SPACE VIPERS

Bill Degnan

From the December 2002 AlTournative Press:
AP: What made you decide to join SunFly after breaking up the band The Space Vipers after only one CD?

BD: It cost about five times what we were making to put on each Vipers show. The final blow came when I had to send the crew home after we had to cancel the Newark show due to equipment failure, and the promoter expected us to pay for our drinks. I mean, that's a lot of money, I tell you. And our band's van side-swiped a dumpster on the way back from the show. I think there was someone in that thing too.

AP: The Space Rock opera, Semiphone. I hear that you finally finished the follow up album to Semiphone.

BD: Actually no, it's just a collection of songs really, no grand theme this time.

AP: Any reason?

BD: Nope, one space rock opera is enough, you know what I mean? There still is material from that period, but I don't have plans for it.

AP: Anything to look out for?

BD: Ideally I'd like to go for Johnny Cash meets Frank Zappa over for coffee, and Charlie Walker and 68-71 Pink Floyd sometimes.

AP: Yah. I heard crazy rumors about some solo shows of yours from early last year before you joined SunFly and after The Space Vipers stopped touring. Care to shed some light for the readers about this lost period?

BD: I actually was doing some avant garde shows at the local mexican restaurant for a couple of months. I would just like, record my washing machine before the show and play it back through the PA system, throw in a theremin thing, sometimes to a bunch of people who couldn't speak English barely at all. I don't think the manager really understood what it was I was trying to do, Jay (Jay Caddle - Mojunk Productions) also ran a game show there too, we alternated nights, and we also brought in a bunch of crazy jazz musicians to sit in from time to time. Eventually the owner stopped opening the door on the days we were supposed to play. There was a near riot the last night, I guess I can't blame him.

AP: Sounds Interesting.

BD: Yah, but I was ready to come back down to earth. I called up Chris (SunFly) and asked him if he was still looking for a bass player for his project. He just got a new siniger (Karla) and it made it easy knowing that we were all heading the same direction.

AP: You had also been filling in as the bass player for the band SpinDrift, until last month when some of the band moved out to Los Angeles to try their luck on the west coast. Did you have any trouble making the decision to stay behind with SunFly?

BD: It was actually last summer and then I decided to bag the whole idea at the last minute. Hey, if their CD (SpinDrift's new 8 Million Asians Can't be Wrong) hits the big time I'll collect royalties on the songs I recorded with the band, like what's that other band I was in...Reepo. (Reepo and His Madmen Reepo and His Madmen Shire: 1986)

AP: Now there's a band you don't hear about anymore in the States.

BD: Actually you'd be surprised, I still get (royalty) checks from those guys. I think two of them are dead now even (laughs), so we'll just see. A lot of people have died in bands I played with. (laughs)

AP: Any predictions for the future?

BD: I have been inspired by new folk bands like the The Be Good Tanyas, and I have been practicing the drums a lot lately. I don't know. I need to get back into the theremin too.

AP: Well, good luck to you.
Musical History of Bill Degnan
If you know of any other bands, please send them to the author.
Reepo and His Madmen 1985
First Sight 1986
Disillusioned Minds 1985-86
Past Tense 1987
Freudian Slips 1988-89
Fire at the Circus 1992-93
The Lost Boys 1993
Wave 1994
Pure 1995
Braxton Hicks 1996-1998
Raised on Sugar (Evolved into Petland) 1998
Spindrift 2000-2002
Sunfly 2000-2002
The Collingwood 2005 - 2006.
Space Vipers 1996-1999, 2003 - pres.

Things Bill Likes:
Kelcey, fresh air, writing music, reading

Instruments:
bass, guitar, keyboard, trumpet, theremin, working on drums.

Favorites:
Pink Floyd '68-71, The Pretty Things, RadioHead, Charley Walker, The Jug Band, lots lots more.

Goals:
Play nice with others


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