Cowsill Transcripts

Susan Cowsill On KUT
March 14, 2005
The Phil Music Program with Larry Monroe
Austin, Texas

If you'd like to HEAR this interview, it is on the archives page (at bottom) at KUT.

Live from Studio 1A Susan Cowsill

Song: Palm Of My Hand

Larry: Susan Cowsill is our guest in Studio 1A. Susan played last night at the Cedar Street Courtyard. Great set, so itís wonderful to have you here in Studio 1A Susan

Susan: (whispering) Thank you Larry

Larry: The new album is called Just Believe It.

Susan: Yes it is

Larry: And itís your first solo album after a life-long career in the music business.

Susan: Yeah, whatís up with that? Late bloomer

Larry: Of course the family band, The Cowsills, and then ten years with The Continental Drifters

Susan: Yeah, maybe thatís what was the deal

Larry: Just time to make the solo album

Susan: It was definitely time to make the solo album. There was nothing else to do. Community service I think was next. Which will continue to be next.

Larry: Well you got a great band. Do you want to introduce them so folks will know whoís playing for Ďem?

Susan: I definitely do, thank you. On drums and vocals is Russ Broussard. There he is. Say ďHeyĒ (deep voice) Hello On bass and vocals is Rob Savoy

Rob: (low and sexy) Good Evening

Susan: Ohhhhhh you have a career in radio I think

Rob: This is FM

Susan: (laughs) Chris Knotts is on guitar and vocals. Say hello Chris

Chris: Hello listeners

Susan: Iím sorry but you didnít get the audition

Chris: I didnít?

Susan: Johnny Sansone is on harmonica and whatís that thing? The big vacuuming thing?

???: Itís an accordion

Susan: (laughs) Accordion, yeah. And Janson Lohmeyer is on keyboards and anything we ask him to do like carrying boxes that is very uncomfortable for him. Say ďHeyĒ Janson.

Janson: Heeeyyyyyy

Susan: And me? Iím Danty June. Now what happens, Larry?

Larry: Well you play us another song. A whole bunch more songs

Susan: OK Excellent (to the band) What are we doing yíall? Ö OK weíre doing it. Ö. Itís a Christmas song, Larry. I hope youíre in the spirit

Larry: Itís almost cold enough.

Susan: I think so. OK guys

Song: Christmas Time

Susan: Oh yeah. So itís a Christmas song, you know. Yep on my new record, Just Believe It, out on Ė hold on Ė wish list. Itís out on EMI/Mercury/Warner Brothers slash Capital/uh Sony thank you. There you go. An excellent way to end it. Comglomerate of and combination of. Itís called (mumbling) Ė Yeah (laughs) I love it. So now what happens to us Larry?

Larry: You just keep playing

Susan: We do? We donít even talk to you?

Larry: You can talk a little bit.

Susan: OK very little bit. Iím not very good at that, but I got the deal. Rain. Russ is doing Itsy Bitsy Spider in back OK I got it. I know what time it is. OK this hear song has been recorded by many a famous person. The Bangles, Hootie and the Blowfish. Yeah and myself

???: Continental Drifters

Susan: Oh The Continental Drifters and then myself. And Iím thinking of covering it as well. My other self. It goes like this.

Song: The Rain Song

Larry: Susan Cowsill and her band playing live for us here in Studio 1A Susan have you been to Austin before?

Susan: Yes, many, many times

Larry: Really? Now did The Cowsills ever play in Austin?

Susan: Probably Cuz we played in ??? Nebraska so why would we miss Austin in our travels. Iím pretty sure, yeah.

Larry: So you kind of grew up singing, didnít ya? From an early age.

Susan: Yeah, I grew up singing. It helped me to grow up Ė to sing. Yeah Iíve been singing since I was knee-high to a grasshopper.

Larry: Now how old were you when you first started with The Cowsills?

Susan: Seven

Larry: Seven

Susan: Seven, yeah. It was the magical age. You got to be in the band and not go to school.

