The Lowertown Line Lowdown with Black Diet


Black Diet will be hitting the stage at Bedlam Lowertown for the next taping of The Lowertown Line on Wednesday, November 19. Since their appearance on Skyway Sessions, we couldn’t get enough and have been eagerly anticipating their taping of The Lowertown Line (tix still available)!

Formed in 2011, the six member garage/indie/soul band was a winner of’s Are You Local? Showcase and was named one of First Avenue’s Best New Bands of 2013. Black Diet is made up of singer/songwriter Jonathan Tolliver (JT), vocalist Mugsy, guitarist Mitchell Sigurdson, Sean Schultze on keyboard and guitar, drummer David Tullis, and Garrison Grouse on bass.

But who is Black Diet, really? They’re talented musicians, yes, and seem like a fun group peeps, so we wanted to get to know them a little better. Responses are via JT and just make us love the band even more.


How’d you guys meet/get started?

We met via craigslist, chain letter style. One member would join, and then that member would post for a new member. Craig has an amazing list, and it’s helped me find a number of things.


Does the band have any pre-show rituals?

Mmm. We’ve all got our own things. Garrison sits in his mom’s big red van and does whatever he does in that van. The rest of us aren’t allowed in.

Mugsy dresses to the nines for every show, and emerges like a goddess right before we’re about to go on.

I pace around the venue. I get really anxious. It’s a good kind of anxiety. Kind of like “hurry up and be show time already.”


What is your favorite past Lowertown Line episode?

Malamanya! I believe I heard about them through their Lowertown session. They’re tremendous.


Where does the band rehearse?

In Garrison’s mom’s basement. Deb Grouse. That place is single-handedly propping up half the Minneapolis music scene.


What is the band’s favorite hang out place?

1) Deb’s basement.

2) Any soul dance night.

3) The Nomad

Mitch creeps around record stores all day. I’m convinced he doesn’t have a job.


Favorite local show in the last year?

Aaron and the Sea knocks my socks off. I saw them at The Entry opening for The Knocks. Electro-R&B with punch. Verve. Love it.


Musical inspiration?

We all love 60’s soul. I think Mitch is probably the most soulful. Knows every record ever made.

I’m big on gospel music, r&b, indie-rock with great textures.


Black Diet member most likely to buy a hot dog from a shady hot dog stand?

That’s me, of course, but there are others I wouldn’t put it past. I’ll say Sean is a close second. I’ve seen some things.


Want to see Black Diet live at The Lowertown LineClick here.