talk to each other. And no one else would understand or believe what you were saying anyway. But when you talk to somebody else who’s been out on the road, too, right away you know you have something in common. So that’s kind of what that’s a little bit about, too.

8. The seasoned traveller?

A: Yeah, the seasoned traveller. So there’s kind of a lot of songs like about that a little bit. Not a lot, but just that itchy thing that I don’t ever – I’m always itchy. Itchy to go somewhere, you know? And I have realized that that’s never going to go away, you know. I mean, here I am and I’m still… like even when I was up in Norway, I just wanted to go somewhere. So that’s part of the reason why we drove, just to get on a road, just to do something, you know? So, it’s like a disease.

9. That you refer to in the song “Gypsy Blood”? The wide open road and your babe by your side?

A: Yeah. And that song, I was – cause I’m going to play that tonight – so I was just in there tuning my… I do it on a cigar box, but I was just thinking about that, because when me and my wife was out in California, last year we took a trip up the coast, you know? Which I love doing up that way, I’ve done it since the 60s. And I got an old car out there, that I keep out there, an old Barracuda. And me and her were driving, and I was like (makes some expression). And she was sitting there, with her legs up on the dashboard, I was going: “Damn, man. This is how I like rolling”, you know?

10. Especially if you do that trip to Big Sur, where you can watch whales…

A: Yeah, yeah, that road there is probably my favorite road in the world. And me and her went up last year, we stayed up in Big Sur, at this little place. And it had a little fire and a fireplace and everything. But the first time I went up there, I think I went up there when I was a kid one time. But I went up for the Monterey Pop Festival 1967. And we hitchhiked down from San Francisco, so… and Big Sur was magic back then. It still is magic, but there was starting to be hippies living in the… there’s all these cabins that are up in the woods that used to belong to miners, people looking for gold and stuff. So there used to be these little cabins, dotted up in the woods up there. So hippies went up there and lived in them, so Big Sur was a… and it stayed really hippie like for years.

11. Now it’s $400 cabins and esoteric institutes…

A: Yeah, they got all that. But what’s funny about Big Sur – even when I was up there now – there’s always some real lowlife people there, too. Like real bums. Like scraggly looking old women, and it has always collected like, also like drunks and losers. And I think there must be some places that they… cause every time that I go there, they’re still there. So like, they might work in the restaurant, they’re at the gas station, so there has to be somewhere cheap to live still. Maybe they live in a trailer. But there’s always been weird people, just sitting around out there. Even with the rich people, then you got – cause there’s not much work in Big Sur, you know? But anyway, I love that place. But anyway that’s where that song kind of got inspired from – going up to Big Sur, funny enough. But for me it’s about: “Just let me go.” So yeah. So, it was just a fun song, and it was fun to play it on the cigar box. Cause anything I can make on the cigar box for me, is fun. Cause it’s kind of hard to play it, so if I come up with something that’s catchy, I like it, you know. Yeah, I like it.

12. And what made you reach out to those poor rich people that lost their tax hole in Panama? Are you calling that song “Hell” because it must be hell to lose so much or do you wish they´d all go to hell?

