Stick Men live — (from left) Markus Reuter, Pat Mastelotto and Tony Levin
It’s fair to say that fans of groundbreaking prog-rock band King Crimson are fanatical about the group’s music.
Only it’s not the kind of fanaticism your casual music lover would expect from diehard groupies. King Crimson bass player Tony Levin — who comes to town next week with his band Stick Men (featuring Crimson drummer Pat Mastelotto) in a show featuring another Crimson alumni, Adrian Belew (and his band the Adrian Belew Power Trio) — learned that a long time ago.
“It’s different than what people would think; I’m not inundated with fans who know who I am,” Levin said. “It doesn’t happen all that often except during and after shows, and my opinion, a band gets the fans it deserves — and King Crimson fans are enthusiastic and have a passion for music. They’re not wild or out-of-control, and they’re certainly not there for your personality or your sex appeal. It’s about the music, so it’s not a bad experience at all to spend some time with them.”
Interestingly enough, Levin noted, he did just that — Aug. 22-26, he, Mastelotto and Belew held the inaugural “Three of a Perfect Pair Camp,” a King Crimson-centric week of music, stories and instruction at Full Moon Resort in Big Indian, N.Y. It was so successful, in fact, that next year’s camp is now taking registrants — it takes place Aug. 12-17, 2012, at the resort, and the cost starts out at $1,210 for a week of tent-camping.
“Seventy-five of them came and spent night and day with us, eating meals and hearing King Crimson stories,” Levin said. “It was very fun and very enlightening, and when it’s like that, fans don’t need to cling so much.”
No doubt next week, the audience at The Bijou Theatre will be full of King Crimson fans. In fact, Levin expects it, even though Stick Men and the Adrian Belew Power Trio both have their own repertoires to offer up. And that’s OK, even if does feel like a boys-only club sometimes.
“Crimson fans tend to be guys,” Levin said with a chuckle. “In the old days, they would bring their girlfriends with them, and we would notice the girlfriends weren’t there after the intermission. After a while, King Crimson did some more ’shoulder-friendly’ music, where the unfortunate woman who got dragged to the concert could move her shoulders a little bit.”
Click here to read the interview with Levin published in this week’s Daily Times Weekend entertainment section.