Bert Miller And The Animal Folk self-released their debut album in December 2012. Primarily a 'live band'. They are excellent in performance. Bert is brilliantly funny and his off the cuff speeches often have everyone, including the band, in stitches. They have the musical ability to be both sweet and delicate and then surprisingly raucous and high energy.
We caught up with Bert outside a Thai massage parlour, by the looks of things, he had just received a deep tissue massage. Whilst he was paying the nice masseuse 'Phuk-Me' for his services, we asked him some questions….
Please introduce the band and your music in one sentence.... Post watershed Disney!
You’re called Bert Miller and The Animal Folk, how did you come about choosing this name? It's an ego thing!! . . No, not really, I'm just called Bert miller. It wouldn't seem right to make me up a different name. I'm not sure how we came about 'animal folk' . We was at a festival in France and a friend said we should be called the animal folk! . . We are not folk. But we are people! Folk.
How has social media aided your music? It hasn't.
How and when did you decide that you wanted to be in a band/performer? I've always been a show off.
What is the best advice you ever received and who was it from? From my dad. . When I was a kid, he said, "you can't be an actor! . . You have to get a real job! . . . And be a musician!"
I have seen your band play on many occasions, for a newcomer, please explain one of your live shows? Someone once described it as, crazy, innocent, playful, musical, noisy, deep, shallow, wild, domestic, charismatic, genuine, tongue-in-cheek, hilarious, offensive and endearing.
Would you rather live with a dog that sings lullabies or a gorilla that can do sign language? Explain your answer A gorilla that can do sign language. I still won't be able to understand him or her. Cause I don't speak 'sign'. But IT'S A GORILLA!
In your opinion, what is the BEST album/record ever released? Hard question! I don't think I could have one best album. Depends what I'm in the mood for listening to at the time. . . But the most mind blowing albums, that have had the biggest impact on my life, would be any of Devendra Banharts albums. (But maybe not his last one. Haven't lisened to it properly yet)
Tell me a fascinating fact about you or one of your band members? I'm really struggling with this question. There are so many. I can't think of one to tell you. . . I suppose that's pretty fascinating
Do you own a record that you wouldn’t like to admit you have? No.
Who designed the artwork for your Album cover? A very good friend of ours called Charlie Scullion. . He's amazing! He also designed my tattoo, of a worm, I have on my foot.
Is there something you would like to tell each of the band members that you haven’t told them before? No. We are very open with each other. We tell each other everything and anything. I tell them to much maybe!
What classic song would you have liked to have recorded and why? None really. I would rather just hear the original versions. Plus I don't enjoy recording. I'm in the wrong business.
First gig you ever went to? My dads.
Where did you record your debut album and what made you choose that studio? In the 'TapeRooms'. In Bristol. By our friend called Drezz Drezzler.
Name three people (alive, dead or fictional) that you would like as dinner party guests? Hitler would be quite amusing. We could make his food extra spicy and put a date rape pill in his drink. We won't rape him! Obviously. But we could tie him up, duck tape a phone to his head and keep ringing it all night to wind him up! Haha! . . My second person would have to be Ann Frank. She would piss herself at the ringing phone that's duck taped to Hitler. And for my third person, hmmmm . Maybe that sign talking gorilla. . . Actually, thinking about it, that would be a shit party. I wouldn't be able to understand anyone!
There are many good bands and musicians out there, who would you ask the readers of musicmuso to look out for? Roger Miller
Who would you like to know has your music on their iPod, MP3 or cassette walkman? YOU!!!!!
If you could describe your music in the form of a fictional character, who would it be? That stupid seagull from the little mermaid.
Do you think we can ever live in a world where a chicken can cross the road without having its motives questioned? I hope not. I wanna know where she's going at all times.
What are your plans for 2014? Tour Europe and kiss lots of girls that look like Pocahontas.
Have you had any ‘Spinal Tap’ Moments? If yes, please share! never seen it!
Are you planning on playing at any festivals in 2014? If so, which one(s)? Yeah loads! Not sure what ones yet!
Bert was counting out a pile of small notes and Phuk-Me's brother Phuk-Yu had come out to see what the commotion was about, whilst they were discussing whether or not Bert actually wanted the 'Happy Ending' that Phuk-Me was offering, we rolled in the quick fire questions….
Coffee or Tea? Milkshake please?
Coke or Pepsi? I'm easy.
Drum machine or the real deal? Real deal
Mac or PC? Mac.
Fry up or Sunday roast? Veggie roast!
Lemmy (Motorhead) or Ozzy (Black Sabbath)? Never heard either!
CD or Vinyl? Don't mind.
Car or Motorbike? Car! I get my first car this week! Watch out the world!!!!!
Acoustic or electric? Acoustic.
Angelina or Jennifer? Both at the same time!
Shower or Bath? Shower
Tattoos or Piercings? Both
Robert de Niro or Al Pacino? Oooh, Al might just have the edge with 'scarface'
God or Google? GOD!?
Now that you know all of Bert's inner secrets, why not spend a few minutes checking out their social media pages. You can play the tracks from the Album & EP links below, once you hear them, you'll be wanting more so get them purchased, then you can listen whenever and wherever you are.
We at musicmuso.com would like to thank Bert for his time and can assure you that no animals were hurt during the interview.