A: Not that I want them to go to hell. You know, I’m not – I don’t really get like so political much. I kind of lost that political thing long… you know, it’s funny, I was just playing this song to my wife last night: “Abraham, Martin and John” – you know that song? It’s like: “Has anybody seen my old friend Abraham”? It’s a beautiful song. Marvin Gaye did it, it’s just about Abraham Lincoln getting assassinated. John Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy. But Martin Luther and Bobby got killed in 1968. I was watching Bobby Kennedy that night on television cause it was the national convention. And when he got killed, something just shut down in me. That was the end of it for me. Cause he was such a hope. Especially for young people, cause he was young. He was 40 something years old, and he was kind of handsome, you know. And then some motherfucker shot him. And so then I thought: “Anybody come up…” Or like when Martin Luther who was, you know: “…anybody come up who try to do something, someone going to shoot him.” So then I just shut down. But when Obama got, before he got elected, when he was running, that was the first time since 1968 I got a little bit excited. I was like: “Oh!” (sighs). I felt that little something. But then nothing much happened for that poor boy, so… but when I heard about these people… Like, my drummer, Dan, he’s a drunk, and he’s like a hillbilly in Sweden. He’s poor, you know? And he’s really stupid, but he’s been earning money with me, and then he didn’t pay his taxes right. So they come and took his car. Him and his wife. They don’t have – you know, they got a little cafe he works at everyday, and the tax people now, they reckon he owed 20.000 pounds. So they come to his house, took his car, took a few things in the house, and anytime he makes money now, they come and take it. And he didn’t mean to do… You know, he´s just stupid. And then all these fucking people who are hiding money down in Panama so they don’t have to pay taxes – alright, then I got mad. And that song just came out one day. It came out in just 10 minutes. And then I wrote it just like that. And I went: “Wow!” Cause I don’t usually do that, you know, I don’t write about politics or any of that kind of shit. But that song come out hard. And the first time we´ve played it was in Switzerland at a big festival. And I didn’t know people were going to like it – and they went crazy.

13. Well, it´s the rhythm, isn´t it?

A: Cause it´s a boogie, and right away, people like the boogie when I do that. But they listened to the words. Cause the whole audience would go, you know, when I would say something specific – and so that was the first time I’ve played it. I’m going to play it tonight, too. But there was some rich people there… I played with Robert Plant, it was a big amphitheater. And one side had… you know, it was a Roman amphitheater, one of the best preserved Roman amphitheaters in Europe. So it’s from Rome. But one side is just all the stone, where you sit on the stone, but one side had kind of nice seats. And that was the last place to kind of get filled up. And I actually said something like: “So you all must be the rich people up here!” (chuckling) And so that’s what made me decide to sing the song there. And so some people who ran the festival came up to me afterwards, and they go (whispering): “That was so cool, cause there is bankers up there, wanting to listen to old Led Zeppelin shit”, you know, and that’s why everyone really liked it. So that song is real heartfelt. Yeah, I was fucking mad. Cause it happened right after they took Dan… Dan had like a 2001 Volvo station wagon. And they took it. So now he ain’t got a car.

14. Panama should be great for surf, though?

A: Yeah, I don’t know much about surfing down there. I know in Costa Rica there’s good surf. I’m sure there’s good surf in Panama. But I’ve never really thought about it down there. You know, it’s always been a problem area, you know, cause obviously, when Noriega was there and America was involved, and then they fought so no one – we didn’t think about going down there ever, you know. But I imagine there is surf down there – there’s ocean, must be surf. (chuckles)

15. Would that be a place to hide if Donald Trump should get elected?

A: Yeah, yeah, my wife… I mean, my wife’s pretty sure he’s not going to win. So I hope that’s true, cause she’s usually quite… she’s like real weird. She usually knows what’s happening really… like when we were living in America – we moved to Norway in 2001 – and she wanted to move back to Norway, cause she said: “Something bad’s going to happen in America. And it’s going to be something bad, and also there’s going to be a real financial crisis.” So then obviously the planes crashed. But then five years later, whatever it was, the whole financial – cause she worked at a bank. And she saw that they were giving loans to people who shouldn’t have them. But she kind of saw out that that was going to happen. And it did. So she’s kind of funny like that. She kind of sees things, but I mean she’s not sure about this thing with Trump, but if he wins, man, I ain’t never going (chuckling) back there again! I mean, I don’t like Hillary Clinton, either, just cause I don’t like the way she look. And also I don’t like that she, you know, they like rich people, and kind of weird, and they love power, him and her. But she’s like an angel compared to that dude, for me. (chuckles) And he looks so weird, too. I don’t know which one is more uglier, her or him. You’re going to have to look at their faces for four years, one of them. I don’t watch the news though. I don’t look at the television, I don’t watch the news.

