Interview: Say Hi

Over the last decade and a half, Eric Elbogen aka Say Hi has proven to be a prolific songwriter releasing his eight studio album. His latest, entitled Bleeder’s Digest, is a sequel to his previous vampire themed album Impeccable Blahs. We talked with Elbogen about vampires, writing records, and of course Twilight.

Bleeder’s Digest comes out just over a year since your last record. With all the touring you did around Endless Wonder, how did you pump out a new record so quickly?

I worked pretty diligently on the new one in between all the touring. It’s hard sometimes to switch gears like that, especially because there were a lot of fly-in one and two-offs on the last touring cycle, so I would be immersed in the record for three days and then would have to get on a plane and not do anything creative for four days. In retrospect though, having a few days off from working on the record here and there actually helped me get a little perspective on what state the songs were in once I came back to them.

How did the idea of doing a sequel to Impeccable Blahs come about?

I’d actually been kicking around the idea since Impeccable Blahs came out in 2006, but didn’t actually get around to it until now. I’ve many times considered the idea of ONLY making vampire-themed records moving forward, but I think I might stick with the once a decade model for now.

Impeccable Blahs came out before the big vampire boom of Twilight. Has the success of that franchise changed your perception of vampires?

It’s fun for me to see how every vampire franchise treats the myth. Each one has its own set of variant “rules.” Sunlight? Garlic? Immortality? Vampire-Human relations? Each one treats these things differently, and I think that’s fun. I’ll admit I enjoy True Blood more than Twilight though, because it has the wacky sense of humor. Like Buffy, which is why I started making vampire records in the first place.

If you were a vampire, what do you think would be your favorite and least favorite parts?

It would probably be pretty analogous to how humans feel about Fried Chicken parts. The breast and the legs would be the most delicious. I dunno, maybe the ears and the nose would be my least favorite parts?

What were the recording sessions for Bleeders Digest like?

They were very much on par with how I normally make records. It’s just me in my small bedroom studio. I would sketch out some arrangements in Logic, Reason, Ableton or Bitwig and then just start layering things on top of the skeleton sketches, until the songs were there. Bass, guitar and synthesizers all go direct, drums are “played” on a midi keyboard. Vocals, shakers and tambo are the only things requiring microphones. I end up tracking way too many parts for each song, and then spend most of my time figuring out what to subtract to make the songs work.

What is your favorite vampire movie?

From Dusk Till Dawn

Finally, what’s next for Say Hi?

Doing a five week tour in the US and Canada with my friends Telekinesis and then some combination of playing more shows and writing more songs…

TOUR DATE

10-01-15 @ The Shakedown — Bellingham, WA; with Telekinesis
10-02-15 @ The Biltmore Cabaret — Vancouver, BC; with Telekinesis
10-03-15 @ Mississippi Studios — Portland, OR; with Telekinesis
10-05-15 @ Humboldt Brews — Arcata, CA; with Telekinesis
10-06-15 @ The Independent — San Francisco, CA; with Telekinesis
10-07-15 @ The Echo — Los Angeles, CA; with Telekinesis
10-09-15 @ The Casbah — San Diego, CA; with Telekinesis
10-10-15 @ Valley Bar — Phoenix, AZ; with Telekinesis
10-12-15 @ Three Links — Dallas, TX; with Telekinesis
10-13-15 @ Warehouse Live Studio — Houston, TX; with Telekinesis
10-14-15 @ Stubb’s BBQ (Indoor) — Austin, TX; with Telekinesis
10-16-15 @ The Stone Fox — Nashville, TN; with Telekinesis
10-17-15 @ Drunken Unicorn — Atlanta, GA; with Telekinesis
10-18-15 @ Cat’s Cradle Back Room — Carrboro, NC; with Telekinesis
10-19-15 @ Black Cat — Washington, DC; with Telekinesis
10-20-15 @ Johnny Brenda’s — Philadelphia, PA; with Telekinesis
10-21-15 @ Bowery Ballroom — New York, NY; with Telekinesis
10-23-15 @ Brighton Music Hall — Allston, MA; with Telekinesis
10-24-15 @ Divan Orange — Montreal, QC; with Telekinesis
10-25-15 @ Horseshoe Tavern — Toronto, ON; with Telekinesis
10-26-15 @ The Blind Pig — Ann Arbor, MI; with Telekinesis
10-27-15 @ Grog Shop — Cleveland, OH; with Telekinesis
10-28-15 @ Lincoln Hall — Chicago, IL; with Telekinesis
10-29-15 @ The Frequency — Madison, WI; with Telekinesis
10-30-15 @ 7th Street Entry — Minneapolis, MN; with Telekinesis
10-31-15 @ Record Bar — Kansas City, MO; with Telekinesis
11-02-15 @ Hi-Dive — Denver, CO; with Telekinesis
11-03-15 @ Kilby Court — Salt Lake City, UT; with Telekinesis
11-05-15 @ Flying M Coffee — Nampa, ID; with Telekinesis
11-06-15 @ The Bartlett — Spokane, WA; with Telekinesis
11-07-15 @ Neumos — Seattle, WA; with Telekinesis (TIX)

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