Interview: Fat Mike (NOFX) @ Warped Tour Orlando 2006

Fat Mike,NOFX,Punk,Punk rock news,Warped Tour,Fat Wreckchords,bicycle

 What's there to say about NOFX that hasn't already been said? They've been at the pinnacle of punk for an eternity now without any signs of letting up. Their sound has been imitated by more bands than your than your average high school graduate can count. The clown princes of punk have put out more albums than will fit on that K-Mart brand MP3 player your mom bought you for Christmas. Let's face it, it's all been said before. But, even though they've been around the globe 10,000 times, they've still maintained a healthy sense of humor. The fact of the matter is NOFX live performances often times resemble more of a stand-up comedy act than a punk show (that's not to say when they do play they don't rip). So it was no surprise when I approached ringleader Fat Mike for an interview at a recent Warped Tour his response was "Can I catch up with you later? I'm about to shave a mullet onstage in like 5 minutes". And catch up with him later I did, as he got his feet massaged backstage by a professional masseuse. The following is the conversation that transpired........

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Big D - Let's talk about Wolves in Wolve's Clothing, the song 60% is about how you guys only give 60% of "your all" playing live shows and into the band in general, is this true?

Fat Mike - Not into the band in general but we put 60%..... actually we don't really give that much. I don't know, I kinda play on stage to have a good time. And if you try really hard to impress the kids, it's not that fun.

Big D - You can't tell me you only gave 60% on The Decline.

Fat Mike - No, that took me like 6 months.

Big D - So would you say 80%?

Fat Mike - No, I gave that 100%. The new album....Well I try, I don't know.

Big D - What made you guys set out to make The Decline?

Fat Mike - We were so bored with playing our songs and it was a challenge. We never really had a song that was a challenge before. We're not gonna play it that much, but we are going to try to play it in every city at least once.

Big D - I heard you played it (The Decline) live throughout the last tour.

Fat Mike - Yeah, I was pretty loaded too. I know I was way too drunk to be playing that song. (To Debbie the masseuse) It's an 18 minute long song.

Debbie the Masseuse - Oh, wow.

Big D - What the hell's up with the track Instant Crassic? I don't get it. It just cuts off at 34 seconds?

Fat Mike - Not alot of bands fade out a song at 34 seconds. I felt it was getting boring, we like short songs.(to Debbie the masseuse) Hey, I have a sprained ankle over there.
Debbie the Masseuse - Is it alright?

Fat Mike - Yeah.

Debbie the Masseuse - How did it happen?

Fat Mike - Eric Melvin shoved me on stage. I was wearing a bra and he shoved me on stage because Jason was fixing my cord. And he pushed me right over this guy, you know when someone's down on their hands and knees behind you? That old trick? He did that to me, sprained my ankle in a bra, it was not nice at all.

Big D - Is it just me or is The Man I Killed inspired by Johnny Cash's prison tunes, and if not what's the story behind it?

Fat Mike - I can't tell you what the story behind it is, because it's illegal. You hear what i'm saying?

Big D - Hmm, Nevermind. How did you come up with Marxist Brothers? From what I gather it's about conspiracy theorists that shop at underground swap meets. More illegal activities?

Fat Mike - Nah, it's about bourgousie revolutionaries that uh, like to read Karl Marx and drink in coffee shops. They like to talk about revolution but they've already got money, so... me being one of these people. * begins raining* You know I used to love the rain, until I started golfing. For the next few days you can't golf.

Big D - Are you an avid golfer?

Fat Mike - I used to be, I used to go out 3 or 4 times a day. Now it's once a month maybe.

Big D - Oh yeah? What's your best score?

Fat Mike - My best score is a 76.

Big D - I can't golf for shit. Last time I "went golfing" I broke a window out of a trailer home.
*Joan Jett walks by*

Fat Mike - (to Debbie the masseuse) Hey, has Joan Jett got a pedicure yet? (to Joan Jett) Hey Joan, let me buy you a pedicure.

Joan Jett - What?

Fat Mike - Let me buy you a pedicure.

Joan Jett - I've never had one.

Fat Mike - Let me buy you one after me.

