Fueled By Death Cast Ep. 125 - BOB THIELE JR.
MUSICIAN AND COMPOSER - BOB THIELE JR.
"QUOTE" Bob Thiele Jr, musician, music supervisor Sons of Anarchy, Mayans MC, The Office
ABOUT BOB THIELE JR.
Bob Thiele Jr. is a composer and musician who has contributed to many artists and TV shows. Early in his career Bob composed and wrote songs for artists such as Bonnie Raitt, Pat Benatar, and Ray Charles, and later has found success as music supervisor for shows like Sons of Anarchy, Mayans MC and the American adaptation of The Office. In fact, after creating the iconic theme song for the hit TV comedy, he also put together the band The Scrantones, which was featured in the show multiple times.
Bob joins the podcast to talk about his experience navigating the music industry and what fuels him to keep creating. Plus he tells stories from the set of The Office, hanging out with Frank Zappa, and the moment he knew he needed to change his path in music.
Jeff: Yeah, let's just jump right in. I want to start talking about what you're currently working on, and then we can work our way back because you've had an incredible career. Currently, you are composing music for the Mayans M.C. show, right?
Bob Thiele: Yeah, I mean, currently, currently, I'm not doing anything-
Bob Thiele: Because we're on hiatus. I don't know if you're familiar with the Brian Eno's oblique strategies. Are you aware of those?
Bob Thiele: It's a series of small, not three by five, but small cards, and you pick the card out each day, or whenever, if you're looking for something. I picked out a card recently and it said, "Do nothing for as long as possible." Coincidentally, that's what I've been doing.
Jeff: I love it. I love it. Those are the best times because sometimes they're few and far between, especially-
Bob Thiele: I'll be starting up. We're on hiatus, so I don't think I'll be in the thick of it until probably the middle of May is when we'll be back to work. Actually, I am organizing some themes and ideas that I might want to try out for season two, but you never know until you get to the actual footage, and you see if that idea worked that I came up with in February or not.
Jeff: Right. I wanted to talk about that too. You were the music supervisor on Sons of Anarchy, and now you're working on Mayans. Was it kind of like getting into your favorite pair of jeans again? Was it just a normal fit, or is it a completely different experience working on this show?
Bob Thiele: It's actually both, you know. The familiarity part is that you're working with a lot of the same people. Just the environment is familiar, you know?
Jeff: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Bob Thiele: What's different is, obviously, the musical sensibility is going to be different. Mayans has a different DNA, if you want to call it that.
Bob Thiele: But it is still the biker culture. Whereas Sons were in the Northern California, the Mayans are in Southern California, on the border. Whereas Sons was a white club, Mayans is a Hispanic Latino club. So the music has to reflect that. Not just the source music, but the compositional music as well. What I'm doing thematically is different. Although in the last episode of Mayans, there was a scene that the editors had temped in a piece of music that I had written for Sons of Anarchy. It worked so well that I took the essence of the piece, and then layered in some of the Mayan musical elements, tones, and textures that I've used. It's the really kind of beautiful combination of the two, you know?
Bob Thiele: It's funnily enough, it didn't occur until the last episode. It wasn't like in episode one where I brought the musicality of Sons to the Mayans. It was actually in episode ten where the two elements blended together.
Jeff: Wow. I was actually going to ask that question. Do you think that is going to happen more as the show progresses because even though these two camps really exist by themselves, it is the same universe? Musically speaking, do you think you're going to pull on anything that you were able to create from Sons for this? Are you going to do that more?
Bob Thiele: Well, you know, your guess is as good as mine really. You never know until you get there. I imagine there will be some nods to the Sons, if for no other reason, and not to create a spoiler here, but for those who didn't see Mayans, there is a twist at the end that brings the Sons ... That actually brings Sam Crowe back to the Mayans narrative. I've not read season two yet, but I'm sure we're going to have to deal with these opposing forces. The music would probably invite those two elements, those two themes to come as one.
