Pixies' Drummer Dave Lovering Has An Interesting Hobby Off The Stage

While Pixies never quite cracked into the mainstream consciousness as many of their alternative rock contemporaries did, they nonetheless have played an influential part in modern rock music. As stated in AllMusic, the band formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1986, cultivating a unique sound that got them enough attention to open for bigger acts in the area. Their debut full-length album, 1988's "Surfer Rosa," crystallized their signature blend of punk, surf, and indie rock that had a rough edge coupled with radio-friendly melodies. The band furthered their style with their follow-up releases, "Doolittle," "Bossanova," and "Trompe le Monde," gradually building their cult audience along the way. However, Pixies split in 1993; it would be a decade before they reunited to continue making music.

The band broke up in the early days of the grunge and alternative rock boom which they were partly responsible for, but sadly were not able to capitalize on. It was an especially rough time for Pixies drummer Dave Lovering, who told Happy Mag that, as a result of the band's split, "a large part of my identity was gone." He continued to explain, "Before I played with them, however, I was an electronic engineer. But I really couldn't go back and do that. There were a lot of younger and smarter kids coming through doing that kind of stuff." While he played with other bands during this time, it never quite reached the same sense of fulfillment he got from playing with Pixies. Luckily, another hobby was awaiting him.

Dave Lovering's hobby outside of music

As Dave Lovering was still trying to find another meaningful purpose in the wake of the Pixies' breakup, he stumbled upon an unlikely craft that would eventually earn him a reputation outside of his music career: magic. As Lovering tells Happy Mag, "So I had a friend from Buffalo who was really into magic. We both went to this magic convention in Los Angeles, and I saw a magic trick that just blew me away. From that point, I was sold. I did everything in my power for about two years, studying magic, until I was proficient enough to become a magician." From musician to magician may seem like an odd professional trajectory, but Lovering has made it work.

In fact, he became so talented in magic that he combined his new love for the craft with his technical background to become the Scientific Phenomenalist, performing magic tricks that involved machines that he built himself. Lovering explained to Happy Mag, "The whole idea of my show ... was not to say that I was a magician. I was really just going out to do a science show with all these really wild experiments, then I started taking it into the magic world. My engineering definitely came in very handy."

Magic and Pixies

AllMusic states that Pixies reunited to tour in 2004, which also saw Dave Lovering return to the band as well. However, he was still enamored with magic and the career that came out of it, so instead of giving it up to rejoin his former band members, he decided to keep both of his passions. In fact, Lovering took his magic show on the road with Pixies, even going so far as to open for them with a Scientific Phenomenalist act, according to Happy Mag.

Lovering has continued to make music with Pixies, whose most recent album, "Doggerel," was released in 2022, according to Pitchfork. Like many other professional artists, however, Lovering was forced to find a way to stay active during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to The Aquarian, he spent much of the lockdown working on his magic and sharing weekly video clips — called "Magic Mondays" — of him doing tricks through the Pixies' social media platforms. This gave him the opportunity to develop his talents further. As he states, "To be able to do this on a weekly basis has been fun because I've had to dream up new presentations for almost everything in a way that would translate to social media, and to make it funny rather than just a boring trick."