Log of The Artist Shop/Talk City chat with
Mike Keneally
on Wenesday, April 8, 1998



Session Start: Thu Apr 09 01:50:01 1998

<WotanCCC> We're still waiting for Mike to arrive folks....enjoy the company of like minded individuals and send in those questions.

<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> Our guest today is Mike Keneally.
<WotanCCC> He is here to talk about the new Mike Keneally
<WotanCCC> and the Beer for Dolphins release "Sluggo".
<WotanCCC> To send a question to Mike use the following
<WotanCCC> format;
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> Type /msg ASKMike Your question here.
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> Your question will be put in the queue and asked in
<WotanCCC> the order it was recieved.
<WotanCCC> .

<GaryD> Hi, everyone. Just spoke to Mike Keneally on the phone. He's heading to the chat right now.

<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> .Next on our Artist Shop Featured Artist Series:
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . Sunday, April 12 at
<WotanCCC> . 2 pm pt / 5pm et
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . Jethro Tull & Thread Drummer
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . Doane Perry
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . another
<WotanCCC> . Artist Shop / @Music
<WotanCCC> . production
<WotanCCC> .

<WotanCCC> Still waiting for Mike folks. Hang in there. And get those questions in. They are starting to stack up. Our guest today is Mike Keneally. He is here to talk about the new Mike Keneally and the Beer for Dolphins release "Sluggo". To send a question to Mike use the following format; Type /msg ASKMike Your question here. Your question will be put in the queue and asked in the order it was received.

<WotanCCC> Folks, Mike is here and will be using the handle of "Boil".

<GaryD> As in the title of his second solo album, Boil That Dustspeck!

<Mike Keneally> Hello? Hello? Keneally here.

<WotanCCC> What happened to boil?

<Mike Keneally> I told the form I wanted to be Boil, but it ignored me. Is anyone here?

<GaryD> Yes, we've got a pretty good crowd in the auditorium

<Mike Keneally> Well, let them in, then. Introduce wantonly, my friend.

<WotanCCC> Okee dokee, folks Mike will be known as Mike Keneally as someone took the boil handle.

<Mike Keneally> I've nothing to be ashamed of.

<WotanCCC> And here we go...

<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> ******************************
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . Welcome to tonight's
<WotanCCC> . Artist Shop
<WotanCCC> . Featured Artist Conference
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . Mike Keneally
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . Presented by
<WotanCCC> . @Music and TalkCity
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> ******************************
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> .

<Mike Keneally> and Alpo all-beef dog chunks

<WotanCCC> Makes its own sauce....

<Mike Keneally> NIce one, Wotan

<WotanCCC> Its a rip, but I'll take them where I can get them...

<Mike Keneally> I feel welcome. I'm happy and wonderful and ready to go.

<WotanCCC> Mike Keneally is renowned for his work with Frank Zappa and is star of the Grammy-winning Zappa's Universe. One listen Mike's new effort "Sluggo" and you will know that Mike was a very attentive apprentice during his time in Frank Zappa's band. And like Frank, Mike pulls his influences from everywhere he can. Mike, we appreciate you taking the time out to speak with us today. Welcome to @Music and TalkCity! Mike can you start us off by telling us about your new CD "Sluggo"? How would you describe the music we'll find on it?

<Mike Keneally> It's very red.

<WotanCCC> And how red is it?

<Mike Keneally> Um, the music on "Sluggo!" is as beautiful as it was possible for me to make it at the time. And very red.

<WotanCCC> What is the instrumentation on Sluggo?

<Mike Keneally> It changes violently from song to song.

<WotanCCC> So its a violent CD?

<Mike Keneally> Some songs are the standard guitar, bass, drums shtick. Others were built from the piano up.

<WotanCCC> A firm ivory foundation...

<Mike Keneally> And others (eg. "I Guess I'll Peanut") use almost no standard instruments previously known to mankind.

<GaryD> Is is true that the song 'Potato' was really an ancient Irish folk song taught to you by your grandmother while she practiced her electric guitar?

<WotanCCC> Hence the name.

<Mike Keneally> Don't tell a soul, Gary.

<GaryD> LOL

<WotanCCC> Strat or Les Paul?

<Mike Keneally> Strat mainly. The solos on "Own" and "Frozen Beef" are a Gibson SG.

<WotanCCC> I meant your Grandmother.

<Mike Keneally> I actually don't own a Les Paul but I will soon fix that sad situation. Just you watch yourself, Wotan. Are there any civilians here yet?