Jeff: Oh, cool. That was another question I had was what is the process like on a show like this? You're on a break right now, and as this episode comes out actually, you're going to be start working on season two. Are you reading the next season basically along as they're starting to craft it, or are you waiting for them to shoot before you actually start crafting music?
Bob Thiele: Yeah. I always get the script in advance, but maybe it's a week or two in advance. Really, I ... And this is my method. I can't really create from the page. I have to create from picture. That's why what I'm doing now, which is sorting through some possible ideas, themes, motifs. I won't know until I actually see picture, and can lay picture against sound and music, and say, "Well, that works. That doesn't work." A lot of time Kurt will write into the script, like as we did in the prior season, we did a version of Sweet Jane. We did a version of Say a Little Prayer. We did some songs, so when it actually is written into the script that "And now a version of Sweet Jane plays," I have a pretty good idea of where we're going to go with that, so I don't need to see picture on that. At least in that context, I know that there's a song. I know what the voice will be, and what the tone and the mood of the song will be.
Jeff: Working on that aesthetic, that's why I think it's so interesting what you do. It's not just taking a cop drama, or a doctor drama, or something, and making the music for the scene and having it work. The music that you create for this show, and also for Sons of Anarchy, is its own character. It's not just the compositions, but it's also the songs that you're taking, and reworking, and re-imagining. Is that born out of a collaboration between you and Kurt? Is that always a Kurt's idea in the script, like I'm going to do ... The example I want to bring up is the example of the incredible thing that you did with Bohemian Rhapsody in Sons of Anarchy. I think I read when that came out that was Kurt's idea, right?
Bob Thiele: Yeah. Kurt's idea was "I want to do Bohemian Rhapsody for the first episode of season seven". That's all it said. It wasn't like, "And I want it to be this, that, that, this, this, and the other thing." I was just going like, "Holy shit. How?" Honestly, that's one that, if we, and I'm just sort of guessing, that we probably started shooting that in May or June, but he told me about that in February. Even though the script hadn't been written, he knew what he wanted to do.
Bob Thiele: I began the process in February actually, because I had no idea what we were going to do. Honestly, I don't even know how it came about. It was just ... I must have worked on it, on and off, for three months. It was like the idea, "Okay, what if I get Jake from The White Buffalo? Okay, but then we go to this section, how am I going to get that? Oh well, maybe it Audra Mae came in, and sang that. Oh, what if we did this? And Billy Valentine could sing that." It was constantly evolving, and each time I would say, I would have an idea of "This section will be Jake from Buffalo," I would get Jake in there, or I would do Jake's voice. You know, I'd go, "Mama," and I would send it to Kurt, and say, "Is this the vibe?" He'd go, "Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah." Then when we'd get to the next section, it'd be like, "Oh, we'll get Franky to sing this." It really was pieced together. Then when I had all the elements, they were in separate places. I had to somehow now weave it so it was one coherent piece of music that could be played. That was luck. You know. Luck.
Jeff: Yeah. It's incredible, and again, I really do feel like these shows, like the music is a character. It really adds another layer to the visual, to the acting, to the writing, to the editing, and all that stuff. I think it's incredible that you have this, ability's the wrong word. This opportunity to work on a show where someone like Kurt Sutter wants to work so closely with that. I mean, it could be an instance where you're getting a note from a director or writer, and being like, "Bohemian Rhapsody. Make it work." Then that's it. It sounds like you guys are really collaborative.
Bob Thiele: It is. You know, and it is "Bohemian Rhapsody. Make it work," but it becomes then, I have the freedom and the time fortunately because that took a lot of time to just ... There's a lot of trial and error in something like that. It's going to be a lot easier when you do House of the Rising Sun because it is one thing, but Bohemian is a symphony. That invites somebody like Kurt to go like, "What do you think? What do you think?" Whereas House of the Rising Sun, you go like, "Here's the idea," and it's pretty much, you're going to get close because you've already had three or four seasons to know what works in the show.
