E (Mark Oliver Everett)–singer-songwriter of the eels

E (nee Mark Oliver Everett)–singer-songwriter of the eels, one of the most critically acclaimed bands of the last dozen years–in a discussion framed around animal ideas, discusses the werewolf motif and animal instinct that underpins some of “Hombre Lobo,” the band’s new album, which has generated yet another stack of laudatory reviews; addresses the inspiration behind the animal songs and images that pop up in his songwriting; specifically recounts the impetus behind “I Like Birds,” a signature eels song written as a sweet tribute to E’s late mother; explains how Bobby, Jr.–his beloved once-homeless rescue dog, immortalized in song and video (Bobby, Jr. even has his own MySpace page)–entered his life, and has since had a profound impact personally and musically; and touches on an array of other topics from Michael Jackson to the prospect of touring behind “Hombre Lobo,” to the striking new length of his beard. [www.EelsTheBand.com]

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COMEDY CORNER: Richard Jeni’s “Fred Robster” (www.RichardJeni.com)

MUSIC: Steve Martin’s version of “The Crow,” eels’ “I Like Birds,” instrumentals

NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE: Muddy Waters’ “Tom Cat”

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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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