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Il Sogno Del Marinaio

Mike Watt

Mike Watt Finds Bountiful Inspiration with Il Sogno Del Marinaio
by Joshua Miller
September 2014

Legendary spiel speaking bass guitar player Mike Watt has spent the last few decades tinkering with musical innovation.  His desire has been to keep learning, sailing the musical waterways from San Pedro, California, to spots around the world. Basically wherever his tour van would carry him. With singer D Boon, Watt helped usher in “Econo Punk” with The Minutemen and helped fuel their quick and direct songs that often dabbled in politics and social issues. After D Boon’s tragic death, he continued making his mark with bands like Firehose and Dos. He’s also spent much of the past decade playing with legendary band The Stooges, who reformed in 2003.

These days Watt keeps a busy schedule of music activities, including new band Il Sogno Del Marinaio. Joining him for that band are Italian musicians Stefano Pilia and Andrea Belfi.  The band is currently celebrating release last month of their second album, Canto Secondo, which follows their debut from 2013, La Busta Gialla. The band found its footing in 2009 after they were invited to be part of the Italy-based All Tomorrow’s Parties festival and found success in the resulting tour. Despite his past achievements, Watt remains humble, not one to hog all the credit all the time. Instead he’s always seeking to find new ways to make music.

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Todd Wolfe at Tobacco Road

The Todd Wolfe Band

An interview with singer and guitarist Todd Wolfe
by Tina Hall
September 2010

Todd Wolfe currently has a radio show at http://wlvr.org Mondays 12 noon - 3 p.m. Todd is probably best known from his previous work with Sheryl Crow. While working with her he has shared the stage with artists like Emmylou Harris, Steve Winwood, James Taylor, Jackob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Elton John, Marty Stuart, and Sara McLaughlin.  Over the years he has opened for some of the biggest names in music including, Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Bob Dylan,Peter Frampton, Johnny Winter, Allman Brothers, Buddy Guy, and Kenny Wayne Shepherd. He now works mainly with his solo project The Todd Wolfe band.

Maximum Ink: How is your radio show going? What can fans expect from that? Did you ever think you’d have your own show?
Todd Wolfe: I enjoy the radio show and it’s been going on for over ten years. When I first started, I did the “community” sessions meaning when school was out, but some years back I just stayed on through both schedules. I have taken a couple of “sessions” off as I was traveling with the band, but I’m still there. It’s very enjoyable playing music for other people and I guess I always kind of played as DJ growing up when friends would be hanging at my house, but never thought I’d have my own show! I did dream about if from time to time ‘cause after seeing “Play Misty For Me” an early Clint Eastwood flick, where he plays a jazz jock, I thought what a cool job that would be! As far as tuning in and what you would hear. Mostly roots rock but it can be anything from Howlin’ Wolf to Stone Temple Pilots, to John Coltrane to The Rolling Stones!

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Travis T. Warren

Travis T. Warren

An interview with Singer/Songwriter Travis T. Warren
by Max Ink Writer List
December 2012

Travis T. Warren, best known for this work as frontman of Blind Melon and in the hard rock duo The Lookout Kids recently released his debut solo album titled Beneath These Borrowed Skies. The album features guests Aja Volkman (Nico Vega), Christopher Thorn (Blind Melon), and Eva Gardner (from Pink’s backing band). All proceeds from the album (out now on Clarity Way Records) go to benefit MusiCares, which provides financial, medical, and, personal support to musicians in need.

Maximum Ink: Can you tell us a little about your background? What was it like growing up in Texas?
Travis T. Warren: Well I grew up in Amarillo which is in the panhandle of Texas. It was and still is a very right leanin kicker town. Not a lot to do but get high, chase girls and play/listen to music. I left for California a month after I turned 17 and never looked back. Texas has great steaks if you’re into that sort of thing.Great Tex-Mex food as well

MI: What is your fondest memory from that time?
TTW: Friends. I had a lot of great friends from that time. I’m still very close to a few of them to this day. We were a brotherhood. Very tight. We did everything together. Skipped school. Got high. Stayed up through the night having long, philosophical conversations about what we were going to do when we got older. Beer runs. Ya know that sort of shit.

