WFUV Pop Quiz: Cory Chisel

by Laura Fedele
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One of FUV's favorite new artists of 2009, Cory Chisel, makes regular trips to NYC for shows around town, as a duet (with Adriel Harris) or with a full band. The last time the pride of Appleton, Wisconsin was in town, he stopped by WFUV for a chat with his champion Rita Houston, which led to the WFUV Pop Quiz. "Nature Boy" or the "New Bruce"? You decide.

Aside from gear, your instruments or your band, you don't go on the road without...

Hats, or peanut butter. Peanut butter is the only other thing that we probably always have on us. We have a vegan in our band, and as you know, in Oklahoma it's not really easy to feed a vegan. Not very rock and roll, but helpful.

What song do you wish you had written, and why?

"Nature Boy" by Nat King Cole. That's the tattoo I have on my chest. The lines "the greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return" is probably the most profound thing I've ever heard.

Who do you wish had recorded one of your songs (dead or alive)?

The biggest one would be if Johnny Cash could've done an interpretation, or probably Willie Nelson, or Elvis Costello, or maybe Amy Winehouse, who sells millions of records.

What song would you sing in the shower but never in public?

Toni Braxton's "Unbreak My Heart."

What's the first album you bought?

U2's Achtung Baby.

If someone finds your iPod and hits shuffle, which song do you hope doesn't come up?

"Don't Speak" by No Doubt.

What's your favorite Dylan song?

"Not Dark Yet," which is on the Time Out of Mind album. If and when the day comes where I'm given a funeral, that's the one I'd go down to. I like that one a lot.

What job would you have if you weren't a musician?

Does unemployed count? Well, for two weeks of my life I worked in a Piggly Wiggly grocery store in Appleton, Wisconsin. They have a pig mascot that stands in traffic waving at people, waiting for them to come in. They retired the costume since I was so good, and they are still holding the position for me.

Do you have any hidden talents that you can share?

[Bandmate Adriel Harris:] If you ever spent time in the van with Cory you'd know he's an actor, he has like forty different characters.

Do you cook?

No, I'm a terrible cook. I can't make anything at all, but I love food and I'm not willing to eat anything bad. I always eat at our manager's house - she's the best cook around.

What is the biggest misconception that your fans or the media have about you?

That I listen to a lot of Bruce Springsteen, it happens all the time. I've always imitated Joe Strummer a little bit with the whole 'stomp your foot, scream and yell,' but I always get Bruce Springsteen.

What wacky thing would you do if you had the time or the guts?

Throw a milkshake at a moving car, or hug an emperor penguin.

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See the other artists who've taken the WFUV Pop Quiz.

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