“Stay the course. Keep on trying.” So sings Glenn Mercer on the Feelies’ In Between, their sixth album and second since rebooting in 2008. Last year, the Haledon, N.J., band founded by guitarists Mercer and Bill Million celebrated its 40th anniversary. Crazy Rhythms, their frenetic, classic debut, arrived in 1980, but they waited six years for their second, the comparatively sedate The Good Earth. That was the first Feelies album with the band’s current lineup of Mercer, Million, bassist Brenda Sauter, drummer Stan Demeski and percussionist Dave Weckerman. After the (relatively) quick run of three albums between 1986 and 1991, the band retired until Sonic Youth coaxed a reunion in 2008 that led to sporadic touring and to 2011’s Here Before. The Feelies will be guest editing magnetmagazine.com all week. Read our new feature on them.
Demeski: I got into jazz a little bit later, mostly because there were a lot of jazz snobs in college. The records didn’t seem as readily available and you didn’t have the internet where you could search things. And to be honest, I was too busy spending what money I had on VU, Beatles and Rolling Stones bootlegs during those years. Anyway, I guess by the mid-’80s, a nice vinyl reissue came out and I picked it up at Pier Platters. About 15 years later, the super-deluxe two-CD version came out with a Paris concert of the record as the second CD. Tenor sax is one of my favorite instruments, and I love Coltrane’s playing. Elvin Jones gives a performance that’s like a drum lesson each time I listen.