Let me tell you a story. In 2004, I hadn't been working at Sub Pop or living in Seattle for more than half a year, and at that time juggled a mix of etcetera-esque jobs (some PR, administrating, handling ticketbuys, listening to demos, assisting the legal department and the GM, writing the column on the label's site) from my post at the front desk. The old S>P World HQ (not to be confused with the OLD old HQ, which was in the famous Terminal Sales building) was at street level on 2nd avenue in Belltown, a neighborhood on the edge of downtown Seattle by the water where you can find, among other things, expensive condos, piles of human poop near dumpsters, people shooting up their friends with heroin in the neck in phonebooths at noon, super good restaurants and nighttime stretch limo bachelorette parties.
The office looked, from the outside, like a storefront, and it was on some "Seattle Tours!" maps, so there were always uninvited visitors, most of whom were foreign Nirvana fans looking for an office tour or aggressive men demanding to speak to the head of A&R one minute, then politely/grossly asking me questions about what they should do to "make it" the next. (One time, a confused homeless man entered while I was in the bathroom, and the staff found him in the office kitchen with the microwave going. He had filled a bowl with water and Emergen-C from the cabinet and told staffers, "I am making soup.") Now, Sub Pop is on the third floor of a locked office building with a key code.
I am very glad, however, that for a time it was not. Why? In part because one day, three friendly dudes came in to hand me their demo, and one of them said, "Hello. My name is D. Crane, and we have a band called BOAT." I enjoyed the name BOAT, and liked the drawings on the CD case, and D. Crane and his friends seemed like folks you would want to go have a beer with at a miniature golf course or something. They had named one of their songs "Salutations, Joan Hiller" without knowing me, which was very neato and also clever, because I listened to the record immediately. IT WAS PERFECT WURLITZERY, HOOKY FUN, AND I LOVED IT, and they turned out to be the very first of the very few bands I tried to sign (sadly, unsuccessfully, although I did sign one comedian) during my time there.
Lo and behold, five years later, BOAT is on the amazing Magic Marker label right here in PDX....AND WE NOW GET TO WORK WITH THEM, AS OF THIS WEEK! I could not really be much happier about it. Their forthcoming effort, "Setting The Paces", comes out October 27th, and I would love...LOVE...to send it to you.
About BOAT, from the mouths of BOAT: "BOAT's current lineup is the epitome of sloppy/poppy three piece rock. It features J. Goodman playing maniacal drum fills/tasteful tambourines/shakers and bells/and keyboards/all this while shouting backup vocals and la las/M. McKenzie playing McCarteney-esque bass and guitar as well as having the most silky smooth backup vocals in all of music/ and D. Crane playing guitars and keyboards and shouting and singing lyrics about lanterns, rainbow shoelaces, his hatred of Chicago, and ninjas. The touring lineup of BOAT features Ian Bone of Sacramento, CA as the utility man."
Speaking of touring, BOAT is about to be on tour; we just got the dates, and would be psyched if you are into covering (contact Nathan At Riot Act Media Dot Com for show-specific coverage).
08.06.09 - Bellingham, WA @ The Rogue Hero w/Lovelights, Ron Hexagon, and So Adult
08.07.09 - Seattle, WA @ The Sunset Tavern w/The Nightgowns, Ron Hexagon, and The Special Places
08.08.09 - Portland, OR @ The Backspace w/Ron Hexagon, (ALL AGES!)
08.09.09 - Redding, CA @ Sue's Java Cafe w/Ron Hexagon, Greener Pastures (ALL AGES!)
08.10.09 - Davis, CA @ Live on KDVS---acapella performance
08.11.09 - Santa Barbara, CA @ Biko Garage (ALL AGES!)
08.12.09 - Los Angeles @ Silver Factory Studios w/The Tartans, Land of Ill Earthquakes, and Peacock and Lebeau
08.13.09 - Palm Springs, CA @ J. Dee's Landing w/Peacock and Lebeau
08.14.09 - San Diego, CA @ Tin Can Alehouse w/Red Pony Clock, and Da Bears
08.15.09 - Sacramento, CA @ Luigi's Fun Garden w/Darling Chemicalia, and Ron Hexagon (ALL AGES!)
08.16.09 - San Francisco, CA @ The Hemlock Tavern w/Red Pony Clock, Half Handed Cloud, and ron Hexagon
1. 100 Calorie Man
2. We've Been Friends Since 1989
3. We Want It, We Want It
4. Tough Talkin' The Tulips
5. Prince of Tacoma
6. Name Tossers
8. Jeff Fell Dream #48
9. Interstate 5
10. God Save The Man Who Isn't All That Super
11. You're Muscular
13. (do the) Magic Centipede
14. Calcium Commuter
Get in touch to start playing this on repeat. xo Joan