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Telephone interview with Gary Louris
by Kelly (true-k)

Kelly: So I was going to ask you some questions today. So where are you situated right there?

Gary: Yup, I'm at home.

Kelly: You're at home in Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Gary: That's correct.

Kelly: Ok. So we wanted to know about your plans for this year in your music life. Is that a big secret secret or...? We know a little about the Sadies but can you just do a little forecast up until like December?

Gary: Up until the summer? Well there's just trying to diversify, to break out of what I've been doing. It's starting to get a bit repetitive, need to explore some areas. It's a bit painful at times, not doing what you normally do and there's a lot of bad music coming out of me right now. To get through that, try to get something new and different so I've just been going down to my studio. Trying to get into a schedule of working, get through all the ideas that have piled up over the last few years. And try everything and anything you know. Not worry about how it would fit onto a Jayhawks record. Then I've just been doing a little film music and I've been doing some...Golden Smog has a record coming out in April. Going to Spain to do a little acoustic tour...

Kelly: That's solo?

Gary: Uh, that's solo with my friend Kraig Johnson and my friend Paco Loco might sit in. I'll do part of it myself, part of it Kraig will do a little by himself. And that works up to the summer when I'm hopefully going to get serious about making my own record.

Kelly: That's what everybody wanted to know. They wanted the confirmation. So it's something you're serious about?

Gary: I'm very serous about it! I thought I could just produce and work on other people's music because I've been co-writing with people, I've been collaborating. I'll be producing this project tomorrow. I'm producing...

Kelly: Who is that?

Gary: A band from Detroit.

Kelly: The Wren...

Gary: Right the Wrenfields. That's something too, that's a good start but I really want to break out of what I'm known as. I'm known as somewhat of a Country Rock where I feel it's a little dead end-ish. I'd like to break into some other kind of production.

Kelly: You've actually been getting lots and lots of offers for work right?

Gary: Uh...a fair amount. I wouldn't say it was...but I'm comfortable just spending time at home too. I just think I just noticed that when I was working on other people's music I found myself missing a bit of the total control I had doing my own.

Kelly: Right

Gary: I think that'll come but with no real big agenda. I think when I feel like the time is right and the music is good enough. I don't think the world needs another cd to be perfectly honest. If it's great I'm going to put it out, if the record's interesting. But it's not to get on the radio or anything else. If I think it's interesting then I think I'll do it.

Kelly: Another thing people might want to know is...would Golden Smog do a one off or do a tiny tour or what do you think?

Gary: Well we've been asked that by the label of course. The label would of loved for us to go on an 18 month tour. But the reality is...

Kelly: You have a life, yeah it's tough.

Gary: Personally I'm not that into touring anymore. I found that I'm not in a band for that. The type of musician I am I'm not somebody that ad libs and creates. I'm more a recreator who when I tour I tend to recreate parts that I've written so touring and playing live is fun to me to a point but... As far as the tour me and Tweedy are probably the two people who are the least likely to want to tour. I would do, we've commited to maybe a minimum of two weeks within the next year. Some might be with Jeff some might be without. Jeff is definitely the least involved of the group as far as contributing to the record and touring.

Kelly: Thank you, that was all very good stuff. I was surprised that you guys didn't make an appearance at SXSW, the Golden Smog. Is that just because you were travelling doing other things?

Gary: Well we talked about that. I think for me SXSW was really an interesting place to go in about 1997, 1990, '92. I've been there a number of times. It's a good schmooze. It's fun if you like running around, It's like Sundance, a million things going around. But Austin for me was magic when it first started, when we were this kind of new band. Meet people, meet other bands and now it's just kind of a showcase. We've been just as guilty as everbody else at using it to go play our shows. I've been talked into it many times. Sometimes it's like you know, sometimes it's time to step away and let somebody else do it.

Kelly: I thought those were all really great comments. I'm going to use this so...

Gary: Good questions!

Kelly: (laughs) Well basically it's what everyone wants to know.