The Rev With His Extra Yeg
3 have been around a fair old while now, making quality sounds, always
daring to be different and injecting a hefty dose of humour into proceedings.
Jake Black (aka The Very Reverend Dr. D. Wayne Love) spoke to Atomicduster
about the bands latest album, Outlaw and the inspiration
AD: The only way I can describe Outlaw is Once Upon
a Time in the West played as a drug opera throughout the clubs
and ghettos of Great Britain. How would YOU describe it?
JB: Its great that you see that, because I would describe it in
pretty much the same way you just have. Its not just about Western
outlaws though; its about ALL the great historical of our time
(except Robin Hood I cant celebrate a man who wore green
tights), with a lot of focus on the Great Train Robbery. Theres
also a lot of satire in there if you listen carefully too. The GTR was
such an incredible piece of performance art and we wanted more people
to be aware of it, so we asked Bruce to expand on it in the sleeve notes.
AD: The Bruce that you refer to, for the benefit of any readers who
dont know, is the mastermind behind that historical crime, Bruce
Richard Reynolds. How did you get on with him?
JB: Hes an awfully nice man actually his son was in a band
called Octopus, do you remember them? (I did) He played the harmonica
apparently but he still regrets that one built in flaw that is
still mentioned even now when people remember the GTR. (Adopts Cockney
accent) I never meant for NOBODY to get clobbered mate. I KNEW
there was gonna be trouble when we got the heavies in. Facking yegs.
They were just monsters with nuffin between their eads but
their fackin ears! Thats the only regret he
has about the whole thing. The plan hed drawn up didnt involve
AD: So what reaction are you anticipating from the public and media?
JB: I dont know really, I just hope they like it, thats
all, because we fucked about with it loads to try and get it right.
Sometimes the music gets a bit cluttered and we wanted to avoid that
this time. Power In the Blood seemed a bit crammed and busy
to me we wanted to get back to good ole rootsy American forms
and redo them in our own way. We put so much effort in and changed things
around so much for instance, Have You Seen Bruce Richard
Reynolds was originally an a capella tune that its
nice to know its all been appreciated.
AD: What made you decide to undertake such a drastic change of direction?
JB: I think records ALWAYS have to be like that. If you look at all
the great artists over the years, theyve always changed and evolved.
If you keep things in a template theres a real chance your music
will start to stagnate and obviously we dont want that to happen.
Do you like Neil Young?
AD: Yes, Im a big fan.
(At this point, readers, I am afraid we went off on a tangent somewhat
and had a fifteen minute conversation about Neil Young and our other
favourite artists, which culminated in Jake playing me several obscure
Grateful Dead tracks down the phone which, incidentally were
all great so, as I cant exactly type all that stuff up,
Ill just skip straight to the last part of the interview!)
AD: Ok, so, having achieved so much already, whats your biggest
JB: Oh theres loads! Make another good lp and tour the states
again for a start. Id really like people to hear our stuff properly
in America because we went out there last time on a kind of bluff really.
As you know, by pure chance one of our songs got chosen as the theme
tune to The Sopranos, and we were kind of just riding the
crest of the wave so to speak back then. We were playing huge theatres
with only 12 people there! I remember one night in particular, when
we were booked to play a 3,000 seater venue in Philadelphia and
just four punters turned up!
AD: Four people? That would have been a real good turnout for my
Interview a bit short? Well, not really, but as I said, we chatted for
a quarter of an hour about complete bollocks, as though we were having
a chat at the pub. Plus, now Im coming to type this interview
up, Im buggered if I can read any of the terribly scrawled notes
I made, so Ill just say this: Jake Black is a top bloke, Alabama
3 are a top band and Outlaw is a great album. Thats
all you need to know really!
Alabama 3s Outlaw album is out now.
- Tone E