Swizzle Shtick

Having a drink with Bob Log III.

Who, living or dead, would Bob Log III most like to share a stage with? "I like Peaches," says the singer. "She is a one-woman band that kicks ass and sings about her tits. We get along great. And I want to tour with her and make a baby."

Is the world ready for Bob Log IV? Hell, are we ready for the Bob Log at hand? Let's refer to the second song on his 2003 release, Log Bomb (Fat Possum). "One Man Band Boom" is a succinct self-introduction that speaks for itself. "I'm Bob Log the third, one-man band," he sings in a swaggering, uneven cadence broken by yelps and crashes. "Tucson, Arizona/Lemme introduce the band to you/On cymbals, left foot/Over here on the bass drum, we got right foot/Shut up!/It's my left hand does all the slide work/Right hand does all the picking/My mouth hole does most of the talking/And you're looking at my finger/Don't talk to my finger—my finger is an asshole." In case you hadn't gleaned it, Bob Log III plays the blues—and, appropriately, he plays them alone.

"I like to play my guitar. A lot. When my drummer didn't show up, I decided to play anyway," Log tells me. In the late '90s, while he and former Doo Rag collaborator Thermos Malling were on tour supporting another duo, the all-over-the-map rockers Ween, Malling just went missing one night. No matter—Log knew instantly that his "slide guitar parties" would continue to rage on. He'd just have to figure out how to do the legwork as well.

But Log isn't just known for his self-sufficient band. Most recently, he's become infamous for imploring women to put their boobs in his scotch. There are better songs on the record, to be sure, but the single, "Boob Scotch," which immediately follows his self-intro, is a sludgy blues drag that instructs his audience to pass his tumbler of scotch around so that all the ladies in the house might take the opportunity to help him enjoy "scotch and ice mixed by a tit."

"I just want women to put their boob in my drink," says Log, like it's the most normal thing in the world. "I really just want everyone to enjoy a boob of their choice in a drink of their choice. It makes my day better, and I think it will do the same for other people. Sharing is good."

Sure, yeah, great. Sharing is good. And rock and rollers get away with all kinds of stuff that the average Joe would never be pardoned for, but boobs as swizzle sticks? Mixing scotch?

"Actually, the country that put their boobs in my drink the most was the good old U.S.A.," Log reports when, knowing that he's proverbially and literally "big in Japan" and other countries, I inquire as to where he's had the best response to his suggestion. "Fifteen other countries did it, too, but not as many times. I don't know why, maybe it's the toothpaste," he says.

Maybe so. On the other hand, "Hell, yes," is Log's short answer to my query regarding dissenters. "One girl ripped the [micro]phone out of my helmet [because] she was so upset that I got a girl to put her boob in my drink. But those are always the first people laughing when a big fat man with big fat-man boobs puts his boob in a drink. I resent the fact that some people think only women have boobs. But on that note, I would like to remind everybody that I don't drink dude boob scotches. Thank you."

Duly noted. While it's tempting, it would be wrong to reduce Log to just his favorite drink—or even his lack of bandmates, or even the trademark helmet/gas mask he wears onstage through which all manner of backwoods nonsense gets muffled, distorted, and amplified. Log is the sum of these parts, a die-hard and unapologetic bluesman who was raised on rock, trained on both AC/DC and R.L. Burnside, and who is not at all afraid to reconfigure the setup of his guitar so that his rhythmic style is rendered even more steady by the low-end alluvium of his strings and the slide that skids across them like a semi through muddy waters. And yes, he's as irreverent and nasty as all hell, but that fits in quite nicely with his blues, especially when he's alongside his punk-rock contemporaries. But really, it's better—or at least more fun—if you just let him tell you about it himself.

lcassidy@seattleweekly.com

Bob Log III plays the Crocodile on Fri., March 5, at 9 p.m. with the Demons and the Gloryholes. $8 adv.

 
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