Straight talk with the Pixies

As previously mentioned on the Dog Blog, the Pixies are playing Saskatoon this week as part of their two-years-and-counting celebration of the 20th anniversary of their 1989 album Doolittle. The Pixies play the album in sequence, as well as various B-sides from that era. I spoke with band members Joey Santiago and David Lovering for a story that originally appeared in the current edition of Saskatoon’s Planet S magazine.
Of course, both Santiago and Lovering told me things that didn’t make it into that story for various non-interesting reasons. Here’s what’s interesting out of that.

I asked guitarist Santiago what song he looks forward to playing the most every night.
Santiago: I like “Tame” because I’m just hitting that one chord, and I feel like a wiseass.

Santiago: I also like “La La Love You” because I just like to see [drummer] David [Lovering, who contributes a rare vocal perfomance to that song] suffer a little embarrassment. At the end, you know, Charles [Thompson, aka Frank Black, aka Black Francis] tends to milk it. He keeps going on and on and Dave has to sing until you see him sweating a bit.

Naturally, when I spoke with Lovering later that day, I had to ask him about it.
Lovering: It’s true! It’s all on me. Everyone in the band starts looking at me, and they try to get me to, y’know, feel uneasy. It does work. It’s usually at the end though, when it just breaks down. When it’s the chorus repeating, repeating and just the guitar going. That’s when they all stare me down.

I also asked Lovering which Doolittle song he most looks forward to each night.
Lovering: You know, I love playing “Tame”. But a nerve-wracking one is “Silver”. It’s a song that we never ever played live ever. It wasn’t until these Doolittle tours that we started doing it. The funny thing about it is, I’m only playing a floor tom; one hit, one hit every bar. So, one-two-three, one-two-three, it’s actually in 3/4 time. It’s all I do through the whole song and it is the hardest song I play. Every night, I’m like ‘oh no, here we go.’ But I pull it off. I’ve never had a failure, but every night I’m thinking about it. I just want to keep the time exact. It’s such a tough one to play so simplistically and keep time.

Author: Emmet Matheson

Saskatchewan Diaspora