Interview: Bollweevils Frontman Daryl Wilson Talks New Album

Chicago punk rock greats The Bollweevils, who formed in 1989, are releasing a new LP, their first proper full-length since 1995’s Heavyweight. The album, entitled Essential, is a 10-song ripper out now on Red Scare Records.

Incredibly affable frontman (and ER physician by day) Daryl Wilson could hardly contain his exuberance for this stellar new record while discussing it and describes what he hopes both old fans and the newly initiated take away from the album: “Hopefully this new record allows fans from back then say, ‘This is awesome,’ and new people go, ‘Oh my god, these guys are awesome. They don’t sound dated in any way.’ Hopefully that’s what we get to do: it just continues to perpetuate the legend of The Bollweevils.”

Read on to find out more about this album and the band’s history.

I’ve been listening to the new record and want to hear your thoughts about it. It sounds amazing.

I appreciate that you’ve heard the record and that you like it. We love it and I have to say as a band, Ken (Fitzner, guitar) was saying yesterday in rehearsal that this is the best thing we’ve ever put out. And it is. Things have changed. Our sound has grown over time. When you start out as a fledgling punk band in 1989, you may not be able to play your instruments as well and you grow.

I think the songs we put out—even some of the ones that were re-recorded—definitely show where we are now as human beings and it’s an amazing thing. All of us were just really happy with the whole thing. We didn’t come out of any of the songs that we recorded; we didn’t feel like, “Eh, it’s OK.” We really were tuned in, and it became this true labor of love. I can’t make a joke about that. It sounds so cliché, but it kind of is. I said to the guys once, we were talking about the record, and we were just so anxious about it coming out, and then in the end, it’s like, why are we anxious? If we think it’s really, really good, that’s all we can really have. We have to be happy with it, and if somebody else doesn’t like it, that’s up to them. We are good with what we put out, and we have to just put it out there and let it be. It’s truly something we’re proud of and we can’t wait for everybody to hear it.

Like you said, a couple of the songs you re-recorded. How did you decide on “Peggy Sue” and “Bottomless Pit”?

It was hard, too, because one, the masters to all of our old catalog are destroyed. They’re just gone. And so we were looking at it, and we were a whole new group of people. It was myself, Ken, and Pete (Mumford), our drummer who’s been our longest drummer, and then Pete Mittler from Methadones, and we’ve known Pete forever. Pete has been our buddy since our first tour way back in ‘92. He was our driver. And now he’s our bass player, so we’ve known him forever.

And our sound has clicked in; this is who we are. And we thought, “Hey, this opportunity has come up; we can make lemonade out of lemons that are presented to us with the songs being basically gone. And we can redo these as we sound now.” And those two songs kinda stood out because “Bottomless Pit” is one of those songs from Stick Your Neck Out; it’s the titular start-off. This is who we are, and it’s one of my favorite songs to play. And when we started playing it, I was like, “Wow, we made this totally a revamped, up-to-date version of it.” And there are people, close friends of mine, who were initially like, “Don’t do that. Just don’t do it.” But the song’s gone, so we have to do something to bring those back and have them stand out as to who we are now.

And a lot of people haven’t heard us from back then, so it is kind of a new presentation of the old band and some people will see us for the first time and say wow this is a great song. And it was a great song back then; it’s a great song now. “Peggy Sue,” to me, is also one of those songs I love playing live. It’s almost a kabuki theater kind of song. Acting like I’m a crazy person who’s trying to hurt themselves in some way. And it’s always been one of those things that’s moved me as a song and the music and the way it drives, and all of us find it to be a vibe that we feel when we’re doing that song. So, we wanted that recorded again too. And I think we did a pretty good job of updating the songs, so you can tell the difference from when we first had them and how it is now. They are the same songs but they’re different. Those two were picked because they’re songs that really make us feel emotionally charged and that we love playing live and wanted those to be a part of this experience of the new record as well.

You just mentioned “emotionally charged.” One that got me was “Our Glass.”

Yes. That song, over the years, everybody, when we’re younger, we try to define something about our philosophic viewpoint of things. And as I’ve grown older and hopefully wiser, I’ve really delved into stoicism and realized that was something that keeps me kind of in a mindset of, hey, this is OK. I deal with horrid things every day in emergency medicine and how I continue to go forward and keep my life in a fashion of good is through stoicism. I didn’t know it until I started reading a lot of Marcus Aurelius’s stuff.

