Pop Quiz: Gnarls Barkley

Aidin Vaziri | Brian “Danger Mouse” Burton has produced albums for Beck, the Black Keys and Ike Turner. He’s also the guy responsible for 2004’s “The Grey Album,” an unsanctioned mash-up of the Beatles and Jay-Z that was downloaded by millions. But the 31-year-old studio maverick is probably best known as half of Gnarls Barkley, the costume-loving, Grammy-winning group behind the blockbuster hit “Crazy” and 2006’s multiplatinum “St. Elsewhere.” The duo’s latest release, “The Odd Couple,” continues to twist genres, mixing hip-hop with psychedelic rock. But is the group still dressing like the “Star Wars” cantina band? Find out when Gnarls Barkley headlines the two-day Slow Food Rocks festival at the Great Meadow at Fort Mason Center on Saturday. Us? We just asked Burton.

Danger Mouse
Q: Did you ever secretly hope that Gnarls Barkley would flop so you would have more time in the studio with your other projects?
A: No. It’s OK. We toured on and off for almost a year on the first record, but I still did a lot of stuff in between. On this album, we only did a few months. That’s pretty much it. It’s not a big deal.
Q: You used to perform in a mouse outfit because you were too shy to perform in front of people. Do you still need a stiff drink before going onstage now?
A: I still do. Not to the point of being completely intoxicated, but it definitely helps take the edge off for me.
Q: What’s your nerve tonic of choice?
A: Ah, it differs. I don’t know. I don’t want to go into my exact formula or anything like that because it might be different by the time this makes it to print. Continue reading.


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