"Like most performers, I tend to be most attracted to people who hate me."
Comedian, musician, and lover Dave Hill is a man of many talents and finely tailored suits. In addition to wearing the hell out of a salmon-colored jacket, Dave recently released a new album called Use Your Weapons with his power pop band, Valley Lodge. He has appeared on HBO, Comedy Central, BBC-America, MTV, Cinemax, and Fuse. He's currently the only comedian with a web series for Huffington Post that takes place in a women's bathroom, Stallin' It with Dave Hill. He has a collection of heartbreakingly hilarious essays, Tasteful Nudes, in stores now. Do yourself a favor, put on your best suit and get a copy.
In your hilarious memoir Tasteful Nudes, you describe your experience on a nudist cruise. Are there times now when you think taking your clothes off would improve a situation?
If you’re talking about my clothes specifically, the answer is no, absolutely not, not even in the case of a medical exam or surgery even. I do reluctantly make an exception to this rule for bathing and/or if I think there is even the slightest chance of friction taking place on a date, at Cinnabon, or, you know, wherever. I am in favor of other people taking their clothes off whenever possible, but as for me, the world is a better/safer place the more flesh I have covered up, mostly because I’m really, really pasty, but also because of the baboon heart.
In the book, you recount your experience living in a tiny room at the infamous Chelsea Hotel. What's the strangest thing that happened to you while living there?
After about three weeks of living there, I suddenly realized the old man next door was actually a woman. But I imagine that sort of thing happened a lot at the hotel over the years. And since I didn’t have my own bathroom, I did end up peeing in the sink in the corner of my room a lot more than I’d like to admit. That didn’t really happen to me, though. I guess when it gets down to it, I’m just a man without limits. Or dignity.
For all the New Yorkers living in glorified closets, do you have any suggestions on how to impress potential love interests despite the tiny apartment?
I always try to leave as much cash lying around as possible. Another good trick is to leave out a stack of X-rays and at some point hold them up to the light and stare at them intently before saying to your prospective mate “Would you remind me to get back to the lab as soon as we’re done here? I think I can save him!” Also, if you’re building will allow it, it’s never a bad idea to have a pet chimp dressed in military attire just kind of hanging out the whole time. Of course, this comes with its own set of problems, but- trust me on this one- it’s totally worth it.
How long did it take you to flesh out this memoir? Was it easier or harder than writing an album?
I wrote Tasteful Nudes over the course of about a year. It was definitely much harder than writing an album what with all that typing and all, but once I got into the flow of it, I was actually kind of fun. Also, it was nice to know at least partially what I was going to do each day, and usually in my underwear. There was more pressure involved too, because I had already cashed that giant cardboard check the publisher gave me so I had to actually turn something in. With music, I pretty much do it solely to entertain myself first and I don’t feel much pressure at all. I do it for fun, to travel, and to occasionally see if I can get a song placed in a hot dog commercial or something.
"Go" the first single off of Valley Lodge's "Use your Weapon" is ridiculously catchy. It's like Fountains of Wayne, Ok-Go and T. Rex made a song baby. What were you listening to while making this record?
Thanks! I was definitely listening to T. Rex. That’s always big in my rotation. I sort of envision Valley Lodge as the band that plays at a pool party gone wrong in an afterschool special from 1975. “Go” specifically was inspired by the feeling of going on our first Japanese tour, the bright lights and high-pitched screaming and all that. There’s actually some butchered Japanese in the pre-chorus that I said on stage between songs while we were over there. It loosely translates to “You are a fantastic dancer. Touch me here.” I’d touch my heart after the word here, though, making it, I guess, hopefully more sweet than creepy (though still pretty creepy looking back on it). I spent most of the tour stringing together random phrases from a Japanese translation book I was reading aloud from in the van, annoying the crap out of everyone, especially our Japanese crew. It never got old to me, though.
As a comedian/musician, who would you say is better to date; comedian or musician?
A comedian will never ask you to help carry anything, so there’s that. Also, musicians tend to want you to actually come see them perform a lot more often than comedians do, which is a hassle. Generally speaking, though, musicians tend to at least dress better than comedians.
Would you steer clear of chuckle-fuckers?
Usually. Like most performers, I tend to be most attracted to people who hate me.
What instrument hasn't been utilized enough in love songs?
I was gonna say the didgeridoo, but everyone knows those didgeridoo guys get more ass than a toilet seat. Maybe the tuba?
"My girlfriend wants to have phone sex. As a first timer, how do you ease into, 'Hey what's going on?' to 'I'm stroking your throbbing penis.'"
You’re doing it all wrong. Mention the penis stroking first, then ask her what’s going on.
"I have a crush on this hottie that hangs out at my coffee shop. Is there a better way to strike up conversation other than,"What's the wi-fi password?""
I suggest ordering a large black coffee, making direct eye contact with the hottie in question, and then dumping the entire large black coffee onto your crotch without flinching. This is what’s known in mating circles as a “power move.” Oh, and be sure to let her know you’ll treat her like gold. If you want to ask her for the wi-fi password after that, that’s totally up to you.
"It seems like drummers and guitarists get all the action. I play the french horn, is there any hope for me?"
Yes, but not sexually. No, I’m just kidding. Somewhere right now there’s a gal who gets so hot and bothered by the French horn that it’s actually kind of weird. Let’s just hope she gets out of jail soon.
"My boyfriend of two years and I broke up last month. I'm sad and horny. How long should I wait before sleeping with someone else?"
This has already gone on way too long if you ask me. Now you get down to the nearest bus station right now and start living, dammit!
"I have no game. How do I get game?"
You have to take a Buddhist approach here, meaning you will only get game after you have freed yourself of the desire to have game. If that doesn’t work, you could try wearing a furry hat or something.