16. Maybe you should put money on what your wife predicts?

A: You know what? She predicted… she’s predicted lots of things, but one of the weirdest ones was when I – before I was, no one knew who I was. I was down in Mississippi and I got that three string guitar from my friend. And I never had no intention of playing that. It just was a piece of junk, right? I just got it. I don’t even know why I bought it from my friend. It was more like a souvenir really, cause he’s so weird, my buddy Sherman. Like you go in his barn, there’s vacuum cleaners, there’s… he buys stuff at the junk stores all the time. So he got like – the whole thing is piled with junk. But that thing was hanging on the wall, so I got it anyway. And I come home – I just threw it over in a corner, you know. I didn’t have any feeling for anything, you know. And plus I wasn’t playing anywhere! But I knew a guy who lived up the street from me – this is in Norway – he was a guitar luthier, you know? Really, he was really good. He’s a little bit crazy, but he’s really good at fixing and making guitars. And our house – my wife was up in the kitchen. And we had a little yard with a little white fence out front. So he pulled up, and I was out doing something in the yard. And he knew I had been in Mississippi, and he wanted to know if I brought anything cool back. And I go: “I got the most coolest guitar”, so I went in and got this thing. And he goes: “WHAT?!” It was like an insult to him. You know, he hated it. And he goes: “You can’t play that!” And it only had the three strings, so I just started playing. My wife was up in the kitchen, looking at us, laughing. But then she heard me playing – with no amp, just acoustic – started playing some like “Cut My Wings” type of thing, I don’t even know what I was doing. He goes like that and just drove away. And I was just laughing. I just did it to bother him. I walk back in, she come down the stairs with kind of glassy eyes. She goes – I mean, I’ll never forget – she walked down the stairs, and I’m walking kind of laughing, I go: “Ha, ha, bothered him”, you know. She goes: “That guitar´s going to make you famous.” And I went: “Yeah! Right! (chuckles) And a flying saucer´s going to come and take us to another planet, too!” So she said that. And my wife is here, too…

17. Is that the one that´s haunted or that has super natural powers?

A: Yeah, he says that, Sherman, yeah. But she said that. And that was way before we knew that. Cause I went back later, and that’s when Sherman goes: “Oh, this guitar’s haunted.” But at the time, he just wanted to sell it. You know? Cause he likes selling stuff. You know, he just likes moving things, you know? But she come down real weird like that, just like a ghost. Like going: “That guitar´s going to make you famous.” And I just forgot. I said: “Ah, go away”, you know? And then it was like… it was couple of years later, when I went on the Jools Holland. So this is way before. And at that time, I couldn’t even play at my neighbours house. There was no me getting to play anywhere. So, she’s kind of funny like that. So the thing with Trump and stuff… but she’s not so sure. But I hope she’s right. I hope she’s right.

18. Start asking her for soccer results…

A: Yeah, man! I’ve said: “Why can’t we make some money on you?” She predicted when bell bottoms were going to come back, too, back in the 90s. They hadn’t been around since the 70s, right? One day she goes: “Bell bottoms are going to come back.” Next year, everywhere was bell bottoms. I go: “Damn, woman! Let’s make some money here!” But I guess we did make money. She’s… yeah.

19. And what made you come up with 20 songs for this album? Were you on a role, were they just pouring out of you?

A: I have lots of songs. They´re like it… I’ve said before, like a train waiting. Long, long train. All my life I’ve wanted to play for people, you know. And now I get to do it. And I have a train 10 miles long full of songs. But this double record was her idea. Cause I was just going to make a normal one, like me and Dan – bang, bang, bang. But she wanted an acoustic one so that she could listen to it. So it can be two vinyls. So she wanted to be able just to put on a record like as if I’m sitting in the room. So I recorded it like that – just with one microphone. So almost the whole second one is just acoustic, except for one song, I think. And it’s all just me and a microphone. And that was for her, so she could just have me… cause she’s a lot younger than me, so like I think she always thinks about when I’m going to die, you know? She’s a little bit morbid. Crazy chick.