<WotanCCC> Oh yes, many, many.

<WotanCCC> LOL...better go to an audience question.

<AskMike> hikarate says: every one is buzzing about the apearance and disappearance of the april 1st diary entry will it be as easy as asking if it was a joke or not?

<Mike Keneally> Yay~ What are you talking about?

<WotanCCC> April 1st diary? Whats this?

<Mike Keneally> I have no idea.

<WotanCCC> Ok, well, lets try another...

<GaryD> I imagine he's talking about your website? Maybe?

<Mike Keneally> Oh, the diary on the website. Well, the last entry was in March sometime, wasn't it? I don't think there was an April 1 entry.

<AskMike> ronspiegelhalter says: where's the April 8th '88 tour entry?

<Mike Keneally> It will be up before midnight PST. Hi Ron.

<WotanCCC> Looks like we're stuck with this diary.

<Mike Keneally> Sorry. I haven't checked my page in a few weeks - was there an April 1 entry?

<WotanCCC> Perhaps we should move on...

<Mike Keneally> No!! I need to know!

<WotanCCC> Can you tell us who some of your influences are? Who do you look up to as a guitarist in addition to Zappa?

<WotanCCC> oops sorry...

<Mike Keneally> My biggest influence is clearly Ron Spiegelhalter.

<WotanCCC> Well, that goes without saying...

<WotanCCC> We'll relay that info to you as soon as we get it.

<Mike Keneally> OK - other fave guitar wranglers include... Jan Akkerman.

<WotanCCC> Why does that name sound so familiar?

<Mike Keneally> Probably because you've heard it somewhere before.

<WotanCCC> Could be.

<GaryD> Jan Akkerman is from Focus

<WotanCCC> Was he in Focus?

<GaryD> yes

<WotanCCC> Or ABBA?

<Mike Keneally> The stuff Steve Hillage played on Khan's "Space Shanty" album. Jeff Beck. Holdsworth, the man with the largest hands in the universe.

<WotanCCC> Holdsworth, amazing fingers.

<Mike Keneally> Akkerman was in Focus. None of the other guitarists mentioned above were, however.

<Mike Keneally> Each of the three guitarists in Radiohead.

<WotanCCC> Have you worked with any of these gents?

<Mike Keneally> Not yet. I'd be happy to work with any of them in a second. Both of the two guitarists in XTC. John McLaughlin. Joni Mitchell.

<WotanCCC> Johnny...

<Mike Keneally> Todd Rundgren. Shall I go on?

<WotanCCC> Thats a great list.

<Mike Keneally> ...Carson. It is merely scratching the surface.

<WotanCCC> Very eclectic. Johnny? Our guest today is Mike Keneally. He is here to talk about the new Mike Keneally and the Beer for Dolphins release "Sluggo".

<Mike Keneally> I knew that! Ron, what's up?

<GaryD> Can you mention a little about some of the duetting you did with Fripp during his soundscape performances of G3.

<Mike Keneally> I spent the first part of the tour watching Robert do his thing from out in the audience.

<Mike Keneally> Robert told me at one point how much he appreciated my attentiveness......and I believe that the first time he invited me on stage was as kind of a reward for my paying such close attention.

<WotanCCC> He actually spoke?

<Mike Keneally> Yes, his larynx, lips, tongue and teeth are in working order. He left a standing invitation for me to join him onstage during his set and I exploited it at every opportunity.

<WotanCCC> It must be something to see Fripp play the blues.

<Mike Keneally> Fripp playing the blues makes me smile.

<WotanCCC> Incredible.

<Mike Keneally> It was a trip. Every night was improvised and it would range from a static tonal center to complete chromatic hell. Some nights were OK. Some nights were outrageous. Some nights were heaven. I'd do it again.

<AskMike> thax says: Mike, I have original issues of the _Drop Control_ and _Fashion Poisoning_ tapes - did you handwrite the liner notes to ALL of them??

<Mike Keneally> You mean in the booklets? They were handwritten once, then xeroxed. But the tape labels themselves were all handwritten and autographed.

<GaryD> Were those part of the 'Tar Tapes' series?

<Mike Keneally> Yes, they were two of the Tar Tapes titles.

<WotanCCC> On what Zappa recordings will we find your work?

<Mike Keneally> "Broadway The Hard Way." "Make A Jazz Noise Here." "The Best Band You Never Heard In Your Life." Volumes 4 & 6 of "You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore." And "Trance Fusion."

