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Published on November 26th, 2000 | by Gerry Galipault

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A Butthole Surfer Rides the Wave

Butthole Surfers guitarist-songwriter-producer Paul Leary has plenty on his plate, what with working on the Long Beach Dub Allstars’ second DreamWorks album (due early next year) and another Surfers LP.

He still finds time to sit down to play “10 questions” with Pause & Play via e-mail, discussing among other things his latest projects and the presidential indecision.

Pause & Play – How have the Long Dub sessions been?

Leary – “Absolutely a blast. The band is made up of such sweet guys, and it is fun hanging with them. Their music is inspiring.”

P&P – What can their fans expect from this album?

Leary – “Fun songs of different genres, as per usual. The songs on this album are all fun to listen to, even though many of them are about going to jail.”

P&P – Has there been a specter of Brad Nowell’s memory during the sessions? (After the 1996 heroin overdose of Nowell, Sublime’s singer, surviving members Eric Wilson, on bass, and drummer Bud Gaugh formed Long Beach Dub Allstars with singer Opie Ortiz, guitarists RAS-1 and Miguel, keyboardists Jack Maness and Isaiah Owens, saxophonists Todd Foreman and Tim Wu and DJ Marshall Goodman.)

Leary – “Well, I think about Brad every time Miguel brings Louis Dog to the studio, which is quite often. For some reason, I like to imagine Brad is in Louis.”

P&P – What’s in the works for the Butthole Surfers?

Leary – “Well, we go back into the studio in January to record with Rob Cavallo producing some songs to finish up our album. Then, hopefully, a radio hit, bla bla bla …”

P&P – What else do you have planned?

Leary – “Hopefully another album production gig to get me through till it is time to tour the next Butthole album. I’m knocking on wood.”

P&P – We’re big fans of the Flaming Lips (you performed on “Turn It On”). Why in God’s name aren’t they HUGE?

Leary – “Why?? ‘cuz they wouldn’t let me produce their last album, that’s why!!! The jerks!! He he he, naaaa. They are one fine band. I don’t think they are out there to be huge. But, it could still happen. They still rock quite well.”

P&P – As a Texas native, what do you make of this presidential indecision?

Leary – “Well, just goes to show just how wonderful our choices were for this office. When do we get the chance to vote for a black woman?”

P&P – What was the first record you ever bought?

Leary – ” ‘Led Zeppelin II,’ for $5 at the mall, the next day after hearing ‘Whole Lotta Love’ on the radio. Five bucks was a lot to pay for vinyl in those days … I remember opening it up and thinking ‘John Paul Jones, cool … ‘ “

P&P – What was the first concert you ever went to?

Leary – “Grand Funk Railroad, San Antonio Convention Center Arena in ’71 or ’72. Bloodrock opened up the show and played ‘D.O.A.’ I went with my friend Flavio. We had my dad drop us off behind the arena so we could climb a chain-link fence to get in. Both Flavio and I got thrown out by the cops during ‘Into the Sun.’ The second concert was Creedence Clearwater Revival. Got thrown out by the cops at that one too.”

P&P – What was the last CD you bought?

Leary – “I just bought the Meat Puppets’ latest release, but when I put it on I discovered half my stereo is not working. I hate my stereo when it doesn’t work. Damn tube technology. … Bought a Prince Jammy record too. The chicks just love it when I put on the Jammy.”

BWF (before we forget): The Butthole Surfers album discography – “Live PCPPEP” (Alternative Tentacles, 1984); “Psychic … Powerless … Another Man’s Sac” (Touch & Go, 1985); “Rembrandt Pussyhorse” (1986); “Locust Abortion Technician” (1987); “Hairway to Steven” (1988); “Double Live” (1989); “Pioughd” (Capitol, 1991); “Independent Worm Saloon” (1993); “Hole Truth … and Nothing Butt” (Trance, 1995); “Electriclarryland” (Capitol, 1996); “After the Astronaut” (1998).

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About the Author

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.



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