Santa Barbara’s Lobero Theatre continues to draw classic acts, and this most certainly includes Cracker and Camper Van Beethoven, who will be performing their annual year-end Santa Barbara show on Monday, Dec 28. Making this show even more special, Camper Van Beethoven will be performing their 1988 signature album Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart in its entirety.
The two bands have combined to release four albums albums in the past couple years, and each of these albums has touched on either the north or south regions of California. This includes Cracker’s most recent 2014 double album, entitled Berkeley to Bakersfield, as well as Camper Van Beethoven’s La Costa Perdida from 2013 and El Camino from 2014.
On top of that, most recently, Camper Van Beethoven had two new songs included in the soundtrack for cult classic Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! These unique songs are “We Got A Long Way To Go (To Get Away From This Sharknado)” and “Infinite Ocean.”
Longtime violinist and multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Segel took the time to respond to interview questions regarding the upcoming Santa Barbara show and the inclusion on the Sharknado 3 soundtrack.
Will Engel: What are you most excited about regarding the upcoming Dec 28 show in Santa Barbara at the Lobero Theatre, and how did Camper Van Beethoven decide to perform the 1988 album Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart in its entirety?
Jonathan Segel: Well, what I’m most excited about playing the Lobero Theatre is playing at the Lobero Theatre! We played there once before, and it’s a great place to play, and it’s an honor to play on the same stage that so many great musicians have played and sang on historically! The place sounds great, and that always helps the show.
As for doing OBRS, well, you know that we did a tour a few years ago of Key Lime Pie, right? So the idea of doing another album in its entirety had been floating around for several years. One of the things that happens when you’ve been a band for 30 years is that you rack up quite a repertoire. We have songs from eight or more albums to choose from, plus any covers. So, we develop sets that change over time, and certain songs get ignored for periods of time. So bringing out an entire album can shine a light back into those dusty corners of the repertoire!
We talked about doing our first album from 1985, Telephone Free Landslide Victory, on this tour, but the very fact of having Chris Pedersen (drums) coming back from Australia for this tour really put us into mind of revitalizing OBRS. This lineup was the definitive Camper Van Beethoven lineup of the mid-to-late 1980s: David Lowery, Victor Krummenacher, Greg Lisher, Chris Pedersen and myself.
That said, some of the really great songs from the album like “Life is Grand” and “Never Go Back” had slipped from the live shows over the years and I have really had to woodshed a bit to get back up to speed on them! I can’t wait to dig in.
WE: How did the opportunity come about for CVB to be on the Sharknado 3 soundtrack and what was the experience like creating songs for it?
JS: The director, Anthony C. Ferrante, besides being a full time nut job director of films like Sharknado, has a punk band with Robbie Rist called Quint that did music for his films. He also happened to be a Camper Van Beethoven fan, and when we learned that, we were happy to contribute some music— it was the perfect venue for CVB to work in, music that was both serious and silly at the same time. We made two songs, “The Infinite Ocean” and “Long Way to Go”, in a very short time (I think it took only a couple weeks to finish both of them) and they were good to go.