With his new 2012 release being heralded as one of his finest to date, the home-spun, always-opinionated, and fun-loving Langhorne Slim sits down with PopMatters to discuss Dali, Ziggy Stardust, and, of course, the film Rudy. ...
Langhorne Slim has done so much in so little time it's almost exhausting to keep up.
Having put out his very first full-length when he was 19 years old, Langhorne Slim (né Sean Scolnick ) has gradually developed a unique, home-spun type of songwriting that simultaneously takes a nod from the dusty solo singers of folk's past while carrying a charm and wry witticism that is unmistakably modern. EPs, national tours, and landing songs in key television commercials soon followed, and, when coupled with his raucous, story-filled live sets, Slim slowly began inching closer and closer into mainstream acceptance.
Now, with this year's The Way We Move already garnering some of the strongest reviews in his career, Slim can finally take a long-awaited rest and answer PopMatters' 20 Questions, here revealing how he no longer recalls being referred to as Pig Pen as a compliment, that he doesn't have much tolerance for either Star Wars or Star Trek, but does in fact have a deep-seated passion for the film Rudy . . .
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1. The latest book or movie that made you cry?
I'm easy to tears so it doesn't take much. Last night Rudy was on. If you haven't seen it, I recommend you do so immediately. The man that plays Rock is in it so yeah, it's pretty much a classic. Anyway, the scene where his teammates are clapping and chanting his name breaks me up. Any underdog story gets to me but Rudy more than most. Shit, Rudy's five-foot-nothin', 100 and nothin' and he's seriously kicking ass. Rudy didn't come to mess around; he came to play ball. There's a little Rudy in all of us. A very tiny Rudy.
2. The fictional character most like you?
Somebody once told me that I reminded them of Pig Pen from Charlie Brown. Looking back on it now I don't think they meant it as a compliment. I used to think I was more like Linus but I don't remember why.
3. The greatest album, ever?
Ziggy Stardust. I've known that album longer than I've known most and it's never gotten old or felt dated in any way. It's soulful and catchy and weird and punk as shit. It's totally captivating from start to finish. It's a damn masterpiece.
4. Star Trek or Star Wars?
Neither. What am I missing, why don't I get it? Why will some people respect me less now knowing I'm not into it? I don't know . . . I dig the shit out of space and and think there is a high probability that alien life exists. I chose Ziggy-friggin'-Stardust as my favorite album but unless I'm hanging out with a girl who wants to watch it and I'm just happy to be there, I'm just not gonna put that stuff on. It simply wouldn't occur to me to do so.
5. Your ideal brain food?
6. You're proud of this accomplishment, but why?
I'm proud to be a musician. It's given me the freedom to dance instead of having to walk in a straight line. I'm very proud to be among the dancers.
7. You want to be remembered for . . . ?
I'd like to be remembered as a real and raw fella. A beautiful freak and a wild soul. A lover, a friend, a badass song writer, and a stand-up cat.
8. Of those who've come before, the most inspirational are?
The rebels, freaks, and wild ones.
9. The creative masterpiece you wish bore your signature?
"These Arms of Mine" by Otis Redding.
10. Your hidden talents . . . ?
Ping pong, skeet shooting, Chinese mind reading, and human cannonball.
11. The best piece of advice you actually followed?
"Follow your heart, don't take shit and have fun" -- Grandpop Sid. I'm fairly certain that's sound advice for us all.
12. The best thing you ever bought, stole, or borrowed?
My first guitar. It was given to my mom by a co-worker and it was in bad shape. I asked my mom to get it fixed and she did. Best thing that ever happened to me. It gave my life its purpose.
13. You feel best in Armani or Levis or . . . ?
I'm cool with either. I'm a firm believer that a person can pull off most any attire as long as he or she believes in it. One that feels good in their pants looks good in said pants. That's a little Scolnick wisdom for you.
14. Your dinner guest at the Ritz would be?
Perogis with Salvador Dali. Not at the Ritz though please, they don't have food for a guy like me. How about soup and perogis at Velselka?
15. Time travel: where, when. and why?
Hmm . . . I'm happy where I am, I think. I do an awful lot of traveling as is and kind of constantly feel like I'm in some sort of time warp. I'm writing this on an airplane now, and when I land I'll take a train for a while to a van and drive a while more. I like it here and when I don't I go over there. I'm already time traveling.
16. Stress management: hit man, spa vacation, or Prozac?
Music and travel.
17. Essential to life: coffee, vodka, cigarettes, chocolate, or . . . ?
18. Environ of choice: city or country, and where on the map?
City and country are mutually important to me. I crave one when I'm in the other too long . Someday, if i stay somewhere for an extended period, I'd like to be by the water. I'm not sure where exactly, but someplace warm and magical. Probably not Florida, but who knows?
19. What do you want to say to the leader of your country?
Mr President, where in the fuck is the wizard?
20. Last but certainly not least, what are you working on, now?
Touring on our new record The Way We Move and keepin' it real as a mofo.