Episode 33: Rocky Votolato

When Seattle-based singer/songwriter Rocky Votolato began releasing solo albums in the late 90's -- at a time when vinyl was all but out of the mainstream consciousness -- it was important to him that every single release of his was pressed to wax. Fast forward to 2016, and he's now celebrating the 10th anniversary reissue of "Makers" on Barsuk Records -- his favorite in his discography, and viewed as his crowning achievement among his fans -- with a tour fronting a talented band that gives new thrilling dynamics to that album's intimacy. Downstairs at Chicago's famed Schubas Tavern, Rocky and I chat about his DIY aesthetic, the idea that music isn't truly real until it's on vinyl, sharing records with his brother and Waxing bandmate Cody (who later went on to form The Blood Brothers), motorcycle movie soundtracks, raising his kids on Neutral Milk Hotel, recording a recent seven-inch live directly to lacquer, recording stories with Chris Walla and Casey Foubert, bouncing around between some of indie-rock's most prolific labels, the differences between himself now and the Rocky who wrote and recorded "Makers," and much more! Visit RockyVotolato.com for all his music, social media and current tour dates.

SPONSORS: Pinwheel Records, 1722 W. 18th St. in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood; KeepersRecordClub.com, where you can save 10% on all subscriptions with promo code VINYLEMERGENCY at check out.

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James Laczkowski