Eric Fisher and Arlie Carstons (Atoms and Void)
SPB: When collaborating with so many artists, how do you draw the determine when to allow a “guest improv” vs pre-composed music?
Eric & Arlie: Our approach to recording is both guided and spontaneous, and our reasons for working with a specific musician (or combination of musicians) are always very intentional. There are really no “guest improv” moments. Rather, in some ways we sort of work like conductors. We always have an idea of what we want the mood, tempo and arrangement of a song to be— often writing and recording the song’s basic structure and then talking with each other about which session player(s) would be best for additional instrumentation on certain songs and in specific spots. Each musician approaches his/her instrument differently, which makes it possible for our songs to sidestep easy categorizations of genre or style. We strive to record with folks that can interpret our ideas in ways that allow for spontaneity and stylistic nuances. Basically, it’s all about trust and communication. We’re blessed to have these people and their creative minds in our lives.
SPB: I just finished reading the book you released in 2006, As Far As You Can Get Without A Passport, loved it and your stories of your youth as you made your way to California. Any chance you will be adding to it or writing a complete autobiography in the future?
Peter: Well, yes, I did write hundreds of pages of stories from that time, about finding my way in the music world, and I DO hope to see it published. And I even have some interest from the people who did the first one, but we'll just have to see. I need some time to finish it, and being a musician is pretty demanding time-wise, so I'll just say ASAP! If there was some way I could be freed up for a month or two to get the manuscript in shape, and write some more etc... could happen sooner rather than later. A lot of people have been asking. I'll do it as soon as I can!
Emmett (Pkew Pkew Pkew – bass/vocals)
SPB: Winter touring in Canada: yes or no?
Emmett: Definitely tour in the winter in Canada. Sure you have to take it easy on the roads, but you can just leave all your beers in the van the entire time and they stay cold!
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