<WotanCCC> I love that Best Band..... Is the Johnny Cash story true?

<Mike Keneally> Utterly.

<WotanCCC> ROFL...kills me every time.

<Mike Keneally> Pretty lame Cash impersonation! I can't believe FZ let me do it more than once.

<WotanCCC> Thats your voice?

<Mike Keneally> Yup. It sounds more like Mr. Ed, don't you think?

<WotanCCC> Ow Ow Ow

<AskMike> thax says: Mike - how will the 6-piece band at the show on the 14th differ from the 3-piece? Besides being bigger, I mean... :)

<WotanCCC> Heavier?

<Mike Keneally> You got yer basic guitar, bass and drums (me, Beller and Travers). Then there's Marc Ziegenhagen on keys. And finally Bob Tedde and Mark DeCerbo on guitars and backing vocals.

<Mike Keneally> But the hand that feeds tastes awfully good sometimes.

<WotanCCC> Whats your kit like? What equipment are you using?

<Mike Keneally> A Rivera R-100 amp. Cry Baby 535 wah. Ancient Korg multi-effects device with chorus, flange, eq and compressor.

<Mike Keneally> A volume pedal. And that's about it. Hi Meri!

<MeriCCC> ;-)

<WotanCCC> Very cool. Those Riveras are made down the road from us.

<Mike Keneally> ^)+

<Mike Keneally> That, ladies and gentlemen, was my first ever emoticon.

<MeriCCC> impressive!

<GaryD> That was a Picasso emoticon, wasn't it?

<Mike Keneally> I thought it was a Sears emoticon.

<GaryD> LOL

<WotanCCC> Only if it has a warranty.

<Mike Keneally> Yeah. The plus sign falls off the end the day after the warranty expires.

<AskMike> mannthebox says: who do you like as far as guitarists among the new bands

<Mike Keneally> The guys in Radiohead, the guys in Spiritualized, and the guitarist in the band who covered "I Will Survive" is cool too.

<WotanCCC> Can you share some performance dates with us?

<AskMike> potatohead says: I heard G3 is touring again....Are you and Vai joining?

<WotanCCC> Is there a tour in the works?

<Mike Keneally> A tour is in the works. Info will be posted on the MK Page as soon as it's real. We've got the gig at the Roxy on April 14, where we're co-billed with Spock's Beard.

<WotanCCC> Spocks Beard, progressive band no?

<Mike Keneally> Progressive band yes. And then there's seven or eight other LA gigs sprinkled throughout April, May and June, all of which will shortly be posted on the Mk page. I'll tell you now, for you LA-ites, that on April 18, four days after the Roxy gig......I'm doing an acoustic gig at Lumpy Gravy (7311 Beverly).

<AskMike> runnytofu says: any planned canadian dates?

<Mike Keneally> Nothing planned for Canada at the moment. I hope to be there before the end of the year.

<WotanCCC> Ahhhh...very cool...

<Mike Keneally> Acoustic gig is cool? Or going to Canada maybe?

<WotanCCC> I would suspect both are cool........

<Mike Keneally> The gig will be cool. The first half will be me solo, and I'll be doing a lot of cover tunes that I happen to love playing. Then Beller will join on bass for the second half and we'll acoustically deconstruct some BFD faves. I'll be playing a lot of piano at this gig.

<WotanCCC> Ahhh. Can you give us a hint on the covers?

<Mike Keneally> I spent a couple of hours today practicing some Rundgren tunes. I'll leave it at that for now.

<WotanCCC> Cool. I was a big Utopia fan.

<AskMike> spumoni says: What's the most important thing you feel you learned from Zappa?

<Mike Keneally> Hard to narrow it down to just one. But it would have to be singularity of purpose. Frank was incredibly driven.

<WotanCCC> Its amazing how much he recorded.

<Mike Keneally> His work ethic continues to inspire me, and his belief in his own work was inspiring as well. He also took no shit.

<WotanCCC> How was he to work with?

<Mike Keneally> If you showed up at rehearsal knowing your parts, he was a pussycat. I loved his music so I was always prepared, and we got along beautifully.

<WotanCCC> Open to ideas?

<Mike Keneally> Hungering for ideas. It was a very collaborative process.

<WotanCCC> Cool. Would he actually write out parts or make lead sheets?

