Interview: Dave Poche (Imagination Movers)

Imagination Movers PHOTO3.jpgEver since the Louisiana band Imagination Movers has had their own show on Disney (the favorite show of the Official Nephew of Zooglobble, I might add), the visibility of the high-energy jumpsuited band has grown exponentially. While up to now they've been producing the series in Louisiana, this fall they're embarking on their first national tour, helping to solve idea emergencies in a city near you.

We had the chance to catch up with red-hatted bassist Dave Poche as he was getting breakfast while on tour in Paducah, Kentucky. We talked about his musical influences, the genesis of the band, the status of lunches with his wife during filming of the TV show, and the one bad thing about being on tour.

Zooglobble: What were your early musical memories growing up?
Dave Poche: When I was very young, I had a Credence Clearwater Revival cassette, and of course a Beatles tape -- that was the first of my own music. I also liked Schoolhouse Rock. And I was really part of the early MTV generation.

As for when I was older... Rich had been involved in music for a long time and Scott sang in college. But I only had picked up the bass when I was 20 or 21. And when we formed the band, we needed somebody to play bass, so I started again.

This project sparked a lot of creativity. My father was in the LSU marching band, so I guess it just took thirty years to tap into [that creativity].

What was the spark for starting the Movers?
Having kids. We went to a lot of birthday parties and saw a lot of kids entertainment. Lots of cartoons, but there were not a lot of live action males. We thought that maybe we could create something that we didn't see at the time.

We knew folks that did fundraising work for the local public TV station and pitched a show. They were enthusiastic, but had no money.

So the original idea for the Movers was always a TV show?
Yeah. We got together at nights, from 9 PM to midnight to work. A few songs on our albums were written as the basis for the show, but we wrote songs inspired by the kids' milestones and lives. We tried to use some of existing songs for the [new] show, but it didn't work out so well. I definitely miss somewhat writing about what's there in front of us rather than being defined by the boundaries of a particular narrative.

What have been the biggest blows to your preconceived notions of doing a TV show?
The schedule -- there is so much going on at all times. Fourteen hours a day, five days a week -- it takes four days of work to put together one 22-minute show. On top of that, we have to review script notes, write songs, spend time in wardrobe. Yeah, the time commitment is something I regretfully underestimated -- I thought, hey, I'll have lunch with my wife every day. Instead, once we're there, it's like we're locked down and the warden has the key.

But the camradarie is great. The crew is 90% local, and the community support is great.

IM_Concert tour.jpgTell me about what you've done for this, your first national tour.
When we were on our own, shows might just be the four of us, with a trash can drum set. Now, I think people will be surprised by the quality of the production. We did twelve dates outside of Disney earlier this year and the response was great. We did everything on our own -- the friends who we hired got experience and they're back with us on tour. We wrote everything -- the narrative and so on.

Of course, there's also the tour bus that we quote-unquote slept on, so it's not perfect.

Have you noticed a difference in the crowd response?
Oh, yeah, they know the words, so that when we say, "It's not just a problem, it's an..." they'll all shout back "idea emergency!" The fact that they know us makes it that much more fun.

What's next for the band?
We're going to keep on doing what we're dong. We're hoping to get a Season Three of the show picked up. We'll keep touring. You know, we're like the #1 kids show in Australia and the UK - maybe we'll be able to tour there.

A lot of what didn't seem accessible, even a year ago, now seems possible. We just want to keep having fun -- it's still fun.