Guess which musician is coming to dinner

Last updated 09:58 28/06/2012

So there are all these hypothetical situations people talk about - five famous people you can have over for dinner; you can - apparently - traverse time with this (makes sense I guess, being that it's a hypothetical). You can cherry-pick from the eras, have a seating plan that includes Abraham Lincoln sitting across from Lady Gaga and Norman Mailer leering at Drew Barrymore. You could of course play Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon - or, you know, just have Kevin Bacon there. And, since I'm suggesting this online I should probably have Adolf Hitler along for the party, right? Or I could just invite Mike Godwin. Let him join the dots...

Well I thought we could play a much simpler game today - what one musician would you like to have for dinner? That is to say, you have a famous musician over to your house, you cook for

Hydrangea

them, you plan the evening. Maybe they get to thumb through your records - or maybe you're too embarrassed for them to see your collection. You may have made up a playlist, introduce them to some material you think they'll like - or remind them of some old favourites...

It's your call. You get to decide.

You can make the call, any era, live or dead - but I've usually found the best dinner guests are indeed the living.

You might want to pick your all-time favourite musician. You might want to pick someone that you think you are interested in as a person - more than for their music. People say they'd like to chat to Madonna, for example. I hear the best way to win her over - and she can be tough - is by getting her some hydrangeas. She loves them.

So you might want a challenge - or you might want a pushover. Pick Jeremy Taylor and there's a good chance he'll cook for you.

I've never been the "Star Star type" - as The Rolling Stones (so delicately) put it. So I don't have stories of famous musicians coming over for dinner. Nor do I have stories where I have desperately stalked musicians - or even planned the business of an interview in public.

So it was difficult for me to think of someone for this hypothetical - and probably my answer is boring, but you'll get the chance to tell me that. I probably should have picked up the phone and done some research before planning this. Silly me, but here goes...

For my hypothetical "guess which musician is coming for dinner" I pick Bob Mould.

He might not be on everyone's list for this sort of event - and my reasons for wanting to invite him are really pretty simple.Bob Mould

I've always been a fan of a lot of the work that Bob Mould has done - but lately I'm revisiting the great Husker Du records (my favourites are Warehouse: Songs and Stories and Candy Apple Grey) and I've always loved his first solo album Workbook. There are other solo albums I dig too - and then there's Sugar.

Copper Blue, Beaster, File Under: Easy Listening...

I've gone back to Sugar (I never really left) and back to Husker (I never really left) and in and around some of the best solo records. So many great records.

What I like about Bob Mould is the work - there's so much of it that's great. And the survival story. Here's a guy who has done the battling-with-demons thing, moved on - in some way at least - from the acrimonious band break-ups. And he's continued to create.

For me there's still great material I'm discovering/rediscovering.

And I think he'd be interesting to talk to.

It's really that simple. And really that boring. (I guess I should say I'm sorry, somehow.)

But hey, didn't I read that at one point Bob Mould retired from music and was, for a while, writing storylines for pro-wrestling? That'd be kinda fun to talk about, right? And he's recently released his memoir - so there's that too.

What actually appeals most is that the evening could be spent - in all likelihood - talking about anything but music. That really appeals.

So that's my pick.

Now - if you've actually had dinner with a famous musician and have a great story about it then by all means share. But the point of this "guess which musician is coming to dinner" gimmick was purely to do down the hypothetical path.

So pick one musician from any era - dead or alive - and bring them to your house for one night, for one meal. Who would you pick? What would you pick their brains about? What music would you play? Would you get them to sign your copies of their albums? Would you prefer to not talk music at all? A science lesson and build-your-own-guitar workshop from Brian May, perhaps?

Oh - and did I mention there's a prize? I will. I'll do that now. Right now. No more stalling. Here's the deal - the best comment, the best hypothetical scenario will win a prize: dinner at my house.

That was a joke, by the way.

But seriously, get writing. There's a prize for the best entry today. I'll pick the best comment/story and award a really cool (music-related) prize.

So which musician would you like to have over for dinner? And why?

