William Elliot Whitmore is an American blues singer and musician from Lee County, Iowa. He has recorded a number of albums released on Southern Records, and now is a member of the Anti Records family. While he has earned much acclaim from the folk, blues and alt-country communities, he is also rooted in the hardcore punk community, by paying, for example, a homage for the worldwide spread icon of Bad Religion. Whitmore has toured with Chris Cornell, City and Colour, The Pogues, Murder By Death, Clutch, Lucero, Converge, Red Sparowes, Modern Life is War, Frontier Ruckus, Frank Turner and The Low Anthem. He joined us for our 5GB series before his show tomorrow night at The Earl.
What’s the first gig you ever attended?
The first show I ever went to was Aerosmith, at the arena in Ames Iowa. I was 15 years old and although I was not a fan of the band per se, I was just glad to be doing anything out of the ordinary. I went with my Aunt and cousins. I remember having fun and even though I didn’t really like Aerosmith, I had to admit that “Sweet Emotion” is a hell of a tune. Also, Joe Perry was shirtless by the 3rd song.’Nuff said.
What is the best gig that you ever played/performed?
I’ve played hundreds of shows, from large venues and festivals to living rooms and campfires, so it’s hard to say which one was the best. One that sticks out in my mind though, is a house show I played when I was first starting out. It was in Iowa City and a rowdy night it was, whiskey bottles and sing-alongs. A guy in one of the other bands cut off his finger by accidentally slamming it in the door. Booze and blood abounded.
What is the best gig you have ever seen?
The best show I’ve ever seen was Flaming Lips at Red Rocks in Denver. A truly magical night. The stars were shining, there may have been weed involved, and the band was sounding perfect. The whole crowd was singing along including me.
What is the gig you would most like to play?
I’d like to do a show at the Grand Ole Opry someday.
What would be the lineup for your dream gig?
A perfect gig would be; me opening up, Mitch Hedberg coming back from the dead to do a comedy set, Killer Mike and Goodie Mob uniting to do all their hits, and all of us onstage at the end doing a banjo version of “Fuck the Police”. Fireworks go off and then we all end up at the Cleremont Lounge.
Catch William Elliot Whitmore, Sept. 18th @ The Earl