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3×3: Pert Near Sandstone on Northern Lights, Flaming Lips, and Flooding Rinks

Dec 15, 2016

3x3: Pert Near Sandstone on Northern Lights, Flaming Lips, and Flooding Rinks

Artist: Pert Near Sandstone — Nate Sipe (mandolin, fiddle), Justin Bruhn (bass), Kevin Kniebel (banjo/lead vocals)
Hometown: Minneapolis, MN
Latest Album: Discovery of Honey
Personal Nicknames: 
Nate: Sonny, Truck Stop 
Justin: DJ RageMouse 
Kevin: Kevin "good vibes only" Kniebel, K-scribble, or Kibbles

If you had to live the life of a character in a song, which song would you choose?

Nate: I guess I tend to relate more to the songwriter than the character in the song. But if I could choose a character, it would be based on my current mood. I would right now relate most to the character in Dave Bromberg’s “I Like to Sleep Late in the Morning.” That has an attitude toward life I can get down with. It is the first song in that I recognized fingerstyle guitar, but also the first song I recall singing with my father while driving down a northern Minnesota country road, who turned to me afterward and said, “Don’t let your mother know you sang that.” Music captured me with its rebelliousness ever after, especially with American blues and folk music. However, I never lost the Lutheran conservativeness.

Justin: Quinn the Eskimo. Everybody gonna jump for joy. 

Kevin: Yoshimi from the Flaming Lips' "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots"

Where would you most like to live or visit that you haven't yet?

Nate: I would like to visit Japan

Justin: I'd love to visit/live in Alaska or northern Canada for a while. I just watched a bunch of grizzly bear film footage and the scenery was amazing. I always want to see natural beauty and wildlife when I can. It's one of my favorite things about going on the road.

Kevin: Hawaii, Italy, and Outer Space

What was the last thing that made you really mad?

Nate: Donald Trump. I despise that guy.

Justin: Kevin not helping load in.

Kevin: Eavesdropping on a couple people talking about politics after a recent show. It is so hard to get good clear information these days, and misguided passion and misinformation often suffices for compelling logic.


Caught a deer tonight. Good job Vanderson! #pertneartour #iowa #VandersonCooper

A photo posted by Pert Near Sandstone (@pertnearsandstone) on

What's the best concert you've ever attended?

Nate: Leo Kottke’s Thanksgiving show in ‘97. I went by myself because I didn’t know anyone else who was familiar enough to spend lunch money on the ticket. I told everyone about it for the next month or more. 

Justin: Tough question. Sooo many to choose from … Neil Young with Chrissie Hynde and the Pretenders opening up in Milwaukee on Neil's Silver and Gold Tour.

Kevin: Buddy Guy headlining the Winnipeg Folk Festival during the most expansive and intense display of Northern Lights I've ever seen. I feel like I never need to see the Northern Lights again after that, but I'd love to see Buddy Guy again.

What's your go-to karaoke tune?

Nate: The Gilligan’s Island theme song

Justin: Carly Simon's "Nobody Does it Better"

Kevin:  "Yellow Submarine"

What are you reading right now?

Nate: Ranger Confidential: Living, Working, and Dying in the National Parks by Andrea Lankford

Justin: Vonnegut and a Bill Monroe Biography

Kevin: Moby Dick and Love Warrior


Nate is excited to be back at @firstavenue tonight! with @yondermountain! @themcouleeboys kicking it off at 8pm.

A photo posted by Pert Near Sandstone (@pertnearsandstone) on

Whiskey, water, or wine?

Nate: Somewhere between whiskey and water. Usually beer — a Czech-style pilsner or IPA.

Justin: Whiskey

Kevin: Scotch Whiskey

North or South?

Nate: The compass points North. The Great North. Northern Star. North by not-north. Northern else matters.

Justin: North! Flood the rinks …

Kevin: The far North

Facebook or Twitter?

Nate: Facebook is a better way to promote shows, but also more easy to interact with family and fans all in one swift motion. I also like Instagram for the visual rabbit hole of hash tags to get lost in. I’ve discovered and explored things in my own backyard with that device, including some amazing music, art, and hiking trails. 

Justin: Not on the Twitter, so I guess Facebook.

Kevin: Facebook and Instagram

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3x3: Pert Near Sandstone on Northern Lights, Flaming Lips, and Flooding Rinks
3x3: Pert Near Sandstone on Northern Lights, Flaming Lips, and Flooding Rinks