Welcome back to another visit with a real-life recording artist for an exclusive, often wincing peek at the secret sonic home lives of professional musicians. For the whole story of why, look here.

Howe Gelb is the multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, composer, producer and founder of Giant Sand which was first the man, then the band and now is the vibrant creative collective at the pulse point of the American Southwest's alternative music scene. Howe's discography is a sweeping document of idiosyncratic guts and beauty befitting an artist who has achieved genuine legend status: A distinction won without so much as a tip of his sun-crunchy Stetson to Big Music's commercial interests. Gelb is the unchallenged godfather and
respected Dean to Tucson's underground school of reflective, thinking-man-in-the-desert Rock. He is a musician's musician, a gifted innovator and an honest-to-gosh nice guy who allowed 6moons to visit with him in Lapland -- or Sweden or some other godforsaken place like that -- where he and his family spend part of their year.

Is your sand really all that giant?
Yep. It really is.
What's your favorite Howe Gelb album?
The one that's not out yet: Sno Angle - Like You.
What do you mean, "No angel like me?" You mean I'm no angel? Or someone else isn't an angel like I am because I'm such an angel?
You have to picture me and ten Baptist Gospel singers lying flat on our backs in minus 43° snow in Ottawa, flailing our arms to make snow angels. And then you read the title above that - Howe Gelb: Sno Angle... like you ...a positive message, I think.
You split your time between two countries, so you must have at least two stereos. Can you tell me about the best one?
The one in Tucson is the best. It was made in Denmark - an old Bang & Olufsen from the 70s. Friends coming over think it's a giant phone machine because Danes have lots of designing time on their hands. It actually has 6 individual mini radios in it to switch among your 6 favorite channels, instead of one radio where the dial just moves. Man, they've got the best sense of humor.
Those zany, madcap Nordic knuckleheads.
It's high-concept comedy.
So a Vintage B&O system. Very cool. The worst home stereo?
The one in Denmark. It was brought over from Tucson and is just a Discman or something plugged into... something.
Hmmm... So the one in Denmark is from the US and the one in the US is from Denmark. And the one in Denmark is an old portable plugged into - something mysterious.
That's correct.
Something unexplained.
Something uncertain and generally unresolved.
Who's your favorite Monkee?
There's no such thing as a favorite monkee...is there?
Between Norway and Arizona, which area has the cleanest AC power?
Bosh, you do know we live in Denmark, and that's not Norway, don't you?
Norway, Denmark, Minnesota...they're all blondes and they're all frozen ass-solid, right? And it's dark over there a lot. Maybe, Howe, just maybe you live in Norway and don't even realize it.
I should be more open-minded. What was the question again?
The AC quality?
Yeah. Do you mean alternating current? Well they got a lot more volts over here. Or do you mean air conditioning? Which we don't have in either place. Back in Tuscon we have a swamp cooler; cools without refrigeration. It just fools you that way. And here it's called winter.
What sort of stuff do you typically listen to at home?
Jazz...I am almost certain it's Jazz. It's old....and it wobbles...and has the best tones ever...and it changes every time you listen to it. Especially when you listen to it over and over.
Maybe the wobbles and the atypical tones and overall inconsistencies mean that portable of yours needs new batteries?
(Long, slightly uncomfortable pause...)
Ahem... Do you listen to vinyl on the old B&O?
Oh yeah. That is the sound of the future. Amazing tone.
Whoa. Could you be a musician who's actually an audiophile? What's your preferred brand of speaker cable?
Usually the one that works. Brown, I guess
Did you marry a Danish girl because of the B&O?
Well, she tricked me. And maybe I did. But I recall wanting a Bang & Olufsen from as far back as I can remember, so maybe I figured she was an omen of the B&O to come. (Laughter) Oh man.
Who's your favorite Monkee?
Thelonious Monkee.
Are you going to finish those fries?
Hey bub, we call 'em pommes frittes over here. Invented in Belgium. And although they speak French in the Southern half of that teeny country, the actual French had nothing to do with creating the fry. And if you really want to call them "Freedom Fries", you are setting yourself up for a sad slice of self satire.
We have more contemporary reasons to be embarrassed as Americans these days. Have you seen the Suburban Assault Vehicle? The Hummer? Naw. I don't want to call them "Freedom Fries". But I might want to call them Bill, or maybe Al.
Good. But ya know, unlike the good ol' gravy soakin' habits of the diner life back in the US -- gravy which is not to be confused with poutine up in Canada, a French word probably nicked from the Quebec province that describes a pommes frittes plate soaked in gravy and salty cheese -- they prefer a form of mayonnaise on em' here.
You mean Finland?
I suppose. And no, I'm pretty much done with Al and Bill here. You can have the rest of 'em. Cannibalism does seem appropriately provincial behavior for an audiophile, does it?

Howe's latest album, Ogle Some Piano, released in conjunctive conjecture with Thrill Jockey Records, is available now. Look for Sno' Angle Like You later this year. For a comprehensive tour schedule of live dates in the US and abroad, check here.