So let me just start off by saying that Chicago is really cold. Seriously… REALLY cold. I arrived at the venue around 1pm to find that the production people had transformed Schubas. There were lights, meters, the smallest HD cameras you’ve seen and a bunch of people to figure out how everything works. Luckily the nice folks at Schubas had wi-fi, so I could actually get some work done while I was around. Did I mention that every single person at Schubas was incredibly nice. I think it’s a mid-west thing or something. KT‘s (pronounced like Katie, btw) bus arrived and everyone cleared out for sound check. As a small side note, she met her God Son for the first time. He played drums while she soundchecked a song, which was quite entertaining considering he was probably 2 years old, if that. Anyway, KT was sounding great.
We wanted to make sure there was SOME sort of company signage at the venue, so I made an emergency call to MN with JR, had him whip up some quick snipes, which AA from that-one-company took to Kinkos, brought back and then I started taping all the posters in the venue. I even used my teeth to cut the tape.
There was no sign of Willy though. Shortly after I started worrying about Willy (and I wasn’t the only one), I got a call from his manager who said he was on his way to the venue FROM NEWARK! He assured me Willy would arrive on time. Sure enough, a few hours later, he walked in the door. I happened to see him walking in, introduced myself and directed him to the stage for soundcheck. Everyone was gathered upstairs for dinner. Willy wondered in and I struck up a nice conversation with him. I knew damn well, that if I started talking, I would ruin the interview I was going to do a few minutes later. Oh well, I thought, we’ll just revisit a few things, which we did.
As soon as people finished eating, we moved everyone out of the upstairs area and conducted interviews. I did some research on KT and Willy earlier in the afternoon and prepped some questions.Willy and I talked about the differences between US and UK audiences, how he felt about being so well-known in the UK even though he was a US artist, how his parents are folk singers / artists and what artists have had an impact on his artistry. He was extremely talkative and we seemed to get along well.
The KT interview was fun. She was also very talkative and we had a good time talking about LA’s own Hotel Cafe, her guitar pedal (called "wee bastard"), Deadheads, other Scottish artists she was friends with and how cool it is to have a tour bus. Unfortunately, our interview was conducted while Willy was on stage, so I’ll be watching the DVD on the plane.
We took Willy in to the audio truck and video van (yes, it was a van), only to see Mike Drumm directing the shoot from a pillow on the wheel well of the van while a space heater kept the frigid air out. HOW PUNK ROCK IS THAT?!
We ended to the evening with a good meal and now I’m abou to pack up and pass out.