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
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