Interview: Rocker Lizard McGee Talks Holy Moley, Cats, Quarantine & More
When the show Holey Moley first aired last summer, it introduced viewers to a world of outlandish characters playing golf in ways that you wouldn’t normally see televised. But the concept was nothing new for local rocker Lizard McGee who has been participating in underground golf tournaments with friends wearing crazy costumes on unconventional courses for over a decade.
“I live on a secluded property and my best friend and I had decided to put a little Scottish-style golf course in my yard,” stated McGee on a phone call with CU earlier this week. “We began a yearly tournament called ‘The Silver Baby Cup’ where around 150 non-golfers get together and we have bands playing for a three-day weekend campout. I’ve won that tournament twice.”
Through those experiences, McGee discovered an online casting call for the ABC mini-golf competition show Holey Moley, and signed up having not watched the first season at all in 2019.
“I’ve seen Wipeout and some of the older Japanese shows that are similar, but I really went in blind,” he explained. “I pitched to them that I’m a rock star and a golfer, but during our video chat last fall they found out that I also have 17 cats and they were really interested in that.”
McGee got the confirmation in January that he was selected to be on the show, which was filmed just north of Los Angeles in February. Sworn to secrecy about the taping, he arrived back in Central Ohio as the pandemic began to take hold and the shutdown started to take a toll on local businesses and jobs.
“I lost my job, but we’re lucky that my wife has a good job and because of how we live we’re able to maintain without too much hardship,” he explained. “Right when I came back I was pumped up because I was going to be on TV. I was excited to share with people the amazing experience I had, but was then faced with the reality of this desperate situation for a lot of people. I hope that people are still able to enjoy it though and have fun with a bit of escapism.”
Meanwhile, McGee’s band Earwig kicked off 2020 with big plans for a new album, but the quarantine has disrupted that project as well.
“We started recording in January for new record in September,” he stated. “I was gonna go to California for the show and then come home and have another recording session, but that’s now offline. The full band has not gotten together for six months now.”
Despite the setbacks, Earwig managed to write and release a new single earlier this month called “Forbidden Planet” which McGee describes as “quarantine rock”.
Local viewers looking to cheer on McGee can catch the latest episode this Thursday night.
Holey Moley airs on Thursdays at 8pm on ABC.