An Interview with Eric Elbogen (Say Hi)

Having recently had Beatles on the brain, specifically the early years of their hysteria-inducing mop tops, I started to think about their early interviews. I started to look up some of those early pressers and was taken aback by just how many times the fab foursome was asked about money and marriage, but there were some gems amongst the clunkers. And so, inspired by the early press conferences of the Beatles, especially their US interviews, I decided to ask some of those very same questions to some of the best and brightest making music today.

Last year some news reached me that made me ever so sad - Say Hi, the excellent musical brainchild of Eric Elbogen, was calling it a day. Alas, as the Oohs & Aahs record is an all-time favorite. But then a funny thing happened...Elbogen revived Say Hi this year, and we can all thank a dreamland visit by a centaur David Bowie for his hand (hoof?) in the process. Now, Elbogen is prepping for the release of his dozenth record this very Friday (Caterpillar Centipede) and a slew of intimate living room live dates in the very immediate future. All might not quite be right with the world, but having Say Hi around at least feels right.

Elbogen graciously took some time to have at the Beatles questions, and shows his mischievous sense of humor with his answers. Don't miss the living room tour, if you can still get yourself a ticket, and pick up the new Say Hi record.  


What has been your most exciting moment in the last year?

My cat Minnie won the neighborhood cat talent show with her performance of ‘Rapper’s Delight.”

Who are your favorite recording artists?

The Rolling Stones.

Do you feel safe riding in airplanes?

I’ve never been on one. Are they fun? Why wouldn’t I feel safe? Do bad things happen?

Does every city look the same?

Physically, yes. Spiritually, no.

What message are you trying to get across, if any?

Get across, in like a Ouija Board way? This message: Please stop haunting me.

How would you describe yourself in one word?


Where would you like to go that you haven't gone yet?

Outerspace or Innerspace. It’s a tie.

Do you feel that you're setting a new trend in music?

Yes, absolutely. Pretty soon every pop song will be about vampires.

What kinds of guitars do you use?

Magic, custom guitars that use six strings, instead of the traditional five.

Does anybody ever ask you for advice?

Yes. My day job is that I’m Dr. Phil.

How do you prefer for your fans to act at your concerts?

Either Method or the Stanislavski system.

How do you go about writing your songs?

I put my hands on my custom, six string guitar and use my arm and wrist muscles to move the plectrum against the strings so that soundwaves are produced.

What is one question you would like to be asked that probably nobody has ever asked?

Can I offer you a free cheeseburger?

What do you call your sound?


Have you ever had a mental block-out on stage?

Yeah. It was mental. (said with a Ron Weasley accent)

What are your unfulfilled ambitions?

I go to the pharmacy to get my Ambitions ™ prescription filled, just like everyone else.

What advice do you have for teenagers?

Please remember that all of the adults in your life have failed miserably at all their goals and dreams. Also, please use punctuation and capitalization. Finally, send emails instead of trying to message through every crevice of the social medias.

What is the closest you have come to losing life and limb?

2.8765 millimeters

Do you think of yourself more as an entertainer or a musician, or do you think it's more of a combination of the two?

I keep trying to think of myself as a professional comedian, but nobody will take me seriously.

[posted 9.4.18]


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