BoDeans rock at NIU and head for Chicago

By Claudia Curry and David Trout

Campus Activities Board Concert committee has outdone itself this semester.

Rock ‘n’ roll music blared through the walls of the Holmes Student Center last Thursday night when the BoDeans performed for about two hours to a packed Duke Ellington Ballroom.

The BoDeans crowd was jumping, clapping, shouting and even waltzing. BoDeans Lead vocalist Kurt Neuman had some words of advice to share with the crowd – “You don’t have to listen to the video stations or the radio stations, you listen to what you want to listen to. Thanks for coming out tonight and supporting live rock ‘n’ roll!”

Diane Dravillas, Concert committe member, announced at the BoDeans concert that, in addition to that night’s fantastic show, the committee’s next arrangement would be the Pixies in mid-November.

During the BoDeans recent visit to NIU, BoDeans keyboardist Micheal Ramos agreed to be interviewed on the band and future plans.

How long have you been on tour?

Michael: Actually, we just started.

Is this the first stop?

Michael: No, it started last week.

What brought the BoDeans to DeKalb?

Michael: Well, you know, it all has to do with routing. We just played Bloomington and Indianapolis, Indiana.

Is this your Midwest tour?

Michael: Yes. Our next stop is in Chicago.

Do you prefer the small venues or big arenas?

Michael: They both have their good points and their bad points. In arenas the sound isn’t so good. It is so much cooler when people are right there in your face. However, you get a rush on a big stage, but the BoDeans have always been about live shows and getting the people involved. Of course, it is easier playing in a small place.

What are some of the BoDeans early influences?

Michael: Sam and Kurt are very much into early rock, the solid stuff like Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, and the Everly Brothers. You can hear all these influences in our music.

How would you describe your music?

Michael: I think it has an authentic sound. It sounds like good rock ‘n’ roll music.

How did you like touring with U2?

Michael: I think U2 can see similarities between themselves and the BoDeans. I think we’ve influenced each other. The bands got along great.

What do you do with your spare time?

Michael: When we’re not playing everyone is out doing their own thing. When we are touring everybody rests as much as possible. When we are not on tour Sam and Kurt write and the rest of us try to do things that aren’t stressful.

If the Bodeans were asked to do a beer commercial, would they do it?

Michael: No. We were asked to do a commercial for $250,000 for Old Style and we turned it down.

Have you ever met Madonna?

Michael: No, I haven’t. But a couple of the guys in the band have. They sat across the table from her at a party. She had Sean with her.