Chilly Gonzales the Musical Genius on Failure, Satire, and Working With Drake

You may know him as Feist's or Peaches' producer. Or perhaps you read about him in the Guinness Book of World Records, in which he holds the title for longest piano solo (27 hours, to be precise). If you're a fan of Drake, then you've heard him playing piano on “Marvin's Room.” You could have seen him on YouTube in a piano battle with Andrew W.K., or heard his song “Never Stop” on an iPad commercial. You might regard him either as a rapper or a virtuoso jazz pianist. Or, as he is wont to call himself on stage, you may simply know him as “Chilly Gonzales, the musical genius.”

Gonzales plays this Friday, Nov. 2, at the Swedish American Music Hall. His shows can be described many ways: cartoonish, dandy-ish, vaudevillian, or like Philip Glass meeting Andy Kaufman. Gonzo knows what he wants (your attention) and isn't afraid to try any number of outlandish tactics to get it. Typically dressed in bedroom slippers and a silk robe embroidered with his initials, he sometimes stands on the piano, playing it with his feet, and other times plays the bongos and raps.

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