Porter Batiste Stoltz
Best Album(s) of 2008
1) The Raconteurs - Consolers Of The Lonely
This album slams. I can’t find one note on this record to criticize - nothing out there this innovative. In the land of noodles and white gravy, these guys are the saviors of rock ‘n roll. Plus, I have to support my homeboy Brendan Benson.
2) Porter Batiste Stoltz featuring Page McConnell - Moodoo
(‘scuse me for blowing this horn) Page rocked and slipped into the funk like he’d been with us from the beginning.
3) Bob Dylan - Tell Tale Signs: Bootleg Series Vol.8
(sorry for blowing that ol’ horn again, but I played on 5 of the tracks). Bob’s outtakes are better than most artists A material. Listening to this record brings back great memories.
Favorite Song(s) of 2008
1) "Consoler Of The Lonely" - The Raconteurs – this is a hard question because every song on this album is brilliant.
2) "Who’s Gonna Save My Soul" - Gnarls Barkley – the album version is good, but try to find the one from their performance on the television show, Live From Abbey Road.
3) "Mississippi" - Bob Dylan – there are three different versions of this song on Tell Tale Signs – one as good as the other.
Your Personal Favorite On-stage Moment/Show of 2008
Porter Batiste Stoltz with Page McConnell - B.B. King’s, NYC, 9.16.08 - Even though we were on the third night of the tour, and Page had played with us before, something magical overtook the stage this night. I guess the beautiful, positive energy of a packed NYC crowd helped us to really kick into overdrive. Page slipped right into the funk like he’d been playing with us for years.
Classic Album or Artist You Discovered This Year
Tom Waits - Frank’s Wild Years - I’ve been listening to Tom for a long time, but somehow this record got past me. Great songs from the theatrical debut by the same title. I recently recorded a version of "Way Down In The Hole" from this album for a film to be released early 2009.
Best Film You Saw This Year
Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson – If you’re a fan of rock star political journalist Hunter S. Thompson you’ll love this film. It’s not a complete bio, but focuses on his early career and in particular the McGovern presidential campaign of 1972, which he wrote about in Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail. Good interviews with President Jimmy Carter and political hack, Pat Buchanan.
I also have to briefly mention two other films:
CSNY/Déjà vu Live – A great Neil Young production - ballsy and to the point. Neil takes on the Bush Administration for misleading the country into the greatest armed robbery in history.
Love In A Time Of Cholera – film adaptation of the great Gabriel García Márquez novel. Great performance by Javier Bardem.
Favorite new gadget, technology, site or application you can't live without
Well, I am not a gadget or hi-tech guy. I don’t even have an iPod. My friends laugh at me because I still carry an extra bag on the road just to haul CDs. For a long time I wouldn’t record into ProTools. I held on to an old-school approach. But recently the studio that I record at installed Pro Tools. I started using it, and it is getting better. I am about to buy a rig for my home studio. I’ve been somewhat converted, but I’m still not happy about it.
Artist You Are Most Excited About In 2009 (any medium)
A group called MyNameIsJohnMichael. This is a band led by John Michael Rouchell, an artist from New Orleans. He is a young guitarist, singer/songwriter and multi-talented instrumentalist with producer skills that precede him. In a moribund town like New Orleans, he is a true renaissance man. On a dare, he set out at the beginning of the year to write, record and release one song a week for the entire year. He’s pulled it off and you can hear and download the songs at www.mynameisjohnmichael.com.
Your Latest Guilty Pleasure
RT Coffee & Chicory
What should President Obama change first in 2009?
The economy is in the tank so it is important to take bold measures to turn that around. But it is equally important - and relevant to the security of the nation - to make an effort to reach out to the nations that the Bush/Cheney Administration has isolated and oppressed in Europe, the Middle East and South America. Considering our fellow humans the enemy is not a foreign policy, it is a death warrant. I know those who lean to the right will say that I am naïve, but they need to wake up and smell the napalm and depleted uranium. http://www.globalsecurity.org/org/news/2003/030810-napalm-iraq01.htm
A Memorable/Humorous/Classic Moment on the tour bus/road in 2008
Well, what started out as humorous and sometimes hilarious has become torture. Russell Batiste, our drummer, gets on the bus and watches the same Columbo DVD over & over & over, day and night. He falls asleep and it’s still playing. We turn it off – he wakes up and turns it on and then falls asleep – we turn it off…. This routine plays out night and day. The DVD is full of scratch marks, it freezes up, but he keeps putting it in the player. I was going to throw it away but he’d just buy another disc – of the same episode.
*Bonus question – great YouTube or viral video you saw this year
I don’t spend much time on YouTube, but one night last week I realized that it was 5 o’clock in the morning and I had been sitting there for about 4 hours watching and listening to old Johnny Winter videos from the early 70’s. I can’t count the times I have seen Johnny live in the last 40 years. Give yourself a treat and indulge in these videos and try to catch him somewhere live. Do a search on Johnny Winter videos.