What do you do in Snowdogs?
Right now as I’m doing this interview via email, I feel more or less like a typist. There are days when I feel like I’m doing phone sales…. phone interviews have that effect on me every now and again. I like it best when I get to play guitar and sing. It’s always been my goal in life to do that for a living and I’m fortunate to get to do it.
Did you guys get your band name from that Cuba Gooding Jr movie?
Of course. We are a boy band put together by the Disney Corporation to publicize Cuba Gooding Jr. movies. They paid us a lot of money, we got almost like $5 for it. Convert it to UK pounds and you can almost buy a beer with it. My brother Mat, our bass player, is a keen Rush fan, especially of Geddy Lee, their bassist. I bought him an old Rush CD for his birthday. It had the song By Tor and The Snow Dog on it. I thought Snowdogs sounded like a dirty bunch of mutts, willing to go places, bringing everyone their favourite drink and a good time to last until dawn. Then, years later, Disney bring out their movie and very nearly ruin a good name… However, you gotta remember that Disney movies come and go but a real Snowdog is forever. There is also the theory that we have massive cocaine habits. Not true. We just like it a little bit. My only wish now is that we get to do the soundtrack to any possible sequel Disney are planning to make. I’ll be bitterly disappointed if they don’t choose us! ;-)
Do you take it personal when people give your Cds a bad review or do you just shake it off and keep on playing?
My friends from Sicily are on the case already. A few journalists will be sleeping with the fishes before too long. I like the ones where they love us better. But if you allow me to be philosophical about it, I’ll say that if you believe the good press, then you have to believe the bad press too. We do our thing the way we do it because we know it’s the best way to go about it. If you like it, great, see you at a show. If you don’t, maybe you’re better off listening to the Hives. They’re such well dressed nice boys.
What’s worse: People throwing stuff at you on stage or booing you?
Depends on what they’re throwing. A guy threw a pint at my head once. I jumped in the crowd and kung fu’d him to the floor. His mates ganged up on me and started to beat me up. Mat started hitting them on the head with his bass. Half of the crowd we’re egging us on, half we’re trying to get out of the way. I’m a pacifist, so I’d much rather have them throw flowers and rose petals… ;-) Booing someone who’s trying to do his best is just downright uncivilized and ill-mannered. People like that should be banned from attending rock concerts.
What was the last film you saw in the theaters?
Monster’s Ball. It was alright. Why is it that so many movies suck? Give me something like The Deerhunter. Now there’s a great film. Why don’t they make them like that no more? Give me a good story, great dialogue and cosmic acting. I don’t want to see movies made by committee and accountants.
If Cuba Gooding Jr wanted to join your band, would you let him?
We’re a three piece, and I don’t think anyone’s planning on quitting, so no thanks. Dave Lee Roth’s also been on the phone, but I keep telling him we’re not auditioning singers. ;-)
What other types of music do you like besides punk?
Is punk a type of music, then? Ha ha ha… I’m really into all sorts. My favourite songwriter is Paul Simon, I’m a big fan of all his work. Benjy, our drummer, listens to classical music. Mat is a Bob Marley fan. My favourite stuff is loud guitars with irresistible melodies. Nirvana still get me going.
Do you think it would be wrong for the remaining members of the Clash to get back together with a new singer/guitarist and tour?
That’s a great idea! Has anyone told Dave Lee Roth! No, I don’t think they should reignite the flame. I would never go see a reunion tour of any of my favourite bands, because I wanna keep my memories or fantasies (in cases where I never got to see the real deal) intact. Consequently, I’d probably want to avoid meeting my heroes because I’d be so disappointed if they turned out to be something I didn’t want them to be.
What’s one band that should go away?
How long have you got? ;-) The hippie in me says we should let all flowers grow. But I think Robbie Williams (this English twat of a singer) would do us a big favour by going away. Trouble is, who’d have him? Okay, in spite of taking the mickey out of Dave Lee Roth, I think classic Van Halen were an awesome band, and quite possibly the only band I’d make the exception to go and see a reunion. I’ll change the question: instead of making any band go away, I say bring back classic VH!!!!
Do you have anything to plug?
In case you didn’t know, Snowdogs, this great new band from England, have a new album called Deep Cuts, Fast Remedies out right now. They are going to tour in the US hopefully very soon. Buy the album, check out the live show, I hear it rocks. Their website is at www.snowdogs.co.uk I’m going to plug the anti war camp. War is not the answer. It won’t make anything any better. Quite the contrary. The best regime change the world can hope for is one where Blair and Bush get dumped. Mush!