Joan Jett - Yeah, I'll do it.

Fat Mike - Alright, your up next in a few minutes. It's a good time. I've only had one before in my life.

Joan Jett - So what, do I get my nails painted. I don't even know what a pedicure is.

Fat Mike - Don't look at my feet juice, my jew juice.

Joan Jett - Why? Are you dirty?

Fat Mike - I am a dirty jew *chuckles all around*

Debbie the masseuse: Actually your not. With your shoes and your socks on, your feet weren't bad at all.

Fat Mike - I should take more showers though. I have only had one shower this tour. I spent some time in a pool though.

Joan Jett - I want my nails black.

Fat Mike - So get'em black. *rain gets even harder* Now it's coming down! It's cooling down that's pretty awesome. (Back to your humble narrator) So what else were we talking about?

Big D - Me?

Fat Mike - Yeah.

Big D - NOFXs' lyrics often take a very anti-religious stance, are you religious at all?

Fat Mike - No.
Joan Jett - Your doing an interview?

Fat Mike - Yeah.

Joan Jett - I'm so sorry

Big D - Are you kidding me? You're Joan Jett. You can interrupt my interview anytime. I'm stoked just to be in your presence.
*picture taking ensues, narrator forgets about Fat Mike and chats with Ms. Jett, Mike chats with masseuse about knots in foot*
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Big D - Sorry man, that's Joan fucking Jett man. I was jammin' out to her when I was knee-high to a grasshopper.

Fat Mike - We're like this now.*does the finger deal*

Big D - Hell yeah, that's cool. Back to the lecture at hand, You put alot of time & effort into thwarting the relection of W, what do you think his biggest blunder (aside from attempting a to create theocracy of intolerance) is to date?

Fat Mike - Certainly the war in Iraq has got to be the worst. But that's obvious.

Big D - And what was your reaction at his reelection?

Fat Mike - I was bummed out for about 2 days. Life's too short to be upset. The day after the election I had a pretty bad ecstasy hangover. No kidding.

Big D - Aside from Mr. T who do you think would make a good president?

Fat Mike - I think Joe Biden would make a good president. Senator Joe Biden (of Delaware) . He has god ideas.

Big D - Why do you think our generation refuses to represent itself at the polls?

Fat Mike - Our voter turnout was higher this election than any other election in history. Our numbers were higher than any other group, percentage wise than the previous election. The press didn't cover that, but those are true numbers. Percentage-wise we came out more than anybody else. So I think we did our job. That's why we celebrated on election night,even though we lost. We did our job.

Big D - Do you plan to do your "job" next time?

Fat Mike - Not as good. Not as well, no. I don't want to work that hard anymore.

Big D - Even if Jeb runs for office?

Fat Mike - He'll never run. He doesn't have a shot. With George Bush's approval rating. He doesn't have a chance.

Big D - On Heavy Petting Zoo, The song August 8th, is it just me or is it celebratory of Jerry Garcia's death?

Fat Mike - Yeah it's a celebration of Jerry Garcia dying. The funny thing is I got the date wrong. He actually died on August 9th. We had a show that night in San Francisco and we bought drinks for everyone in the club, you know so we could all cheers to Jerry Garcia's death.

Big D - At what point did you realize "Holy shit, I can make a living playing punk?"

Fat Mike - 1991 I made $8000 that year. My wife was making $20,000 at her public relations firm. So I was like, "together, we can do this"

Big D - What's been the craziest thing you've seen while playing a show?

Fat Mike - Probably the craziest was in Columbia, Missouri, a really small town. There were some girls who came on stage and asked us for Liza & Louise. They all got naked and were licking each other, licking each other's "hoo-hoos"

Debbie the Masseuse - On stage?

Fat Mike - On stage. And the one in the back was getting spanked by the other one and the kid's in the front row were just...... it just blew everyone's mind. We actually played the song 2 times in a row because we didn't want them to stop.

Big D - What's your favorite country to play?

Fat Mike - Iceland's the best.

Big D - I heard you guys live in different cities these days. What's the writing process like now?

Fat Mike - I write all the stuff and tell everyone what to do. It works out pretty well for us.

