Wednesday, July 24, 2013


It was last Tuesday when he walked in, fidgeting and nervous, like a man anticipating something falling off of a bookshelf. 
"Would you wanna do an interview for Reid Perry?"
I knew the name. My eyes narrowed.
"Sure, but what's in it for me?"
Work was tough these days. I was on the nut and needed to claw for every penny I could get, even if it meant squeezing this jobbie's pearls.
" you not want to do it?"
The little gink wasn't gonna make this easy. I sparked the end of a gasper and laid in.
"I never said that, bosco, but if ya want me to give the third to this Reid egg, you better have some cabbage waiting in your cowhide."
The kid looked at me and shook like a one pound chihuahua.
"...haha! .....You mean...ah..."
It became clear that he didn't have the clams to fork out. I leveled with him.
"Look here, you. I don't bleed stones pro-bono and I sure as hell ain't gonna wind up on the wrong side of an iron just because you've got cold pockets. So either make an offer or breeze off."
Now the kid really played up the old dummy act. He sure had some brass ones. 
"Are you being serious?"
I stared into his map like I was threatening to put the cross on him.
"Serious as a heart attack, guy. What's it gonna be?"
" know we don't have much money or's nothing too serious....just the Dreyfest blog. ...Maybe I'll just ask someone else."
I lost him! All my tough talk and now he was ready to blow! I kept my cool and took it down.
"Ah, shit, kid. Have a seat."
"No thanks- I'll just see ya later."
He shot his keyster into the chair and quivered like the buttons on a fat man's jacket.
"...Why you so shaky, anyway? You in a Colombian snowstorm?"
"Nothing. I just don't wanna deal with any junk fiends. You aren't doing juju are you?"
"I, uh-"
I felt bad for the kid. He was an obvious wreck. Months of planning and work and it was getting down to the wire. If I didn't help the poor sap, I knew nobody would.
"Nevermind. Tell you what- I'll grill this Reid character, but you gotta promise me that after I get the information for you, you'll owe me. ...I've had my eye on lettering for my door for a while. This office needs a personal touch and having my name out there might be just the thing to boost business."
The kid really had my number. I let it slide.

I had heard of this Reid guy, and from everyone I asked, he was a "nice guy" and "kept his nose clean". ...Well, I don't know about that. I figured that if I wanted to get the real dirt, I would have to stop tiptoeing around and go to the source...

You are_________, you are_________years old, you are from_________.
I am Reid Perry, I am 20-years old, and I'm from Hardin, Montana (currently residing in Billings).

Why the interest in Juarez, or Mexico in general?
My interest in Juarez actually came from a Johnny Cash song, "Cocaine Blues". Mexico, well, the entire southwest, is a place of great fascination to me. My family vacationed down in Arizona for a week when I was 13, and that's when I fell in love with the desert. The starkness of it, the beauty in its emptiness... It's like North Dakota, but with things to look at. Like canyons and cacti, and sand dunes and rocks... Lots and lots of rocks. So Juarez and Mexico were really just a vehicle to express my love of the desert.

Who are the people in Nashville that we heard helped you put out Juarez and how did you come into contact with them?
Tate Music Group, actually located in Mustang, Oklahoma (I think it got hit by a tornado) released Juarez. I sent out a TON of emails to record labels in the Spring of 2010... By August, they were the only ones who got back to me. Said they'd give me a helluva record deal for only $2,000! (I hope they got hit by a tornado and had to pay $2,000 to fix their crap.) Since then, I've learned never to pay someone to own your music. It's an obvious thing now that I think about it. The bastards. I'm not bitter, or anything though, haha.

I hear you have a new live band; how is that working out? Will your set at Dreyfest be solo or with them?
Yeah! I've got a new group of awesome musicians backing me up! They're great. Geniuses! Jerimiah Tretin on bass, Sam Steingraber on drums and percussion, and Adam Restad on guitar and making us look awesome. It's cool to play with people who already know how I want my songs to sound without us ever really having to talk about it. Amazing guys, phenomenal musicians, great friends, and just really solid people. They're permanent. So we will be playing Dreyfest as a band. And it will be legendary.

Caught off guard or doing a superhero pose? No one knows!

I also heard that you went on the road with Idaho Green for something or other. Seems like a strange fit! What was it like? 
Haha, yeah, Austin Finn (of Idaho Green) got a hold of me last June and was like "Hey, you wanna do Whynot Minot!? with us?" and I was like, "yeah I do!" It was an awesome time! Austin, Jordan, Coop, Julius, and Dan! Man, that car smelled so bad! My dog had died the night before we left, so I was pretty bummed for most of that first day. I was just chain smoking Camel cigarettes in the backseat. One after another. Totally Humphrey Bogarting it! I don't know how they all breathed in there, cause I was really the only smoker, but they never, not once, complained about it. So yeah, on our way to Missoula (we took the long way to North Dakota) we stopped in Butte. No one should ever stop in Butte, by the way. We got some gas and snacks at a gas station off the interstate and they had me drive from there to Missoula, which was hilarious. They only let me drive once after that. Never had such great conversation with people as I did with them. I'd only ever met Jordan and Austin before, so we were virtually strangers, but there was no small talk. Real conversations about things like how big the bugs are in Malta, the philosophical aspects of theft, A&W milkshakes.... we covered just about everything. Great group of people and I would very much like to travel to Minot again with them.

Do you find it difficult to sustain creativity in a town that is not as accommodating to alternative ideas as, say, a college town might be?
Honestly, I feel like living in a town at all just suffocates creativity. Like, I know that the mix of culture and people and constant motion is supposed to fuel the muse, the romance of the city and all that, but college town, industrial town, and sort of town at all I think is bad news. For me anyway. Living in the middle of nowhere, where you're alone with your thoughts and you don't talk to anyone for days at a time, that's when I feel most creative. 'Cause you're inward. There's nothing external going on. The lands so empty you have to imagine things in your head, and I think that lends to creativity more than any city or town, regardless of the sort. If I had to choose though, I'd pick a city more like Billings.

Favorite season:
My favorite season is fall. He's a little bit of a killjoy, but he seems more like a solid guy than summer or spring. Winter's just stupid. I hate that guy.

Ideal hors d-oeuvres? 
Hors d'oeuvres? Is that like a sex thing? I don't know about that stuff yet.

What’s up with this Dreyfest thing anyway?
I don't know what's up with this Dreyfest thing, but it sounds like fun. Even if I wasn't playing it, I'd check it out. I like Richard, and I think I heard he was the one puttin' this thing on, so I'm pretty stoked to meet him.

What do the coming months have in store for Reid Perry fans?
A third full length, a tour with No Cigar, full band shows, merch! Website updates, I think I'm gonna make some tacos one of these nights, we'll get 'em all over to the house, make a night of it! It'll be great. Fans can expect life changing shows, new songs, and I promise that anyone who likes my music enough to come to a show, buy a CD, or anything will get their money and time's worth. I'm honored to say I actually have fans.

Well, I don't know if I ever got to the bottom of what my client was looking for. I do know that I tried damn hard to grease Reid for information and that he came up clean. Upon delivering the news, I was rewarded with, "You really want letters for your door?" and "How much does that cost?" and "Why do you keep talking like that?". 
Breaks are few and far between for a guy like me so I wasn't expecting my client to offer the cheddar so readily. He said that after the fest, he would slip me $2.95 if there was any dough left after paying the bands. So I lit up another stick and threw my feet up on the desk. "See you at Dreyfest," I said to the letterless door staring at me from across the room, "See you at Dreyfest."

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