With Albany concert promoter Greg Bell celebrating his 20th year in the business, I was honored to publish the most in-depth conversation with the man himself -- read it here. We talked about moe. a lot in our conversation, and at one point he declared that "working with moe. has been the highlight of my career."
So, just to put the cherry on top, I caught up with moe. guitarist Al Schnier for a brief chat about Greg.
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Al Schnier on Greg Bell
Al Schnierphoto by Andrew Wyatt

Do you have a good Greg Bell story to share?
Al: I don't even know where to begin. [laughter]
I just talked with him and he said that working with moe. has been the highlight of his career. You've had a really long relationship with him.
Wow! That's flattering. Did he happen to mention the first time we worked together?
No, not in any detail.
Greg was charitable enough to book our first shows in Albany that we had. We played at Valentine's, and that club was sort of like how Nectar's was -- there was the upstairs and the downstairs. The more significant shows and the bulk of the shows were upstairs in the bigger live room. But they would have smaller bands set up in the corner downstairs from time to time. We were that downstairs band because it was our first time in Albany.
Well, I don't know if it was a weeknight or what, but there were literally three people in the bar when we played. Greg was one of them. The bartender was another one of those people. And the third person was an acquaintance of ours. And that was our first gig in Albany [laughs]. But the thing is, Greg absolutely loved it and the bartender loved it, we loved it -- everyone had a great time. I remember having a really great time. It was worth doing again. Greg was good enough to see some value in it and he stuck by us. And part of the reason we still work together today, I guess, is because he stuck by us and we stuck by him. He's just a really good guy.
We ended up doing a run of shows at Valentine's with Greg and then eventually we started to build something. There was a great music scene in Albany at the time. We were good friends with the Ominous Seapods, Moon Boot Lover, FreeBeer&Chicken, and everyone was based in Albany at the time. It was a pretty driving music scene, and Greg would host all the bands for Bellstock at his camp in the Catskills, and some of those were out of control [laughs]. And the thing about it was Greg had a job. He had a career. He was making a living teaching. So, he was doing this because he loved music and was passionate about live music. That was also a cool thing about working with Greg. He wasn't doing this to get rich. He was doing it because it's a hobby he was passionate about. It's like a person who's into vintage cars. You don't really get into restoring them because you think you're going to make money on it. It's something those guys are passionate about. You go through the whole process of restoring it and if you're lucky you break even on it. If you actually considered all the sweat and hours you put into it, you probably don't ever break even on it. It's sort of what Greg has done with live music over the years. It's just something that he's really passionate about. And that's obvious. And that's really cool.
Yeah, exactly.
And he's still doing that today, which is cool. It's cool that moe. has gone from literally playing to three people in a bar in Albany to selling out the Palace Theatre, and we're still working with Greg Bell. And at the same time, Vinnie and I have this bluegrass band now called Floodwood, and we're playing in bars in Albany and Greg is promoting our shows. He came to the first show that we had done there, and there was a great crowd there and it was a great scene. At the end of the night he came up to me and he had the biggest grin on his face. He had spent most of the night in the crowd watching the band and he said, "I had so much fun tonight. This is why I do this. Sometimes I forget why I'm doing all of this, but this is why I do this: because of the music and nights like this." And that's amazing that after 20 years. He still has that energy.
That's awesome. Any other Greg stories you want to share?
No, that's enough. I wouldn't want to say anything that would incriminate him [laughter]. Greg knows we love him. And we look forward to another 20 years with him.
moe. at the Palacephoto by Michelle Arthur