The Spin Doctors' Eric Schenkman on hockey and his new album "Who Shot John?"
With many millions of albums sold, thanks to five Top 100 singles, The Spin Doctors was one of the most successful bands on the 1990s. The quartet -- which consists of vocalist Chris Barron, guitarist Eric Schenkman, bassist Mark White and drummer Aaron Comess, both its original and classic lineup -- is still at it 30 years later after debuting in the late 1980s. And to celebrate that, The Spin Doctors will be headlining a big 30th anniversary show at New York City hotspot Brooklyn Bowl on November 8th.
Guitarist Eric Schenkman has always kept busy outside of his work with The Spin Doctors. He has notably recorded and/or performed with Chico Hamilton, Carly Simon, Natalie Merchant, Noel Redding, Phoebe Snow and Corky Laing. He recently released a solo album, Who Shot John?, which features contributions from Canadian blues veteran Shawn Kellerman, Enrique Iglesias drummer Van Romaine, and North Mississippi All Stars co-founder Cody Dickinson. Title track "Who Shot John?" is already out via Spotify, while the full-length itself gets a proper release on October 26th.
I had the pleasure of doing Q&A with Eric Schenkman, and some of those highlights are below. More on all things Eric Schenkman can be found online at www.spindoctors.com and www.ericschenkman.com, while more on the upcoming Brooklyn Bowl show in November can be found at www.brooklynbowl.com.
What came first: Your move to Canada or your love for hockey?
Eric Schenkman: My move to Canada.
Do you have a favorite team within the NHL?
Eric Schenkman: The Boston Bruins.
Are there other sports fans in The Spin Doctors? Or your solo band?
Eric Schenkman: Aaron Comess loves football. He’s a Dallas Cowboys fan. So does Matt, our stage tech.
What was the last sporting event you attended?
Eric Schenkman: The Toronto Blue Jays at the Skydome, which shows how often I go to the ball game. It was the ‘93 World Series game 7, the night the Blue Jays beat Philly with the Joe Carter homer. I got four seats on the first base line as a guest of the Phillies because they had used our song “Two Princes” as their win song. I actually brought three Blue Jays fans. It was quite a night.
Have you ever played the national anthem at a sporting event?
Eric Schenkman: No, but I would love to.
Sports aside, Who Shot John? is your new album. Were all of the songs on the album specifically written for the album as opposed to The Spin Doctors or the Openhearts Society?
Eric Schenkman: There are two songs in particular that weren’t. “Lincoln’s Feat” was written with my folk trio friends from Wolfe Island, Ontario. “Locked In The House” was written with my brother from another mother, Corky Laing from the band Mountain.
Aside from your solo efforts, The Openhearts Society and The Spin Doctors, you have been part of Cork, The Chrysalids and High Plains Drifter. Do you pick up a guitar every day?
Eric Schenkman: Yes, or I sing.
When not busy with music, how do you usually spend your free time?
Eric Schenkman: I love to ride my bicycle in the city!
Finally, what do you wish more people knew about Eric Schenkman?
Eric Schenkman: That the title track “Who Shot John?” is now up on Spotify -- and you can jog to it! (laughs)