Featured: Top of Home Page

20 Questions: Ike Reilly

Songwriter Ike Reilly tells PopMatters 20 Questions about firm abs and buttocks and the best sitcom, ever.

Ike Reilly

Poison the Hit Parade

Label: Rock Ridge Music
US Release Date: 2008-04-08
UK Release Date: Available as import

Ike Reilly, who has headed up his band The Ike Reilly Assassination for the past several years, is back in stores now with a collection of b-sides and unreleased tracks under his own name entitled Poison the Hit Parade. In 2007, PopMatters called Reilly "the best songwriter in America" and his album We Belong to the Staggering Evening was dubbed "straight-up killer. Hilarious, unsettling, raw… but mostly just rocking… Not just a best-of-year record, but maybe an all-timer."

1. The latest book or movie that made you cry?

I'm not sure if it was the movie or the book... I was reading The Norman Fell Story while watching Just Friends. Just Friends is a romantic comedy starring this fat guy that loses quite a bit of weight. I believe his dramatic transformation may have touched me.

2. The fictional character most like you?

Blanche Dubois or Joe Buck. I'm like a scorned woman and a male prostitute.

3. The greatest album, ever?

Cat Stevens' Tea for The Tillerman or Catch Bull at Four, although not for a specific reason. At any given time, any album could be "the best." There are just too many good records to comment on.

4. Star Trek or Star Wars?

Star Search. I have no interest in science fiction.

5. Your ideal brain food?

Codfish and rickshaw beans. Oh, for my brain: any art that deals with the conflict between man and machine.

6. You're proud of this accomplishment, but why?

I once walked all the way to the state line to see about raising money for public awareness of public policy procedures that were not being followed and could ultimately cause cancer if left unchecked. After the walk, the girls from the Lake County Haven and I felt really wonderful, we went to a spa and drank nice wine.

7. You want to be remembered for...?

Giving back to the world community, especially down the stretch. I'm not comfortable discussing my volunteer work, but it is more than considerable, bordering on saintly.

8. Of those who've come before, the most inspirational are?

Matt Foley, Woody Allen, Fatty Arbuckle and Eli Whitney.

9. The creative masterpiece you wish bore your signature?

Three's Company.

10. Your hidden talents...?

Songwriting. I have lots of people working on keeping that talent hidden.

11. The best piece of advice you actually followed?

Say 'yes' quickly when someone tries to buy you dinner or a drink or a gambling device. Don't sleep much, but if you have to, find a place where you can really let it all hang out.

12. The best thing you ever bought, stole, or borrowed?

I bought a slot machine that takes quarters and returns nickels. It's called the Screaming Injun. I bought it but I didn't name it. I do love the term "firewater", however.

13. You feel best in Armani or Levis or...?

I feel best in burlap and when I mean best I mean better than any other human on earth. I could leap to the clouds in my burlap kilt.

14. Your dinner guest at the Ritz would be?

I eat there a couple of times a week and I have generously let most of my guests buy me dinner. It makes them feel better about themselves. My guest would be Three's Company actress Joyce DeWitt or Amanda Bynes (Big Fat Liar). You know, attractive women with suitable means.

15. Time travel: where, when and why?

I would travel back to Saturday night at Bennigan's. Some slick hipster clipped a $20 from me. I left it on the bar and went to play Golden Tee. I'd like to go back and catch him doing it and give'm a donkey punch.

16. Stress management: hit man, spa vacation or Prozac?

I'm a huge advocate of prescription medication. I recently took too much Oxycodone and had an incredible fit of the sweats! I was a dinner guest of my sister's and we were dining at the Ritz in Chicago. She asked the waiter to get me a face towel. I sweat so much that now my sister calls me "Puddles".

17. Essential to life: coffee, vodka, cigarettes, chocolate, or...?

Vodka and Vodka. Routinely ordered as the V & V.

18. Environ of choice: city or country, and where on the map?

On the side of the map. The country part where the city ends and the strip mall slams into the polo grounds.

19. What do you want to say to the leader of your country?

"Here, hold this a minute and keep your eye on that woodpecker up in that maple tree. Don't move till I come back or until that feathered friend quiets down."

20. Last but certainly not least, what are you working on, now?

Mostly my abs and core… some buttocks work.

Ike Reilly (center) and bandmates: Tommy O'Donnell, Ed Tinley, Dave Cottini, Phil Karnatz




Reading Pandemics

Pandemic, Hope, Defiance, and Protest in 'Romeo and Juliet'

Shakespeare's well known romantic tale Romeo and Juliet, written during a pandemic, has a surprisingly hopeful message about defiance and protest.


A Family Visit Turns to Guerrilla Warfare in 'The Truth'

Catherine Deneuve plays an imperious but fading actress who can't stop being cruel to the people around her in Hirokazu Koreeda's secrets- and betrayal-packed melodrama, The Truth.


The Top 20 Punk Protest Songs for July 4th

As punk music history verifies, American citizenry are not all shiny, happy people. These 20 songs reflect the other side of patriotism -- free speech brandished by the brave and uncouth.


90 Years on 'Olivia' Remains a Classic of Lesbian Literature

It's good that we have our happy LGBTQ stories today, but it's also important to appreciate and understand the daunting depths of feeling that a love repressed can produce. In Dorothy Strachey's case, it produced the masterful Olivia.


Indie Rocker Alpha Cat Presents 'Live at Vox Pop' (album stream)

A raw live set from Brooklyn in the summer of 2005 found Alpha Cat returning to the stage after personal tumult. Sales benefit organizations seeking to end discrimination toward those seeking help with mental health issues.

Love in the Time of Coronavirus

'Avengers: Endgame' Faces the Other Side of Loss

Whereas the heroes in Avengers: Endgame stew for five years, our pandemic grief has barely taken us to the after-credit sequence. Someone page Captain Marvel, please.


Between the Grooves of Nirvana's 'Nevermind'

Our writers undertake a track-by-track analysis of the most celebrated album of the 1990s: Nirvana's Nevermind. From the surprise hit that brought grunge to the masses, to the hidden cacophonous noise-fest that may not even be on your copy of the record, it's all here.


Deeper Graves Arrives via 'Open Roads' (album stream)

Chrome Waves, ex-Nachtmystium man Jeff Wilson offers up solo debut, Open Roads, featuring dark and remarkable sounds in tune with Sisters of Mercy and Bauhaus.

Featured: Top of Home Page

The 50 Best Albums of 2020 So Far

Even in the coronavirus-shortened record release schedule of 2020, the year has offered a mountainous feast of sublime music. The 50 best albums of 2020 so far are an eclectic and increasingly "woke" bunch.


First Tragedy, Then Farce, Then What?

Riffing off Marx's riff on Hegel on history, art historian and critic Hal Foster contemplates political culture and cultural politics in the age of Donald Trump in What Comes After Farce?


HAIM Create Their Best Album with 'Women in Music Pt. III'

On Women in Music Pt. III, HAIM are done pretending and ready to be themselves. By learning to embrace the power in their weakest points, the group have created their best work to date.


Amnesia Scanner's 'Tearless' Aesthetically Maps the Failing Anthropocene

Amnesia Scanner's Tearless aesthetically maps the failing Anthropocene through its globally connected features and experimental mesh of deconstructed club, reggaeton, and metalcore.

Collapse Expand Reviews

Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.