Bob Thiele: It's sort of like, in the beginning, we didn't know. Season one, episode one. I don't know. Let's see where we get. By episode five, six, seven, you start to go, "I think I know what the sound of the show is." By the end, when we did John the Revelator, it was like, "Ah-ha. These are the elements. There's this guitar. There's this acoustic. There's this slide guitar. There's that voice of Curtis or Jake, and then Audra Mae. That brought another side to it. So what it really is it's like a painter whose got here's the pallet that we work with. You do a lot of elimination when that comes too. You go like, "No. No. No. This doesn't ..."
Bob Thiele: I just remember when major labels would pitch their bands, and they were really well produced, and kind of slick rock, not quite metal, but hard rock recordings. They just had that sound of professionalism. They'd be pitching it to the show because we did move the needle for a lot of bands, and stuff like that. We could brake bands. I would listen to them, and go like, "This has nothing to do with our show. Just because it's got big guitars, and a tempo, and it's like that. I just sounds so slick." Sons is everything but slick. It was really funny. "But we'll give it to you for nothing." I'm like, "No. That's not the factor that makes us decide. It's not money. It's got to be tonally right."
Jeff: That's really awesome. Working through all the seasons of Sons, and now onto Mayans, you've worked compositing and writing for TV before that, but again, I feel like these are much more of a different entity. Has it changed you as a musician, and as a composer?
Bob Thiele: Yeah, well, the truth is I haven't done that much writing for TV or film. I mean, a short bio of myself is I was a musician, and a songwriter, and a record producer. The way that the ... It was probably around the early, it's the late '90s. The business was going through a shift. A lot of what I was comfortable with, and successful with, and familiar with, a lot of that music was no longer necessarily a viable way to make a living. It was sort of like the birth of boy bands, and Brittney Spears, and pop. Suddenly pop music had become, there was a whole, not even such a method, it was like there was a paint by numbers' aspect to pop music. Even the rock music of that time, it just had this sound of similarity. Everything sort of sounded the same to me. I just couldn't do it anymore. I thought, "Well, I got to get out of this business."
Bob Thiele: I started doing some work around film and TV, but more as a musician or a producer for hire. When Kurt came to me, and said, "I'm doing this show, Sons of Anarchy. You want to be the music supervisor?" I was like, "Yeah, but I don't know whatever that means. I've never been a music supervisor." He says, "Well, I've never been the show runner before." So we really jumped into it together, both not knowing what we were doing. There was no how-to. If there was a how-to, we weren't going to pay attention to that how-to. I think that's ultimately why Sons has a musical signature that's different because neither of us had any conception of how to do it according to the rules.
Bob Thiele: What's funny is that I basically was given a new career. "Oh, yeah. He's the guy that composes and supervises Sons. He's a music guy now in film and TV." But I'd start working on other projects here and there, and it was nothing like Sons. It was like the music business again, where it was a paint by numbers. It was like, "Here's how we do it. We're not really interested in going at it with a clear pallet. We have a way to do this." I was like, "Didn't I just try and get away from that sort of thing?" That's why, actually, in a weird way, I'm not doing anything because I think my skill is not ... You know, if you want me to do a cop drama, or a medical drama, or a legal drama, I'm just not the guy for that. There are people who do it really, really well. Truth be told, I don't think those shows necessarily have a musical, that there is a character to the music. The music tends to be like, "Okay, we need something to fill this space here." I'm not really interested in doing that.
Jeff: Yeah. No, and I'm glad you're not because you're creating, again, something really unique, and something amazing. On the other spectrum of that though, speaking of your other body of work, when you were talking about having these jobs that aren't this, and kind of like a model, like "Here's your set path" kind of thing. I have to ask, was that what the experience was like working with The Office?
Bob Thiele: No. Well, that was different. That was very different. That was in my transition time. That's when I was sort of leaving the music business, and entering into this other world. The thing about The Office was ... And that's another case of right place, right time. The creator of The Office, the American version, his daughter and my son were in school together. I'm guessing in, what was it 2004, 2005? The kids were pretty young, and I saw Greg, one day, Daniels. He said, "I got this theme song, but it just feels really thin. I feel like it could be more. Do you think you could make something of it?" I listened to it. I said, "Yeah, sure." He says, "Okay, well, what do you want to do?" I said, "Well, why don't we go into the studio. I'll get a couple musicians together, and we'll do it. When do you need it by?" He says, "Well, the shows premiering in two weeks." Yeah. That was Greg, and so we actually went in, I think, the next day, and just recorded it. We recorded the theme, and it was just another one of those magical things.
