Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Get to Know...

Mike TV from Get Set Go

1. Where are you from originally, and what brought you to Los Angeles?
I, Mike TV, am from Southern California. I grew up in Palm Desert and then moved out to Los Angeles in the early 90's. Eric Summer, our violist, is from Missoula, Montana originally, but has lived so many places, and is on the run from so many law enforcement agencies that he really has no true place of origin. Dave Palamaro, our drummer, purports to be from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, but I have it on good authority that he actually sprung from the mind of Cthulu, the many tentacled god of yore. And Colin Schlitt, our bass player, is from the fabled and many-splendored ocean-view retreat of Northern California known as Port Reyes. Jim Daley, our lead guitar, hails from Boston. He also rains, squalls, sleets, and drizzles from Boston.
2. How did the name Get Set Go come about?
Well, when we signed with TSR Records we were originally called All Your Base Are Belong To Us. But for some reason the label didn't like that name. So we went through an exhaustive many week period where we submitted hundreds of names to the label, and they shot hundreds of names down. So, we eventually hit an impasse, where I went to Tom, the owner of the label, and said, "Okay, we're gonna come up with three names. You guys will then pick your favorite of those three. And that'll be the name. And we'll all be just vaguely disappointed." Tom agreed, we submitted So You've Ruined Your Life, The Hunting Accident, and Get Set Go. The label chose Get Set Go.

