Picking the easy targets since 1993
Published in RW#13, 1999
And so I beg of you, please, if you can not find it in your stone-cold hearts to forgive me for the following interview, please forgive this magazine and for God's sake, forgive Booker Noe.
Booker Noe is:
RW: We're with Booker Noe and we're on our way to . . . where we going? A liquor store?
WING: Cal's Liquor's.
RW: And where is Cal's Liquor's located?
WING: Van Buren and Wells.
RW: Van Buren and Wells.
LORI: Is this for the Reglar Wiglar?
RW: Ahh well . . . it is for a "magazine."
LORI: Ok . . .
RW: What magazine wants to option it, we don't know yet.
LORI: Is it going to be a magazine with the circulation of the Wiglar?
RW: Could be.
WING: Is there going to be tablature in it? Am I going to have to write all my songs out in tablature?
RW: That's a good idea, I never thought of that. Tablature sells copies. That sells magazines.
WING: Are we going to start talking about gear now?
RW: What do you play through?
WING: I'm using a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe.
RW: What's your favorite gauge of string?
WING: I like the GHS Boomer Thin and Thick, the thicker the better is the way I look at it.
RW: Excellent! Enough of that. Where does the name Booker Noe come from? Is it a character in a Western? That's what I tell people.
LORI:No. He was the last--
LORI: He was the last Jim Beam distiller.
WING: The current distiller.
RW: He's still alive?
LORI: He was born in 1906.
RW: Whiskey will keep you young. So he's still in power?
WING: Yes, he is. I thought you said there was an exit here.
RW: There is.
(There is a brief moment of confusion as the turn on to Lake Shore Drive comes into sight.)
RW: How do you describe Booker Noe's music? Can I tell you how I describe it to people? It's theme music to a Western movie. How's that?
LORI: That's good. It's a little more rock than that.
RW: A rockin' Western! I didn't say it was a lame Western did I?
LORI: No, you didn't. You wanna fight?
RW: Not yet.
WING: That would be somewhat to the idea, but we think it stems off into other areas, like rock and roll.
LORI: It's kind of surfy.
WING: It's kind of country, but we do like Western movie soundtracks.
RW: Do you play country and western? I understand that you're playing two shows tonight. That's quite a grueling schedule.
RW: That's quite a grueling schedule. I'm sorry, I'm eating a Jack's Naturally Rising frozen pizza slice.
WING: You should really eat a little bit healthier.
RW: I should but hey, I was asleep about fifteen minutes ago, so . . . you gotta go to where the story is in this business.
RW: No, I prepared all day for that interview. I got up really early. I rehearsed all the questions. We're not talking about the Polkaholics. We're talkin' to Booker Noe.
UPV (Unidentified Person in Van): What's that you're drinking? Coffee?
RW: Yeah. I actually wrote out some questions but I forgot 'em.
LORI: Save 'em for the follow-up interview when we're rich and famous and we grant one interview.
RW: I will. (To Unidentified Person in Van) So what's your role in all this?
UPV: I'm just along for the ride, man.
RW: Yeah, there's a lot of guys like you in the music business. Who is this guy?
RW: We're looking at boats on Lake Michigan. It's a crisp spring evening. I'm going to continue this interview throughout the course of the night.
Lori: Yeah, after we've had a few drinks.
RW: I've had a few drinks and I'm recording over someone's demo tape right now. I don't know whose but I'm sure they deserve better.
Cal's Liquor's is a south Loop dive through a hole in the wall, not much in the way of decór but they did happen to have free music and cold beer and that's a good combination.
RW: So where are we and why exactly are we here?
WING: We're here to turn a few more heads on to the Booker Noe sound.
RW: Is that a slow process or do you find that people are hip to the country/western/rock kind of thing?
WING: I don't think it's that slow of a process. When we get in front of people they seem to enjoy it quite a bit. The problem is getting ourselves in front of a lot of people.
RW: Yeah, that's always tough.
RW: Especially getting a lot of people to pay money to have you in front of them.
WING: That is a problem.
RW: I'm surprised, but I believe it.
RW: Is this a bad time for music, right now? The end of the world, this is a bad time for music? Is it ever a bad time for music?
RW: There is a bad time for music?
WING: If you're talking about popular music. Is that what you're, in fact, talking about?
RW: I don't know, I'm just throwing it out there.
WING: When I turn on a Top 40 hit rock radio station
RW: Which is how often?
WING: Maybe once a week.
RW: You turn on a hit radio station once a week?
WING: When I listen to it, I hear two or three songs in a row that sound very similar, the quadrupled vocals, these big effects and they got so much compression on them that it sounds like a video game/skateboard kind of thing. We got to go back to where the amp and the guitar make a difference again.
RW: Back to where the amp and the guitar make love again?
WING: Sweet love.
After the show.
RW: You guys were really workin' it up there. I could tell. You're sweaty.
WING: When I play I like to have a little sweat going so sometimes you're sort of shivering up there. I don't like U2, I don't like any of that shit.
RW: You don't like U2?
WING: Let's put it this way, I saw U2 at the Fox Theater in '87 or '88.
RW: And they weren't sweating enough for you?
WING: Bono was very sweaty, I'm just talking about that fucking video they had.
RW: The one where they're sweating?
WING: "Christmas Day" or whatever the hell, where they're standing outside.
RW: "New Year's Day"?
UPV: "Sunday Bloody Sunday", man.
WING: Yeah, where they're standing outside with cut-off gloves and shit. But anyway, I saw them in Detroit and they were very good but—
RW: They were too sweaty?
WING: Well, obviously Bono lost touch with reality. I think that the Reglar Wiglar audience would agree with me.
RW: I think a great portion of them would agree with you on that one, but certainly not all of them.
JAKE: Hey, that gig was a lot of fun.
RW: It looked like fun.
JAKE: Yes, it was. It was hot and then I took my shirt off.
RW: I saw that.
JAKE: And then it got a little hotter in the room, you know what I'm saying?
RW: A lot of the ladies had to sit down.
JAKE: We got a ten dollar bill in the tip jar.
RW: I'll bet.
JAKE: It has my tits written all over it.
RW: I know, I put that in there. Just kidding, I wouldn't tip Pamela Anderson Lee ten bucks. You guys still gotta play another show tonight?
JAKE: Yeah. I'm used to it though, I used to play cruise ships in Las Vegas.
Well, that's it. That's all I was able to salvage from the tape. Booker Noe did indeed play another show that night and I'm pretty sure I was there. My tape recorder disappeared for awhile at the party. I found it on the side of a pool table recording some idiotic meathead conversation that thoroughly bored me upon replay. Pretty pathetic, huh? (Just say yes.) I tried to do a follow-up interview with the Booker Noe but they've since moved to Colorado. And so it goes.
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