And with that whole thing of “Our Glass,” it’s kind of that whole idea that time really is an illusion. We think we have all the time in the world, but we really don’t. All the things that we have have an expiration date on them, especially the material things we get. We sometimes spend so much time thinking about, how do I keepI’ll use as an example your TV or your phone or just all the things you have around you that are really already broken when you get them. They really aren’t going to last. So, we put a lot of effort into things that are broken already instead of really looking at the important aspects of our relationships with people that are the things that mean the most. Because those things will actually break as well, too, so while we around, while we are existing, we have to hold on to the things that are important and not waste it on things that are truly valueless and broken when you get them already. I love that song, too.

How long were you working on this material?

Gosh, it’s been since our last release. Boy, we put out the first single that is on this record, the songs “Honesty” and “Theme,” those came out on a seven-inch back in 2015 on Underground Communique, and those were, of course, some of the songs we were going to put on our LP when it was going to eventually come out. And we’d been talking about, “We have this LP that’s going to come out in 2015,” and it’s kind of a joke. The whole thing of, yeah you’re going to tell us about the record coming out, and it’s never going to come out. And we even started believing some of that ourselves. We’d look at each other and go like, “We’re never putting a record out again,” because we keep talking about it, and we’re gonna do it and we’d write new songs, and we’d be like, eventually it’s going to be great to put down and record them.

So, really it’s been in the works since 2015, and we slowly started accruing these new songs. We have more that are still in the pipeline that we have waiting to put together. And what we started doing, which is a new thing, and I think this is why the record is so good, is that we wouldn’t take ideas and go, “Let’s put them together and throw them down.” We’d take the ideas, put them together, and play them for a while and figure out this didn’t work. And as we’ve gotten older and more mature, we could actually criticize each other–constructively criticize each other, and not suddenly lose our minds about it. When you’re an adolescent band and everything you say you take so personally, it doesn’t allow growth. “I’m the singer; you’re playing guitar; don’t tell me how to sing this.” But then, as we’ve grown and people say, “This is what you sound like; this is what I hear, and you can do this better,” and they’re really trying to help you do the best you can, versus knock you down and to say, “You suck.” We can do better than this. Yeah, we can, so let’s keep working on this until we are all satisfied with it. It’s not going to be just three-quarters of the individuals are satisfied with it, and we’re going to push this through. Unless all of us are satisfied with it, it doesn’t get put together.

So, all of these songs are really a matter of, we all are 100% into those songs. And I think people will understand that when they hear the record. As you said, it sounds so great because we took the time to really make sure these are the things we wanna put out right now. And as we get more things we wanna put out, we will do those things. Timing is everything. Opportunities come up, and then they go away. And that’s OK. Sometimes it may not be the right time to do something. Obstacles come up, and those obstacles aren’t necessarily a bad thing; they might be the way to something better. And so things happen and you have to be able to go things are not bad or good, they’re just things and then it’s a matter of what you do with those things.

What about recording? Were you in there for a quick or long time?

We were in pretty quick I’d say. It sounds weird because we took from 2015 on to get the songs together. But our recording itself, it took us five days total probably, putting together the different dates of recording. We had a bunch of the songs recorded and had those mixed. Initially, I think “Liniment and Tonic” was out, the single and then the B-side was a cover of “Black Hole in My Mind” by The Lillingtons. So, we did those; we had a bunch of the songs recorded and done, and then we had to finish up four other songs for the LP. We did those over the stretch of another three or four days. So, it was maybe six days total time for recording. That includes every tracking and vocals we laid down. Then it was a matter of getting a mix. That was the biggest thing too that I think helped with the sound. We initially were like, OK we got it mixed, and we had to then take some criticism that some of these things didn’t sound good. It was Brendan Kelly who said that. He’s like, “We’re putting this out; it doesn’t sound good.” I remember Ken biting his lip like, what?! I can’t believe this. No, but Brendan knows what we’re supposed to sound like. “This is not you.”

And so I sent some of the songs to a couple of people and Joe Principe who’s one of my best friends, he’s like, “I like these songs. They all sound good.” And then he didn’t say anything. Then he comes back to me and says, “Hey, will you consider getting this mixed at The Blasting Room?” I’m like, “I don’t have Blasting Room money. What are you talking about?!” He’s like, “Well, you’re a doctor.” I said, “Dude, that’s not in my budget. I have kids and a wife and other things too.” He’s like, “Consider that.” Finally, I said, let’s just bite the bullet and do it. So, we sent it and Chris Beeble, amazing engineer; he’s the best, and he mixed it and sent it to all of us, and we were just jaw dropping to the floor. I swear I will not have anybody ever mix our stuff. It’s gotta be Chris Beeble all the time. He does an amazing job. He knows what we sound like. He was working with us to fine-tune what we sound like, what we hear, what we knew we needed to be, and he dialed it in.

