A Talk With Kevin McMahon
CLE Magazine # 3B, 1981
By Michael Weldon
Transcribed by Avenpitch
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Relentlessly struggling for success, west side Cleveland rock band Lucky Pierre has overcome obstacles that smashed better bands. How these four young guys climbed to the top of the rock garbage pile here in Cleveland is a story that could be written into a dozen different kinds of novels. Lucky Pierre has been described as sounding like what Sparks would sound like if those guys had really crawled out of the plane crash on that album cover. In a recent interview with Lucky Pierre singer-songwriter misguiding light Kevin McMahon, CLE magazine put these questions to him.

CLE: You have a 45 out on Unadulterated Records with an A side called "Fans and Cameras." This thing sounds great blasting out of the jukebox at Hennessey's, (Editor's note: Hennessey's -- a notorious Cleveland watering hole where "punk rock" "musicians" come to express their "interest" in "punk rock") and yet, "Fans and Cameras" never really caught on big with the local music-listening audience, at least not yet. How come?

Kevin: I don't know how to answer that question, but I imagine I won't know how to answer the rest. The first pressing (1000 copies) sold out quickly enough. But the second pressing is being held-up in our ex-manager's basement. I guess he is interested in impeding our progress as much as he can, as a result of our separation from him. The investors of our first record were a find of his, and, judgment aside, the majority of these people were assholes. They wanted their hands kissed, daughters, groupies, and cameras posed for. But, like anything else I put out, I'm glad it's documented.

CLE: You are in a very curious position, because although you have a reputation for being a talent in songwriting, this reputation is supported in the main by hearsay. Hardly anyone really knows what your song lyrics are, much less what they mean. The band drowns you out when you play at the clubs.

Kevin: The uneasiness of lyric comprehension has influenced me to the point of apathy. In regard to immediate clarity of poetry or prose set to contemporary music, I think it's better in a repetitory small dose. Anyhow, if the band doesn't play loudly, I can't sing lyrics I forgot I wrote. If I sang the words to "Fans and Cameras" for ten years, I think I'd go nuts.

CLE: Let me go out on a limb and say Lucky Pierre is the spearhead of romanticism in modern music. Have you ever thought of yourself as a defender of romanticism, similar to the way John Morton is the exponent of nihilism in modern music?

Kevin: If romanticism is the same thing for you as it is for me, then it longs to be attacked. The more it's attacked, the more it consumes. And, by the way, John would be proud of me -- lately my guitar's been way out of tune.

CLE: Two songs which you're currently playing which intrigue me are "Deeper Deeper" and "Match." What are they about.

Kevin: Fountains of youth. "Deeper Deeper" concerns itself with the gnawing dependence of a past relationship which continues to burrow through the heart after the original break has healed. "Match" pertains to that frozen millisecond of timeless awareness when any two separate entities are one. They're both mental vacations to me.

CLE: How much money have you lost since you started playing rock & roll?

Kevin: The word "lost" is relative, but I've spent plenty of everything.

CLE: Have you ever heard of the word plagiarism?

Kevin: Yes, I graduated from grade school. Plagiarism - noun - 'Tis a contagious disease which preys on the stomach of the starving and the mind of the witless.