“I play alternative folk rock, with a twist of the blues,” says San Diego singer-songwriter Reverend Stickman. “The music is a guitar-driven and an unconventional fusion of Americana and alternative. Most of my songs are stories from some place or time in my life. I’ve never been much for writing love songs. Not with two ex-wives.”
Not that he has anything against the institution of marriage, as evidenced by his side occupation. “I’m an actual reverend, with the credentials to perform marriage ceremonies and legal unions. What’s more, everyone I’ve joined together in marriage is still together. I’d love to be a part of more happy weddings. That’s even more rewarding than happy gigs, at least spiritually.”
Stickman plays in several local bands, including the Cathryn Beeks Ordeal and Gypsy Nights. In 2009, his song “Nearly Beloved” was a finalist in the San Diego Songwriter’s Guild song contest. A 2010 solo album, Half Alive: Stories From Under the Black Hat, features his Electric Stickband as well as Collage Menage collaborator Jenene Lambert (vocals), Michael “Mrod” Rodriguez (drums), Christopher “Halestorm” Hale (fretless bass), Bahman Sarram aka Bviolin (violin), Bob Bartosik (saxophone), and the Reverend covering 6- and 12-string acoustic and electric guitars, slide guitar, and vocals.
WHAT’S IN YOUR MUSIC PLAYER?
1) King Crimson, Discipline. “An amazing album, made even more so after I saw them perform most of it live.”
2) Aerosmith, Toys in the Attic. “I recently rediscovered this gem, one of the best solid rock records ever.”
3) Genesis, Live. “I’m a Peter Gabriel fan, so I like these old songs from when he was the vocalist.”
EMBARRASSING CD IN YOUR COLLECTION?
“The Monkees’ self-titled first record.”
“My friend and backup singer Jenene ‘Neener’ Lambert, lead singer for Verge of Distortion. She always goes the extra mile to look hot at all the shows.”
EVER BEEN A CRIME VICTIM?
“When I lived in Seattle some years back, I was stabbed while resisting an attempted mugging. I actually didn’t know I’d been injured until a few minutes after the incident, after the would-be muggers ran away and I noticed the pain. And blood. They were soon caught, arrested, and convicted.”
BEST AND WORST BAND NAMES?
“I think Soundgarden is the coolest, most descriptive band name ever. The worst is probably Loudness, a rock act out of Japan.”
GIG FROM HELL?
“When I went out of town with a hard-rock cover band, working in Topsail Beach, North Carolina. We showed up with our huge amps and sound system and saw that the place was a tiny little tiki bar filled with senior citizens. Our blend of Alice in Chains and Metallica did not go over well. But we did get paid. Barely.”
“Dream Theater, 1993, on the Images and Words tour at the Paramount Theatre in Seattle. I had front-row-center seats in a venue that seated less than 5000. The evening was incredible. The album had been so fantastic that I was skeptical about whether they could perform it live. Well, they did, and I even managed to snag a drumstick when it was thrown into the audience.”
LAST TIME SOMEONE YELLED AT YOU?
“I was yelled at recently by some crazy lady at the dog park. Evidently, she wasn’t aware that dogs sometimes run and jump and even growl and bark at each other. I suggested that she might be the problem, as opposed to my dog, but she didn’t seem to find that helpful.”
ON YOUR BUCKET LIST?
1) “Snorkel in Jamaica.”
2) “Climb a pyramid.”
3) “Learn a foreign language.”
POOREST YOU’VE EVER BEEN?
“When my second ex-wife split and left me with a considerable debt. That was tough, paying for someone else’s mistakes, but in the eyes of the law I was responsible. Things financially are much better now, and maybe I’m a little wiser, too.”
TELL US SOMETHING WE DON’T KNOW.
“I have a Jack Russell terrier named Adagio who likes camping and swimming. And catching small animals.” ■