Bob Thiele: When I saw him, and Greg and I are good friends. He was saying how he was doing an episode where he was going to take, it was called The Booze Cruise. I said, "You should have a band on the boat." He said, "Great idea. Let's put a band on the boat." So we actually went out on the boat, and that's when we became the Scrantones.
Jeff: Which is so hilarious.
Bob Thiele: Yeah, and then we went to, we did Phyllis' wedding, and we did ... I did a bunch of stuff with them. We actually did this great project where we got a bunch of the actors to sing songs. I had Ed Helms did a version of Werewolves of Scranton, and Kate Flannery did ... Oh, God. I forget what Kate did. Malora Hardin did Loosen Up Your Buttons. We did them all like a punk rock band from Scranton. We had like 10 songs. Craig Robinson, I think, did a couple of tunes. He did Creep, and I'm in You, that Peter Frampton song. Anyway, it was really funny because we just came in under the guise of we're a garage band in Scranton. We're essentially Scrantonicity. Actually, Brian Baumgartner did a version of I Can't Stand Losing You, the Police song. What was really funny was that everybody could sing except for Brian. He was the only one who couldn't sing. I'm like, "Oh my God. We've got to make this guy sing." It was just a fantastic thing. Sadly, you guys will probably never hear because of NBC. NBC was like, "Oh, we don't want this to come out." I mean, now, I should just sneak it out there, and see what happens.
Jeff: Stranger things have happened.
Bob Thiele: I know. I know. Maybe if I give it to the actors, they'll leak it.
Jeff: I think that's a great idea.
Bob Thiele: "I don't know. I just ... What?" Okay. So, yeah. I think what happened with that, and maybe this is kind of a philosophical tale, but I knew that the road that I was on in the music business was not true to me. There was just something, and it changed so much. I come from a legacy. You know, my father, and all that. I just knew that I couldn't do something that wasn't true to me. I didn't want to be in the boy band business. I wasn't good at writing for Brittney Spears. That wasn't my world. I had to let go of that preconceived notion, and trust that whatever was going to appear, and I'm probably getting a little metaphysical about this, but when you run into Greg Daniels on the playground dropping your kid off from school, and he says something like, "Hey, I'm doing this show. It's The Office. You want to do the theme song?" That's an indication from a higher source that stay on the path because the path will keep revealing itself to you.
Bob Thiele: So, you know, two years after Greg, I worked a bunch on this show Boston Public. I did some stuff for The OC with Peter Gallagher, but these were just like, "Here's some money to keep you going. Here's some stuff." It was also great because Peter and I became friends, and working on Boston Public, I got to be friendly with Rashida Jones, and with Sharon Leal, and all these great people. Eventually, it led to Kurt, and Sons of Anarchy, which really has been my career ever since. I don't jump too far out of my little pool that works for me.
Jeff: Yeah, well. That's why I wanted to talk to you because I really think your journey's inspiring because, like you said a couple times, and for our listeners and viewers that might not know, you did start out in the music business writing songs for other people. You worked with Bonnie Ray, Ray Charles, and all these people, and then the music business changed. You had a choice. You could have just stayed in there, and hated your day job, and cashed your paycheck, and created music that you didn't really feel, but you looked at it, and just like you said, were like, "Let's see where this path can take me," and were open to that opportunity. I think that's very inspiring, not just for you specifically, but for anybody looking to do something creative.
Bob Thiele: I totally agree, and that's why I prefaced the last comment with "This might sound a little esoteric or metaphysical," but in fact, whenever I think I should be doing something that's somebody else's doing, comparing myself, in a way going, "I can do that," but the "I can do that" is more of a mimic than a true expression of me, then that's not true to my nature. I don't know what my true nature is until I'm put into a place where I get to see it.
