I spoke to Smallpools’ frontman Sean Scanlon the other day for an article you can read here. Sean and the band were in Oklahoma, having a day off from performing. They’ve got two sold-out shows coming up next week at the Independent, and luckily, the venue saves parking spaces for performers. The last time Smallpools was in town, last summer for the Cultivate Festival in Golden Gate Park, they decided to check out the city. “It’s kind of hard to park, and hotels are very expensive,” he said. “Two things for a band that are a kind of terror.”
While you’re waiting for my story, here’s a bonus Q&A. If you’re going to the shows, make sure you get there early to catch openers Magic Man.
RIFF: Do you try to add covers to your live show to make up for your lack of released material (the band has just one four-song EP released)?
Sean Scanlon: There is a cover we do right now; it’s kind of a down-tempo song. It’s from the “Drive” soundtrack. It’s called “A Real Hero” (by College). Not a lot of people know it but it’s a really cool song. It’s fun to see when people do catch on to what it is.
How’s the new album coming along?
The new album is done. We’re just trying to figure out tracklisting and get the artwork situated. I’m hoping it (will be out) by January or February at the latest. It seems like all the pieces are in place. … There’s constant emails every day trying to get this thing going.
What did you learn about your bandmates while you were cooped up in the recording studio with them?
I found out one day that (bassist) Joe (Intile) makes his own vegan granola, which he brought to the studio. (Drummer) Beau (Kuther) likes a good PBR.
You’ve known guitarist Mike Kamerman much longer, so just tell me something about him and yourself.
I’m more of a laid-back person. I let things come and Mike is really constantly trying to make things right. He can be more anxious about decisions. It’s kind of a good cop, bad cop routine, with Mike and I, when we are trying to get stuff down.
One one of two country songs Scanlon has written and hopes to get another artist to record in the future:
Oh man, I don’t know if I should give out these ideas. Well, OK… You have a really good night with a girl; this guy, who’s singing, and you hit it off. Everything goes amazing. And then you hang out a second time but everything fades and the gravity’s going away and you can’t figure out why. So you spend the whole song trying to hang out with her. Not to even be with her, just to try and ask her what happened.