Dave Doughman The Exclaim! Questionnaire

Dave Doughman is the brains behind maniacal Dayton Ohio outfit Swearing At Motorists. His new album,. This Flag Signals Goodbye, is out now on Secretly Canadian.

Current fixations:
On the last leg of the "Never-Ending Tour" I must have listened to Okkervil River's last album Don't Fall In Love With Everyone You See (Jagjaguwar) 25 to 30 times in less than five weeks. It is the reason I asked them to join us on tour in July. Also coming out of Austin, I have an advance of the new Spoon album, which is amazing. I don't know what else to say about it other than Britt just raised the standard for rock'n'roll up a few notches. Last but not least, a two-song demo from the Dayton band Shesus. Black Sabbath meets the Shirelles, these ladies are one of the best things to happen in Dayton for quite some time. They will be opening for us at our annual appearance in Dayton, July 27.

Mind-altering work of art:
I went to a flea market yesterday and bought a fabulous painting of a clown. It is quite dreadful, like a clown from some nightmare circus, very sad looking. I don't know if I can hang it though, it really creeps me out.

Most memorable or inspirational gig and why?
A tie between the first night in Toronto (NXNE 2000, El Mocambo) and our first night at Raven in Hamilton (December 16, 2000). The show at the ElMo was the perfect combination, sharing a great bill, getting good press, and having an enthusiastic audience. The result for me was a performance that was cathartic. From that night forward I felt as if our accomplishments were our own. At Raven, later that same year, it seemed if as if everything had come crashing down on me, but instead of being crushed, it was actually cleansing, and set the stage for things to come.

What should everyone shut up about?
Everyone should shut up about whatever they are talking about while a band is on stage playing. If you want to talk, leave the room, go to the bar, go outside, whatever, just shut the fuck up. Talking during a Swearing At Motorists show can be hazardous to your health.

I would drop everything to play a benefit for:
A friend in need.

What trait do you like and dislike most about yourself?
I like that I am so easy to get along with. I dislike that I am so hard to please. I wish I knew what the hell I was thinking sometimes, you know, most of the time I feel completely lost. That is probably why I tour so much, to keep moving, try to keep things fresh, get different perspectives, see how other people are feeling, and what other people are thinking.

What would make you kick someone out of your band and/or bed, and have you?
I would kick someone out of my band if they making me not want to be around them, or if they didn't play every show like it was their last hour on Earth.

When I think of Canada I think:
Of marijuana, Mecca Normal, Raven, Three Gut, Picastro, Teenage USA, White Star Line, Sonic Unyon, Mean Red Spiders and Tim Horton's.

What is your vital daily ritual?
Smoke marijuana and play music.

How do you spoil yourself?
Drink whole milk and listen to National Public Radio.

What was your most memorable day job?
Director of the Audio Engineering Department, International College of Broadcasting.

If I wasn't playing music I would be:
Dead.

What is your greatest fear?
Dying.

If you had a superpower, what would it be?
I would be able to fly, although I wouldn't mind being invisible.

What makes you want to take it off and get it on?
Musically, Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding, James Brown. Otherwise, it changes.

Music and sex: Is there a difference? Why?
There is a difference, but I think they can be equally intimate. For me a great musical performance can be as intense and as satisfying as the most amazing sex. And everyone makes stupid faces during both.

Strangest brush with celebrity:
As I'm talking to Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon, someone comes up to me and asks, "hey aren't you that guy from Swearing At Motorists."

Who would be your ideal dinner guest, living or dead, and what would you serve them?
I would invite Neil Young for some Flying Pizza.

What does your mom wish you were doing instead?
She loves Swearing At Motorists, she just thinks I shouldn't turn down offers from major labels. I am trying to explain to her the difference between selling 20,000 records on an indie vs 20,000 on a major. Eventually, I'm sure I can explain the math to her. I don't want to be rich or famous, I just want to make records and play shows for a living.