Kick-drumming It Old School: One Question with C. Llewellin

Sons of Herman Hall 1-11-97 © Joe Ryan

TheGourdsNews: I must have seen you play at least 100 shows with The Gourds, and that was only a fraction of what you did with them. I'm wondering, when you think back on those times, what are some of the first things that come to mind, good or bad?

Charlie Llewellin: Driving the white van, so many gigs, pot roast at Schuba's, thunderstorm at Lee's Liquor Lounge, Missy in cowboy boots, five people in a Motel 6 room, McDonalds, strings, drums, friends, travel, seeing the country, sleeping under the stars at Bear Valley, sold-out shows at Electric Lounge where we felt like kings, the love we got, the hippies, wearing all-Adidas at Stubbs, slowly realizing that Jimmy and Kevin didn't like how I played, slowly being unable to play as a result of that realization, playing with Doug Sahm in Holland, Europe, Europeans, empty show in Berlin, dancing drinking, loving the music, the first time Jimmy played me LGO, borrowing a car and a P.A. every saturday from anybody to do our first coffee shop show--thanks Lisa Mednick, Slaid Cleaves, and others--chess, american spirit, American Spirit, the burgers in Amarillo, counting money, signing contracts, hoping, driving the white van. Gracias a la vida and thanks to The Gourds. It was great.

1 comment:

  1. We would have never played a gig outside of jimmy's house if it hadn't been for Charlie dragging us into that world. We would have never played electric lounge or made a record when we did. Charlie led us confidently into the real world outside of the steamybowl. It is hard to explain the musical impass we reached. The decision was difficult because we were friends. Keith was a fan of the gourds with Charlie and was a bit dismayed when we called him about replacing him. This decision had huge implications for the
    musical lives of everyone around us. We were called on by Esther Balin to record some songs with her once. Keith was with us by then. She was a little disappointed that we did not have that
    same feel she heard on the first two records. We were too good she told
    me. I remember wondering if we should have just let that line-up run its course instead of dropping Charlie. I regret the way I handled the end of our time with him. But, that experience taught me a lot about myself. And the aftermath challenged us in ways that made us better. We all think fondly of our old friend though.