Deer Tick's John McCauley on Hanging Out With Brian Williams While Hungover

Categories: Q&A
Deer Tick.jpg
courtesy of Big Hassle Media
Alt-country stumblers Deer Tick know how to keep up the pace. Songwriter John McCauley started the band in 2004. Since then, it's morphed from a solo project into a full-fledged rock 'n' roll machine, spitting cheap domestic beer and rangy Americana fury.

In October, they released Divine Providence, and before we knew it they'd already issued a follow-up, the Tim EP. It's been a busy couple of months for these laid-back Rhode Island boys.

We spoke to McCauley about his favorite country to perform in, his awkward experience with Brian Williams, the story behind Tim, spending Christmas in a Chinese restaurant, and more.

Deer Tick is scheduled to perform with Turbo Fruits on Thursday, May 3, at the Crescent Ballroom.

Up on the Sun: Why the political campaign theme for this tour? I love the yard signs, by the way.

John McCauley: It just kind of makes sense right now. The Republican debates are so fucking hilarious that I guess we wanted in on that. Nah, we just thought it would be a funny concept for a tour, I guess.

As a Jewish chick, I really appreciate the song "Christmas in a Chinese Restaurant." Was that song written about a real experience?

I have spent Christmas in a Chinese restaurant before. I had Chinese food on Christmas Eve this past year. A couple of years ago, me and my friend Diego went and got Chinese food, and then we drove down to Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut. It was just a funny day. I was just basically hanging out with Jewish people and Asian people. But it was sort of inspired by A Christmas Story. You know that movie? At the end they're at the restaurant. It's just a little story about a man and his wife arguing at Christmastime.

There haven't been any serious mental breakdowns or anything, so I'm going to continue doing it like this.

--John McCauley, Deer Tick

What exactly was the main inspiration for the Tim EP?

It was some leftover songs from Divine Providence that we wanted to put out in some way. Tim is the guy that owns Partisan Records, and that's him on the cover. We did all of this behind his back because we're kind of in a prank war with him. And then there's the Replacements' album. The Replacements named their album Let It Be, so we'll just name something Tim. And then on the back we put the cover of Let It Be with Tim's face Photoshopped on all of them. It's just all a big joke.

Deer Tick released Divine Providence in October, and already you've released an EP this year, as well. What's been enabling you to just pump out all this music so quickly? That seems like an ongoing theme for you guys: producing lots of music very quickly while still maintaining quality.

I don't know. I just really love recording and being on tour, too. So it's a lot of pretty careful scheduling for our year. But there haven't been any serious mental breakdowns or anything, so I'm going to continue doing it like this.

Location Info

Crescent Ballroom

308 N. 2nd Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Music

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