Interviews TheRoyalTinfoilcropped(RichardBrendel)34

Published on October 19th, 2012 | by Ballard Lesemann


The ‘Punch List’ with Lily Slay

Metronome Charleston‘s weekly Punch List puts local musicians on the spot with a questionnaire that touches on music, venues, gear, records, vices, and more. This week, singer/guitarist/cellist Lily Slay of The Royal Tinfoil:

1. What is your favorite local hang and why?

“Tin Roof! They have a really cool staff, delicious food, a super fun, regular clientele, great sound, and really creative/hilarious events, all while maintaining the quintessential dive bar ambiance. I also feel like the owners, unlike a lot of other bars or venues, really take the time to get involved with who they are booking. They study the Charleston music scene so they’re qualified to pick the best accompaniment when bigger acts come through, almost all of which are outstanding!

2. You know you’ve played an excellent show when…

“… People who have never heard us before start singing along to one of our original songs. You have to be either really charismatic or really repetitive to accomplish that. Sometimes, but definitely not all the time, you can just kinda tell when it’s the former. Also, if I look like Carrie in her infamous prom scene due to my sweat and red hair dye soaking my head and clothes, it’s usually a pretty good indication I brought it.”

The Royal Tinfoil (photo by Sean Money and Elizabeth Fay)

The Royal Tinfoil (photo by Sean Money and Elizabeth Fay)

3. What was the last show you attended that really got you fired up in a good or bad way?

“Tweakbird with Melvins Lite blew my mind out of my dick. Tweakbird, I’d never seen or heard before and now I’m kind of obsessed with them. Trevor Dunn on upright bass is one of the best things I’ve ever seen.”

4. Define your musical style in exactly 10 words.

“Primordial Evil Gypsy Garage Junk, Intergalactic Ass-Clapping Eardrum Genocidal Rock”

5. What’s your theme song?

‘Yankin’ by Lady.’ 

6. Gear-wise, what’s is your irreplaceable baby?

“It would probably be my cello, actually, despite the fact that I don’t play it all that often. I love my guitars, but, I could feasibly obtain another one of the same model. I can’t really do that with Gregor.”

7. What’s the most overplayed album in your collection?

“Mortal Man’s The Champion of Forever. It’s a metal band from Wilmington, N.C., and, yes, the singer sometimes plays cowbell. The album is a story explaining the ‘rise and demise of Mortal Man,’ with all kinds of Lord of Rings/D&D-type imagery. It tickles my GWAR, Baroness, and Thin Lizzy spots all in one album. It’s the ultimate pizza delivery soundtrack.”

8. When was the last time you were genuinely star-struck?

“Last weekend when I saw Justin Townes Earle at the Jam Room Fest. I stood three feet away from him when he called off his band and played his final blues song solo. I swear I could have fainted it was so amazing.”

9. What’s your poison?

“Deadly Nightshade, or Belladonna. It’s every femme fatale’s calling card.”

10. In 10 years, I will be…

“Somehow, even better looking than I am right now.”

Lily Slay and singer/guitarist Mackie Bowles formed The Royal Tinfoil three years ago as a duo. The band expanded in size with the addition of bassist Brad Edwardson, ukulele player/harmonica man Tim Edgar, and drummer Marshall Hudson. They released a self-produced collection titled Well Water Communion earlier this year.

Slay will perform a solo show at the Tattooed Moose on Tues. Oct. 23 at 9 p.m. with local songsmith Harrison Ray on the bill. The Royal Tinfoil will share the Pour House stage with the Whiskey Gentry on Sat. Nov. 17 at 10 p.m.

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Top photo by Richard Brendle.

The Royal Tinfoil on stage at the Pour House, 2012 (photo by Ballard Lesemann)

The Royal Tinfoil on stage at the Pour House, 2012 (photo by Ballard Lesemann)



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About the Author

Ballard Lesemann

is a musician and writer. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he spent years playing in bands and working for Flagpole Magazine in the bustling music town of Athens, Ga. He returned to his hometown and served more than seven years as the Charleston City Paper's music editor. He's better at drumming than he is at playing guitar.

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