<Mike Keneally> Songs that had charts were generally very complete charts. The simpler tunes rarely had charts at all.

<WotanCCC> Thanks Mike.

<AskMike> hikarate says: what is happening with the chances of moving to the majors, what is the proposed tour start date?

<Mike Keneally> Right now we're just booking East Coast dates, although we'll be in Sacramento in May, and Clearwater, FL in June. Then it's on to the genealogy chat.

<GaryD> LOL

<AskMike> dill_munch says: Tell me about how u guys came up with the material for Joes Garage especially catholic girls lol

<Mike Keneally> I was ten years away from meeting Frank when he wrote that material, so I had to convey it to him telepathically.

<WotanCCC> ROFL But if you were on Joes Garage....

<AskMike> mannthebox says: who did you listen to as a kid, and why?

<Mike Keneally> The Beatles, because they rocked my world.

<WotanCCC> Good question.

<Mike Keneally> Good answer.

<WotanCCC> Stones fan?

<Mike Keneally> Fully. My first musical instrument was a little electric organ I got for my seventh birthday, and I was playing "Paint It, Black" on it within ten minutes of receiving it.

<WotanCCC> That was a great time for music.

<Mike Keneally> I went through a phase when I was about ten where I decided that I had to stop liking the Beatles in order to be a Stones fan, but I got over that in a hurry.

<WotanCCC> Tough call.

<GaryD> Mike, did anyone ever claim the gold ticket in the Tar Tapes contest?

<Mike Keneally> Silver ticket. And yes, we have a winner...his name is...

<Mike Keneally> ...is...

<Mike Keneally> ...is...

<Mike Keneally> ...Peter Haugseth!

<Mike Keneally> He lives in Norway, I think. I'll be writing and recording his song next month.

<WotanCCC> And you have to be present to win.

<Mike Keneally> Oh, he's very present. Almost prescient, in fact.

<GaryD> Norway? Hmmm. I'll have to check my records to see if he got that from me. I'm seem to recall sending some to Scandinavia :-)

<Mike Keneally> I think he found it lying about in a fjord somewhere.

<AskMike> ronspiegelhalter says: please explain the Hugo Mooney Boogie/Man with Two Brains connection

<Mike Keneally> A line from "The Man With Two Brains": "Gramma Nooney died?" There you go Ronnie.

<WotanCCC> How did the Frank Zappa Universe tribue come about? Who initiated it, and how were the songs chosen?

<Mike Keneally> Joel Thome initiated it. The songs were chosen by Joel and me, and Frank weighed in with a few choices of his own. Frank wanted us to do "Jazz Discharge Party Hats," for which I'll be forever gratefu.

<Mike Keneally> l.

<WotanCCC> How do you feel about his induction to the Rock hall of fame?

<Mike Keneally> I really don't feel about it at all.

<WotanCCC> Moon had an interesting take on it.

<Mike Keneally> That's great.

<AskMike> barracus1 says: Sluggo! is incredible

<Mike Keneally> Thank you!

<AskMike> ronspiegelhalter says: discuss the major label deal and re-recording Sluggo! bits for it

<Mike Keneally> I shan't discuss the major label deal for fear of the unknown.

<WotanCCC> You were also involved with a tribute to progressive rockers Gentle Giant. How did you become involved with that project?

<Mike Keneally> It was initiated over the internet. Anybody who wished to become involved was welcome.

<WotanCCC> I remember reading about it. You subscribed to the mailing list?

<Mike Keneally> The same people who put it together are now doing an ELP tribute, for which I'm doing a track, although it's taking me a long time to get it done. I seem to recall I wasn't even online at home when I was asked to participate in the Gentle Giant thing, actually, so I guess I was sought out. I kind of forget.

<WotanCCC> Must be difficult to solve all the copyright and liscensing issues.

<Mike Keneally> Good thing I've got nothing to do with it.

<WotanCCC> LOL

<AskMike> cthulhu says: Are you still using the Fender w/EMG's as your main guitar?

<Mike Keneally> Yup. It's a Clapton Strat with EMG SA's, Steinburger tuners and a 2-Tek bridge.

<Mike Keneally> Boy, my eyes really glaze over when I start talking gear.

<WotanCCC> LOL

<GaryD> Ha, Ha!

<Mike Keneally> Let's say five.

<WotanCCC> Okee dokee

<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> ****
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . For more information on Mike Keneally
<WotanCCC> . and "Sluggo" go to;
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> . http://www.artist-shop.com
<WotanCCC> .
<WotanCCC> ****
<WotanCCC> .