Bob Thiele: See, if you had said to me when episode one of Sons started filming that by the end of this season, 13 episodes from now, you will have created Forever Young with Audra Mae, and John the Revelator with Curtis, I would have been like, "How the hell is that going to get there? That is so inconceivable to me." Because, first of all, I didn't know Audra. I had no idea of the Dylan song that Forever Young was that I was referencing. There's a much more popular version that everybody knows, but I was doing a version that Dylan had done as a demo before he really recorded the song. So it had a completely different feel.
Bob Thiele: I guess what I'm saying is that you have to sort of be a beginner all the time. I was a beginner when I launched into Bohemian Rhapsody. Now, beginner not in the sense of like "What's an A chord?" but a beginner in the sense that I don't really have a preconceived notion of what I'm going to do here. You almost have to have the willingness to fail, to be willing to blow it. That was hard for me to do when I was 25, or 35, or even 45, I think. You get to a point in your life where you go, "Fuck it." It's really, that's it. "Fuck it. What am I going to fucking do? I've tried it your way. I'm done. I don't want to do it your way anymore. Not that I'm so sure my way is going to be the answer for you, but at least I won't be regretting that I sold out in order to ... Because if I sell out, it's not going to succeed anyway."
Bob Thiele: I remember one of the last things that I did in the pop music, when I was working ... It was a boy band, and they liked this song that I had co-written with some friends, and the essence of the song to me was like what if Bob Marley and Bill Withers got together with Bobby Womack, and made a song? That's how I conceived the song. Now, when this song got in the hands of this boy band, by the time we were done with it, there was absolutely no trace of Bobby Womack, Bill Withers, or Bob Marley. It became kind of a hit, and I was like, "Man, I just want to bury myself. I don't want any part of this." That was the revealing moment when I said, "You know, it's not that important. I'd rather pour coffee. I'd be happier then."
Jeff: Well, again, I think it's a testament to your nature that you just were looking, you weren't complacent. You realized that, "Wait. This is eye opening. This is something that I'm not happy in this moment anymore, but that doesn't mean it's the end of the road. It just means the road's going to shift."
Bob Thiele: You have to have that faith, which is a really hard thing. Listen. I'm not saying that, "Hey, have faith and it will all be okay." No. You have to have the faith. You have to be willing to fail. You have to be teachable. I think the minute you lock it in, "Okay. I got this." The minute you lock it in, you've lost ... The joy will disappear. There's something about just being teachable and open to a newness, to just surprising yourself that really is what makes it all a really fantastic journey. I wish I had learned that earlier, but I guess that's the case with most people. We flail through most of our early adult life trying to figure shit out, and lock it in, and then go like, "Boy, that taught me what I don't want to do." Now I know.
Bob Thiele: It's like these guys that go to graduate school. They become lawyers, or doctors, or financial guys. They retire when they're 45, and whatever they've done with all this money. Then they're like, "God, what the hell do I do now?" The ones who seem to get it together are the ones that start giving it away. You know, the ones who go into charity, or go into "Let's make the world a better place." You see that they create a second life for themselves doing these things with the money they've made.
Jeff: Yeah, and that kind of leads me even further back. I just wanted to know, where did the idea ... When you were a child, I mean, again, for people who might not know, you do come from a legacy. Your father was a well-known music producer, as well as probably his biggest writing credit being What a Wonderful World, co-writing that song. You're immersed in this. You're around this, but where does it come into your head that, "I don't want to follow in his footsteps, I actually want to create. I want to write. I want to create the music." Was there a catalyst in your childhood where that happened?
Bob Thiele: Not really. I think I just had a nature affinity to music. I could pick things out on the piano. When I was four and five, my grandmother loved Silent Night, so I could play it with one finger on the piano. I think what got me was with a lot of people my age, I just happened to been born at the right time is like, you're eight or nine years old, and you see The Beatles on Ed Sullivan. You go like, "Wow." That sort of is going to make an impact. Then, not too long after that, when I was in my very early teens, that whole San Francisco, British blues. There was a real explosion in the world of rock music. I just, because of my father, and he was married to a woman who, my stepmother at the time, published a music magazine called Jazz and Pop. I was around the Fillmore East a lot, and I got to meet the Jefferson Airplane, and Frank Zappa, and Janis Joplin, and all these people were coming in and out of my parents' life. It was exciting, and that's where you want to go, "I want a guitar."
