George Winston Interview
When I think of the cartoon "Peanuts" I always think of the theme song. I never knew until recently that George Winston recorded "Lucy and Linus". I know that now because it says so on George Winston's website. I've heard of George Winston before. I heard that he was anti-social and didn't like to have his picture taken. I heard that he loves his music and is a real professional when it comes to performing.
I did my research about George before my interview and I called a few friends who are huge George Winston fans. Yes, these friends used to be in the band in high school, but they don't talk like that girl in the movie "American Pie". George showed up at the press conference on time along with his new fiancée. If some of you hav
e never seen George Winston before, then you might think that he just walked out of an L.L. Bean catalogue. He's got a bushy beard like Paul Bunyan and he's bald up top, like a bald guy. Actually, he looks like Mick Fleetwood from "Fleetwood Mac".
George sat down and the local press asked a slew of questions about his playing style and about his upcoming concert. I saved my questions for my interview. After the Q & A, George began to play a few songs on his harmonica, guitar, and piano. I was swept away with his ability. He really is extremely talented!!!! His fingers glided over the piano and he played with so much passion for some little press conference. I felt like the Queen of England. Well, maybe that's not the best example, but you get my meaning.
J: Mr. Winston it's a real pleasure to meet you.
G: Nice to meet you too, but just call me George
J: Are you tired from traveling so much?
G: A little but it's OK.
J: I saw your schedule on your website and you play practically everywhere.
G: I love to perform.
J: What's the smallest crowd you played for?
G: I've played for crowds as small as 30 people. As long as people want to see me play then I'll perform.
J: So when did realize you had this talent?
G: Actually, I didn't start playing piano until I was 18.
G: Yeah, I was too busy playing sports.
J: What sports?
G: Basketball and baseball.
J: Now, you don't really look like a jock at all. Were you any good?
G: I know I don't. Baseball was my main sport, but I peaked when I reached high school and so my baseball career stopped.
J: What position did you play?
G: I was a pitcher and third baseman.
J: Favorite team?
G: Loved the Detroit Tigers! Have you heard of Al Kaline or Denny McLaine?
J: George, I might look young, but I'm "old school". Kaline was one of the greatest homerun hitters and good ole Denny loved to gamble. Let's talk about your music before we start talking about Shoeless Joe Jackson or Pete Rose. OK, why are most of your albums' titles named after seasons of the year?
G: I try and write music that goes with each theme that I'm working on. For example, when I was writing "Plains" I thought about growing up in Montana and I used those memories to write. Every season has a distinctly different and each has it's own sound.
J: When you performed here 2 years ago you played a winter concert. How about this time?
G: This time I'm going to play a summer concert, so my fans can here a different type of music. Actually, I'd like to come Korea every year, but the promoter said that wouldn't be a good idea. Do you know why?
J: If you come every year than it's no big deal that you're here, but if it's only once in a while then it turns into a 'can't miss event'. Does that make sense to you?
J: Any hobbies George?
G: Nope, just recording. I love recording!! Sometimes I still play basketball, but I wouldn't call it a hobby.
J: Any family?
G: My mom and sister and now fiancée and we have 4 cats.
J: Last time you were in Korea you wouldn't let anyone take your picture and you seemed very anti-social. Have you changed at all or is it me?
G: I tell people that I'm not anti-social. I'm no-social. I like spending time alone and writing and just relaxing. I don't drink or smoke so there's no reason to go out.
J: You look like a fisherman. Do you fish?
J: What other kind of music do you want to pursue?
G: Right now I've just been working on playing the slack key guitar.
J: What's the slack key guitar?
G: It's Hawaiian traditional style of playing. The slack isn't a type of guitar, but a style of playing. Every person has their own sound. There are no two sounds alike.
J: One last question, how did the death of Charles Shultz the creator of "Peanuts" affect you?
G: It didn't affect me. Death doesn't bother me. I think he had a great life and I believe that once you die you just move on. I didn't know Charles Shultz personally. He was a great man.
J: Hey George maybe when you come back in a couple years we could shoot some hoops if you have any free time.
G: Sounds good.
J: Thank you for your time, and good luck with your career and marriage.
George Winston was a real gentleman. I was really impressed with his banter during the Q & A and he has a real good sense of humor too. George's sense of humor was almost as good as Yngwie Malmsteen's. George plays with a lot of passion and if anyone has the opportunity to see him live then I would suggest to go see him. If you have the time then check out his website: www.dancingcat.com
Check out more of Johnny's entertainment interviews!
Copyright 1999-2001 1stopKorea