Kyle Hollingsworth: Then There's Now

How has being a father changed the way you express yourself as an artist?

I tend to be a lot more tired when I'm trying to be creative [laughs]. But seriously, I sort of touched on this in the last answer. The fact that I think I'm living more in the moment, and there's this whole other life in my family, it makes me feel more complete... as a unit.

When you say living in the moment, that's opposed to the hustle and bustle of being on tour or what?

Kyle Hollingsworth by George Weiss
For me what it means is sometimes I might be thinking, "What am I doing next week? What am I doing after that?" or, "What I did last week really sucked. I should have done that better." People spend most of their time living in where you were or where you're going to be and less literally where you are at that moment. And you're only in the present for one moment. That's what I'm talking about.

String Cheese played its last show before the hiatus a few summers back at Red Rocks Amphitheatre (read the review here), but then you guys played a headlining set at Rothbury this summer (read the Rothbury review here). What is the current status of The String Cheese Incident?

We played Rothbury this summer and that was sort of a test run to see if we could all hang out together again and it went really well. We had a month of rehearsal beforehand, all the way through into Rothbury, and we're all super-psyched. We haven't made any decisions yet. We're kind of playing it by ear, but we're feeling good about where we are.

Editor's Note: Since this interview, SCI's Michael Travis confirmed plans for the band to play shows in 2010. You can read more here.

Understanding that no decisions have been made, if you had to analyze the vibe, would you say your bandmates are interested in getting back on the horse?

Kyle Hollingsworth by George Weiss
I'd say we're all moving in that direction. I can't say when, but we're moving in that direction.

I'm sure a lot of practice went into...

Hollingsworth: ...into one two-hour set.

Exactly. But seeing as that practice seemed to be a test as to whether or not you guys could hang out comfortably, is that to say you guys were getting sick of each other before the hiatus?

I think it's fair to say every band that plays together for 14 years needs a break from their bandmates. Whatever. It's like being married to four different people, trying to make it all work.

But it seems like the break has done what it needs to do.

Absolutely. It's been super-healthy

What would you want listeners to know about Then There's Now before they went and picked it up at a record store?

Well, to go in, if you're a String Cheese fan, go in with open ears and an open mind and know you'll get a lot more than you expected. For a new fan, again, go in with open ears, and expect the unexpected. Each song could change; a funk tune could be followed by a hip hop tune, followed by an Afrobeat tune, so jump in with both feet.

What would you want people to know about Kyle Hollingsworth the performer before they went out and purchased a concert ticket?

Kyle Hollingsworth by Tobin Voggesser
Live performance for me is beyond what you hear on a CD. The CD is in the now, and on Then There's Now that's what you'll hear on the CD. But as for a live performance, what's more important for me is to take risks. You'll hear an expansion on what you hear on the CD. I try to jump off the cliff more and see what happens. I experiment onstage. I've got such great musicians with me, I feel like we can go anywhere, anytime. We can call out songs midway through a jam and find our way there. We can go in and out of different genres. So, expect a special treat from the live performance.

So, is it fair to say that if a listener is looking to get the definitive Kyle Hollingsworth Experience, it's live, not on a CD?

If you want the full experience, come to a concert. But if you liked my last disc, you'll like this one.

Is there anything you'd want JamBase readers to know about the world of Kyle Hollingsworth that we haven't discussed?

Sure, I'd like to talk for two seconds about my home brewing. I make my own beer. I'm doing this tour where I try to incorporate my love of beer with music. I'm not making Coors or Budweiser. I'm trying to go across the country to microbreweries and do special shows along the way. So, you could come to a sound check and taste some local beers. I started the whole thing with a brewery called Mountain Sun. I brewed a beer with the head brewer called Hoppingsworth IPA, and we were able to make it, and we just released it at the Fox Theatre at the CD release party. So, people got to drink my beer while catching my show.

That's the definitive Kyle Hollingsworth Experience right there.

[Laughs] Exactly. Hoppingsworth will be available at all the pubs, and hopefully we can keep it coming.

Kyle Hollingsworth just began the second leg of a major tour; dates available here.

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[Published on: 11/12/09]

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