3. How did the current line-up meet?
Actually, it was a hodge-podge. I knew Dave from the old Mr. T's/Launchpad days. Eric from Kiss or Kill. We found Colin on Craig's List. And Jim through the scene. Actually, I don't know how we discovered Jim. He just sorta showed up. But the boy could wail.
4. What has been the craziest show you have played to date?
Well, one of the craziest shows actually involved a crazy person. His name was Billy Ray Something. I don't remember his last name. But he was a homeless guy. We were in Orlando, and our venue cancelled on us last minute. So we decided to hold the show in their parking lot, just to spite them. So, there we were, us and about 20 friends and fans, playing acoustically, when up rolls this homeless guy that starts talking over the music, asking people for change. Then he starts hamboning, out of time, to the music. At first it was ridiculously frustrating. Then it became comical. And by the end, he was part of the show. We actually managed to coerce him to settle down and behave, under the threat of actually being paid some money. It cost me 10 bucks to get that guy to quiet down and we promised to meet him in Tucson, Arizona. A promise we didn't keep. For all I know, he may still be there, waiting.
5. What instruments do you play?
Mike TV - guitar, vocals
Eric Summer - viola, vocals
Dave Palamaro - drums
Colin Schlitt - bass, vocals
Jim Daley - guitar, vocals
Get Set Go in action
6. What made you get involved with music?
I don't know. I've been making music my entire life. Not with any intention of doing anything with it. Or putting out records. That's only a recent twist. But there's a thrill in writing a brand new song. Something that the world hasn't heard before. And it belongs to you. And you get to play it to your heart's content. It's quite possibly the greatest feeling ever. But that's just me. I don't know why the other guys make music. Probably because of the girls. The girls run a close second for me.
7. What has been the craziest show you have played to date? (yes we liked his first answer so much we had to ask it again...sorry Mike!!!)
Hmm....deja vu. I guess another crazy show was a time in Missoula, Montana. We were running late because our lights had short-circuited. We had no tail lights, no headlights, nothing. So we had 'em fixed in Seattle, and then had to drive 6 hours to Missoula. So we got there at 1 in the morning, and we were sure that the venue was gonna be empty and the show was gonna be over. But everyone had waited for us. There were like 100 people in the venue, and when we started playing, they were singing along, and going nuts. It was glorious. At 1 in the morning. For us! I couldn't believe it. I still don't believe it. I suspect somebody spiked the punch.
8. It seems as though you guys are always on tour, do you actually enjoy touring?
I love touring. Love, love, love touring. I hate booking tours, but actually being on the road is my absolute favorite. Mostly because all of your responsibilities get tossed to the wind. Your only objective is to make it to the next show, or radio appearance, or instore and play your hearts out. I mean, how great is that? No bill paying, no fights with the girlfriend, no IRS, no rent, nothing. Just you, the road, the fans, and the music. It's glorious!
9. What has been your favorite venue or town/city to play while out on tour?
That's tough. There are lots that we love. San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis, Rochester, and New York to name a few. But wherever there are people that dig our music, it's always a joy to play for them. Whether there are 5 people in the club or 300.
10. How did Get Set Go's involvement with Kiss or Kill come about?
When did you play your first Kiss or Kill show? know, I don't know. I remember Matt and Cooper from Bang Sugar Bang coming out the Tuesday nights at Mr. T's, and I remember them telling me that they were starting something up at the Garage (now known as the Little Temple) on Sunday nights. And I remember going to a few shows out there, which were always loads of fun. I mean, this was at a particularly hard-boozing period in my life, and if there's one thing beside make music that the Kiss or Killers do well, it's putting back the alcohol. So, it was always glorious fun. Insofar as our first show, I really don't know. I think it was at Zen (Sushi). Although, we played the Garage a bunch of times, and one of those might have been a Kiss or Kill show. My brain doesn't work so well, anymore.
11. What do you feel makes Kiss or Kill different from other nights in Los Angeles/Hollywood?How do you feel the Launch Pad at Mr.T's influenced Kiss or Kill?
Well, basically, Kiss or Kill is about community. It's about bands who love music supporting other bands who love music. And, for whatever reason, that's a pretty rare breed of band. And I live for those nights when I'm seeing bands that I love, surrounded by people that I love, and all of us are sharing an experience that is singularly ours. It doesn't belong to strangers. It's not about getting rich or being famous. It's about music, and each other, and love. And man, if that's not PR I don't know what is.And, what was Launchpad's influence on Kiss or Kill? I don't know. Maybe, just maybe it inspired Cooper and Johnny and all of the architects of Kiss or Kill to realize that you don't have to wait around for someone else to make a place for your music to belong. You can do it yourself. But that might be assuming way too much. I really don't know. But I do know that I'm happy that Kiss or Kill exists. Without it, the Los Angeles music scene would be a dramatically bleaker environment.
12. How many Cd's have you all released to date? Was any of them harder than the others?
We've got three records in stores. So You've Ruined Your Life, Ordinary World, and Selling Out & Going Home. Each of them were recorded with a different cast of characters, although, I'm hoping that the current line-up remains until I'm old and grey. The hardest, I think was Ordinary World, and mostly because it was such a serious departure from the first record. I really had trouble sleeping at night for worry about how the record would be received.
13. You guys seem to have a great all ages following, what do you credit that to?
One word. MySpace. Yeah, it basically revolutionized our ability to access our friends and fans. I don't like saying the word fans, because it suggests a degree of distance between us and the people that like our music. And I really try to abolish that distance. I try to be personable, and open, and honest with everyone that we meet. And MySpace has really allowed us to stay in contact with thousands of people, on a daily basis. And most of those people are kids. They're the users of MySpace. And fortunately, they're not adverse to having me clog up their inboxes with daily bulletins.
14. In your own words how would you describe the Get Set Go sound?
Mid-fi cock pop.
15. You always seem to be working on your next cd the minute you put out every cd. How long is the cd making process for Get Set Go, and where do you get all of the ideas for the songs?
Well, basically, about 3 weeks after the completion of a new record, I get bored with the music. Ha! And then I really desperately want something new. And since I'm our biggest fan, I like to have new Get Set Go music as quickly as possible. So, I've already written 40 songs for our fourth record, and I'm gonna write another set of 20 to 40 more before we actually get into the studio. Hopefully next June. My favorite thing in the whole world is writing and recording records. I mean, I've only done it three times, professionally, but we've been multi-track recording our stuff from the very beginning of Vermicious K, my first band in the LA music scene.Where do I get the ideas for the songs? I have no idea. The third record was about relationships. So, I tried to write as honestly as I could about what I'm going through with my current girlfriend. There's also a couple hold-overs from past relationships, but it's mostly a chronolog of my current relationship. Sorry Sarah.
16. How has the sound evolved over the last few years?
Sheesh. Well, we went from being a powerpop/pop-punk band on the first record, to an indie-folk/folk-punk pop band on the second, to a indie-alt-prog-post-groove-monkey-nipple-banana band. I guess. The first record was a three piece. The second was a 10 person collaboration. The third was five guys, fresh off of multiple tours, laying down a lightning fast collaboration of doom!
17. What bands have influenced you personally?
Arlo and all of their antecedents. New Maximum Donkey. The Archers of Loaf. Jesus & Mary Chain. Pavement. And basically every band from Kiss or Kill and the old Launchpad Scene. I mean, they're the bands that I grew up watching and being inspired by. There's nothing like seeing your friends kicking ass to inspire you to do the same.
18. What advice would you give to bands that are just starting out?
First, figure out if you want to do this as a career or as a hobby. And make sure the entire band is on the same page. Bands fall apart after having established some significant success because they weren't all on the same page about that one. And second, play. Play often. Play every chance you get. And pay attention to the songs that people get excited about. Try to figure out what makes those songs different than the others. And then write more like those. And keep doing it. You'll eventually find your own sound, and your own voice, and once that happens, there's no turning back. Unless, of course, someone gets a high-paying job. Or someone has a baby. Or gets married. Or has to play shows on Fridays. Or....well, you get the idea. Being in a band, and coordinating everyone's schedules is a pain in the butt. Don't get discouraged. Just keep on keeping on. Because if you're not making your music, no else is gonna do it for you. And that'd be sad to think that the world is gonna have to live without your music just because you guys couldn't get your act together.
19. What would be your dream bill to play on?
Hmmm...opening for the Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl in 64. I mean, it'd suck to have to try to compete for those girl's attention, but it'd be glorious to be there and feel that manic, sex-addled energy.
20. If you didnt reside in the Los Angeles area where would you live?
Wyoming. The population of the entire state is 400,000 people. I bet even if you lived in the downtown section of their major cities you can still go for days without seeing another human being.

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