And so now that relationship with that person—it’s like I have a person that does my dreads. To find a new person to do my dreads is like I’d have to walk through fire. You don’t want someone else to mess with what you know. And that’s how Beeble is; he’s just amazing. And then at the end I told Joe, “Why didn’t you just tell me specifically to do this? You had to pussyfoot around and not tell me directly.” He said, “Well, I didn’t wanna hurt your feelings.” “Dude, you’re my friend. You can tell me these things without hurting my feelings. Just let me know as my buddy, ‘Do this.’” And I’m glad we finally figured it out. “Well, you’d figure it out over time.” I’m like, “No, dude, just tell me. I’m gonna listen.” So, we got it done. I’d say with the recording at The Echo Mill with Jeff Dean and he did a great job; he fine-tuned things and gave us suggestions producing on it to say, “Add this part to this, I hear something else here that you’re missing.” And it worked out because he’s known us forever too. And having that combination of Jeff Dean recording us and Beeble mixing it, it sounds really, really good. And with the songs themselves, it’s just a marriage made in heaven.

And just about time taking to record this one, was it that much different than your old records?

Looking back, I’m thinking Heavyweight in ‘95, we recorded that with Mass (Giorgini) at Sonic Iguana. I think that was recorded over three days, the 24, 25, and 26 of I think June or something like that. The joke is that we’re one-take wonders. You go in; you do it, and you’re done. And I’d sometimes get this prideful feeling of, I’m just going to walk in; I’m gonna lay down these lyrics, lay down these vocals right now, and it’s going to be done. And on this one, Jeff was like, “Do it again.” I’m like, “I did it. It was awesome.” He’s like, “Nope. Do it again.” I’m like, “Are you kidding me? I just did this three times. It was good the first time.” He’s like, “Yeah, it was good the first time, but you could do it great, so do it again.”

There were points where I thought, I’m going to throw fists at you, I swear to god. But it was the right thing to do. We’ve never been worked that hard. I think it came down to wanting to work that hard. You can do things and just kinda half put it in. It comes back philosophically to understanding that if you’ve done your best, that’s all you can do, no matter what the outcome is. And I guess sometimes you think you’re doing your best, but somebody goes and tries to light that fire underneath you and they go, “Try it again. See what you can do. Try it again.” And then you finally reach a point and you go, “Wow, that was better. I wasn’t really giving 100%; I might’ve given 98%.” And if you give 100% and you lay it all out there, that’s all you can do, and you have to let it go and say this is my best. And if somebody doesn’t think so, how can you do any better than that? I think this is our best. And I say that for now because you can’t sit on those laurels, too. We’ve written this record; it’s great; I love it, but now the next thing in my mind is: What do we do next? What’s the next thing we can do, and then we can go from there. And that’s on us to make that happen.

And when did you officially come back as a band?


(Laughs) Sorry.

No, don’t apologize. It’s funny because it’s like those stutter steps. I think we came back and did—I’m going to walk through my house and see if I have a poster, there’s a poster in here. I think we came back officially, I’d say, 2006. I think we played Riot Fest in 2006 was the time we came back, and this is when we were like, “OK, we’re going to do this.” Because we played at Riot Fest and thought we were going to be done, and then we got asked, “Why don’t you keep playing?” We thought it was fun, so 2006 was the official comeback. We did do a comeback, as all bands do, they do this stutter step and comeback and disappear and comeback and realize they wanna keep doing it because music is great for your soul.

Yeah, “It’s just a one-off. It’s just a one-off.”

(Laughter) Exactly. NOFX is going to break up. They’re never going to play again. OK, yeah sure. So, in November 2003, we did a show for this radio station from Loyola, WLUW in Chicago, a benefit show. It was like hell froze over. We’re playing this show with us, Apocalypse Hoboken, The Traitors, The Dutchmen, and this band Mexican Cheerleader. So, we were all playing at The Metro. And we’d been banned from The Metro for a long time. (Laughs) After our Weevillive incident back in ‘95, we got banned from there, and so this was us coming back to play at The Metro. The funniest thing, we come out, and over the PA, all the other bands like The Traitors and Apocalypse Hoboken, they all got it together, I said at the end of Weevillive (their live album), “We’re never f’n playing this place again,” and threw the microphone down and walked off the stage. So, we come back in 2003 to play the show at The Metro, it’s supposed to be a one-off and over the PA, they’re playing “We’re never f’n playing this place again” over and over again on a loop. And I’m like, “I guess we lied. Here we are. We’re The Bollweevils,” and we started playing. We played that and thought it was done. And then in 2006, we got dragged back in for Riot Fest, and I think that would be the official restarting of this whole thing, 2006.

