What do you think ou would have become without the band? What kind of life would you have? Does the band give you enough money for a living?
This is the best question I think I've ever been asked, also one of the toughest. First off I'd like to say that each and every one of us in NOFX is extremely lucky and thankful of everything that has come our way. We all feel that way. What would we have become, I don't really know. Hefe would probably be a musician of some sort because he was playing music long beore I ever met him and he is incredibly talented. Mike has a college degree in some field of social science or political science and a minor degree in human sexuality so he probably would have been a politician (or Larry Flynt's lawyer). As for me and Melvin, just a couple of freeloading punk rock bums with not too much in the way of education. Actually, I probably would have ended up doing construction.
And yes, we do make enough money off the band to make a living!
I get all the gain I need out of my Mesa/Boogie Mark IV. I use a wah pedal on "Eat The Meek." That's it. Oh yeah, sometimes I use my Melvinator. And once in a while I pull out my Superfuzzoticspectrophaseshiftalotarchorups, but it uses up a lot of 9 volt batteries.
I love you guys and I love Fat Wreck, but I have to ask, is is not kind of hypocritical to take something that by nature is supposed to be liberating and anti-establishment and makin' all these piles of money off it? Like come on, Fat Mike, you've gotta be worth MILLIONS. To be honest, I really don't have a problem with is. I think that you have worked long and hard to get what you have and you should be proud, but I can't help but feel a wee bit of dissillusionment when I hear "Shit-talking Capitalists" on the latest Good Riddance disc, then read them thank Vans, Converse, Puma, and Porn Star on the back. Where do you stand on this issue? Thanks a lot.
Good question. Neither I nor Good Riddance are being hypocritical when it comes to making money. First of all, Good Riddance hardly make any moeny. They make a living off the band, but they tour like 8 months a year. I don't really think it's a big deal if they get free tennis shoes or t-shirts. Not to mention that Good Riddance gives proceeds off of all of their albums to local charities and animal rights organizations.
Back to me. I can't deny that Fat Wreck Chords makes a bunch of dough, but the difference between Fat Wreck and corporate America is that we don't exploit or take advantage of anybody. We don't fool anyone into buying something they don't want, and we don't rip anybody off. The bands don't get ripped off, our employees don't get ripped off, and the kids who buy our music don't get ripped off. Everybody in the equation is happy. Also, our cd's are made in America, not some sweatshop in China, and the cd booklets are made in Canada. No one gets exploited. Not only that, but at the end of every year, if FAT had a good year, we give big bonuses to all our employees and more importantly to all the bands (something that is unheard of in the music industry). We also give tens of thousands of dollars to PETA, Food Not Bombs, and other charities. So, yeah, I make a lot of money, but I don't consider myself a Capitalist in the traditional sense. I make money, but it gets shared and spread out. FAT might be doing well, but so are a lot of bands and people involved with it.
Just to settle a debate, the pictures of NOFX inside the "So Long. . ." cover don't look much like you, are they you? Some people say the pictures aren't you. You will never reply but if you do, thank you.
Melvin: That's Little John. He tours with the Swingin' Utters.
Fat Mike: Serge. He plays in Limp.
Smelly: Chuck plays bass in Good Riddance.
El Hefe: His name is O. He plays guitar and sings in Fluf.
What do you guys think of Crass? I know that you talked about them on I Heard They Suck Live, but what do you think of their music, views, etc.? By the way, The Decline was the best stament you guys have made yet!
I like Crass ideologically, but their music bites. Eric Melvin used to listen to the a lot a long time ago, but I think he's over it. What does stament mean?
As NOFX has grown in popularity as a band and through music, do you still find time from your busy schedule to hang out with fans while on tour and not be so isolated and guarded like so many other big names?
Actually, I really like hanging out with people on tour, I just hate getting mobbed. It's a drag when kids freak out when they see you, but it's cool when people just kinda say "Heh, I like your band" or "Can I buy you a beer?" That's why me and Melvin usually hang out at the bar, cuz there's a better chance of someone buying us a drink, instead of asking for an autograph. Oh yeah, I wish people would get over that stupid autograph thing.
My question is this. . .why do girls how you there boobs at shows? It just seems weird. Do you have some kinda spell you put on them and *poof* up goes the shirt and out come the boobs? Just wondering. . .I think it's funny.
I think it's funny too. I certainly don't ask girls to do that. I don't get it. It makes sense at a Motley Crue show, but not at one of ours.
from: 0 - United States
January 22, 2000
What's your favorite band to tour/hang out with? What's your favorite band to cover?
Lagwagon, Snuff, High-Standard, and the Vandals.
Eric, was wondering how long you've played guitar before you played in a band?
My mother tried to give me lessons when I was ten or eleven, but I neer took to it well. When I got into punk rock that's when I really wanted to play guitar. I was around 15 years old. NOFX got together two years later.
How long did it take Eric and Erik to grow dreads like they had in "The Longest Line" album? And did Erik cut them because he got sick of them?
I really can't remember how long it took either of us to grow our dread to "Longest Line" lengths. Maybe three or four years. Erik cut his hair 'cuz he was on a mission in the desert and it was too fuckin' hot.
from: 0 - United States
January 22, 2000
You guys have been around for fucking ever, has there ever been times when you just felt like giving up? What made you stick around?
No, this is what we do. We love playing and we all get along with each other really well. But we do get mad at Melvin when he is late for things, which is more often than not.
On "The Decline" it seems like you have a taken a strong stance for gun control (I agree). What prompted this?
Guns are retarded. The only reason guns are legat is cuz the NRA has so fucking much money. My view in a nutshell: Illegalize guns and lobbyists and legalize drugs and prostitution. It's real simple.