Clementine Creevy, frontwoman of LA rock band Cherry Glazerr, just wrapped a six-week tour with six SXSW shows in Austin, Texas. Naturally, she looked a bit exhausted wrapped in a grey hoodie, but perked up at the sight of a Real Ale Hans Pils poured from one of the dozens of taps at one of Austin’s best beer bars, Brew & Brew. Over pints of pils, Creevy spoke about IPA fads, touring without the lubrication of alcohol, and her band’s secret show name (spoiler alert: it’s a reference to a NPR host).
How do you describe your music for people who haven’t heard it before?
The way I describe Cherry Glazerr music is guitar heavy with good, simple, beautiful melodies. Kind of funky and groovy sometimes. And high, airy vocals with direct lyrics. I would say we're a little bit of a punk band, a little bit of an indie-rock band, a little bit of a pop-rock-noise band. So, I think we make a lot of different types of music.
We’re drinking the Hans Pils from Real Ale. Do you like it?
Yeah, totally. Pilsners and blonde ales are my favorite beers. I don’t like IPAs, because I feel like they’re over-hyped. Like, why would I want to punish myself with this gross-tasting drink? I also like lagers, something like a Stella.
Do you have a favorite Pils?
I usually get something local. One of my favorites is Modern Times, they carry those at a lot of places I go to.
What are some of your favorite places to drink?
The Gold Line is an awesome bar in Highland Park, I’m happy for the neighborhood to have a nice sounding space where there’s good records spinning all the time. It makes it a very interactive space.
There’s this brewing company in Chicago called Saint Errant, they made a Cherry Glazerr beer for us. It’s called the Glaze Effect.”
Are you a big beer drinker?
I am, but I haven’t been drinking a ton because my bandmate did Dry January. So I’ve only had a few beers over the past three months.
Has that made the beers you do drink feel like special occasions?
Right. I’m really happy to be here drinking this beer with you, because I knew it was going to be on the morning of my last day of a six week tour. It’s a reward beer, which is how I feel about this particular pils.
What were some other special occasion moments on this tour?
There’s this brewing company in Chicago called Saint Errant, they made a Cherry Glazerr beer for us. It’s called the Glaze Effect. I really liked that, it was a real hoppy blonde ale made with clementines.
You’re catching me at a pretty tame point in my career. There was definitely a time when I was doing more partying. One time we drove straight from LA to New Orleans, and we stopped at this rest stop and had a few beers and it was raining and my band jumped over this fence into this field in the middle of nowhere. It was gorgeous and lush and green, we just took a nap in the field and let the mist wash over us.
How does touring dry compare?
It was awesome to feel a little bit better. You’re already sleep deprived, because you’re only allotted five or six hours of sleep. You literally get to your hotel room at two in the morning and are required to leave early to get to sound check in the next city. To add another layer of feeling physically shitty is not the most ideal. That being said, I don’t care what anybody else does with their body. I don’t think it says anything about your character if you self medicate.
You’re here in Austin for SXSW, how has your week been?
I feel very grateful for bands, that’s why I love this town and this festival. It’s so much fun. We didn’t play that many shows. Well, I guess we played six shows, but we were only here for two days. It’s so great to see where your capacity lies. If you set your mind to it, you can do four shows in five hours. And that’s exactly what we did.
The line-up is different this year than last, right?
It is. I brought the band back down to a three piece, because I love three pieces and the way we can arrange music for three pieces. I was excited about having keys on some songs, but realized I don’t need a full-time keys player for that, because sometimes you just want one note to play sporadically throughout the song, and it’s like, are you going to make somebody stand there and do that?
Seeing the band live, you guys seem very punk, because there’s something confrontational about the show.
Yeah, you know, I can't really help but go bananas on stage. One of my great favorites, Carrie Brownstein, she says that also about her playing in Sleater-Kinney. It’s a space where I like to get creative with my body and my mind, as well as my playing. I guess I like to harness a certain type of powerful energy that I have seen a lot in male performers. But then I also like to mix that with feminine moves. I like to mix a gender-bending element into the show, as I feel that I myself teeter a certain personhood.
We’re named after the NPR news host with the same name, she does news and traffic.”
You also DJ around LA regularly, what do you like to play?
I like to do all vinyl DJ sets—a lot of rock and pop music. I like to play The Damned, but then also Grace Jones and classic pop like Madonna, The Cars, and Blondie. Then also some punk—I have this Hot Snakes record that I play. Sometimes a little Deerhoof. And a lot of Prince and Bowie.
What’s your favorite Bowie song to play?
What does Cherry Glazerr mean?
We’re named after the NPR news host with the same name, she does news and traffic. I just thought that she had a great name. She found out about the band at a certain point, and she’s okay with it. It’s kind of a great and strange blessing how lovely and cool she is. She says she feels like a proud aunt watching her nieces and nephews.
I guess if she didn’t like it you could change your name to Kai Ryssdal.
We’d change it to Kajon Cermak. That’s our secret show name.