Big D - I've got a bone to pick w/ you guys. The 7 inch of the month club, I refuse to buy a record player! Where did this idea come from?

Fat Mike - Because people who don't own record players bother me. So I wanted to bum them out because people should own record players.

Big D - Do you ever plan on releasing that material via the internet or CD?

Fat Mike - No plans

Big D - Pffft. Whatever. Speaking of the internet, what's your view on illegal downloading?

Fat Mike - You can't do anything about it so why bitch about it? I used to tape my friend's records on cassete tape so.......

Big D - You got any gold records on the walls back home?

Fat Mike - Punk in Drublic went gold. So Long and Thanks for all the Shoes went gold in Canada.

Big D - Have you ever been arrested on tour?

Fat Mike - Yes. 1986 I was arrested for possession of a deadly weapon. Went to jail in New York.

Big D - A deadly weapon?

Fat Mike - A billy club.

Big D - Which was actually a dildo?

Fat Mike - *all 3 of us laugh* No. Jail.... very boring, very boring place to be.

Big D - Don't I know it.

Debbie the Masseuse - Do feel that?

Fat Mike - Yeah

Debbie the Masseuse - It's a knot.

Fat Mike - Ohhh, hurt me.

Big D - Your the patriarch of Fat Wreckchords, who are some of the lesser known bands on Fat Wreck that we should watch out for?

Fat Mike - I think the most underrated band is Frenzal Rhomb from Australia. Their last album was so good and noone bought it. Dead To Me are good to, but the record's not out yet so..... (to Debbie) That feel's neat. Is that on a pressure point?

Debbie the Masseuse - I study reflexology.

Big D - I envy you. You've mention your record collection in a couple of songs now, what record do you most treasure and why?

Fat Mike - The first Misfits 7 inch. I used to see them play.

Big D - Not me bro. There's the New "Misfits" but we all know it ain't the Misfits

Big D - So you're married right?

Fat Mike - 14 years.

Big D - Has she domesticated you yet, or do you still reserve showering for Wednesdyas and Saturdays?

Fat Mike - I take one to two showers a week

Big D - If I know anything about women (editor's note; Dorian doesn't know anything about women), they won't have sex with you if you haven't showered.

Fat Mike - That's when I take my showers, before we have sex.

Big D - You've got the 'Gimme Gimmes, does anyone else in the band have side projects?

Fat Mike - El Hefe does hip-hop in a band called Potluck.

Big D - Let's go back in time for a moment shall we, at the So Long and Thanks for All the Shoes show in Tampa a few years back, I lost my shoes. So I yells up at El Hefe "Hey man, I ain't got no shoes on" so he brings me up on stage, after asking the crowd if they had seen my shoes, we were all treated to a shower of smelly old sneaks. Ultimately I got my shoes back.

Debbie the Masseuse - You got your shoes back?

Big D - Oh yeah, I was totally stoked .Before I got on stage I was in the pit dancing and didn't give a shit. I had hamburger feet for days. Anyway, El Hefe tells me to stage dive on his que. So you guys started playing a song I've never heard before, he looks over at me and gives me the go ahead. About mid front flip, I mean I went big, You tear into a song, "Don't know how to stagedive" were the only lyrics.

Fat Mike - I don't remember that at all.

Big D - Well, after peeling myself off the floor, all I could do was smile. Thanks for the shoes, and that was the best prank ever pulled on me. I got my balls busted for weeks after that by my friends. Has anybody in the band gone too far while pranking each other on stage or off?

Fat Mike - I don't know ..............Once I put some China White Heroin in Eric Melvin's Cocaine bag. That was pretty funny. Dude he slept for a week. Well it was a coma, you know.

Debbie the Masseuse - Alright your done.

Big D - Looks like my times up

Fat Mike - Yeah, I'd love to sit and chat D but we're playing in a couple of minutes..

Big D - Right on, thanks for your time

Fat Mike - Yeah man, no problem. Take it easy.

Interview: Guttermouth (Mark Adkins, Don Horne, Scott Sheldon)

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I caught up with the guys of Guttermouth a while back, with them releasing their new album last week I figured I'd post this up on the top of the blog 'cause I'm feeling lazy (IE:I'm still mourning Steve Irwin by watching video taped episodes of The Crocodile Hunter and taking massive bong rips all day & night).