Bob Thiele: First I started playing the drums, and I lived in New York City, and I'd have rehearsals 20 blocks away from our apartment. I'd be like a 12 year-old kid pushing drums down the street going, "Taxi. Taxi." They're not going to pick you up. I said, "Nah. Enough of this. I'm going to play the guitar."
Bob Thiele: It was just an amazing time to be alive, and exposed. I was like an open book. You could just start writing in it. So I was really, really fortunate because of my parents to be exposed to that, but I just want to say that the other side of it was, I think unknowingly, I had to go through a kind of, let's say, ego-leveling in my 20s. Where, guess what? You're not entitled to any of this shit. You have to work and find yourself. Just because you're born into this, that doesn't mean it's given to you. It was tough, man. I think in my late 20s, my early 30s, it was really rough. I was parking cars for five bucks an hour at one point in my early 30s. So, I paid my dues.
Bob Thiele: You know what I mean? It was like, "Fuck." What kind of success is that when you're making five bucks an hour? Or as my friend said, "Nah, actually after taxes, you're making $4.66."
Jeff: That's the truth. Yeah, like you said, you have to find your own voice, but you were exposed to so much that obviously helped you out too. As a side note, and as a fan, I'd be sad at myself if I didn't ask, you said you got to meet Frank Zappa. What was he like?
Bob Thiele: He was like a normal guy. You know.
Jeff: No, don't tell me that.
Bob Thiele: No. No. He was. It wasn't like we spent a long time talking to each other, but it was really weird. It was, I don't know if you saw the picture of me with Zappa, but we were in ... My dad had taken me to the Bahamas for, there was a music business conference down there. These are in the days of long before South by Southwest, or shit like that. It was probably like 100 people maybe, who are professionals in the music business. They were having a conference down there. I was by the pool, and Zappa was in his Speedo. I was introduced to him by my stepmother and father. He was really nice, and we took a picture, and we're both giving the peace sign to the camera. I was a huge fan. I mean, Absolutely Free, and We're Only in It for the Money. I mean, my God. Those were two of my favorite albums. I was much more tuned into Zappa's sardonic wit, and the musicality that was always shifting. I think when Frank became more like the muso, and there was George Duke, and all this kind of playing, that wasn't so much my thing. But Absolutely Free, Brown Shoes Don't Make It. Those records were incredible.
Bob Thiele: Yeah, so I knew how fortunate I was, but I don't think that necessarily ... If anything, it impacted me in a way where I realized that I had to give up all that kind of entitlement thing when I was in my late 20s, early 30s. It's like, "Dude. You have to be Junior. You're not Bob Thiele Senior. You're Bob Thiele Junior, and you better figure out who Junior is."
Jeff: Yeah. That leads me into the question I get to on this show with everybody. Through your career, through changing paths, through all the hardship, all this success, what fuels you to keep going? To keep creating, and to keep wanting to put it out into the world?
Bob Thiele: Coffee.
Jeff: Every time, I get a raise for that every time.
Bob Thiele: Okay. Good.
Jeff: Just kidding.
Bob Thiele: I mean, what fuels me is just the, you know I can tell what wouldn't fuel me is doing some sort of cop drama where they want something that someone else could do a lot better than me.
Bob Thiele: You know, and I'm saying, "Oh, we're going to give you the gig, but you know." What fuels me is the idea of doing something that I didn't necessarily feel that I could do, but I was inherent in me, and I created something somewhat beyond the scope of my limitations. I don't know if that makes sense but-
Bob Thiele: It's always expanding even if it's just infinitesimal fraction. It's just going somewhere where I can look at what I did, and go, "Wow. That was cool. I did something beyond the scope." What's funny really is that I'm not interested, once I do it, I'm not interested in hearing it again. Like, "Hey, did you ..." I don't really watch the episodes because what I'll do is I'll get too self-conscious. I'll start becoming critical. I'll start complaining about the way it was mixed, or you know, I just don't want to know it. It's sort of like, "Here it is. I've done it, and I give it. It's yours now." I don't want to own this in the sense of be territorial, and go, "Look it. Look it. Look it." You know. It's more like what's next rather than what was. I want to know what's next.
