A Conversation with Neko Case (continued)
PM: Are you playing a lot of guitar on stage these days, Neko?
NC: Yeah, I play guitar on pretty much everything. I don't really know that it would be noticeable if I did or didn't. [laughs] Maybe if you took it away, you'd notice it.
PM: Yeah, right. Mostly electric, or mostly acoustic?
NC: Mostly electric right now. But they definitely don't need me to hold anything up, guitar-wise.
PM: Shouldn't we talk some about Kelly Hogan or Carolyn Mark, while we're discussing your friends?
NC: Sure, we can talk about them right in front of them, they love it. What would you like to know about them? [laughs] Oh, Kathleen wants everybody to know that Kelly said "Single," right off the bat. I guess we're all single right now, I forgot.
PM: Thank you, that's very important, actually.
NC: I do have a dog I'm very devoted to.
PM: What about Kelly Hogan, does she have new recordings our readers should know about? What's she doing solo?
NC: You want to talk to her? Hang on, I'm gonna pass you over to Kelly Hogan, single.
Kelly Hogan: Hi there, Hogan here.
PM: Hi Kelly. What are you up to solo that we could share with our readers?
KH: Thanks. I'm doing a jazz-oriented band these days, called The Wooden Leg. We play every Thursday night at The Hideout, in Chicago. Their website is hideoutchicago.com, and you can check it out there. We play makeout music--we turn the lights down, and try to help people get it on, that sort of thing.
KH: We call it jazz with a limp. We have a great Hammond [organ] guy, guitar, bass, and drums. We turn the lights down, there are no pimples or wrinkles in the back room on Thursday night. Helping people get it on, that's my crusade.
KH: We just recorded a live record. I don't know if it will come out on Bloodshot, I'd like to put it out myself. I'll be mixing that in February, should be available in the spring. You could find out at my website or the hideout website.
PM: You're a monster.
KH: I'm a mess, really. But you know what? I just turned 40, and I don't care.
PM: A major talent, and hella fine. Kelly, thanks for talking with us.
KH: You're welcome. Here's Neko again.
PM: Hi, Neko, so let's talk about The Tigers Have Spoken.
PM: I hadn't heard a Buffy Sainte-Marie song in a long time.
NC: I know what you mean.
PM: Wow, that was an out standing cover of "Soulful Shade of Blue."
NC: We did a credible version of her, I think. I love her.
PM: Have you talked to her-- is she around, first of all?
NC: Yeah. She apparently is still incredibly foxy as well, I'm told.
PM: Oh, yeah, she always was.
NC: She still performs, yes. I think she lives in Canada. Actually, no, I don't know where she lives. But I know Carolyn Mark actually introduced her at the Edmonton Folk Festival a couple years ago. And she was like, "Wow! She was incredible! She was still smokin' hot."
PM: Wow. And so you haven't spoken to her since you cut that, you don't know her or anything like that.
NC: No, I don't know her. I wish I did. [Find out some of what Ms. Sainte-Marie has been up to recently at www.creative-native.com]
PM: She's got to catch wind of the fact that some hot singer just cut "Soulful Shade of Blue," and that a lot of people are listening to it again.
NC: Well, that would be cool, if somebody told her. But you never know.
[A discussion broke out about gas and a bathroom break, and they started pulling over and up to some tanks.]
NC: Diesel, diesel, diesel--straight ahead.
PM: Wow. Do you know the Jim Lauderdale song "Diesel Diesel Diesel"?
PM: Great song, I thought you were quoting him. Have you done any acting?
NC: Oh, God, no. Everybody wants to do that.
PM: That's true. Everybody wants to do that.
NC: Hold on one second. I have to work this freezing diesel pump.
PM: Oh. It's pretty cold in Shanghai. What do you got out there? Thirties?
NC: Oh, it's so frickin cold I can't even tell you. I don't even know. Last night I think it was like five below zero or something, just unbearably cold. God, I can't get this cap off. There we go. Damn.
PM: Wow, I've never interviewed someone who was trying to get a cap off the gas tank.
NC: NO, it's off this horrible diesel additive.
PM: Oh, the additive, yeah.
NC: Okay, you put it in. I'm going inside, it's freezing out here. continue