Anyway, as you may notice, the whole lot of us are drunk off our asses for the interview and get side tracked a couple of times. Enjoy!

Big D - So how did Guttermouth come to be?

MARK - Personal ad. The personal section in the local rag.

DON - I was playing nose flute at the time.

MARK- Nose flute player seeks singer and back up band. Have you ever seen the nose flute?

Big D - Can't say that I have.

MARK - It's a great instrument from India or Africa I believe, one of those places. And Don is the master of the nose flute

DON - Yeah, I can do the theme from Titanic

* breaks into Celine Dion's "My Heart Will Go On" with whistling nose*

Big D -  I'm king of the world!

MARK- You'd make a great Leonardo.

Big D -  Sorry, I couldn't contain myself, I love that movie.
So, there's been a few line-up changes since Guttermouth's inception?

MARK - Yeah, things change. Shit happens. Like evolution, we were born with tails and we crawled around on our knuckles, some lost their tails and stopped on their knuckles and others didn't and are now incarcerated in what is known as a zoo.

Big D - So who's in the band these days?

MARK- Me, Scott (Sheldon) and Clint (Heidenrich) sometimes. Those are the three original guys. Don (Horne) has been with us for awhile. Then there's Kevin (Clark) who fills in when Clint can't make it, and this goofball Ryan (Ferrel). Which is a good mix, they're younger than we are (Ryan and Kevin). They're like the kids of the band. We keep a toy box in the van for them so they can play as we drive. It keeps them entertained

Big D - You guys were on the first Warped Tour, you shared the stage with acts like Sublime, Face to Face and Civ who are now defunct for one reason or another, Do you feel lucky to still going strong?

MARK - Boy that's an understatement! No, luck has nothing to do with it. Actually it's perseverance, hard work and determination that make us who we are today. The four D's of Guttermouth.

Big D - How has the Warped Tour and punk in general changed since then?

MARK- Oh it's getting better! ~maniacal laughter all around~ with each day that passes I wake up a better brighter person and more optimistic about the punk scene in general because it seems to be progressing in a fashion I deem acceptable

Big D - But bands didn't used to get sued by some jerk-off's parents who got hurt stage diving at a show?

Mark - Yeah, they thought they we're going to get a whole bunch of money from some big rock band. Guess what, we didn't have any! Really the whole genre should've died long ago.

Big D -  You guys are still doing it.

MARK - That's because we can. It doesn't make it right. It should've died along time ago.

Big D -  Ok, So the song Black Enforcers off your last album (Covered in Ants), you make mention of a Jay Santos, every time my roommate gets drunk he claims to know Jay Santos and insists everyone knows it's nine times against the wall (which you also mention on the same song). Could you shed some light on me as to what the hell he's talking about?

MARK- It's actually General Jay Santos. He's the general of the Citizen's Auxiliary Police in the Southern California area branch. What he basically does is roams around town and looks for people who look a little unsavory, namely people with 5 O'clock shadows, and points them out to the authorities as terrorists. He's got a good eye for that sort of thing. So that's General Jay Santos. Nine times against the wall comes from the feature film that went straight to video, Black Enforcers (it's basically for truckers or something) there's this one scene where this pimp is banging his bitch's head against the wall 'cause she was trying to rip off her pimp, and you don't do that.

Big D - So everybody knows it's 9 times against the wall?

MARK - Everybody who's in the know, knows it's nine times against the wall, I just couldn't fit that in the song, so sorry about the confusion.

Big D - Off your last album (Eat Your Face), the song Octopus Hairpiece is about a balding middle-aged man who loses his hairpiece while surfing, how do you come up with this shit? Alcohol? Drugs?

MARK - It really happened. This guy was out in a pair of Speedos, he needed a hairpiece he didn't actually have one or know he needed one at this juncture in his life. So he was out there surfing and this octopus handed him one when he landed on his head. Speaking of which, it looks like you could use a visit from the octopus

Big D - Yeah, male pattered baldness is a bitch.

