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Old 05-15-2008, 08:31 AM   #1
avsfan7733
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Default Matt Sweeney is getting desperate.

http://www.billboard.com/bbcom/news/..._id=1003802536


Matt Sweeney Makes Unlikely Neil Diamond Sideman
Matt Sweeney
May 13, 2008, 10:45 AM ET
Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.
Neil Diamond has worked with a wide range of musicians throughout his legendary career, but perhaps none with as much of an indie rock pedigree as Matt Sweeney.

The Chavez frontman wound up playing a major role on Diamond's new Columbia album, "Home Before Dark," and performed with him last Thursday during a surprise MySpace-sponsored club show at New York's Bitter End.

Sweeney, who was brought onto the project by producer Rick Rubin, spoke to Billboard.com about the experience and what else is new and exciting in his musical universe.



How much were you involved in the recording? Just a few songs, or the majority?

I played guitar on all the songs, I think. We did them live in the studio, with no drums. Neil played a Martin guitar from the 1800's, Smokey Hormel played guitar and/or bass, Mike Campbell played guitar and Benmont Tench [was] on piano and organ. Mike, Benmont and Smokey are so great to play with -- such cool people. And Rick Rubin is an incredibly sensitive and attentive listener who makes great suggestions for musical moves. I then threw on some electric and acoustic overdubs by myself, but I'm not sure if they made it on the final mixes.

On the first album Neil made with Rick [2005's "12 Songs"], there was a lot of talk about Rick forcing Neil to play guitar on the songs. Did this happen this time? Do you feel like this made a difference with the material?

We would all push to have Neil lead us with his guitar to set the tempos. He's very self-effacing about his guitar playing, which is funny because he is one of my all-time favorite guitar guys. He was also completely open for suggestions about how the song should feel.

You are playing with Neil on the video for "Pretty Amazing Grace" that's up on Amazon.com and you played the Biter End show. Do you have any plans to play with him beyond this?

No plans, but I would play with him in a heartbeat. I really was sad when the record was done; it was a summer camp-like experience.

In general, I'd love to have your thoughts on the experience. Were you a fan of his music before you started working on the album?

I've been a fan of Neil Diamond since before I could talk; my mom still always plays his music. In high school my friends and I would freak out to [Diamond's famed 1973 live album] "Hot August Night" -- my friend Lee Hetfield could lip-synch the entire album. I am a giant fan.

Here's the mindblower: Neil Diamond is so funny, low key and open. He sees every song as a chance to, in his words, "make a great record." He'd encourage all of us to come up with cool parts and feed us delicious food. He was so encouraging and excited about making music. Every day was awesome.

He simultaneously maintains a mystique and gives himself completely over to the song. He totally exposes himself to such a degree that he becomes almost invisible. His words and music come from such a private place, and still become songs that so many people can relate to.

I never imagined I'd play music with him, so the experience was really wild. It felt like jumping off a cliff. I'd tell myself, "OK, just pretend you are doing this." -- like a dream.

What else are you working on? Any guest appearances on other albums? Are you working on any of your own stuff? And I'd be remiss if I didn't see if there was anything percolating in the Chavez world...

Thanks for asking. I [was] on tour in Europe playing guitar with Baby Dee and Current 93. We just played in Moscow. Within the last year I've produced, co-wrote songs and/or played on records by Endless Boogie, Baby Dee, Sightings, Dax Riggs, Cat Power, Mike Bones and other stuff that I'm sure is good but am too fried to remember at the moment.

I'm also working on new Superwolf (that's Bonnie "Prince" Billy's and my collaboration team) songs to follow up the album Drag City put out in 2005. We'll have a song on a Kenneth Anger tribute album that's coming out on Dutro Records. I think maybe another new song of ours is gonna be in a movie. I hope to do Chavez stuff as well.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 08:38 AM   #2
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wow he's a d-bag.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:55 AM   #3
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how is he getting desperate?

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:04 AM   #4
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playing with his hero, what a sellout!

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:04 AM   #5
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Neil Diamond gets all the tang. Sweeney done good.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:10 AM   #6
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Seems happy and really busy. Probably the opposite of desperate.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:20 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yudhistira View Post
Neil Diamond gets all the tang. Sweeney done good.
he done good by missing out on the tang?