Larry: Well it seems like you have survived better than people like for instance Michael Jackson.

Susan: I know I feel Ö. Yes I have Ö I wish I could give him some of my DNA

Larry: Heíd be a comtemporary of yours. You were both out at about the same time as children.

Susan: Yeah we were in fact one time I just had the TV on in the 80ís while I was frosting mugs and Casey Kasem came on the TV. And he was doing his little wind up thing he does at the end of the show where somebody writes in a question. And the viewer Ö the question was ĎWho was the youngest female on a rock record?í And the answer was me. And I was like, ďWow thatís a really cool question.Ē And yeah I was slightly dazed but I was pretty dazed at the time in general and then he went on to say that Michael Jackson was the youngest male on. So all of a sudden I felt all connected to him so it breaks my heart to see him all twisted out.

Larry: And how many years did The Continental Drifter, with you as one of the singers, last?

Susan: I think ten glorious years

Larry: And about how many records out of that period?

Susan: Youíre doing math on me Larry. I think three

Larry: Well weíre at a university.

Susan: Three, four, maybe five Can I get some tutoring?

Larry: Not from me

Susan: OK

Larry: Well weíre at a university, but Iím not a good example.

Susan: OK (laughs) Are you like the Alfred E. Newman of the university?

Larry: Not quite.

Susan: OK I donít know why that came to mind. Remember he used to like be going to school and some of the little Ö. Oh never mind. OK Larry, maybe we should sing.

Larry: At what point in your career did you decide to make this solo album. Were you kind of thinking about this when you were with The Continental Drifters? Or was this a totally different project?

Susan: No, I didnít think about this till it was the moment I need to think about it. It was something I think I was kind of avoiding for the first 35-40 years. And I think, no, I think I think. Itís like saying like. Like Like Like It was the next thing to do. And had I done it earlier, it wouldnít have been the record I made, which Iím incredibly proud of.

Larry: You made a really good record.

Susan: You like it? Thank you I appreciate that. And we all made it together. Everybody youíre looking at right here in this room were a huge part of making that record. There are no solo careers. Thatís a bunch of ... crap.

Larry: Did you have a good time playing at the KUT Showcase last night?

Susan: We had a blast playing at the KUT Showcase last night. It was a beautiful venue cuz it had trees and thatís pretty much all I need.

Larry: Yep itís an outside place. A courtyard.

Susan: Yeah it was wonderful. Did you all have fun, yíall?

????: Hell yes

Susan: Hell yeah and anything else that I would say.

Larry: Letís hear some more songs. Susan Cowsill live in Studio 1A

Song: Nannyís Song

Larry: Susan Cowsill is playing live in Studio 1A with her band. Now most of the writing on the album is yours and a few co-writes including some with your husband Russ Broussard, the drummer.

Susan: Yeeeaaaahhhhh

Larry: Now did you write all along with The Continental Drifters? And even as far back as The Cowsills?

Susan: Yes and no. I actually learned to write during my Continental Drifters days. So they are precious to me for a million reasons. But I had six brothers and any time I even LOOKED at one of their instruments, theyíd go ďDonít even think about it.Ē Theyíd throw me a tambourine and thatís like dog bone meet tambourine. Pretty much that. And thatís OK because I became a hell of a tambourine player.

Larry: But youíve turned your tambourine in for an acoustic guitar.

Susan: Yeah I gave my tambourine to Janson and he couldnít be happier. (laughs) And then really I mean The Drifters were definitely, the guys - especially in the early version were really instrumental in encouraging me to try and play the guitar which really Ė I really need a band in order to pull this off. I proved that this afternoon on my panel at SXSW. And learned to write with them and they were very encouraging and very supportative of me and I Ö a good thing.

Larry: Now you played the KUT Showcase last night, are there any other performances, liver performances coming up.

