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Baker's Dozen

"The Spirit": Mike Watt Of The Missingmen's Favourite Albums
John Calvert , March 6th, 2014 10:13

Currently in the middle of a European tour, the Minutemen, Dos and Firehose founder pares down his record collection to give John Calvert his thirteen all-time top LPs

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Wire – Pink Flag
We felt very guilty that we were learning songs from records in our bedroom while all the Hollywood guys were up there playing their own songs in front of everyone. But we were looking for something to help us find our own voice, and in the end it was Pink Flag; we couldn't fuckin' believe that record, man. Now, we weren't going to copy their words or their music, but what we did get from Pink Flag was the format. It was all about the format, you get me? Man, it had such a profound effect on us: this idea of making little "bits". "Bits" right, in England they say "bits"?! [laughs] Again it's the Stooges/Beefheart idea that you can do whatever you want, only with Wire they were working with the fundamentals. It was like, you don't wanna have a guitar solo, then don't have a guitar solo! You don't wanna a chorus, don't have a chorus! You know?



I got to see them play in 1987, but it was… different. Like, it's wasn't Pink Flag era. Pink Flag, Chairs Missing, 154, those three records were like WOAH. But after that we kinda got out of them. But hey, everyone has their own lives. For example, I don't really like Mardi Gras, the seventh Creedence album. When I'm hittin' the Creedence it's never seven, always six. And I don't like a lot of The Fall, but up to Grotesque I know it by fuckin' memory, man. I know every fucking word that cat sang. I love it… I love it... I wish it was Baker's two Dozen, 'cause I'm made of influences, man!


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Mar 6, 2014 4:09pm

Cue inevitable 'He's picked a load of albums I've heard of, boooooring' type comments. Sounds like a real gent, I'd love to go for a beer with him.

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Mark
Mar 6, 2014 4:57pm

Love Mike Watt, best Baker's Dozen ever. Thanks!!

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Mark
Mar 6, 2014 4:58pm

He is a real gent, had a drink with him when he last played the Lexington.

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alex connor
Mar 6, 2014 5:36pm

mike. fucking. watt.
That made my day.
I'm still smiling...

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F Again
Mar 6, 2014 5:42pm

Oh man, what a joy. Can you bring Watt back for a second and third Dozen?

Thank you for this, it's just the best.

Watt is The Man- then, now and forever.

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Taun Aengus
Mar 6, 2014 6:20pm

Mike Watt is the man. What a heartfelt soulful dude. All those albums are like pouring gasoline on a fire.
Just had a thought--How about getting Lester Bangs back from the dead and finding out his favs?

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PRINCIP
Mar 6, 2014 7:14pm

Mike Watt is almost impossibly cool.

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Manic Inventor
Mar 6, 2014 7:19pm

A Baker's Dozen that woke me up instead of putting me to sleep. Hell Yeah!

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j
Mar 6, 2014 7:26pm

everytime i read "D.Boon" written i can hear mike saying it in his voice hahaha. he fucking loves saying it.

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chris
Mar 6, 2014 9:48pm

Every bit as excellent a read as I'd hope.
Countdown to the Ruby Lounge...

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Mar 6, 2014 10:31pm

Blue Oyster Cult ** are ** (were) shorties!! And so is Richard Meltzer!!

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Mar 7, 2014 3:46am

Cowhouse

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BOD
Mar 7, 2014 2:27pm

This was a joy to read. Brilliant. Love Mike Watt and can't wait to see him again in a few weeks.

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Jeff
Mar 7, 2014 8:17pm

Not to nitpick, but in the first paragraph of the Stooges record, the word "shields" is used, when I think Watt meant "shills": to act as a spokesperson or promoter <the>

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Mar 7, 2014 11:49pm

In reply to Jeff:

It's possible that is what he meant. Apologies, if so. I was talking to him from another country so the connection was a little sketchy.

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AdamSz
Mar 8, 2014 11:05pm

Mike Watt Forever! Thank you for getting him to talk about his favourite records, I can now go off and love him just that extra bit more.

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Mar 10, 2014 11:08am

Mike Watt will always be the man and one of my biggest heroes. I think the first comment said something about "Cue the inevitable "He's picked a lot of albums I've heard of etc." but the great thing about his choices is that they aren't just name dropping the classics as some might do, but that you can hear each album's honest to god influence on his playing and his approach to life. Thank you Mike!

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AL
Mar 11, 2014 12:46am

Seeing Mike slay in Los Angeles last year was a blast (even jamming on "Sister Ray" in tribute to Lou). Love the term "hittin' the Creedence" - gotta use that.

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Chris
Mar 13, 2014 1:49pm

I didn't want that to end...just brilliant, give him a regular spot. Got me fired up like carburetor dung.

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Christian
Mar 13, 2014 4:48pm

Excellent

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sumlin
Mar 17, 2014 11:54am

I think when he says "second band" on the Stooges page he might have meant "Secondmen" as Iggy would have asked him to be in the Stooges around 2002 when Watt was doing the Secondmen band...

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Gareth
Mar 25, 2014 1:44pm

They say never meet your heroes, they obviously never met Mike Watt. I got 5 minutes with him after his gig in Belfast a few years ago and he was polite, engaging, enthusiastic and just the friendliest guy you could meet. Love the guy, love this article!

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veronica
Apr 4, 2014 2:10am

The many musical layers of Mike Watt. That is all.

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