Friday, June 3, 2011

The Untitled Interview #128 – STPP Fest Edition: Starring Alex Champagne (A Cat Called Cricket)

DC has, for some time now, not really been in love with festivals. Folks have tried, sure, but there is a substantial void in the festival scene when it comes to the “indie” scene. Fuzzy Logic’s brother blog, Sweet Tea Pumpkin Pie, is valiantly trying to give the people what they want: a legit (and FREE!) festival. And with 120+ bands playing over 2 days, there’s a lot to look forward to. Did I mention the freeness? Cuz yeah. It’s one hundred percent FREE. The STPP Fest is June 4-5, with a pre-party June 3. Check the official site for all the pertinent details.

Baltimore. It’s less than an hour away, y’all. And it’s a rather fertile breeding ground for pretty good bands of all shapes and sizes and sounds. One such pretty good band is A Cat Called Cricket. The more I hear of their lovely, occasionally twangy front porch urban folkpop, the more I like it. It’s music meant for long summer days and lemonade and cutoff shorts and the smell of fresh cut lawn. And who doesn’t dig the cello, really? Singer and guitarist Alex Champagne herewith proffers his thoughts on festivals, and his compulsive need for merch (I can totally relate to this).

Fuzzy Logic: Inevitably, you will forget to bring:
Alex Champagne: A tuner, a capo, CDs...possibly our cellist! Just preparing for a show (even in your hometown) can be like a scene out of Home Alone; running around, going through mental checklists and doing a head count, trying your best not to forget a single piece of important gear.

FL: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
AC: We've got a lot of friends from Baltimore playing, that we always enjoy seeing and sharing a stage with; House & Home, Honey Boat, Of The West, Letitia VanSant. It'll be cool to see them in a new space and in a city were not too familiar with. It'll be like going on tour with all your friends!

FL: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in DC?
AC: Find Parking, then maybe grab food at one of the restaurants that are a part of the festival.

FL: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
AC: I think it was an HFStival at RFK Stadium. I was like 15 or 16 and my parents went away for the weekend. They told me I couldn't go, but some friends and I took the train into DC, caught some bands (some good, some bad, some really bad) and came home. My best friend who lived next door was pretty pissed I went, when both of our parents didn't want us to go, so she ended up tattling on me. My folks were pretty mad at first, but when I told them we took the train, drank plenty of water, and used sunscreen they were pretty impressed how responsible we were. That made my best friend even more pissed!

FL: Favorite thing about festivals?
AC: All the merchandise! I'm a huge sucker for a cool band t-shirt or picking up a CD from someone I've enjoyed watching at the festival. I'm not allowed to go to Pitchfork Fest anymore because of how much money I blow on records, show posters, and band merch.

mp3: Nothing (A Cat Called Cricket – more here)

[photo by Blake Larson]

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