20. And your recording studio is your front room or kitchen?

A: No, I got a barn that I put all this old recording equipment in. So I have proper stuff from the 60s though. You know, really old tube stuff and everything. And then I got these – so we got a barn, and I then got the wires going into the front room of the house. And so me and Dan, we just sit – right where my couch is and stuff, we just move some shit out of the way. It’s not very big. Probably this room, but with more of a ceiling like this. And he sits here, and I sit over there, and we just crack open the wine. And I got a friend of mine down the road – he doesn’t know how to record, but I taught him how to push the button. Cause we use tape machine, and it’s very hard for me to run back and forth all the time, though I had to do it anyway. But he could at least start it and stop it for us. So he goes: “Ready?” And we go: “Yeah!” And then we go: “AHHAAAAHHAAAAA!” (chuckles) But we record old school – only on tape. No computers anywhere. And even when we go to make the vinyl and everything – no computer.

21. Have ever tried to work with modern technology though? Have you given it a shot?

A: I don’t know how to even… I can barely answer my email. Yeah, I don’t know how to use a computer for anything. But I know how to run tape machine. And I know how to use microphones, you know? So I’m good at it, I know how to do it. But if they run out of tape, you know, when you can’t get tape anymore, then I quit. That’s the end for me. I got lots of tape, though, at home.

22. Is that’s why you´re best friends with Jack White, because you both share that passion?

A: Yeah, that boy, we think the same. He just – I actually just did some stuff for him. He’s having some – maybe I’m not supposed to talk about it – but he’s having a… one guy’s making, at Third Man, making a book about all the people who came and did singles. So we’re going to do that. And then Jack’s having a record coming out. I think they’re going to make some little cartoons, and then have people who know him, tell stories, you know? I think it’d be cool. I like that boy.

23. So the title track is you living out your inner Hendrix?

A: You mean, the Horse song? for me, I don’t usually make lead guitar parts, so I don’t even know where that came from. But it’s like, you know, I saw Jimi Hendrix play like 4 or 5 times. And to me he was the greatest. And I don’t know if I was thinking about him, but if I could do anything that was even in the same universe – thank you very much! (laughs) But for me, yeah. I made that song out there in California actually after we came back from riding horses. And when I did the lead, I made the lead part, I was like: “Wow!” I was so: “How did I do that?” Cause I don’t usually do much of that kind of stuff, so that song’s a little different from what I normally do. But I like it. We haven’t got to play it live yet, but when we go on the next tour, we’re going to play Wembley arena, and we’re going to – me and Dan are going to get together, cause we only ever played the song probably once, when we recorded it. And then – I don’t even know if I know how to play it anymore, so I have to learn the songs again. Cause we don’t do it over and over and over and over and over again. We just do it. And that needs to be good enough.

24. Are you nervous playing such a big venue?

A: Nah! I don’t got time to be nervous. I’ve played for 100.000 people outside. Right? So, it don’t mean nothing. I always just turn it into a bar. I just shrink it in my brain. I just like: “Alright everybody!” And I just, I take my arms and I just go “rrrrrrrrrrrrrr”, and I look at the few people up in the front there, and we’re having a party. Cause you can’t see nobody anywhere else, so… But I try to reach around my arms, you know, in my brain. I’m like: “Come on down everybody! Party!” (chuckles) So I try to turn everything into a bar.

25. Also it´s an anniversary party, isn’t it?

A: Yeah, 10 year. 10 years, when I went on Jools Holland at the end of the year, you know, so… and the record, my “Dog House” record in England come out in November. But we couldn’t get it, it was all booked up. So, that’s how it ended up being October. I’m happy about that.

26. Say is “Walkin´ Blues” your application for ZZ Top – would you be interested in becoming their 4th member?

A (laughs): No, they don’t know how to do that kind of music, actually. “Walkin’ Blues” is more of a… you know, them ZZ Top guys is like a little, they more like in that whole Texas Rock thing. I love them and all that, but this is a little bit more Mississippi Hill Country. One chord… like that’s my kind of tribute to R.L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough, a little bit, just trance (sings) – dang dang dang bou…bo gong bon gou (etc)”. You could play that for 5 or, 4 or 5 hours up there. People just be like, you know? (chuckles) So it’s like my trance to R.L., you know?