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:29 AM   #8
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is that him on the right?!




poor miserable son of a gun.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:34 AM   #9
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...and they both love coke

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:36 AM   #10
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Matt Sweeney: The ultimate studio musician.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:52 AM   #11
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neil diamond has some good songs, i don't see how this is 'desperate'. you must be one of those people who thinks it's uncool to like anything by an old dude.
"girl, you'll be a woman soon" is fucking classic.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skipgo View Post
neil diamond has some good songs, i don't see how this is 'desperate'. you must be one of those people who thinks it's uncool to like anything by an old dude.
.
Whoa lets not make assumptions.
I'm actually a pretty big neil diamond fan, I found the article linked to another article about how well the album is doing. As with most of you, my father and mother played Neil records constantly when I was a child, so he is in the blood. I even spent quite a bit of money to see him in pittsburgh in 05.

I just find it funny that someone as "indie" and "hip" as Matt Sweeney would record guitar tracks for as big of a main stream artist act as Neil Diamond and Rick Rubin. Maybe desperate wasn't the right word. I just needed a title to draw you people in =)

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:06 PM   #13
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ok, i get where you're coming from now

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:08 PM   #14
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do you? do you really?

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:19 PM   #15
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kinda

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:22 PM   #16
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Matt just needs a drug buddy to record with since he's too dumb to come up with his own new songs. See: Bonnie Prince Billy, Zwan, Tortoise etc.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:30 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fluxequalsrad View Post
Matt just needs a drug buddy to record with since he's too dumb to come up with his own new songs. See: Bonnie Prince Billy, Zwan, Tortoise etc.
Matt was never in Tortoise.

I'm sure all of these immensely popular musicians are just convinced by Sweeney to collaborate with him because he's urgently needing a drug buddy.

Idiot.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:33 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Quiet CD View Post
Matt was never in Tortoise.

I'm sure all of these immensely popular musicians are just convinced by Sweeney to collaborate with him because he's urgently needing a drug buddy.

Idiot.
the ring came off my pudding can.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 01:17 PM   #19
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What does this have to do with Smashing Pumpkins/Billy Corgan Discussion?

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 04:08 PM   #20
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Everything.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 05:34 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elvis The Fat Years View Post
What does this have to do with Smashing Pumpkins/Billy Corgan Discussion?
Another example of an album which outshines anything Corgan has released in the past seven years.

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 08:18 PM   #22
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"Diamond Tops Dylan As Oldest Living Chart-Topper"

"Neil Diamond this week becomes the oldest living artist to land a #1 album in the 52-year history of Billboard's weekly album chart. Diamond, 67, achieves the feat with Home Before Dark..."


Etc.


http://new.music.yahoo.com/blogs/cha...g-chart-topper

 
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:49 PM   #23
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guys, Tortoise are fucking sweet
seriously, go listen to "Djed"

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 12:07 AM   #24
Esty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avsfan7733 View Post
I just find it funny that someone as "indie" and "hip" as Matt Sweeney would record guitar tracks for as big of a main stream artist act as Neil Diamond and Rick Rubin. Maybe desperate wasn't the right word. I just needed a title to draw you people in =)
Yeah, its not like he didn't record with billy corgan.

Stupid fuck. Stop making threads.

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 07:41 AM   #25
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wow that 'cherry cherry' song is so laughably bad.

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 08:03 AM   #26
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I heard 'pretty amazing grace' on the radio and it was so bad I actually laughed

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 08:41 AM   #27
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i <3 neil

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 10:18 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fluxequalsrad View Post
wow that 'cherry cherry' song is so laughably bad.
you are such an idiot.

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 11:50 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esty View Post
Yeah, its not like he didn't record with billy corgan.

Stupid fuck. Stop making threads.
right, cause its not like zwan was billed as an "indie supergroup" or billy corgan has the same success and fame as neil diamond.

 
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Old 05-16-2008, 03:54 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcm View Post
you are such an idiot.
I'm no diamond girl

 
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