Well, people. We did it.
The taping of the EPIX special went amazingly well at The Vic Theater in Chicago.
Before I get into that whole story I want to make sure the people of Red Bank, NJ, Huntington, NY, Port Chester, NY and their surrounding areas know that I am coming their way toward the end of this month. Please check the calendar for exact dates and come see the show!
So, this process of moving toward the special has been relatively fast. We chose to shoot in Chicago after the tour dates were already in place. In other words, it was kind of an afterthought. I could’ve waited and done it after the tour proper but we just made it happen. Bobcat Goldthwait was available to direct and we got on it. I had never been to The Vic but I knew that people had shot specials there before. It is known to be a good venue. EPIX hired a set designer, Bobcat got a crew together and it all came together in a matter of weeks.
I was in NYC shooting the pilot for the VICE Portraits series I’m hosting. I interviewed John Cameron Mitchell. Then I started to panic about the special. I flew to Chicago on just to do a walk through of the venue because I had never been there. It’s a beautiful old theater. Lot of ghosts. Good ghosts. Ate some heavy deep dish pizza, crashed, then flew to Cleveland. Had an amazing show at Playhouse Square and ate some very rich food at The Greenhouse Tavern which was also amazing. It was good to stretch out and do the hour plus again. I felt ready. I felt gross because of all the food but I think I need a little self-hate to fuel the machine. I flew to Chicago the next day and spent the day doing soundcheck and interviews and gearing up.
The night before the special Bobcat asked if he should reach out to Joe Swanberg and see if he wanted to come. I said not only should he do that but he should ask him if he wants to grab a camera and shoot backstage. We hadn’t really conceived of a way to bookend the special and we thought that would be amazing if he wanted to. He did. I love that guy. It was really just me and Joe wandering in the basement/dressing room area before both shows. It was great to have him around and shooting and talking before the show. It was calming. And he’s going to edit the stuff he shot. What a beautiful thing to have two great independent filmmakers working on my special.
The audiences for both shows, give or take a drunk lady, were amazing. I love Chicago crowds. I’m so fucking glad I shot there. It’s going to look great.
I think I nailed it first show and the second show was pretty free form. Of course Bobcat liked the second show. All I know is we’ll have a lot to choose from. Not that I paid very much attention to continuity issues that second show but we’ll see.
Today on the show I talk to the wonderful Constance Zimmer who played my girlfriend in the premiere episode of ‘Maron’ this season. She’s a pip. On Thursday the highly anticipated Mike Watt talk will post. He’s a genius. Look him up.
Well, people. We did it.