By Michael Moses
In 1972, while the other 2-year-olds in his Maryland neighborhood were busy crapping their
diapers and learning to walk, little Brian Transeau was already playing piano and
exploring the right side of his brain. Fast-forward 28 years and not much has changed.
While much of the electronic scene is tangled and static, Briannow known as
BTis surging forward with his own brand of progressive house music. Over the course
of the past few years, he's released two groundbreaking albums, scored two number one hits
on Billboards Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart (including Tori Amos
Blue Skies), scored two films (1999s Go and the upcoming Denzel
Washington flick, Under Suspicion), created the soundtrack for Sony
PlayStations Die Hard video game, collaborated with Peter Gabriel on the
music for Britains New Years 2000 celebration, and remixed for such artists as
Madonna, Seal, and Sarah McLachlan. His stock continues to rise with the recent release of
his third album, Movement In Still Life, a disc being driven by the success of its
lead single, Never Gonna Come Back Down. In addition to garnering serious
radio airplay, the trackwhich features former Soul Coughing vocalist M.
Doughtywill also appear on the upcoming Charlies Angels soundtrack. Of
the album, BT says, I wanted this record to sound like one of the greatest mix tapes
that a friend would make for you. The title is about trying to stay centered and still
during a very turbulent time. Its a reference to the three years I spent with Warner
Bros. Records awhile backthey totally didnt understand what I was doing. It
was a horrible influence over my creative output. Luckily, those days are gone and
Im feeling really good. As he prepares for an upcoming tour, the
classically-trained artist spent Five Minutes talking about Peter Gabriel, Bobba
Fett, and being Warner Bros. bitch.
drDrew.com: What's your favorite thing to do when no one else is around?
BT: Either drive really fast through the hills of Hollywood or play fetch with my
dog. Boring, huh?
drDrew.com: Name a guilty pleasure.
BT: Chasing my girlfriend around the house with a greasy spatula [laughs].
drDrew.com: What's your greatest fear?
BT: Flying. I hate it. Its an unnatural act. I detest it. I especially hate
flying over water. A plane is basically a bus with wings.
drDrew.com: What's your favorite part of your body?
BT: My hands, because thats what I use to make music.
drDrew.com: If you could change one thing about
yourself, what would it be?
BT: Im obsessive-compulsive and wish I wasnt. Id like to go
easier on myself regarding tidiness.
drDrew.com: What was your worst day job?
BT: Being Warner Bros. bitch.
drDrew.com: What's your idea of perfect happiness?
BT: Not being on Warner Bros. Records.
drDrew.com: What's something you're good at that's
BT: Im great at catching things with my feet. If something drops, I can catch
it with my feet before it hits the ground.
drDrew.com: What's your favorite album for a night of
steamy monkey love?
BT: Its gotta be something filthy and funky, like the darkest, nastiest drum
n bass track you can get your hands on. It would probably be something from Roni
drDrew.com: What was your most memorable celebrity
BT: Meeting and having dinner with Peter Gabriel. He told me this crazy story about
how Kiss got their idea for stage makeup from him. That was the biggest spinout session of
my whole life. According to [Gabriel], the guy from Casablanca Records [Kiss first
label], called Peter to his office and said, The stage makeup that you used to wear
with Genesis was amazing. Ive got this baby band that Ive just signed and they
need some kind of hook. I want them to talk to you about the theatrical stuff you used to
do. Peter went to meet them and it was Kiss, and he told them about what he used to
do, and they were like Whoa, we never heard of Genesis. He ended up helping
them decide to do their theatrical thing. This was straight from Peter Gabriels
drDrew.com: If they were to make an action figure of
you, what accessories would it come equipped with?
BT: A big smashed synthesizer. I always trash my synth rig during the live show.
drDrew.com: Who would you like to trade places with for
BT: Brad Pitt [laughs].
drDrew.com: Who's your favorite fictional character?
BT: Bobba Fett from Star Wars--hands down. Bobba Fett smokes all.
drDrew.com: What Hollywood star would play you in a
documentary based on your life?
BT: People are always teasing me, saying that I look like Val Kilmers younger
brother. So I guess it would be him.
drDrew.com: What song best represents the soundtrack of
BT: Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini by Rachmaninoff.
drDrew.com: If you could choose what to come back as,
what would it be?
BT: It would be a tree because I think theyre the most beautiful and wise
things on the planet. We need to stop cutting them down.
drDrew.com: When you were a kid growing up, who did you
imitate when you stood in front of the mirror?
BT: When I was 12 and had my funky new wave haircut, it was Dave Gahan from Depeche
Mode. Later, when I learned how to play guitar, it was Hendrix, followed by Richard Butler
from the Psychedelic Furs.
drDrew.com: Name a book you've read recently and liked.
BT: Conversations With God.
drDrew.com: Name a film you've seen recently and liked.
BT: American Beauty is the best movie Ive seen in yearsand
Thomas Newmans score is just sick.
drDrew.com: Name an album you've heard recently and
BT: I really love Yo La Tengos And Then Nothing Turned Itself and Wishville
from Catherine Wheel. Ive also got some unreleased Radiohead tracks that are just
sick. Theyre my favorite band.
drDrew.com: Finish this line: "If we can send a man
to the moon, then why... ?
cant we stop eating animals?
drDrew.com: What will you remember most about the '90's?
BT: Arsenio Hall 8-ball jackets and flannel shirts.