“Spot”light on… Man Man

“Spot”light on… Man Man

“Spot”light on…Man Man

Connecticut becomes a tour starter for yet another national act as Manic Productions brings Man Man, the five man experimental band out of Philly, to Daniel Street on Wednesday, October 12 with local openers M.T. Bearington.  Called “avant-garde doom rock heroes” and described by the New York Times as “delirious, scrapheap-eclectic”, they bring their war paint and feathers to Daniel Street in support of their latest release, Life Fantastic.

Man Man, consisting of Honus Honus, Pow Pow, T. Moth, Chang Chang, and Jefferson, has released four studio albums and two ep’s.  Man Man has also had multiple songs featured in the hit series “Weeds” and has toured with Modest Mouse.  Alarm Magazine has determined that their latest album “Life Fantastic easily takes the mantle as Man Man’s best album”.

Man Man was one of the high-light performers for me at BOMB Fest this summer.  After watching their colorful and crazed set, which incorporates the use of xylophones, French horns, flutes, spoons, and pots and pans along with conventional instruments, I couldn’t wait to check them out again.  Incidentally, they also had one of the coolest tour shirts I’ve seen in a very long time and I actually bought one!

I had an entertaining conversation with singer/song-writer, Honus Honus who is personable and thoughtful.  This is what he had to say:

lsg:  Let’s break the ice.  Anyone ever tell you that you look like Freddie Prinz circa Chico and the Man?

HH:  Yeah.  He blew his brains out at 23.  I do get that a lot.  I also get compared to Sono Bono a lot.

lsg:  You are from Philly.  I was just there recently for Popped Fest and had a chance to roam around and look at the art.  What’s your take on the art scene in your home town?

HH:  Philly is cool man.  It’s a gem and has a good vibe.

lsg:  So you are beginning your US tour here in Connecticut.  Thanks.  Why start in CT?

HH:  We actually play Connecticut a lot.  We’ve played Daniel Street before.  It’s on the East Coast so why not.

lsg:  Was Man Man ever a “normal” band ie jeans, t shirts, vs the costumes, war paint, and unusual array of instruments and who came up with the concept?

HH:  Well, I started the band around 40 or 50 years ago when my tv show got cancelled.  I shelved the Freddy Prinz name and started a band.  It’s not as lucrative as the show but it’s alright.

lsg:  Tell me about your stage name?  What’s that about?  And what inspired the others?

HH:  We took on anti-stage names and they took off and have a life of their own.  Philly is a small town so I wasn’t sure if people would be as open to a band with Ryan Kattner in it so we made up the names.  Kind of wink/nudge.

lsg:  I read somewhere that the current album is about relationships and death, can you tell me a bit more?

HH: Relationships and death are the bedrock of successful albums.  I like the juxtaposition of moods.  Incidents to elevate a catchy hook with a line that sticks in your head.  Like with Life Fantastic.  It’s like broken glass in the batter.  Or making something that looks delicious and then it tastes like spoiled fruit.  It’s a balance of extremes.

lsg:  I’ve really been digging Life Fantastic.  I have my own favorites (Steak Knives…It’s beautiful and sad, Haute Tropique…It reminded me of Frank Zappa, and the title track…I’ve simply listened to it over and over).  What are yours and why?

HH:  Steak Knives is one of my favorite songs I’ve ever written.  I gravitate to songs with a simpler structure.  It’s really just two chords.  You can fit a beating heart into two chords.

lsg:  BK or Mickey D’s?  Inquiring minds wanna know…

HH:  In and out burger.  I can get it when I hit Cali or Nevada.

lsg:  Wrapping this up, what’s the best part of being in Man Man?

HH:  I get to travel a lot.  I feel fortunate that there are people who want to hear us.  Would I still make music if no one did?  I would.  I didn’t choose to be a musician.  I just am.

Next Wednesday night, the place to be is Daniel Street for Man Man.  Make sure you make it there in time to see M.T. Bearington, another fantastic local band, who are the openers.  Doors at 8:00 pm and tickets are available through the Daniel Street or Manic Productions.

Hey!  You!  We’re not done yet!  Check out my fb page – http://www.facebook.com/lsgoriginal – and follow my antics on Twitter at @lsgoriginal.  Web page forthcoming!


Lisa Sanchez Gonzalez aka lsg

Lover of music and the visual arts, Lisa Sanchez Gonzalez is the insanity behind lsg original photography. lsg specializes in artist and performer photography. She’s had the honor of photographing national bands such as Weezer, Snoop Dogg, A Simple Plan, Paramore, Whitesnake, Wye Oak, and The Antlers along with countless local bands and performers.

Hailing from Hartford, CT, Lisa is a life- long music connoisseur. Growing up, her mother exposed her to everything from The Stones to Simon and Garfunkel to Earth, Wind, and Fire to Loretta Lynn…and everything in between. No genre was left unexplored in her vinyl collection. She saw her first concert at 14…Rod Stewart at the (then called) Hartford Civic Center. Thirty years later, it’s still her favorite pastime.

Lisa has two kids (grown!) and a day job. Her loves of music and photography have melded into a second career. And her love of CT keeps her promoting and pushing for local artists and performers. Lisa spends the greater part of her free time seeing and shooting live bands, performers, and artists and art work…and purchasing vinyl!

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