WHO'S DRIVING: sound clips

Driving West
Snake Eyes

the "WHO'S DRIVING?" page


"Who's Driving" came into being because our van broke down. It is just that simple.

Vans are a big part of the life of any touring band. Playing twenty-some shows a month across America, driving six hours every day, transporting five tons of gear everywhere you go, a van becomes a key part of your existence.

In mid-1993 our old Chevy Sport van finally died--we knew its time had come when it started spitting blue flames a la Batmobile out of its exhaust pipe in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Needing a new vehicle, we approached our pal Mango, the guy from Landmark Distibution who was then distributing our first album, "Bag". We offered Mango a live album in exchange for a new van.

Providing the live album was no problem, since we had been taping most of our shows to DAT for about two years at that point. Along with our then sound man Dean Mullin, we first went through all the tapes to find the most listenable ones in terms of sound quality. Then we took a few weeks to narrow down the selection of material to where it was about an hour long (much to my regret, a killer version of the Beatles' classic "A Day In The Life" was left off at the last minute). Finally I wrote some liner notes, and Rob Sinclair (aka "Squibb") did an oil painting for the cover that depicted what else but a white van tooling down a mountain road. (Some of the band members observed that Rob's signature on the painting was so big that we should just title the album "Rob Sinclair".)

Speaking of the title, it came from a GSW song that has never appeared on any album and is very rarely even played live. The song "Who's Driving" was a dark, David Lynch-inspired summary of some of our troubles and experiences shortly after moving into the upstate boondocks of Ossining, New York, where on off nights we would all gather in the living room to watch taped episodes of "Twin Peaks".

I have to be perfectly honest here and say that I don't really like "Who's Driving" (the album) that much, although many of our fans have told me they think it's the best thing we've done. The bootleg-level sound quality sort of bothers me, as well as the sloppiness of the jams, and the fact that you can plainly tell that the audiences were tiny at most of the shows! But what do I know, I'm just the guitar player. What I would like is another chance, now, to make a really great comprehensive GSW live album that would sound great, be a lot more focused than "WD", but keep all the looseness and energy.

But until that day comes, there's "Who's Driving".


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