We are very stoked to present Irrelevant Interviews, Kat Gardiner's new weekly column for LocalCut. The title pretty much tells you what you need to know! -Ed.
The Moondoggies are one part harmony, one part crescendo, one part cedar. Hailing from Seattle and taking notes from its folky roots and Alaskan highway dreams, this quartet finds itself at home in the Americana landscape of the Northwest, surrounded by yellowing pictures of relatives and shredded flannel shirts. If you love to lie on your back in the grass and listen to your mom's old favorites on warbled vinyl, you won't be disappointed.
Last week, Kevin Murphy (guitar/vocals/primary songwriter) took some time to talk to me via telephone amid the frustration of dealing with the band's dysfunctional van in Kansas City.
Kat: If you were an amphibious creature would you live in a lake, pond, river, bay, bayou, ocean…
Kevin: I don't know, the deep oceans kind of freak me out. So I wouldn't want to go there...I'd probably want to be one of those river dolphins. That seems like it'd be fun...
So you'd want to be an intelligent mammalian?
Besides your ID, credit card and cash, if you wallet were stolen, what would you miss the most?
There's a Costco card of my mom's from when I was about three years old. She's holding me up in the picture. It's a funny picture. Just a little ID photo. I'd hate to lose it.
What three historical people would you go on a road trip with?
Do you get a lot of Jesus responses?
I don't know…How well would Jesus do in a car ride?
I don't know? Couldn't he just teleport you to your destination?
Can Jesus teleport people? Like Scotty?
Maybe…seems like something he could do, but just never showed off.
Let's see...I'd probably go on a road trip with old relatives, actually. You know, my great-great grandfather, or something like that. Get to know my roots. I don't think I'd want to go on a road trip with famous people. They tend to be into themselves.
If you could choose one mythological creature to exist in real life what would it be?
Godzilla. Definitely Godzilla. I really liked him as a kid...and dinosaurs.
But wouldn't you be scared of him, I don't know, destroying your city?
Nope. Not really.
Sticking with Godzilla on this one.
Okay. What is your oldest article of clothing that you still wear?
All my clothes are old. A lot of my plaids were given to me by my uncle way back in the day. I pretty much never wear new clothes. I have four plaid shirts and that's it. The one I'm wearing right now is shredded in the back and the sleeves are cut off.
Good for summer weather.
Yeah...it's pretty nice.
If you were a middle school teacher, what subject would you want to teach?
PE. It's the most, I don't know, annoying time to live through, middle school. I'd like to be able to just be like—you kids! Run a mile! Get it out of your system.
What about the non-athletic kids, the ones that couldn't, say, run a mile?
That was me, so I'd have a lot of sympathy. I'd like to punish the bullies a bit, too.
What was your PE teacher like in middle school?
He kind of weirded me out. Had two belly buttons.
Two belly buttons?
One right next to the other.
How is that even possible? Were they both innies? Outies? One of each?
Both innies. He liked to show them off a lot. Kind of creepy.
I'd say so.... What's the first album you listened to that really made your head spin?
I listened to Nirvana a lot growing up—I have older sisters who would play it—and I liked that a lot...but the first album that really made my head spin? Might just have been Meet The Beatles. I know it's an obvious choice, but one time my sister brought out the old record player and put it on when we were running around playing night tag—I must have been ten—and I listened to it and was like…whoa.
Would you rather travel back in time or into the future?
Not the future. I'd be scared to see what I found out. I might melt. You never know. So I'd go back in time. Probably not too far into the past, though. They might not take kindly to me strangers like me if I went back too far.
Would you go even if you knew you could never come back?
Depends when you ask me. Now? No way. If things started getting rough though…then maybe.
Do you have an affinity for rock, paper, or scissors? One you would always go to?
Rock. I always go for rock…I guess I better change my strategy now, shouldn't I?
Probably. What do you wish you could be good at but aren't?
Well, I can't hear in one ear, and it really effects my balance. I can't skateboard very well and my equilibrium is always off. So I think I'd say my balance.
Which ear is it, that you're deaf in?
The right one.
Do you think this effects how you play music?
Maybe. I mean I have to hear everything in mono, which sucks. But someone once told me that your right ear is the conversation ear and your left ear is your music ear, so maybe I lucked out after all.
Top five: music your mom listens to?
Steeley Dan - Babylon Sisters FOR SURE.
My sister, Molly's, mix CD (solid).
Fleet Foxes-she LOVES them.
A lot of the classics from her generation (she raised us well).
A lot of things off 103.7 The Mountain (a classic/smooth/alternative rock radio station in Seattle).
SEE THEM:The Moondoggies will be playing Mississippi Studios July 2nd with The Head and The Heart and The Quiet Life. Doors are at 8, show starts at 9. $12.