27. Like acoustic moonshine?

A: Yeah! (chuckles) Moonshine, all righty. Boy, I had some good moonshine when I was out there last time, phoo! Mm, mmm…

28. Also you’re using the Diddley Bo on “Don´t Take It Away”…

A: Yeah. That’s my old Diddley Bo that I’ve had on lots of records, or some records. And I haven’t used it for a while. And my wife says: “You need to make a Diddley Bo-song again.” And I couldn’t even find it, I couldn’t find what I had done with it. Cause it’s just a plank of wood, and it’s got this one string on it. And a handle from a Chevy. Man! (chuckles) So, I didn’t know where I put it. And so I got it out, and sometimes I try to make songs on it, but it’s really hard! And most of the time it doesn’t work. But that time I went right away and wrote that song in one minute. Or, you know, what, 5 minutes. So it was real good. It was like (sings) “oom”… so I was happy.

29. Then there´s four covers: Glen Campbell, Love, Harry Nilsson and a remake of your very own “Walkin´ Man”. What made you pick these songs? Is it because your wife loves the acoustic stuff?

A: “Everybody’s Talkin’ At Me”, and John Hartford wrote “Gentle On My Mind”. I know, Glen Campbell’s the one that made it famous, and he’s the one I first heard it, so I’ve been playing that song since it come out in 1967. Just for myself. It’s like one of my favourite songs in the world. And I’ve always just played it for myself. And if somebody wanted to listen to me, I’d play it for them, too. But I’ve been playing that song for almost 50 years. And I never recorded it. And it’s literally my favourite song, cause I heard it when I was on the road. Somebody picked me up hitchhiking and it was new. And they turned it on, and I was like: “Huh! This guy’s telling how it, my life is!”, you know, in my brain. And as soon as I could I learned to play it, and I’ve been playing it all this time. So I finally said: “You know what? I’m going to record this song, no matter what.” And the same little – not so much with “Everybody’s Talkin´ At Me”, but that’s also a very favourite song of mine. You know, something about that I felt, you know… so those 2 songs I did just cause I wanted to. The Love-song is another song I’ve been playing since 1966 or ‘7, but then I was having some problems with heroin. And so that’s what that song’s about. “I can’t unfold my arms”, you know, and things like… And I loved Love. That band – there was something so special about that band, cause they were hippies, but they had a black guy in it, and that was unheard of back then. There was only like The Chambers Brothers – they were black guys. And Arthur Lee. And Jimi Hendrix. But for the most part, all the hippie bands were white. But they were so good, Love, you know? And so I’ve always wanted to do that song. And I thought: “Man, you know, if I don’t hurry up and do these songs, I’m going to run out of time.”

30. Is that why you´re following up the last album so quickly? I mean, it’s only been a year since “Sonic Soul Surfer”. Do you feel you have to make use of whatever time is left?

A: I feel that, you know. But by the time this record comes out, it’ll be like over a year, about a year and half between, you know. But I don’t know what else I’m supposed to do. Like you say, I feel time is of the essence. And it’s for all of us. It’s just that when you get older, it starts to get like… I mean, you can drop dead obviously when you’re 20. But people just don’t – you think you’re immortal when you’re young. But when you get older, you kind of know that there’s, you know, your chances are pretty strong that you got 10 years maybe, if you’re lucky, more. You know, think about – that’s not very long. If I get to live another 10 years I’ll be super happy, but (it’s) still not very long, you know? Not, it’s not a long time.

31. What made you start Dead Skunk Records aka your own label?

A: That’s my old, you know – me and a friend of mine in Mississippi did that record when I made the “Cheap” record. But then I got sick, so it never came out. That record never came – I made that record 2003 in Norway. But it didn’t come out till Andy released it on Bronze Rat, like in 2007 or ‘8. That’s when it finally came out. So it never even got out – never got printed or nothing. We printed up I think 3 or 4 hundred of them at the time. But then I got a heart attack, so the record company never – I mean, nobody wanted me, so I had to make my own record company. But then I got sick, and so it just went… so a few years ago, you know, like when I did… that “Sonic Soul Surfer” one’s on Dead Skunk, too. But it was put out through Caroline at the time. That’s why I was at Caroline. But we did that on our own label. So I figured I’d try to resurrect it. I’m tired of record companies.

