Welcome to the next edition of Better Know a Musician, a semi-regular column where serious local artists answer some not-so-tough questions.
If you have any suggestions for future guests or additional questions you want to ask Valley songwriters, please leave them in the comments section or email culture editor Jason Keil at email@example.com.
Next up: Abelardo Gil of Treasure Mammal
Clad in a Spandex bodysuit, Treasure Mammal's Abelardo Gil is one of the Valley’s longest-running weirdos whose performances breakdance on a thin line between sincerity and irony.
Gil and his Treasure Mammal cohorts have brought their music to life on stage over the years using giant inflatable snowmen, backup dancers, Celine Dion sing-a-longs, and turning the entire floor into an Ouija board and using one of his bandmates as a planchette.
Putting on shows that feel like aerobic classes on acid is all well and good, but it wouldn’t give Gil the staying power he has if he didn't bring some serious jams to the table. Treasure Mammal
One is immediately struck by Gil's jovialness when speaking to him on the phone. The frontman laughs at everything with an infectious and energetic heh-heh-heh. Whether he’s talking about a Julia Roberts movie or reflecting on his last meal, Gil’s laugh punctuates the ends of his sentences.
If you were on death row, what would your last meal be?
Hmm … probably lasagna. I’m a big fan of lasagna.
Taking the Garfield route, I see.
Yeah? Does it have to be one thing? Can I do a Hot-N-Ready pizza too?
Oh yeah, absolutely. It can be a whole banquet.
Okay, cool, yeah — let’s do it. Lasagna plus a Hot-N-Ready pizza.
If you could cast someone who looks nothing like you to play you in the movie of your life, who would it be? Who would have your energy?
I’d pick Richard Simmons circa 1980.
If you could be reincarnated as any kind of animal, what would you come back as?
Dude, I love platypuses. I’d be a platypus — that’s the best of the animal world, right?
If you could go back in time to see any concert live without ruining the space/time continuum, what show would you go back to see?
Wow, that’s a tough one. Any show at all?
Throughout all of history.
I’d probably go back to the first time that Pink Floyd ever played The Dark Side of the Moon
That’s interesting — are you a big Floyd fan?
Yes, I am.
Did you ever try doing the whole Wizard of Oz/Dark Side sync experiment?
Yeah, I did. It was cool. But I also listened to Pantera’s Far Beyond Driven while watching Fried Green Tomatoes and there’s not much that syncs up. But there’s a time when Julia Roberts and Phil Anselmo sync up, you know. The synchronicities of life.
Let’s say you open up a Men’s Wearhouse-style business, but it only sold Spandex bodysuits for men. What would the tagline be? What would be your TV ad pitch?
Dude, that is a great business idea.
I’m just sayin’ — you already have inventory.
I would say, like, “Feel the flex when you put on the Spandex.”
If you could eat the brain of anyone, living or dead, and immediately gain all their knowledge and abilities, who would it be?
I’d go with Darwin. The most important question of all time. Everybody hated him but he didn’t care. To be able to ask that question and have people be infuriated by it for many moons after is pretty awesome.
If you could have one person write a theme song for you, a piece of music that’d play whenever you’d enter the room to herald your arrival, who would you pick?
Alive or dead?
I’d go with Steely Dan. I just love that song “Peg” so much.
Treasure Mammal are scheduled to perform at the Glow! festival at Triangle L Ranch in Oracle on Saturday, October 5. Tickets are available through the event's website.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.