~Mark grabs my head in a modified iron claw aka the Octopus Hairpiece~
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Big D - How about Hotdog to the Head (also on Eat Your Face)?

MARK - That was Dave our old merch guy. He made up that little saying while he was getting wasted one night he said "I'm gonna give you a hotdog to the head right before you go to bed". So we had this board on the refrigerator of the van and you could write stupid slogans, one liners or whatever. That board is where a lot of that shit came from.

Big D - A lot of people don't get Guttermouth's sense of humor. I noticed a couple of posts on the internet labeling you guys as sexist homophobes and even going as far to call you "those asshole jocks from high school". Care to clear any of that up?

MARK - Yip, Yip. Absolutely all of that is true.

SCOTT- Who was a jock?

MARK - Let's just say we are and claim everything. Did you say racist? Guttermouth is not racist. But we are totally sexist, men rule the world!

SCOTT- We may be realists, definitely not racist.

Big D - You took a lot of flak for variance in sound that sets Gusto apart from your other albums; did that have any affect on the return to Guttermouth's more familiar sound?

MARK - Nope just like driving a car, shifting gears. We do whatever we want.

DON- We got the idea to do some country sounding stuff from the soundtrack to O Brother Where Art Thou.

Big D - With all the time put into Guttermouth (IE recording, touring, lawsuits) how often do you get a chance to paddle out?

MARK - As often as we want pretty much. We don't work that hard. We're pretty lazy about touring and stuff. We've done it a lot but we're pretty lazy about it. We'd rather be at home and punkin' around. So yeah, quite a bit actually, lots of time. The road gets boring fast. We do three week trips at the most.

Big D - What kind of stick are you riding these days?

MARK - A Hobie Fusion, my girlfriend bought it for me last year. My chick knows one of the shapers over there.

Big D - You ever get a chance to surf on tour?

MARK - Yeah in Australia. We schedule a lot of days off when we're down there. Around the States. You're usually in one city and off to the next. No real time for anything

Big D - Since surfing doesn't play a factor, where's your favorite place to play on the east coast?

MARK - Favorite place on the east coast Providence, Rhode Island.

Big D - Really? Why?

MARK- No, I'm kidding, I don't think there is one. And I'm not saying they're all good or bad, Jacksonville Beach on this trip. Good show. I'll roll with that for now.

Big D - You have a new DVD coming out soon tell us about.

MARK-We do?

Big D -  Beyond the Warped?

MARK - Somebody filmed some stuff and we checked it out. We had nothing to do with it. But it was ok, so we were cool with it.

Big D -  I noticed the Epitaph website took down all Guttermouth related material, are you still on their label.

MARK - No we're done with them and they're done with us.

Big D - Any plans for '06?

MARK - Well, we're gonna make another record, we better. It will be on Volcom's label. It's supposed to come out July 4th. We're working on it right now. Hopefully we'll finish it in a timely manner, which probably won't happen. But it's supposed to come out July 4th. It's going to be a long year.

Big D - With so many old school punk bands still around these days (see Subhumans, Circle Jerks and Social Distortion) where do you see yourself in 20 years?

MARK - living in the back of my car foraging for food behind the Food Riot, the post apocalyptic super market me and Ferrel Rian and I are starting. We're ready for the apocalypse.

Big D -  Thanks for your time bro.

MARK - Anytime, Delorian

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All photos above appear courtesy of Gemini Split

Interview: Joe Queer (The Queers)

I've said it before, I'll say it again, punk's not dead, but it sure has taken a beating. With corporate giants buying into the scene every chance they get, fueling a veritable tidal wave of sub par mall-punk bands, and the dime-a-dozen bands flying the gimmick riddled socio-political banner, the scene seems devoid of any culture it once cherished. A culture hell bent on having a good time no matter what was going on in the world around it, a culture where monetary gain was the least motivating factor. Nowadays, it's hard to look at the scene with any sort of hope for redemption of those lost glory days. It's easy to say shes lived long past her prime. Yet there are still a handful of bands with no bullshit attitudes that have beaten the odds and remained true to their fans and themselves. One such case is The Queers. For those of you familiar with the Queers, you know exactly what Im talking about. They've been at it for years releasing album after album of punk-pop fury, and burning up stages throughout the land w/ sets seemingly powered by the crowd itself and vice versa. For those of you not familiar with their Ramones inspired sound, now is as good of a time as any to play catch up. The Black & Blue recently caught up with The Queer's front man, Joe Queer for a little Q & A, heres how it went down.

