It’s a snowy day on the East Coast, and Goose multi-instrumentalist Peter Anspach is looking back fondly on the band’s successful Goosemas performance, seven stories high at Rockefeller Center. Thankfully, the celebration will continue this weekend with a full rebroadcast of the show on FANS.live giving fans – and even the band members – a chance to soak up any tunes they’d like to enjoy a second time around. And while the Goosemas show was a watershed moment for the Connecticut band, Anspach notes that there are a few things still on his holiday wish list for 2021.
“The one thing I miss the most is just a packed room,” he says fondly. “Basically how everything used to be. There’s nothin’ like the sound of a crowd in a venue.”
In the meantime, Anspach and company will join thousands of others on their couches this weekend, tuning into the free Goosemas rebroadcast on Saturday, Dec. 19.
You’re about a week out from Goosemas, and fans seemed to have loved the show. How do you feel about how it went down?
We were waiting to decide when we would actually do it for a while because of the weather. That was the biggest question mark. It was originally supposed to be this weekend, on the 19th, but I think that would have been quite chilly, and potentially still snowy [Laughs.]
I’m really glad we decided to do it on the 11th, and that was a decision we made three days before we announced it. So it was kind of like this amazing anticipation within our team, because we hadn’t told anyone that we were doing this.
People thought it was a joke. And we were just so excited to announce it for real, because we knew just how ridiculous it was. Like, “We’re just going to play on the top of a building in New York City.”
Rockefeller Center is so synonymous with Christmas time and the holidays, so it works perfectly for our Goosemas show. And yeah, the reaction was just priceless from people we knew. We were getting the funniest reactions. And then it seems like afterwards people really dug the background and how everything was put on–the performance, the camera work. And it seemed like our crew did an incredible job, so very proud of everyone who worked on it.
Tell me a little bit about how the idea for Goosemas at Rockefeller Center was born?
Certainly there were talks about Goosemas back in September, and maybe even August, where we were just kind of deciding like, “Will drive-ins in the south still be happening in the winter? Can we do a drive-in in the south? Is that a possibility?”
It didn’t look like that was going to happen, and then it kind of came down to like, “Okay, I think we should do some kind of stream thing.” And it was either, we go big at some crazy destination, or we just do a thing at home in front of the fireplace.
But our managers kind of took it upon themselves to reach out and try and nail down some wild locations. We talked about Radio City, that was an option.
Yeah, but that was just not feasible. But it was certainly on the table. That was the first target, because it was inside. So, and then, we just kept tossing out wild ideas, Rockefeller Center was one.
Gus Field, he’s the guy who really made it happen, he’s friends with Pete Shapiro. And our manager Ben reached out to Pete, was like, “Hey, we need a spot.” I think we were even thinking about doing it at The Cap–a livestream at The Capitol Theatre. But yeah, this kind of trumped everything because it’s just like, the best possible location.
Were there any kind of funny reactions when you guys were either performing or loading in? People like “What the heck is going on here?”
Certainly on the load-in. We had to get like, police permission to drive down this road that they closed off for the holidays. And then all the security were like, “Are you here for the event?” And we were just like, “What is the event?” And they’re like, “Goose.” And we’re like, “Uh, yeah… That’s us!” [Laughs.] It was just so funny that everybody knew what was going on, even though they didn’t really know who we were.
I heard it was really an “all hands on deck” operation, with you guys moving your own gear.
Well first of all, we adore our crew. And if there’s any moment where we feel like the crew is working and we’re not–I feel bad, personally. So y’know, we get involved as a band–we’re all like loading in and setting up, it’s just how it works with Goose I guess, y’know. And it’s more fun that way, anyway.
Your last New York show before this was your Jan. 25 stop at Music Hall of Williamsburg. From there to Rockefeller Center is quite a quantum leap.
Sure, absolutely. I can’t believe it’s the same year, honestly. It feels so long ago, but those shows were so special, and this is incredibly special. You go from playing a room [like Music Hall of Williamsburg]–650, I mean, that’s really a significant size. Especially in New York.
And then y’know, I think there was like over 11,000 people watching the stream at least. Specific accounts tuned in, it could equate to like 40,000/50,000. It’s just unbelievable how many people have checked us out this year. I think it’s been, by far, our biggest year yet. Which is so crazy to say, because there was so much uncertainty, especially back in April, about what was going to happen this year. I was definitely pretty scared if we were going to be able to play any shows at all, or what was kind of the outlook and the timeline. So I’m really grateful that we were able to play some drive-ins, and do something as spectacular as we just did for Goosemas.
I’m really grateful for it honestly.
What were the challenges of throwing this event and also being COVID safe?
Yeah I mean, one of the things I was just really concerned about, going into the Goosemas week was–”Oh my god, what if somebody gets covid?” We announced this thing, this is a weather dependent event that can only happen on one day. And if one of us gets covid, it’s all over. One of the band, or crew, or anyone like, related, or who’s living with the band, that would be it. It would be done.
I just hope people understand that it’s just like a very crazy time to be in, for sure. And we tried to play it as safe as we could. We didn’t travel too far, we made sure we were smart about wearing masks, and making sure all the venue staff were wearing masks as well. I mean, we barely talked to any of the people in the crowd, all Fall, which was kind of a bummer, But y’know, we were trying to keep it safe.
Awesome, you’d mentioned it was a weather-dependent event, I wanted to ask you about the ski suits you all wore to stay warm.
Right. Shinesty–shout out to them. They’re just like this hysterical company, I mean if you check out their website, it’s just the most ridiculous stuff you’ve ever seen. So yeah, Ben had a connection to them, Ben Baruch our manager. And he just reached out to them and they hooked up the suits for free. Because it was cold, but not in those things. Y’know, we were almost too hot honestly.
The original plan was the night before Halloween was going to be 30 degrees and there was snow on the ground. We were like, “Oh my god, let’s get the suits now, and wear them [for Halloween].” So we rush-ordered them to have them that day, but that show ended up getting cancelled. But that would have been pretty funny to have worn them, I mean they would have been great that day.
With Goosemas donations, you guys raised over $45,000 for NIVA and Conscious Alliance and will continue to collect money through this weekend’s rebroadcast. Tell me a little bit about why it’s important to have that charitable element to Goosemas.
Yeah, so that’s something we really started doing last year at Goosemas, where we did a food drive for the local soup kitchen/food bank in Norwalk. Which is where originally Goosemas has been every year. But this year it’s certainly more on a national scale. So, going with Save Our Stages makes a lot of sense for us obviously. We would be where we are, if we didn’t have local venues that support us and local venues that allowed us to play over so many years, as we were growing as a band. And obviously food is a serious concern, especially now, people are struggling financially. So just making sure we can provide as much as we can for that. Yeah, and Conscious Alliance supports people all over the country, so we thought that was a good move–to get those involved.
Will you guys be watching the rebroadcast?
I’m definitely going to watch the whole thing. I remixed and remastered the audio, so I’ve listened to it, but I haven’t watched it.
That’s awesome, is that something that you guys do a lot? Watch game tape, as they say?
Yeah, I mean I personally do. It’s really good to be able to listen back to what you’ve done and grow from that. The game tape aspect is very much a thing. We record all our practices and listen back to that. Yeah, it’s a big thing.
Cool, and then kind of my last question is–what’s next for you guys? I mean, I’m sure you’re taking some time off for the holidays. But do you guys have anything else kind of cooking for the winter?
Yeah, definitely some stuff is coming up. Some really, really exciting, like long-anticipated stuff, so. I can’t say what, but… [Laughs.]