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W.A.S.P. - artwork by Ian Chalgren

W.A.S.P.


by Jeff Muendel
February 2010

Those who have encountered the band W.A.S.P. are not likely to forget the experience. Like them or hate them, their stage antics tend to be memorable. The group almost literally clawed their way out of the early eighties Los Angeles heavy metal scene the same fertile ground that produced the likes of Mötley Crüe, L.A. Guns, and Ratt. These groups paved the way for many more hair bands to come, but W.A.S.P. was a little bit different. While many of the other groups from that era focused on a cross-dressing, bad-boy image, W.A.S.P. was just plain twisted and scary; the group was more Alice Cooper than Rolling Stones. Band members had circular saws sewn into the crotch of their trousers. Raw meat was cut up and thrown into the audience. Blood was a common stage prop. All of this accompanied aggressively sexual lyrics, buzz saw guitar riffs, and pumping double-bass drums.

At the heart of the group, then and now, was Blackie Lawless. In fact, he is the only remaining original member, and for all intents and purposes, W.A.S.P. is his artistic vehicle. Lawless was born Steven Duren on Staten Island, New York. Famously, or perhaps infamously, he got his first break playing with the legendary New York Dolls. The group was in its final death throes, but it introduced Lawless to New York Doll’s guitarist Arthur Kane. After the New York Dolls finally split, Lawless followed Kane to Los Angeles.

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Wayland - photo by JR Wyatt

Wayland

An interview with lead guitarist Phillip Vilenski
by Michelle Harper
November 2015

One hundred and sixty four miles from Lincoln City, the birthplace of legendary rocker Bob Segar, is a town called Wayland, Michigan. With a population of around 4,000 people, it’s safe to say that unless you’re from the area, you probably have never heard of the place.

Enter Wayland, the band. Their hot, searing vocals, combined with a blues/rock fusion sound will make sure that, not only will you know about the town of Wayland, Michigan…

You’ll never forget it.

Their new single entitled “Bloody Sunrise” is taking the radio waves by storm. I had the privilege of speaking with lead guitarist Phil Vilenski, as he and the band were driving down the road in their tour bus somewhere between Memphis and Shreveport.

MI: I read that you and Mitch (Mitch Arnold, lead singer of Wayland) met in California around 10 years ago.
PV:
It’s funny because we’re all Midwestern guys, we’re all from Michigan, Mitch is from Indiana, and we met in Los Angeles.

MI: That is funny.  So how did you guys meet? Did you meet in a club? Were you auditioning for groups? What happened?

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Vocalist/Guitarist Wayne Static

Wayne Static

An Interview with Vocalist/Guitarist Wayne Static
by Aaron Manogue
October 2011

There have been very few voices and guitar riffs that have been as noticeable as Wayne Static’s signature metal howl and “evil disco” sound in the past few decades. He has mashed and molded a unique combination of hardcore metal with industrial sounds dashed with a side of disco to form a brand that has sold thousands worldwide. Now that Static-X is on an indefinite hiatus, Wayne is back at it, doing it solo but still bringing the signature sound to rape and pillage your ear drums. Maximum Ink’s Aaron Manogue sat down with Wayne Static to talk about his new solo album Pighammer, his favorite music he listens to and his pyshco dog Brutus that would protect his wife and himself, in case of a zombie apocalypse.

Maximum Ink: Talk to me a little bit about where the name Pighammer came from for your latest solo album?
Wayne Static: It’s kind of just a word that popped in my head years ago and I’ve wanted to use for something for a long time. I finally figured out we’d call the solo record Pighammer and me and my wife had a good time thinking of what Pighammer means. At first, we were going to say it was a sexual position, but we thought that might be too much for the kids. So we came up with this whole story about the mad plastic surgeon with this big hammer tool that he uses to change women into pigs. That kind of went along with the whole lyrical theme of the record too, which is transformation.

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Luke Jorgensen of Lower 5th and Whiskeyonsin organizer

Whiskeyonsin Family Reunion 2016

an interview with organizer and musician Luke Jorgensen
by Teri Barr
May 2016

Success with a group of musicians is one thing.

But also being an accomplished producer and event organizer should elevate the clout for one of the founders of The Lower 5th, a Madison-based, Midwestern-soul band. Yet any communication with Luke Jorgensen reveals a kind-hearted man, who is simply proud to be able to play a style of music he loves with people he describes as “amazing.”

Ask him about his three-year-old event, the Whiskeyonsin Family Reunion, and it’s when you get the fierce passion of someone who considers this one of the top shows to bring some of the best area bands together, and all for us. I asked Luke about Whiskeyonsin, how it has turned into one of his favorite things to be part of, and why the show is moving to Madison this June.

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