<Mike Keneally> You can also go to http://www.moosenet.com/keneally.html

<AskMike> sealycat says: Mike--Scott from MI here--What are the plans for the tour this year?

<Mike Keneally> Hey Scott! Guess you got here late. We're starting on the East Coast around July 20 and going for about a month. We'll start posting dates on the MK Page real soon. You should email me, Scott.

<WotanCCC> Haven't we sort of tackled that one?

<Mike Keneally> Hence the "guess you got here late."

<AskMike> barracus1 says: we love you MIke

<Mike Keneally> I love you too.

<Mike Keneally> Beller? Oh, Beller?

<AskMike> prairie says: Have you read 'Zen Guitar' by Philip Toshio Sudo yet?

<Mike Keneally> I have not read "Zen Guitar."

<GaryD> Mike, is Sluggo getting any kind of airplay....It seems there are some tracks that could be killer on the radio.

<Mike Keneally> I kind of liked that "bloated, sluggish" thing showing up right then.

<GaryD> "Why am I Your Guy" for instance

<MeriCCC> we cater to all kinds here ;-)

<Mike Keneally> Yeah, I could stand to hear that on the radio. I think "Potato" is the first single though.

<WotanCCC1> Of your extensive discography, what is your favorite work? What are you most proud of?

<Mike Keneally> The next album. Of things which people can actually currently buy, I'd have to say "Sluggo!"

<GaryD> On Voyage to Manhood you actually use a snippet from Christopher Cross. How did that happen?

<Mike Keneally> I decided to do it. It's not a snippet of the actual recording, it's me singing. And I changed the melody ever so subtly.

<GaryD> right, I didn't mean his actual performance

<Mike Keneally> Are there any more real people lurking or are we basically done?

<WotanCCC1> Is there anything else you would like to mention before we conclude today? You had a great audience Mike. Lots of real fans.

<Mike Keneally> I guess that means there aren't any more questions.

<WotanCCC1> We pretty much used up the queue.

<Mike Keneally> Thanks to everyone who participated. Thanks to everyone who likes my music. Looks like our time is up...

<WotanCCC1> I'd like to thank everyone for joining us tonight. Mike, we appreciate taking the time to come and chat with us.

<Mike Keneally> Thanks to everyone who plans to keep an eye on me in the future. You won't be disappointed.

<WotanCCC1> We all hope youšll come back to Talk City again soon!

<GaryD> Thanks, Mike!

<Mike Keneally> You're so damn welcome.

<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . For more information on Mike Keneally,
<WotanCCC1> . Beer for Dolphins, and "Sluggo" go to;
<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . http://www.artist-shop.com
<WotanCCC1> .

<Mike Keneally> As well as http://www.moosenet.com/keneally.html

<WotanCCC1> Finally, thanks to the Artist Shop for working with us on this conference. We especially appreciate the efforts of Gary Davis in giving us the opportunity to speak with Mike Keneally.

<Mike Keneally> We love you, Gary!

<GaryD> Oh, pshaw ;-)

<WotanCCC1> Don't forget to drop by the Artist Shop and explore all of their musical offerings.

<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . http://www.artist-shop.com
<WotanCCC1> .                       and
<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . http://www.moosenet.com/keneally.html
<WotanCCC1> .

<WotanCCC1> I remembered.

<Mike Keneally> You rule, Wotan.

* MeriCCC has her eye on you! Keep up the excellent work!

<WotanCCC1> Danke

<Mike Keneally> Bye Meri!

<WotanCCC1> And thanks everyone for coming.

<Mike Keneally> Or however you may have reacted.

<Mike Keneally> Perfect! Bye...

<GaryD> Don't forget, we have Doane Perry of Jethro Tull this Sunday and Ian McDonald, original King Crimson member next Wednesday!

<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> .Next on our Artist Shop Featured Artist Series:
<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . Sunday, April 12 at
<WotanCCC1> . 2 pm pt / 5pm et
<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . Jethro Tull & Thread Drummer
<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . Doane Perry
<WotanCCC1> .
<WotanCCC1> . another
<WotanCCC1> . Artist Shop / @Music
<WotanCCC1> . production
<WotanCCC1> .

<GaryD> Stop by http://www.artist-shop.com/irc   for details.

<WotanCCC1> Night all.

Session Close: Thu Apr 09 03:23:09 1998


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