Jeff: Man, that's awesome. That's awesome. I think that, at the core, is what good creation really is. It's not about what that is. It's create it. Put it out there, and get onto that next creation.
Bob Thiele: As you're saying, "That's awesome. That's awesome." I'm going like, "I have no idea what I just said." You know what I mean? I'm sort of like going from this place, and I'm kind of interested in knowing what I just said because I know it came from here, but at the same time, I probably will not watch this because I'm not ... You know what I mean?
Bob Thiele: I'm sort of like letting this go, but I hope, and I don't care if somebody's watching, and goes like, "What the fuck is he talking about? That's like, what an idiot." I don't care. It's not really, I'm not speaking to anyone. I'm just speaking from my own experience. Trying to be as open and honest, and not have any sort of preconceived notion, or script. You're asking me a question. I don't know what the question is, and I'm going to try to answer it intuitively, and intrinsically from here rather than from here. Because I'm not good from here.
Jeff: Yeah, I'm with you, and I absolutely enjoyed being able to ask you these questions because I think this has been an incredible conversation. I want to ask, and this is always the terrible question because who cares about social media, but do you social media at all? Can people follow your journey?
Bob Thiele: Yeah. I mean, I tend to be sporadic, and I'm not particularly good at self-promoting. For instance, somehow I saw this clip of Aretha Franklin singing Say a Little Prayer the other day. It was a live version, and I'd never seen it before. It completely blew me away. I remember when I was about 15, maybe 16, I had a summer job at Atlantic Records Studio in New York sweeping up the floors, and wrapping mic cables, and doing shit like that. You know, Aretha was around then. That was like '72. That was '71, '72. That was a really incredible period for Aretha, and it also impacted me a lot. Studio musicians like Perdie, and Cornell Dupree, and Chuck Rainey were there. Those guys have ever since been my like, you know ... But anyway, when I saw this, I was just blown away because it was probably the most beautiful, the most perfect, the most just staggering thing I'd ever seen Aretha do. You know, I posted it. That's what, it's sort of like, or then I see some ridiculous thing by our president, and I'll post that. Or then I'll see ... It's just like, I just do what I feel like doing, and I don't really have a social media, what you would call, I guess-
Jeff: A plan, or-
Bob Thiele: A playbook.
Jeff: A playbook.
Bob Thiele: Yeah, a playbook, whereas, my son is really good at it. That's why I'm on social media too is just to see his shenanigans. He's pretty great. But yeah, we have a Facebook page that I wish somebody else would take more charge of. I have an Instagram and all that stuff, but you know. You'll probably unfollow me as much as you follow me.
Jeff: I'll put all that in the show though.
Bob Thiele: Yeah, okay.
Jeff: I can't thank you enough for taking time and talking with me.
Bob Thiele: It was my pleasure, man. I love ... It's kind of a treat to be able to talk like this because it reminds me a lot of how fortunate I am. It also reminds me of the struggle. You know, the highs, the lows. All that stuff. It's just some self-reflection. I think self-reflection is really important. Best done with another individual. So this is like a 45 minute therapy session that I don't have to pay for because I get to talk about myself for a while.
Jeff: Exactly, and I just have to say finally, if you need help linking those Scrantones tracks, or leaking them, I'm in. I'll help you.
Bob Thiele: You know, maybe today you've inspired me to just dig them up and send them out to the ... Stay tuned. Maybe we'll find something. Okay.
Jeff: I love it. I love it.
Bob Thiele: Okay, man.
Bob Thiele: All right.
Jeff: Thank you so much.
Bob Thiele: Oh, yeah. It was great talking to you.
Jeff: It was great talking with you too.