This June, the Flaming Lips will attempt to break Jay-Z’s world record for most concerts performed in a 24-hour period. As a part of MTV’s O Music Awards Show, the band will start in Memphis and head south to New Orleans, playing gigs with local musicians along the way. As we’ve talked recently with Coyne about blood records and getting foot tattoos from Ke$ha, Hive jumped at the opportunity for a quick chat about their upcoming roadshow. Strippers and peyote dominated the talk.
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We heard that one of the tour buses will be outfitted with a stripper pole.
Well they’re going to put one in. We stop at a place where they’re actually stripping. But next door — this is the way the world is done — there is a stripper store where you can buy shoes and poles and lubrication. So we’re going to buy a pole and install it in the bus.
Now will you use the pole? Will you strip?
I would. But we would have some strippers.
Yeah, yeah. Me personally, I think it becomes too acrobatic, exercise-ish. To me, it’s not as sexy as drunk women naked. [Laughs.]
Well they teach classes now on stripping. That’s a class someone can take after their day at work.
“My life with my older brothers and all of their friends was Ken Kesey the whole time. At the time, I just thought that’s the way we lived. I mean we were taking LSD when we were 13. Just go do things, you know? But now I see not everybody lives like that.”
I know. But I agree. To me, that takes a little bit of the freakiness out of it. I mean, I never dig the pole. The pole seems like uhhhhhh [Motions about a pole]. Especially if the leg gets shaking. It’s like a lot of things: In a movie, in a dream it’s one thing. But in real life, you can’t overcome the awkwardness.
This road trip certainly sounds like a Merry Pranksters-type expedition. Did you go on any crazy road trips when you were in high school? Peyote-driven trips perhaps?
Well when I was 16, my older brothers and their friends all took motorcycles out to Los Angeles in 1977. But, frankly, my life with my older brothers and all of their friends was Ken Kesey the whole time. At the time, I just thought that’s the way we lived. I mean we were taking LSD when we were 13. Just go do things, you know? But now I see not everybody lives like that. I was born in 1961, so growing up in the ’60s and ’70s …
And you went on this bike trip?
I did, yeah. We all did.
Well, we believed the dream that we would drive to California and we’d meet a bunch of crazy hippies and we’d live with them for the summer and then drive back. Well, this didn’t happen. The motorcycles didn’t make it because it’s a long, long journey. And Easy Rider, which is probably what my brothers were basing it on – that we jumped on motorcycles, we bought drugs, we ran into women and had some adventures. But in real life, the motorcycles broke down, and you have to buy gasoline.
The girls aren’t there.
The girls aren’t there when you want them. Not in the middle of the desert, like there are in movies. This is true: I left Oklahoma and all I was wearing was a pair of shorts. I had to buy clothes along the way.
I don’t think so. Back then, we’d run around all summer without shoes. But everything — reality comes in and changes the dream. So we bought clothes along the way but the motorcycles all broke down. One of our friends had to come in a van and rescue us.
You still haven’t confirmed any peyote stories. I wanted a peyote in the desert story.
I think we thought it was peyote. My brothers bought a lot of acid and peyote and pot. But none of it turned out to be real. A lot of people I know, they’ve had some good peyote stories. I don’t like it that much. It’s too much for me. Even smoking pot … it’s too much. I like other drugs that get you up instead of trip you out too much. That’s just me. You seem different. Peyote is illegal. You can’t just walk up to a store and get it.
I don’t know anybody who actively seeks it out.
Oh, I do.
You came in here to do some peyote with me. C’mon, this is MTV, this is a giant corporation. Go get us some peyote, and we’ll do some. Some fresh, green, purple peyote from that UFO that crashed in Costa Rica a couple of weeks ago.
Watch the Flaming Lips perform for 24 straight hours on June 27 and ending on June 28 here.