Dorian: Whats shakin Joe, How's it going these days? Joe: It's busy as hell for The Queers haha. We have lots of stuff going on these days.

Dorian: Let's start off with the name of your band, The Queers. For those who don't already know, how did you come up with it?
Joe: We just wanted a name that people would remember and that was sort of provocative. It pissed a lot of people off in Portsmouth, NH. 

Dorian: So it has nothing to do with the bands sexual orientation? Joe: Hahaha -no.

Dorian: Has there been any backlash from the gay community?
Joe: Nope. It takes balls to travel around the world saying you are in a band called The Queers!!

Dorian: At what point did you realize you wanted to become a professional musician?
Joe: I never really thought I could do it as a job really. I remember back around 1986 I'd sent a cassette tape to Joey Ramone and seeing him backstage at a show in NH. I just went up and said hey I am Joe from The Queers and Joey immediately said how much he liked "Love Love Love" and "Goodbye California" and at that moment I thought well if Joey likes it then maybe I can play music. Later on he asked me to work on songs for his solo album and that was awesome for me. Ben Weasel and I finished one idea Joey had and we used it on our last album as Joey was too sick to sing it. That song is "I Wanna Be Happy".

Dorian: What kind of jobs did you work before then?
Joe: Eh-I've done everything, from construction to owning a restaurant/bar to working for my brother on his commercial fishing boat.

Dorian: So, How long have you been at it now?
Joe: We've been pretty steady since 1993 when we put out "Love Songs for the Retarded".

Dorian: After so many years, how is it the Queers have stayed relevant and kept fans interested? Joe: I think that a lot of kids like the fact we aren't some phony punk band. We just keep it simple like The Ramones did. I like trying different stuff too though, like on "Don't Back Down". You have to work hard and try new stuff. I think there are so many boring bands doing lame songs.

Dorian: Yeah, no kidding. Punks changed a lot since those days, what are your feelings on punk's evolution?
Joe: Well the scene has changed so much since we started touring. Back then it was way more DIY and kids helped out more. Now the money has changed the way kids think. The kids see some band on The Warped Tour and that is like the height of making it these days. They will buy any CD if it's on FAT or they see the band on The Warped Tour, whether the band is any good or not. Like I think Against Me! are great guys. I've never met them but I know people that know them and from what I hear they are super guys. But, musically they are so lame and they are not any better or worse than a million other bands out there. I used to think the kids would see through all the BS out there but they can't. I mean look at Anti Flag, great guys. For years they say they are anti-corporation. Fine, I agree with them, I am too. Then they sign with RCA so they can "get their message out to the kids" for a ton of money. So what that tells me is it's not about their morals and convictions it's about the money. So they can fuck themselves as far as I am concerned. Plus, if you wanna learn about politics don't go to a punk rock show. I mean do kids really think that its cool when a band gets onstage and says Bush sucks? We all know he sucks but I don't want to hear that shit at a show. I can think for myself and so can the audience. It's so conceited to act like you are so much smarter than the audience. I hate that shit!! And any scene that puts Lars and Lint from Rancid on a pedestal with the fucking Dropkick Murphys is fucked in my opinion. Fancullo a tutti!

Dorian: So that explains why you guys have never come around on the Warped Tour?
Joe: Yeah, Its everything that punk rock was against. Huge ticket prices, big arena settings, bands acting like fucking rock stars. I hate it. It's all about the money and the kids are treated like shit. I like a small club with the band and the audience right there.

Dorian: The Ramones did it for somewhere around 20 years, how much longer do you think youve got in the gas tank?
Joe: Haha, well who knows? We will be going for a while yet though I can see the day when I stop doing it as much as now. I want to write and do other stuff I mean there is so much other stuff I could do to make an impact in the world besides playing punk rock and I wanna start doing that stuff.