32. Are you currently hiring? What does corporate headquarters look like? It is a barn?

A: (smiles) I don’t think it has a headquarters yet. We don’t have anything. But at least I don’t have to answer to record companies no more. Now we’re doing everything ourselves. And having over here like Rough Trade put it out. You know, distribute it. We’re the record company, me and my wife.

33. I found this picture of you and Chris Evans, driving some car on “Top Gear”. I seems like you’re almost vomiting in your beard there. Is he such a terrible driver?

A: No, he was really good, but it was very dangerous. It was – I mean, me and him almost got killed twice. And at one point, the director was telling us to do something – in the South Africa go up the Sani pass. It’s one of the most dangerous roads in South – just thousand feet straight down. And like, it was starting to get dark and raining, and the guy who’s the stig – you know, the stig? He drove down the hill, he says: “You guys go up there, you race up there, you could die tonight.” And so it was that dangerous. And me and him realize at one moment, we go: “Fuck!” They don’t actually care. The director does not actually care if we die. And as soon as we really realized that, we go – I turn to him: “I don’t want to die here today”. And that’s how serious it was. So these kind of – I mean, we’re having fun, but it was dangerous. So I mean, this shit they do on “Top Gear” is crazy. But he’s gone now.

34. Did they get Jeremy back?

A: No, no. I don’t know what they’re going to do. People didn’t like him. And he tried his best, too, but people didn’t give him a chance. They didn’t give him a chance. He did six episodes.

35. So how big is your car collection? I hear there’s an 1948 ndian and you ot tractors as well?

A: I got two tractors. I got a 1951 Chevy that I’ve had for 10 years. And I got an old Cadillac, ’55 Cadillac.

36. Whatever happened to your 67 Volkswagen Splitscreen camper?

A: You know, that I got rid of about I think 4 years ago. And I just, I sold it to some… cause it, what it was, I had that in England, but I couldn’t drive around anywhere, cause everybody bothered me. So I couldn’t go camping or do anything. So I sold it. And then they took it to auction and sold it as Seasick Steve’s van. I was like: “Fuck you!”

37. It sold for over 30.000 pounds. Can you believe that?

A: And I sold it for what I got it. I got it for 20 and sold it for 20. So just by putting my name on it, they made… fuck! And if I would’ve known that, I would’ve rather burnt it. Or just kept it, you know.

38. To come to an end: How do you deal with all these screaming young girls in your audience? How do you handle the attention?

A: (chuckles) I don’t understand… you know, it’s a funny weird thing that music is such a magic thing that it can make somebody like me and Dan something to yell at. Cause it’s not like, you know, neither one of us is like no bathing beauties, so like… and I’ve just had some girls in Switzerland, they was like – like this girl was 18 come up to me: “I love you Steve!” and hugging me. And I’m like: “Helloooooo! Anyone home?!” You know, I’m grateful – I think it’s a very beautiful compliment. But it’s more a compliment to music. That music is so magic, you know, that you can transform two old crusty guys and make us into pop stars! (chuckles) You know, that’s a crazy thing. You know, that young girls or whatever could actually like us. Whereas if we weren’t playing music, I can guarantee you they wouldn’t come within a block. And I know that, cause like I’m in California – if I’m walking down the street, and I see some girl come, she’ll go on the other side of the street. She’s all: “Oh, look, here come an old bum. He going to ask me for money or something.” No one wouldn’t come up, you know, like just as a guy? Why would some young girl come up to me? Like I just look like an old bum. But when you play the guitar, then it’s magic.

39. That’s why all the guitar players get the good looking girls…

A: Yeah. Well, it’s all wasted on me and him. We don’t take no girls, any… you know, but it’s like: “Damn, man! I wish I was like 40 years younger – and single!” It’s so wasted on us! And Dan, he don’t have nothing to do with no girls either. So like – I wish we had some like, what do you call, alternative bands that, that comes with us.

40. What about your son Paul, who’s touring with you?

A: Yeah, he got married and has two kids now, and lives in Australia. But even when he was with us, he didn’t pick no girls up either. And he was a handsome boy.


By Nicole Hart