It’s time to say hello to Eric Elbogen—despite the fact that he’s been here for awhile.
Ever since he initially moved to New York to form his band Say Hi in 2002—which is mostly a solo project for all intents and purposes—Elbogen has managed to put out six well-regarded solo albums, his stature growing with each and every release. His 2009 album Oohs & Ahhs, for example, managed to get songs featured in everything from Cadillac ads to Showtime television programs. Now, with his seventh disc, Um, Uh Oh, Elbogen’s alter ego is poised to break wide open, and the single “Devil” has already been featured in the TV show Gossip Girl, exposing Say Hi to a much larger audience.
Elbogen’s unique home-spun sound feels right at home on Barsuk, and his expressive, perfectly imperfect voice might invite more than a few welcome comparisons to that of Arcade Fire’s Win Butler. His songwriting abilities are as sharp as ever, and people merely need to hear Um, Uh Oh‘s album opener “Dots on Maps” to understand what the fuss is all about. Taking time from his busy schedule, Elbogen managed to sit down with PopMatters to answer our famed 20 Questions, revealing how he’s still trying to be a badass drummer, why you don’t mess with the Stones, and how he wants to be remembered for his terrible jokes . . .