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74 comments
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Cat   #1   10:18 am Jun 28 2012

The first musician that popped into my head that I would invite for dinner is Freddie Mercury, but then I thought about John Deacon. Because he has always been the quietest member of Queen it would be really interesting to talk to him about his time in the band, and what it was like working with Freddie, Brian and Roger. I would also like to ask about he strange choice of outfits that he would wear on stage. And, I would like to talk to him about one of my favourite Queen songs, which he wrote, I Want to Break Free (esp about the awesome music video)

Jonny   #2   10:19 am Jun 28 2012

Smart choice, and one I can't better. I guess my runners-up would be John Darnielle and Patti Smith. Oh man, that's a party...

Nick   #3   10:21 am Jun 28 2012

Well I had to toss a coin to come up with my 'dinner guest' and Steve Harris (Bassist for Iron Maiden) won Being a bass player myself for over 20 years, I always listen to bass lines in songs. I'm not really into flashy bass players who really like to 'show off' but Steve Harris is a very melodic bass player and he is essentially the 'glue' that holds Iron Maiden together - he is not just a bass player - he actuallty writes most of their songs and when he doesn't he has a say in the way that they are arranged. There would be 3 main things I would like to ask him 1) I'd ask him about the meaning of the lyrics in several Maiden songs 2) I'd ask him how the hell he can play the bass so fast only using his fingers and not a pick like some bass players do 3) I'd ask him why he is still playing the same Fender Precision bass guitar for over 30 years... surely with all the money they have made he could afford to buy other bass guitars?

Paul   #4   10:22 am Jun 28 2012

Bob Mould is a great choice, I love Husker Du and, you are right, that first solo album is a must listen. But you chose him first.

I am not really a Tool fan, but as a wine professional I would have to go with James Keenan, because we would have a rich conversation about wine and food...

Daz   #5   10:24 am Jun 28 2012

It's hard for me not to say Jimi, buuut... I'd have to go with the thin white duke himself, Mr D. Bowie. You'd want someone who had lived an interesting life and had a few stories to tell - and Bowie has probably lived one of the most interesting lives on the PLANET.

andrew_love   #6   10:35 am Jun 28 2012

Brian May?? no James May he has a music degree and perfect pitch, Playing "Jessica" with car engines is my best of Top Gear. He could probably make me a working guitar out of my sons lego while I get dessert.

Nathan   #7   10:41 am Jun 28 2012

Jordan Luck would possibly be quite an interesting guest.Here is a guy who had a knack of writing quite good pop songs,had a fairly entertaining stage presence and possibly if the stars had aligned themselves correctly could possibly have gone on to greater international pop acclaim. I'm sure he would have some very interesting and possibly funny yarns about growing up in Geraldine and becoming a pop star, touring up and down the country oodles of times in a van,losing a bag of money,and what it was like heading to the UK and finding yourself as a very small fish in a big pond. Also, he would more than likely bring the alcohol so that's always a bonus.

Hazzard County Cricket Club   #8   10:45 am Jun 28 2012

I would invite Stephen Harris aka Kid Chaos aka Haggis to mine for dinner; having been a member of Zodiac Mindwarp & The Love Reaction, The Cult and The Four Horsemen - three of the greatest bands of all time - as well as playing with Guns N' Roses (filling in for Duff McKagan while he was getting married) he would no doubt have some great war stories...

Chris   #9   10:52 am Jun 28 2012

Delaney Davidson. I'm sure if the food's not up to scratch he could give me pointers or cook another dinner and we'd mostly end up discussing Tom Waits discography and the politics of NZonair funding New Zealand artists based overseas.

Fraser The Amazer   #10   10:57 am Jun 28 2012

Whilst I enjoy music, I have zero musical ability so I couldn't exactly wax lyrical about their musical talents without sounding like a complete amateur so anyone with fantastical musical instrument playing ability is out.

So what does that leave? In the single days I would have chosen a hottie in a heartbeat but I doubt the Mrs. wants to see my fawning over the likes of Katy Perry whilst I rehash every lame joke/story in my repertoire and sweat profusely whilst I draw an imaginary line under her neck and will myself not to look below it. so that’s out.

I'm going to run with MJ I think everyone 30+ has liked at least one of his songs during their lifetime? and hell it would be an entertaining night just chuckling to myself every time he spoke.


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