David Lowery is the lead singer, guitarist, and primary songwriter for the band Cracker. He was also in now-defunct, late '80s college cult band Camper Van Beethoven. He owns a small record label called Pitch a Tent. He and Cracker play at the Crystal Ballroom Thurs Aug 3.

Do you like karaoke?

"I've done karaoke before. I thought it would be really funny to go to a weird karaoke bar and do my own song. It was a shock because it was in a different key than what we play so people could sing it more easily."

What song did you sing?

"It was 'Low.'"

Did anybody recognize you?

"No, I don't think they realized it was me."

Are you politically active?

"We got involved in the last Clinton campaign. We got invited to the inauguration, and that was really interesting. The one key thing is that we played for 45 minutes while the crowd was gathering downtown Atlanta. He's really popular there, and there's a large black community there who support him. We were supposed to play there to bring the young 20-to 30-something white office people out, and that was interesting for a band called Cracker. Coretta King was sitting there and we played and the President came out and spoke. Sam Nunn was sitting next to me; it was really surreal. Afterwards, Clinton thanked Johnny Hickman, our guitarist, and he said, "Mr. President, that's a great suit." It was very nice--custom-tailored--and he sort of pulled on his lapel and winked."

What music are you listening to?

"We're listening to ourselves a lot lately. We're digging on our bad selves...Um, the new Cure record--the Cure is one of my favorite bands. I like D'angelo, too, how his stuff is kind of weird and jammy, it almost relates to those hippie jam bands. Uh, there's this woman named LP who we sort of did this collaboration with. It's sort of like Cracker with a gay female singer. It's pretty great. There's more '80s in it. We're kind of eclectic and sort of have this retro thing; she's done the same thing, only she's 10 years younger than us, so sometimes she's drawing on Concrete Blonde."