QuickPUNCH Q&A: Drew Dunlevie

The Peninsula Arts Guild president on the remarkable transformation of Menlo Park’s buzzy live music venue, his most prized possession, the song that most reminds him of high school and more.

What most surprises people about The Guild?
That it exists at all.

What’s your favorite Beatles song?
I’m more of a Stones guy. The Beatles are interesting. The Stones are scary. As for a favorite Stones tune, that’s impossible given the scope of the catalog.

What would be your pitch to get The Rolling Stones to play The Guild?
I would tell them we have a stage big enough for Mick to really move around! I’d also mention that it is one of the best-sounding rooms on the planet (Thanks Meyer Sound!). Lastly, I’d tell them that Ken Fulk did the design and he’d be there…and when Ken is there, you know it’s going to be an amazing party!

What piece of advice would you give your younger self?
Try. Don’t be intimidated by the opportunity. Be a doer. I’ve started a bunch of things, some worked, some didn’t. I’m just glad I gave this project a try.

What is the dumbest way you’ve been hurt?
Tore my ACL doing a 360 dunk on a low basketball hoop before our first Guild board meeting.

What song reminds you of high school?
“Don’t You (Forget About Me)” by Simple Minds.

What’s your favorite quote?
“The line between art and kitsch is largely measured in ruin.”
—Adam Gopnik

What is your most prized possession?
My concert poster collection.

What’s something people are always surprised to learn about you?
I’m shy.

What’s your favorite sports team and why?
The Texas Longhorns. My alma mater. You don’t get a choice.

What are your three all-time favorite TV shows?
The Wire, WKRP in Cincinnati, Justified (list subject to change every hour).

What’s your favorite book?
All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy.

If you could pick a superpower, what would it be?
Playing guitar.

What age would you choose to be again and why?
I’d be 39, because my kids were three and five. I’m about to be an empty nester and I just remember those ages as being a magical time. I’d do it all over again.