Is that when this line-up came together?

Yeah, so we had that line-up in 2003, it was without Pete Mittler, so at that time, it was still our original bass player Bob, and we had the addition of Pete Mumford, who’s been our longest drummer who’s the most amazing drummer in punk rock. Pete Mumford is an amazing artist. He’s an amazing drummer, an amazing human being. He made us better. So, with him in the band, we were playing and kept on playing, and Bob left the band.

And we were at this crisis point of figuring out what we were going to do. We were having too much fun. We wanted to keep on playing music despite other individuals saying we should just stop, though they were no longer in the band. And we did; we got another guy to play in the band for a while, Miguel. It was OK, but it wasn’t really what we needed, and then Miguel left, and we were looking for a bass player. And it’s funny because Pete Mittler was always our buddy, and he played bass, it was, “Why don’t we think about that?” And Pete came and played, and we were instantly like, “We should’ve always had you as our guy.” And it’s just been perfect. It’s one of those matches that you just couldn’t even fathom, but then you realize it was right in front of you all the time. So, that line-up has been around for the past, like, 10 years almost I think. It’s in that range of seven to 10 years. It’s been a while. And this line-up, I think, is our best, and it epitomizes what we are as a Chicago punk rock band.

What about you playing live and writing again, does it have a different feel now? What would you say?

It does. It’s easier in some sense, it’s also harder at the same time. It’s all this nuance of having these two things that are equally viable, and they seem like they’re complete opposites. It was easy to write songs when I was 21, 22 about, my heart’s broken; here’s my angry missive regarding that, and I’ll be OK, and you guys understand it; we all go through this. That’s easy. And then as you get older, and you have different changes in your life, you find whatever sense of happiness you get out of your day—which you can only make happiness for yourself. With my kids and with my profession, it’s like, wow there are other things you start thinking about. You start thinking a little deeper than the superficial stuff you might’ve written about.

The thing that makes it hard is sometimes finding those things that might get my ire up, but it’s really not that hard. I look around and go, there’s still inequity, and that’s a problem; I wanna write about that. Or you realize we’re all fatalistic; we’re all going to end up in the same place, so why don’t we enjoy our moments because moments are all you have. That kind of thing which is commonalities of themes throughout life. And then the easier part, too, is, we’re better at our craft. Each of us can play way better than we used to. I think I sing better than I used to sing. But it comes down to the ability of us to collaborate because we know each other’s tendencies. I know when Ken is writing something, I know what the next part of the song is going to sound like, and I know what my voice is going to sound like. And he knows that too, so we can have this unwritten communication that just happens almost telepathically to make a song kind of flow. And we also now can realize once again that criticism is OK and actually criticize each other and say, “You can do better than that,” or, “I don’t like that,” and that’s OK. We don’t take it so personally, and we don’t take our ball and walk away and wanna break the band up every five minutes. That doesn’t happen.

And then realizing too we do this because we love it. It’s passion; it’s not because we’re looking to suddenly make a buck. We’d love to; that’d be great, but it truly is one of those things where we play in a punk rock band because we love playing punk rock music, and so that comes out in what we play, too. So, it’s kind of easier. It’s difficult now because we have to deal with other life events. I can’t always do something. If I have my twins’ birthday, I can’t play a show on that day. That’s not going to happen. I have priorities that are different. You put your priorities in a different fashion and I know what my priorities are. The band is in my list of things, but it’s not in my top three, to be realistic. It’s probably somewhere near the bottom of my top 10, to be quite honest. But it is a part of my life that’s important. Whenever you start to put these other things in place, like if I have to do something with the band, I have to start taking other priorities and shift them and realize that that may suffer. And I have to accept that, and so that’s a hard part. Sometimes shifting priorities to say, can I do this right now? Is it worthwhile to do right now? That’s hard sometimes.

What about the feeling of being on the stage now? Does it differ from when you were younger?

