Milwaukee at SXSW | Gordon Gano of the Violent Femmes
Listen: On SXSW Music’s Thursday, for whatever reason, Milwaukee bands seemed to be playing all over town, all day, one after the other. In addition to the wonderful Muzzle of Bees Showcase, Juiceboxxx had a few spots, Collection of Colonies of Bees played a few shows (including playing on the same card as Andrew W. K.), etc. It had me running up and down 6th Street until my legs were sore.
As I’ve quickly learned to expect in my few days at SXSW, the highlight of my day was a surprise. I heard through the grapevine that Gordon Gano (amongst other things, lead singer of the Violent Femmes) was playing a showcase just a few blocks away, so I ran over and caught the end of his set on an outdoor stage. Perfect person to talk to when covering Milwaukee at SXSW, right?
I love seeing Gordon play, with the Violent Femmes or otherwise, but I’ve always been itching to ask him one question. We both went to the same high school (Rufus King), and while we graduated years apart from each other, Gordon’s name was still strong in the school’s lore. My 10th grade English teacher, Ms. Minga, told me that Gordon had once sung a song at a National Honor Society induction at King, but things had gone terribly wrong. Her details were a little sketchy, so I took this opportunity to have Gordon straighten out the story:
Proto-Femmes playing at Rufus King High School! My alma mater! If you like that story, here’s the full interview with Gordon, where a lot of the details are filled in:
Seriously, talking to Gordon Gano I’d never been so star struck in my life. And he was so nice! Stay tuned for more!