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20 Questions: John Curley

20 Questions with Venomous
by Venomous Valdez”

This week’s victim: John Curley

1. How long have you been playing music?

Since I was about 15. That’s when I got my first bass. I had played clarinet in the school band and taken a few guitar lessons in grade school but I didn’t really stick with it until I got the bass.

2. What instruments do you play?

I can play a little bit of guitar, a little less keyboard and keep a beat on drums.

3. What instruments do you wish you played?

Piano and drums.

4. What was your first musical memory?

I can remember asking my mom to write out the lyrics to songs I liked when I was about 5 years old. My parents always had music on in the house and in the car. The first song I ever taped for myself was Changes by David Bowie. I used to stay up late and make cassettes of my favorite songs off the radio.

5. What was your first album you bought?

I think it was Earth, Wind and Fire Greatest Hits Vol. 1. I bought it at the drug store because the real record store was too far away to get to on my bike.

6. What was your first concert?

Aerosmith ’77.

7. If this were a confessional, what would you confess?
I like TV more than music.

8. What album do you own that would ruin your indie credibility?

Jesus Christ Superstar.

9. Which curse word are you partial to?

Fuck. Shit is a close second. Fuck is just more versatile. And more offensive, which is what you want in a curse word, right?

10. If you could be any superhero, who would it be?

Ziggy Stardust.

11. Do you have any kind of theory on staying underground versus “selling out”?

No, not really. For one thing, the term “sell out” is so subjective anyway. What does that even mean? I think most bands/artists/writers would love to get their work in front of as many people as possible and make a little money, too. There’s nothing wrong with that. I get grossed out by people like Avril, Ashlee and the new so-called punk bands that seem like they were created by marketing departments for the sole purpose of moving units. The “why take a chance on something original when we can squeeze out another Goo Goo Dolls” attitude is what really bugs me.

12. In which global city where you have performed, was the most amazing experience and why?

Isn’t Cincinnati global? Does it matter if the airport is in KY? Because I’ve had some pretty great experiences playing here. As far as other cities go, I’m pretty lucky to have had a lot of great experiences all over the world. I can’t really narrow it down to one, though and even a small list would probably be pretty cheesy…

13. Devoid of time or death which artist would you have record at Ultrasuede Studios?

The Kinks.

14. What is the weirdest reaction you ever got from a fan?

The first time I saw a band cover a Whigs’ song was pretty weird, but in a good way.

15. What is your pre-gig ritual?

Ideally, it would be a couple hours of video games. It’s like bulk erasing your brain. When the show starts, there’s nothing on your mind and you can fill it all up with music. Austin’s van came from a TV station so it has all the racks and gear for doing TV news. I’m trying to get him to put a PS2 in there.

16. What should a crowd expect at a STAGGERING STATISTICS show?

Something ridiculous. (I was stuck on this question – trying too hard to say something cool or something so I asked our drummer, Joe. He said, “Say something ridiculous.”)

17. What venue in Cincinnati is your favorite to perform?

The Jockey Club?

18. What is the one thing you would change about the local scene?

If Cincinnati were a dance, there’d be no one on the dance floor and everybody would be bitching about how lame it is that no ever dances around here. Then, some poor S.O.B. would venture out onto the floor and everyone would stand around making fun of them.

19. Name a few of your favorite non-Cincinnati Bands.

In no particular order: Twilight Singers, GBV, Shesus, Tough & Lovely, RC Mob (RIP).

20. Name a few of your favorite Cincinnati Bands.

Again, in no particular order: Greenhornes, Culture Queer, Ruby Vileos, Thee Shams, Derrick Sanderson, Tigerlillies, Wolverton Bros., Ass Ponys, Sistern, Fairmount Girls, Heevahava, Pearline, Chalk, Hogscraper, Keynote Speaker, David Enright, Campfire Crush, Ricky Nye, Mallory, Sundresses and I’m sure I will remember 20 more once I hit “send”. RIP: Roundhead, Radiolaria, Ditchweed, Schwah, Dock Ellis…

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