Home Music Les Claypool Discusses Flying Frog Brigade, Whamola Wieners, Pilot License

Les Claypool Discusses Flying Frog Brigade, Whamola Wieners, Pilot License

Les Claypool Discusses Flying Frog Brigade, Whamola Wieners, Pilot License


Photograph Credit score: Paul Haggard

Few rock artists of the trendy day stay as persistently busy – or a member of as many tasks – as singer/bassist Les Claypool. Finest identified for his work with Primus, Claypool has additionally been noticed through the years in quite a lot of different bands – Sausage, Holy Mackerel, Oysterhead, Colonel Claypool’s Bucket of Bernie Brains, Duo de Twang, and Claypool Lennon Delirium.

And starting in Could, one other one among his tasks, Colonel Les Claypool’s Fearless Flying Frog Brigade, can be returning to the highway for the primary time in 20 years with the 41-date Summer season of Inexperienced Tour 2023. And as they’d achieved on their 2001 launch, Reside Frogs Set 2, Claypool and co. can be overlaying Pink Floyd‘s 1977 basic, Animals, in its entirety.

Claypool spoke with AllMusic shortly earlier than the launch of the tour, and chatted in regards to the present Frog Brigade lineup, Pink Floyd, Primus’ most missed album, his vineyard, and just lately acquiring his pilot license.

AllMusic: What made you resolve to reunite the Flying Frog Brigade now?

Claypool: “There have been simply lots of requests through the years. My supervisor, Brad, stored speaking about how there was an entire technology of oldsters that felt they missed the unique Frog Brigade, missed the Animals factor. So, we might all the time talked about it, and we had an enormous ‘Primus couple of years,’ so it was time to take a bit breather and it simply appeared like the appropriate factor to do.”

AllMusic: Who can be within the band?

Claypool: “As a result of Frog Brigade and the Claypool tasks usually have been diverse through the years, it is kind of a combined forged of characters. I’ve received Sean Lennon on guitar this time, I’ve received Harry Waters on keyboards, Skerik on sax, Mike Dillon on his numerous marimb-eye, vibraphone-age, and percussion, after which Paulo Baldi on drums.”

AllMusic: You are additionally in one other band with Sean [The Claypool Lennon Delirium], however how did he get entangled with Flying Frog Brigade?

Claypool: “Effectively…I wanted a guitar participant. And Shiner and I’ve been engaged on a 3rd Delirium file, so I simply mentioned, ‘Hey, do you need to do that factor?’ And he mentioned, ‘Sure.’ So, it was fairly easy. We’ll be doing stuff from my complete catalog, so theoretically, we are able to dip into some Delirium now. It will be a smorg-e-bob of Claypool materials.”

AllMusic: You simply referred to Sean as “Shiner.” How did he get that nickname?

Claypool: “As a result of he is ‘Shine Lemons.’ He is been Shine Lemons for a very long time, so I’ve all the time known as him Shiner. We’re like brothers now – he is very shut with my household. It’s extremely uncommon for somebody to exist in my world and never have some pseudonym that is thrust upon them by my warped sensibility.”

AllMusic: How was Animals chosen to be lined in its entirety and what does that album imply to you?

Claypool: “Effectively, a few years in the past once I began Frog Brigade, in response to the Primus hiatus [from 2000-2003] – which was only a fancy means of claiming, ‘Hey, we’re breaking apart…however we’d do it once more’ – I received a keyboard participant within the band, who was Jeff Chimenti. I principally simply gathered a bunch of my favourite musicians collectively and began touring the west coast in an Airstream motor dwelling.

And I might all the time mentioned, ‘If I had a keyboardist in my band, I wished to do ‘Pigs” – as a result of it is one among my all-time favourite songs…positively one among my favourite Floyd songs. So, we began doing ‘Pigs,’ and I believed, ‘Effectively, hell – let’s do the entire file. We’ll do two units and we cannot must have a gap band.’ That is how it began. Then it grew to become a problem – particularly again then, as a result of I actually had little or no confidence in my vocals in these days. It was an immense enterprise and an excellent waypoint for development for me.”

AllMusic: What are Primus’ future plans?

Claypool: “We’ll be on the market doing our stuff. We’re engaged on a bunch of dwell information proper now, making an attempt to get these collectively. There is a documentary being made proper now. In actual fact, my son is spearheading that. And he is gone by 9 hundred and a few odd hours of video footage that we have amassed through the years – so he is received a reasonably monumental activity in entrance of him. However he is chiseling away at it.”

AllMusic: Any speak of going again within the studio with Primus?

Claypool: “Oh, there’s all the time speak. I’ve received a reasonably full dance card proper now, so it will not be anytime quickly.”

AllMusic: Which Primus album would you say is essentially the most missed?

Claypool: “They’re all missed – that is the crux of my profession! We had been hoping to make an enormous splash with [1997’s] The Brown Album after we did it – as a result of it was simply such a left flip. And it was a really controversial file – lots of people beloved it, lots of people hated it. I do know Tom Waits has mentioned that is his favourite Primus file, as a result of he says, ‘It sounds prefer it wants a very good wash.’ So, I’ve all the time prided myself on that.