I think the post-stage feeling is different. There’s more achy-ness that comes with it. (Laughs) But being on stage is amazing. That’s a feeling that you can’t—It’s hard to describe to people what it feels like to perform, to jump around, even if it’s in front of a party of three or 3,000. You get to express this thing that’s inside of you and let it out, and you get to connect with people you may have never ever met. That’s so visceral. That’s so real. It’s a true human connection, even though you have this barrier that’s in front of you, but it’s not a barrier. You break it down. You’re breaking down these barriers between human beings from the stage to a person to connect with.

You look them in the eye, and they’re smiling at you or they’re scowling at you or whatever, shaking their fist or bobbing their head. It’s not intimate in the sense of things you have with your spouse or your kids or your best friend, but it is something that’s basically human where we all as a species have to find ways to work together. And music and storytelling and all those things from when we were tribalistic human beings living together trying to survive against the elements and hunt together and gather together, we’d all gather with song or with story or with art, and that’s a common thing that still drives throughout all of humanity. And being onstage kind of brings that out, where you feel this element of euphoria that can’t be reproduced all the time.

So, it is an endorphin hit that you get, and it lasts for a period of time, and then you come off of it. But it still feels great to be up there. I sometimes laugh and am amazed I still get to do it at my age. And I have people comment, going, “I can’t believe you are of that X age,” I won’t say it, but, “That’s how old that guys is?! There’s no way.” It’s like, yeah, that’s me. It’s still an amazing feeling to be on stage, and it is very enjoyable. It’s definitely a break from my day-to-day profession, which can be in itself enjoyable yet can be tragic and wear you down and lead to moral injury. It’s definitely a way to heal moral injury that takes place from my day-to-day emergency medicine job. So, that’s what I feel.

Just talking about how people are like “He’s that old? No way.” (Laughs) I was going to say the record has this youthful vigor, you know?

Yeah, that’s the thing. We were talking about who plays fast. And it’s not that you have to play fast; we like to; that’s just our thing. I don’t know if we know any other speed besides fast. (Laughs) Maybe semi-fast or kind of fast and then super-fast. But that’s just how we all play. If somebody challenged us and said, “Could you write a slower song?” Of course we can. Some of our songs are not as fast as others, but I think the tempos are still fast, and I think it drives. It’s something that makes people want to move, and it makes you want to feel something. And I think that’s what we need in life is to be able to feel things that are visceral and real, and not made-up, manufactured things that are fed to your brain through some device.

Live music, live theater, live performances, are things we should always have as a species. And you could tell some of the effects that occurred during COVID lockdowns, people weren’t able to experience this. And then seeing people have this opportunity to go and experience live events again, look at how people described how they felt when they got to go back to see things happen live. It was a breath people could take, that they could suddenly exhale. I’ve been holding my breath for this time, and I can exhale, and it felt really, really good. I think the link that we have, once again that human link between all of us, where we have shared experiences, are super important, and we have to keep doing that stuff. And I love being a part of that.

Do you have any tentative touring plans or anything?

We have some shows lined up. We have a festival we’re playing. We’re doing Pouzza in Montreal in May. Specific tour dates, no. We have other shows we’re doing sporadically throughout the next couple months. And we have Fest, of course, at the end of the year, which is one of the greatest festivals to go to. We’re waiting on some things. We’re kinda (like) let’s get (the record) out; let’s see where we can go, what we can do, and how to plan it out from there. There’s some shows sporadically planned out. Once the record’s out and people hear it, it’ll help to open the floodgates for next year probably more so. There’s definitely ways for us to try and get out and do one-offs here and there and maybe do weekend warrior stuff in spots, so we’re looking forward to just the record coming out and having opportunities start to open up more and more for us.

One other thing about the album, you called it Essential, and the press release says that all of you are essential workers, so that was kind of the basis of the title?

Yeah, we sat around thinking about what we’re going to call this record, and it was during the pandemic. And Ken was a school principal and is a teacher, which, of course, is an essential worker. I’m a physician; I work in the ER, essential. Pete Mittler is a lineman, so he runs line and cable and everything; that’s essential for us to have infrastructure to function. And then Mumford also works with students at a college, so these are all the things that help to keep everything rolling and moving. And the artwork is done by Ben Wahhh; he sent this tattoo basically, this artwork; he’s a great tattoo artist, and it kind of fit this whole thing of all of us have this part in making things work, and we’re kind of spokes in a wheel that keep things going.

