Ypsitucky — goes with everything but hip-hop and reggae

El Monte Slim finds a fiddle, a new name, and a new twang

“We really enjoy each other’s company. Beer and jokes are our collective diet.”
  • “We really enjoy each other’s company. Beer and jokes are our collective diet.”
  • Image by Jeff Motch

‘We came together while playing in El Monte Slim, and when that was put on hold almost two years ago, we just decided to keep it going with Heather Vorwerck on fiddle full-time,” says Ypsitucky singer/guitarist Ian Trumbull. “We really enjoy each other’s company and do things outside of the band, which is probably key to maintaining a good chemistry. Beer and jokes are our collective diet.”

The players in Ypsitucky veer more toward Southern blues than their previous ensemble, though, “We’re definitely a song-based group, as opposed to any one particular style,” says Trumbull. “I suppose you could say it’s a twangy, roots-oriented pop or country, with a small dose of rock-and-roll swagger. We can certainly play alongside almost any band that’s not reggae or hip-hop.”

Ypsitucky appears Saturday, September 24, at the Adams Avenue Street Fair on the Roots/Rock Stage (4 p.m.) and on Friday, October 1, at Bar Pink.

WHAT’S IN YOUR MUSIC PLAYER?

“I’ve been spinning Lee Hazlewood’s House Safe for Tigers. It’s a trippy, eccentric group of songs that combine country and easy-listening, along with sharp-witted lyrics delivered in an almost spoken-word style. You either hate Lee Hazlewood or love him, and I’ve been searching out all of his stuff lately.”

HOW ABOUT LOCAL MUSIC?

“I’ve been listening to Drive Like Jehu’s two records after seeing them at the Organ Pavilion last year and the Irenic a few months ago. It really hit home what an amazing group they were and are — so dynamic and explosive, with absolutely killer guitar tones.”

NAME AN EVERGREEN SELECTION?

“I almost always have a couple of Replacements records out. They’ve remained my favorite band over the years.”

ANYTHING YOU WERE EMBARRASSED TO MENTION?

“Probably a K-Tel LP comp called Stardust; it’s filled with cheesy ’70s AM radio numbers that I grew up listening to. I can’t get enough of it whenever I’ve had too much to drink.”

USELESS BUT FASCINATING TRIVIA?

“Link Wray only had one lung for most of his life.”

BEST CONCERT?

“The Nick Cave show I saw at the Balboa Theatre a few years back was transcendental. The band was ridiculously tight, he had the audience eating out of his hand, and the long shadows he was casting on the walls made him look like Nosferatu.”

WHAT’S MISSING IN YOUR WORLD?

“Tower Records. Besides the fact that I worked there for 13 years, there’s no place local that you can shop for all newly released records and other media these days. It was a great social atmosphere, and you could really learn a lot from coworkers as well as customers.”

SOMETHING YOU NEVER RUN OUT OF?

“Guitar strings. I used to drag my feet when it came to changing my strings, but now that I’ve seen the damage it can cause to your frets, I change them every couple of weeks and always have several sets on hand.”

FEARS OR PHOBIAS?

“I abhor flying and tall bridges. Didn’t used to, but now that I feel my mortality, I simply don’t want to go out like that.”

WHO DO PEOPLE SAY YOU LOOK LIKE?

“When I was young, people used to say that I looked like Robbie Benson. Now with my beard, all I get is, ‘You look like that guy on the Gas Monkey Garage show.’”

WORST INJURY?

“I tripped on a wrinkle in the rug on my way out the door to see Star Wars for the umpteenth time, and my left arm went through the glass door and shredded it to pieces. I should’ve had stitches, but my grandparents made me tough it out.”

TELL US ABOUT YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD?

“Living in North Park is great for being centrally located with great bars and restaurants nearby, but the cost of living is going up so fast that it’s getting hard to stay there.”

Past Event

Adams Avenue Street Fair

  • Saturday, September 24, 2016, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Adams Avenue near 35th Street, Normal Heights
  • Free

MOST AWKWARD MOMENT?

“I got accosted by a man once when walking over to the Alibi. He said that I looked very well-endowed and was very persistent that I go party with him and do drugs, and he basically followed me the whole way there, despite my quickened pace.”

BIGGEST REGRET?

“Probably not having enough money to buy a house here in San Diego when the prices bottomed out a few years ago. I’m really tired of renting.”

FAVORITE MOVIE BASED ON A BOOK?

“I’d say The Big Sleep. I’m addicted to film noir, and Raymond Chandler excelled at capturing that aesthetic on paper.”

THREE THINGS WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU?

  1. “I was born in Queens, New York.”
  2. “I didn’t get a haircut until I was almost ten and was constantly mistaken for a girl.”
  3. “The only thing I ever stole was a pack of chocolate gum from a convenience store. It tasted so terrible I couldn’t chew it. Not sure whether it was because I felt guilty or if it was the fact that it was chocolate gum.”

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