Susan: Oh Larry I am so all over the place. And if I had my Ďover-40í glasses I could tell you all of them. Hold on. ... oh darn Ö. Thanks Johnny ... Iím cominí

Larry: Iíd give you my Ďover-60í glasses but there are those progressive bi-focals and you wouldnít be able to see

Susan: That might make me prematurely over 60 and that would not be good. I mean nothing wrong with being 60 cuz Iím looking forward to it.

Larry: Itís better than the alternative

Susan: Right (laughs) Well put Larry. We are Ö. Today was the BMI thing Austin Thursday. Whatís today? Oh itís live on-air performance on KUT FM, thatís coming up.

Larry: Thatís right now.

Susan: Yeah thatís right now. And tomorrow Saturday at 1 PM we at the Pop Culture Press Party, which weíre really looking forward to. And then .. no that at the Dog and the Duck Ė Dog and Duck? Ė yeah right I was very good in English you see and it was Dog and The Duck . And then on that very same day Ė as if my magic Ė we are at D & L's Texas Music Cafe at 7pm which is at 1321 S. Congress Ave. And if even Ö oh this is also magic cuz we are being invisible at Mother Eganís at 8 oíclock. Itís a little Ė I also dabble in magic and I have a little disappearing thing Iím going to do at Mother Eganís at 8 oíclock. I want everyone to be there and check it out. Iím there, but you wontí see me.

Larry: Can you levitate?

Susan: Oh man, I levitated my whole band right out of the show. And then as if by even more magic and some divine intervention, Iím sitting in with Dwight Twilley at The Vibe. OK so thatís it man.

???: Midnight

Susan: At midnight and thatís at 508 E. 6th Street

Larry: Is that also tomorrow?

Susan: Itís all Saturday. If tomorrow is Saturday, itís all tomorrow. Is tomorrow Saturday?

Larry: Tomorrow is Friday

Susan: Excellent I get a day Ö. Iím really glad about that. Thereís nothing on Friday. Weíre going camping.

Larry: You should stick around Austin and see what there is to Ö

Susan: Weíre goiní aí Weíre going to the thrift stores. Thanks Johnny Sansone for these glasses. So now weíre doing to do what Larry?

Larry: We have time for two more songs.

Susan: Two more

Larry: Yes

Susan: Uh oh we have to pick and choose. Just Believe It and what? Ö Oh yeah, why not ! Uh oh it Ďs not a good thing Ö. I Ö. So now weíre going to do the title cut off my solo debut record that is only out in Europe. OK so itís very special Ö. OK thatís a lie Ö. Itís only out in Europe and itís only out on my website. But I think it should be only out in the US so we can all go get a free dinner at the Grammyís next year. Thatís what Iím thinkiní

Larry: Now would that be

Susan: yeah, isnít that frightening. Iím a .com and I donít even like cars. Yeah OK Yíall think Iím nuts.

Song: Just Believe It

Larry: Susan Cowsill live in Studio 1A Got time for one more song but I have to do the credits before this song because I have to catch an elevator out of here.

Susan: Wow thatís very Batmanish or something

Larry: On drums Russ Broussard. He also played the rub board on that last song. On bass Rob Savoy. On guitar Chris Knotts On harmonica Johnny Sansone And on the keyboards Janson Lohmeyer (Susan panting) and in the control room doing the mix, Walter Morgan. (applause)

Susan: Heís our favorite

Larry: And Susan Cowsill live in Studio 1A. Iím Larry Monroe. Thank you Susan

Susan: Thanks Larry Thanks very much for having us. I appreciate it. OK now I have to see if my guitar is ready Ö.. Wait a minute yíall. I canít see. It still sounds nasty and all. ÖÖ.. That sounded nasty. Whereís my fuzz yíall? Doesnít matter here we go One Two Three Four

Song: I Know You Know

Larry: Susan Cowsill and her band playing live in Studio 1A Thank you Susan and thanks to Walter Morgan for sticking around tonight to do the mix for Susan Cowsill and her band. ItísThe Phil Music Program here on KUT.

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