Dorian: Speaking of the Ramones, they and the Beach Boys seem to be obvious influences, who are some of your not so obvious influences?
Joe: Well, a lot of the old Bubblegum stuff-Lesley Gore- The Turtles-The Troggs-Chuck Berry-Del Shannon.......I really love The Jesus and Mary Chain. I emailed the singer Jim Reid about helping me on a song and he said he would so I am psyched about that. Most morons in the punk scene are too busy listening to BS like Social Distortion and emo shit to listen to them but they are awesome.

Dorian: So do you listen to any of your contemporaries? Joe: Very few. I love The Muffs, MTX (Mr.T Experience, The Dickies, and Screeching Weasel. I hear about a lot of new bands that are great but none of them knock my socks off, except The Steinways and The Unlovables, both bands are from NYC and are awesome!!

Dorian: Ben Weasel and you have been known to collaborate from time to time, how did the two of you meet and what kind of relationship do the two of you have? Joe: I sent him a tape of the stuff that was later on "Grow Up" and that was basically how we met. I talk to him all the time.

Dorian: So what are the chances on future collaborations?
Joe: We write stuff here and there so who knows? We are hoping to do a few shows where The Queers play a set and then Ben comes on and we are his band and play his stuff. People think he hates playing but he doesn't and he is actually psyched to do it!! It will happen this year! 

Dorian: I'm there man. You seem to tour relentlessly, how much time do you spend on the road in an average year? Joe: Last year and this year we are touring like mad. I get home for a few days after this tour and studio stuff and go to Europe. Then I get home for a week and hit Brazil with Marky Ramone. Then we get home for a week or so and go off to tour the US with The Hard Ons.
Dorian: You got any crazy touring stories? Joe: Hahah, a million, but you'll have to wait for my book to come out.

Dorian: Fair enough. You recently toured Europe and Australia, what are differences of touring over there compared to here in the States?
Joe: It was our first time in Australia but it was fun as hell. Europe is weird cause we will play some places that are tiny and the next night headline a festival for a few thousand people. It's really fun though. The states are a more steady draw across the board for us. I like playing everywhere pretty much.

Dorian: How about Japan?
Joe: We haven't been back to Japan for about 3 years. We've gone about 8 times. We are overdue to go. I love it there, the kids go off.

Dorian: Whats going through your mind when you play a show?
Joe: Eh-just what song to play next usually. I just have fun.

Dorian: What song would you consider the most requested?
Joe: "Ursula Finally Has Tits".

Dorian: What song do you enjoy playing the most?
Joe: Hmmm......I really like "Kicked out Of the Webelos". It is the essence of what The Queers are about I think.

Dorian: Any experiences w/ obsessed fans or stalkers?
Joe: Hahaha, Usually it's just kids that are way into the band that won't leave you alone. I deal with it though, it doesnt happen that much.

Dorian: Any gold records hanging on your wall at home?
Joe: Hahah hell no!! I've had a lot of fun doing music so I don't worry about how many albums we sell.

Dorian: The song Granola head off of Love Songs, while humorous, is an overtly anti-drug song, what was your inspiration behind it?
Joe: It was a tongue in cheek song about hippies and the whole life style they lead. That moronic belief that if they follow The Grateful Dead and take LSD, then life will be great. Like that is the path to enlightenment. I mean they are no worse really than a lot of moronic kids in the punk scene today either. Bands take themselves so seriously these days. One of the biggest differences from the old days is all the bands then had a sense of humor. Black Flag, The Dead Kennedys, The Dickies, and The all these bands think they have the fucking cure for AIDS. No one can laugh at themselves anymore. I mean the big message I got from punk was the ability to laugh at myself-to not take myself so seriously-to question things people tell me whether its the president or the singer in some punk band. Now if the idiots crawl onstage with a mohawk and yell about George Bush them kids think "wow!! These guys are punk". Meanwhile the assholes are living like rich yuppies. But if they are on the right label kids love them. 

Dorian: So whats your anti-drug? Joe: Hahaha my anti drug? Reading.

Dorian: You got any tattoos?
Joe: Yeah, One-The Queers on my left arm.