And we, as the essential workers, thought, let’s make this record about the essential things. All of us are, but everybody else is too in their own way, and if we all don’t work together, we fall apart. We collapse. So, that’s kind of the gist of it. We’re all putting in so much to keep society, to keep us as a species moving, and we’re all essential in our own way, and if we all don’t work together, things fall apart. So, we’re all spokes in that wheel that keep the city, that keep the state, that keep the country, that keep the world, that keep the universe, everything, moving. We took it from our essential working situation to put it into the essential need for all of us as human beings to work together in concert to make us flourish.

One last thing, I like to ask people, especially those who’ve been in the scene for so long, what got you into punk and hardcore or just music generally in the first place?

Oh man, that’s a good question. I was thinking about this question actually the other day because a buddy of mine was asking me. We were laughing about it. It’s great to try to say I was born with a punk rock gene inside. It never works that way. Music in general is how you fall into things, and then you start developing this taste for what you love. Music was always played in my house as a kid. My mom actually had a contract to be a singer in Motown, but she never took it. She had her PhD in sociology and was a social worker and never did that. But she sang. And my mom and dad always had the turntable out, had music playing, anything from Earth, Wind & Fire to Stevie Wonder to Sly and the Family Stone to The Brothers Jackson. A lot of soul. My sister suddenly would pick up stuff from Devo and B-52’s, things like that. It was cool. We had all this music playing all the time. I remember just Saturdays music playing and blaring through my house, and I can almost smell the cherry blossoms outside of our house. (Laughs)

That got me into music as a human, but then as I got older, and I’d hear songs, I remember seeing the movie Heavy Metal with my dad; he took my older brother and me to see (it), which is probably not appropriate for a 9-year-old to see, but the music was just awesome. I remember the first record I ever bought with my own money was the soundtrack to Heavy Metal. Hearing Dio “The Mob Rules,” and Blue Oyster Cult “Veteran of the Psychic Wars,” and Cheap Trick “Reach Out,” all these songs that were just cool. I loved the driving beats and the guitars and the bass that metal had. And so as I got older, MTV came about, and I was like, well yeah, I could hear Iron Maiden “Run to the Hills” and hear AC/DC play “For Those About to Rock,” and it’s so good. And then I remember being exposed to skateboarding. I was never a good skateboarder at all. The music associated with skateboarding was punk, and I remember being handed a mixtape from a buddy of mine, I was probably 12, 13, and on that tape there were The Germs, The Adolescents, and Angry Samoans. Let me tell ya, Angry Samoans started off the whole tape, and “Gas Chamber” comes on, and I’m like, holy god. I’m getting chills thinking about it. I loved it. I could not stop listening to that tape. And then The Germs, just Darby’s voice and the visceral, just gutteralRarrrrr.” I love this. It kind of epitomized me as an adolescent who was angry with my parents’ divorce and all this other stuff, moving, I’m like, “This is speaking to me. This is saying what I can’t express. This is me.” And so I fell in love with punk. And after that, Circle Jerks, then you’re getting Black Flag, then Descendents. I was skating and listening to music, and that was it.

Then we moved again, and moved to Chicago, and I was exposed to Naked Raygun, and that was like, man. Jettison had come out, and I’m like, “Oh my god, this is so good.” And we went to see them, and I was like, this is amazing. This is everything I wanted in life. I already loved punk rock, but this was my scene. I’m here in the Chicago area now; I can go to shows in Chicago, and this is me. This is where I wanted to be.

I knew seeing Raygun, I took my best friend Paul there to see Raygun, that’s how I met the band by the way, all going to Raygun shows. I knew one day, I wanna meet those guys. That’s what I wanted to do, and I have. They’ve become mentors, friends, family. So, my beginnings, I started listening to metal, and then my punk rock neophyte brain was born by Angry Samoans, one of my favorite bands, The Germs, one of my favorite bands, and The Adolescents. Those three bands started me on my journey to where I am today. I’m smiling ear-to-ear right now talking about it.

I realize that my kids, I have two 10-year-olds and an 8-year-old, and one of my kids is so into punk rock, she’s definitely into music. I haven’t introduced her to Angry Samoans or The Germs yet. (Laughs) But she has her favorite bands. We’re number two, by the way. Rise Against is her favorite band, and she’s like, “The Bollweevils are OK. I think you guys are fine.” It’s Rise Against, The Bollweevils, Descendents, and Bad Religion are kind of together, and then it’s Jawbreaker, then 7 Seconds. She has good taste.

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