Interview: Janet Weiss, Drummer of Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks
Janet Weiss headlines the Siren Festival this Saturday, July 19 with Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks at Coney Island.
On the last.fm group Janet Weiss is Hot: "I love it. It's not annoying at all. It's fantastic. I'm just glad someone out there is noticing me at all. You know, no one notices drummers."
Janet Weiss will probably not be wearing that hat at the Siren Festival.
Drummer Janet Weiss grew up in Southern California, obtained a degree in Photography from San Francisco State University, then saw her music career take off when she migrated further north to Portland just about twenty years ago. In that time she's played on records by the Go-Betweens and Bright Eyes as well as her own bands, the currently on-hiatus Quasi, the dearly departed Sleater-Kinney and her newest stint as "the Jick in the back," furthest behind former Pavement leader Stephen Malkmus.
We spoke by phone on Thursday, July 10th, just before an early afternoon (Oregon time) band practice and a mere 9 days before Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks headline the Siren Festival.
Hey Janet, I want to start with a few lighter questions before we get into real world issues.
Tell me something that you've never ever done before in your life.
I've never skydived.
Okay. Tell me something that you've . . .
Or bungee jumped. I've haven't bungee jumped either. Bungee jumping's more exciting.
Why would that be more exciting?
I don't know, because it's just sillier. I would rather say that I'd bungee jumped than I had sky dived. Skydiving's kind of like, it's kind of retro, you know. It's kind of '70s.
So bungee jumped is going to be the answer.
It's more modern [laughs].
Tell me something that you've done once and one time only.
That's a tricky one.
Yeah, I like that one.
You know, you can't be too revealing. If you only did it once, that means you didn't like it.
Well, not necessarily.
Let's stay in the sporting vein. I only snowboarded once.
You've snowboarded once. Okay. You know, it's amazing how innocent the first question comes across and everybody's mind instantly goes into the gutter for the second one, and I'm not really sure why that is but it does seem to happen.
But, you know, you only graduated from college once. That would be one that your mom could read and it wouldn't be a problem.
Yeah, but that's like less taking action. Graduating from college just kind of happens to you.
I'm just saying. But you want to maintain the motion theme. Got it. Tell me the name of a book that you've read at least twice.
Catcher in the Rye.
A movie that you've seen at least three times.
Okay. Your favorite Beatle.
And is there a beverage within your reach at this very moment?
Yes, there is.
What is that beverage?