Dorian: How do you feel about people sporting Queers tattoos? Joe: I love it!! It's an honor.

Dorian: Your from in and around the Boston area, a hotbed of the whole "Working Class" group of punk bands, recently youve been openly downtrodden on this scene and some of those bands, care to elaborate?
Joe: Eh- I think all those bands are stupid. I hate the pseudo-Irish thing. All the kids look like ex-Nazis. What exactly is working class anyway? I worked on my brother's fishing boat when I wasn't on tour so I guess I'm fucking working class. To me that is just a way for the assholes to get together and look like Hitler Youth. They just want to go to a show and fight. That's such a great message!! Good for them. They add nothing to society or the punk scene. All the working class guys I knew were pot smokers supported by their girlfriends and/or parents. Fuck all of them. I grew up on The Ramones and Black Flag so I can't buy all that stupid shit.

Dorian: Rapid fire question time. These only require a short answer. Your Favorite-

Dorian: Movie?
Joe: "Picnic"

Dorian: Car youve owned?
Joe: -my van I own now.

Dorian: Book?
Joe: "Confederacy Of Dunces"

Dorian: Beer?
Joe: Bud, but I stopped drinking a few years ago and I don't miss it. I realized that it's more fun to play sober than fucked up. There's more to life actually then just drinking and going to shows.
Dorian: City to play?

Joe: Chicago
Dorian: City to stay?
Joe: Oviedo. Spain

Dorian: Ethnic food?
Joe: Japanese

Dorian: Holiday?
Joe: all of them

Dorian: Actor/Actress?
Joe: William Holden and Veronica Lake

Dorian: Sports team?
Joe: Boston Red Sox

Dorian: Last show you went to?
Joe: Agent Orange

Dorian: I didn't know they were still touring.
Joe: Yeah, they're still around.

Dorian: Cool. Tell us about the split you did with the Italian act The Manges, how did that all come about?
Joe: We are all friends so the label asked us to do it. It was ok, but we ended up paying for most of the recording ourselves. Never got the money back either.

Dorian: On Tamara's a Punk, among other things, you say youve jammed with the infamous GG Allin, how well did you know him and whats your opinion of his work?
Joe: I knew GG pretty well back in the day in NH. He was a good guy that loved good music. I liked some of his shit and didn't like some other stuff he did.

Dorian: On Summer hits vol. 1, theres little or no information regarding this album other than a track listing. Just skimming through the songs listed, it looks as if most if not all appear on other albums. Is this a best of album or what?
Joe: Yeah, we rerecorded all of the songs though, it was just done for a Japanese label, but they ended up never releasing it. But were not repressing it.

Dorian: Repress it? Shit I love the new recordings! It's on Doheny Records, isnt that your label?
Joe: Yeah, I may do vinyl and some other bands too once I get going.
I am just starting that up to release side projects on.

Dorian: Side projects like The Drunken Cholos?
Joe: Yeah, that was the original lineup of The Queers-me-Wimpy and Tulu. Tulu thinks I made a million dollars off that band and is mad at me. We made exactly $298.00 off that one CD we did. Wimpy and I want to do another CD but if Tulu won't do it we will do it ourselves.

Dorian: Right on. You have a live CD coming out in the near future, if memory serves me, didn't you put out a live album about 3 years ago, Live in West Hollywood? What's the difference between it and Weekend at Bernies?
Joe: That Live in West Hollywood was not very good and we were not happy with it at all. That was another scam by Hopeless to make money off us without paying us. That label is a complete rip-off and I have heard from former employees about how bad they were. I hate that blind bastard that runs it. If people knew how much money they made off us and how little they paid us they wouldn't believe it. 

Dorian: No shit, I guess it's hard looking from the outside in to see all the bullshit that goes down behind the scenes.
Joe: Like I said, you wouldnt believe it.

Dorian: So what should we expect from The Queers in the near future?
Joe: We just released the new live album-we are recording a new album next week-we have a tribute album coming out-we are working on a DVD-we are real busy!

Dorian: Well hey, it sounds like your busy as hell, I guess I'll let you get back to it then.

Joe: Thanks for the interview. Take it easy.

Dorian: No man, thank you.