However I do not assume it was the favourite of the file firm by an extended shot. That is after they began going, ‘Hey whoa hey whoa, Claypool – perhaps it is best to begin speaking to some producers,’ and this, that, and the subsequent factor. So, I will simply say that one. It was a really experimental file for us – we purchased a bunch of previous gear and set it up. It was very lo-fi. There is no Professional Instruments or something on any of that stuff – it was all simply tape. I do not assume we even did any overdubs on that file. It’s extremely, very uncooked – and you’ll inform.”

AllMusic: Not too long ago, the ebook Over the Electrical Grapevine: Perception into Primus and the World of Les Claypool was reissued as a paperback model.

Claypool: “By no means heard of it! What are you speaking about? [Laughs] Yeah, it has been launched as a paperback. I feel it has been supplemented with extra pictures and whatnot. But it surely’s virtually to the purpose the place now we have to do an replace/revision – as a result of it has been a number of years for the reason that authentic has been launched. Clearly, Herb‘s been again within the band for some time, and we have been tromping across the globe doing considerably attention-grabbing issues – Willy Wonka [Primus & the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble] and Rush [A Tribute to Kings tour] and all these completely different tasks. I am certain there is a couple tales to inform.”

AllMusic: Which Purple Pachyderm wine is your favourite?

Claypool: “I’d most likely say the Rice-Spivak [the ‘CC Pachyderm’ Rice-Spivak Vineyard Pinot Noir], as a result of I simply all the time gravitate in direction of that. However they’re all superb as a result of they’re made by Ross Cobb. I all the time say, ‘I am in a band with Stewart Copeland [Oysterhead, with Trey Anastasio] which is a tremendous factor, and I make wine with Ross Cobb, which is equally as superb’ – as a result of he is form of the ‘Stewart Copeland of wine makers.'”

AllMusic: I just lately noticed an attention-grabbing scorching canine [called “whamola wieners”] served at Claypool Cellars, which included Fortunate Charms as a topping.

Claypool: “For the vacations, I often provide you with a specialty canine. So, St. Patty’s day was coming, and what are we going to do? So, we had our regular wiener – however with yellow mustard versus wholegrain mustard, dill pickle relish not candy pickle relish, after which Fortunate Charms on high. It began as a joke, however it’s truly actually good! It is magically scrumptious – however it freaks some individuals out. However that is form of the purpose. We simply did an occasion final weekend – we did a Crusing the Seas of Cheeseburger. Which was superb – it was two smash patties with slices of cheddar and Swiss cheese, bleu cheese dressing, and cheddar cheese Goldfish on high of it.”

AllMusic: Who’re some present rock artists that you simply fancy?

Claypool: “Fancy? Up to date stuff, I am not even certain. Clearly, I get my dose of Billy Strings – as a result of he is a buddy of mine. However I feel so far as a musician, Billy is a power to be reckoned with.”

AllMusic: What are some unusual albums you take pleasure in?

Claypool: “All I do today is I placed on the MoogTube playlist on Spotify, let it run, and let it simply wash over me. So, that is the place my head’s at today. It is all Moog synthesizer music, however it’s all attention-grabbing variations.”

AllMusic: Different upcoming tasks?

Claypool: “I am midway by this Delirium file, I am midway by a file with Billy, we truly put some vitality just lately in making an attempt to get a South of the Pumphouse movie made. It is all the time one thing. And I received my pilot license – that is the large factor. I’ve spent the final 4 months principally specializing in nothing however getting my pilot license – which was an unimaginable quantity of labor. I’d stand up at 7am each morning and examine till darkish, and I used to be only a hermit – I remoted myself till I received my license. So, I am completely satisfied to be social once more.”

AllMusic: What made you need to change into a pilot?

Claypool: “Effectively, I had began a few years in the past and by no means completed. So I believed, ‘Effectively, I might higher end. I am not getting any youthful.’ And I used to be on the lookout for one thing – I wanted a brand new chapter. So, that is my new chapter. Typically, it’s essential discover issues that make you need to stand up within the morning or fireplace the synapse. It positively knocked an entire hell of lots of barnacles off my synapse – as a result of I used to be utilizing elements of mind I hadn’t used ever in my life. And happily – I can attest to this – there isn’t any silly individuals flying airplanes. There is perhaps some assholes on the market…however they’re clever assholes, as a result of it’s a must to be sharp to get your pilot license.”

AllMusic: What kind of airplane do you fly?

Claypool: “A Cirrus SR20.”

AllMusic: Now that I give it some thought, there are fairly just a few rock musicians who’re additionally pilots – Bruce Dickinson, Krist Novoselic, and Alex Lifeson come to thoughts.

Claypool: “Alex used to fly. I do know Krist – in actual fact, we had been going forwards and backwards once I was getting my license. I do not know Bruce. However I do not know lots of musicians who’ve their license. You form of named the one ones I’ve heard of. Oh, Gary Numan does, as effectively. That is like 1%. So, it is not quite a bit.”

For extra Claypool, take a look at his official web site.



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