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Interview with Paul Trudeau, November 12, 2016

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:00:09 - Early life

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Partial Transcript: Where'd you grow up?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau recalls growing up in Providence, Rhode Island, and Guatemala City, where his father was a teacher. He talks about his interest in drumming, which was initially sparked by The Partridge Family and increased when he began listening to classic rock cassettes. Trudeau also remembers briefly taking drum lessons and receiving his first drum set one Christmas.

Keywords: childhood; family; parents

00:10:40 - Middle school and high school bands

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Partial Transcript: When did you start playing in bands- did you just have friends around that played too?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau talks about drumming for The Basix, his middle school band, and The Fibers, which often played original and cover songs at high school basement parties. He also discusses playing in Coat of Arms, a hardcore band turned power pop. Trudeau recalls Coat of Arms performances in Connecticut, Athens, and Atlanta.

Keywords: Rockfish Palace; The Anthrax; The Metroplex Theatre

00:17:06 - Drumming with Hetch Hetchy

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Partial Transcript: You came to Athens for the first time- is that what led to you moving down?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau talks about moving to Athens, where he soon began working in restaurants between recording and touring with the band Hetch Hetchy. Trudeau also mentions performing with Porn Orchard and several other bands at Boston's Green Street Station.

Keywords: Jay Totty; Lynda Stipe; Michael Wegner; Toast

00:29:08 - Touring with other artists

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Partial Transcript: After Hetch Hetchy split up, was there much else between that and Harvey Milk?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau discusses playing drums for Juliana Hatfield on her solo tour and opening for The Lemonheads. He explains not enjoying the way people treated him as if he were famous while on tour.

Keywords: Hey Babe; tours

00:34:33 - Harvey Milk: members and musical style

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Partial Transcript: Now Harvey Milk had already- had just started around that time, I think.

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau talks about the original members of Harvey Milk and their early practices, which took place in an old shed in Commerce, Georgia. He discusses their influences, including Kiss and The Melvins, and describes Spiers' slow, orchestral music style, which he says made it difficult to keep rhythm on the drums. Trudeau also mentions covering the entire R.E.M. Reckoning album as an April Fools joke.

Keywords: Creston Spiers; Stephen Tanner; performances; practices

00:52:09 - Naming Harvey Milk / National Anthem gig

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Partial Transcript: Where did the name Harvey Milk come from?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau describes how the band decided on the name "Harvey Milk," and he explains that the name was controversial due to its association with gay politician Harvey Milk. He goes on to discuss the band's breakup, as well as another band he was in, National Anthem. He mentions one of National Anthem's performances at Mama's Kitchen in Athens and talks about the band's breakup.

Keywords: Creston Spiers; gay rights; homophobia; politics

01:01:15 - Reformation of Harvey Milk

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Partial Transcript: Well you wanna talk a little bit about the reformation of Harvey Milk?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau talks about negative experiences recording a Harvey Milk album in New York, discusses the band's increased popularity in Athens after their return, and chronicles his decision to leave Harvey Milk.

Keywords: Kyle Spence; New York; Special Wishes; The Melvins; albums; records

01:10:08 - Trudeau's cover bands

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Partial Transcript: You wanna talk a little about- a couple minutes about your cover bands here in town with Ted?

Segment Synopsis: Trudeau discusses his less serious musical endeavors, including playing hair metal covers at a wrestling show, the sarcastic Canadian Invasion project, and the band Knight Seeker, which has performed hair metal and karaoke around North Georgia. Trudeau also talks about the Athens music experience, mentioning that the town is remarkably hospitable to new artists who don't have strict plans.

Keywords: Ballard Lesemann; Ed Livengood; Kevin Sweeney; Larry Tenner; Nick Bielli; Ted Hafer; heavy metal