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Interview: Joey Cape - 10.07.08
 

Joey Cape - 10.07.08

Interviewed by
Joey Cape - 10.07.08Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions for us. First off, how did you and the rest of the fellas enjoy the MxPx/Only Crime tour?
It was great. A lot of fun. It's over now.

Have Lagwagon and MxPx been trying to arrange a stateside tour for awhile or did it all just sort of fall into place?
It just fell into place. We have toured in Australia with them before.

Are they any immediate plans for a Lagwagon headlining tour and follow-up to your recently-released EP? Or was supporting MxPx it?
Just Australia and Japan -- that tour [with MxPx] was our North American tour for the E.P.

I heard from some fans that you guys have been performing mostly early Lagwagon material from the Trashed years. What made you want to go back to those songs with so much back-catalog material to choose from?
We always play songs from the early records; that's nothing new. We always play a song or two from each record. We rarely play much from the newest release.

What album does the band get asked about the most, perhaps to perform in its entirity? I would imagine Hoss or Let's Talk About Feelings over more recent discs like Blaze.
Yeah, ususally Hoss or Trashed.

Now, although Bad Astronaut is now in the past, do you ever plan on bringing some of those songs to the forefront during Lagwagon shows or solo tours?
I will never play any Bad Astronaut songs with Lagwagon. However, I will do some when I play solo shows in the future.

You're known for wearing many musical hats with so many projects always on your calendar. Is there any specific reason Afterburner stalled? "Canoe" and "Non Sequiter" made it onto the solo record, but did you just decide to end that project or run out of time?
I just decided to end it. It wasn't going to work as more than a one-time project. Todd was busy, I was busy... it was moving too slow for my taste. It took us four months to record four songs! (laughs)

Cool. So, what's the word with Me First and the Gimme Gimmes & the Playing Favorites? Have all you guys been discussing any upcoming plans or new ideas?
Yeah, but there are no concrete plans yet for either. I'm sure the Gimmes will do something early next year. Maybe the Playing Favorites, too. I mean, I hope so. That was a lot of fun. (chuckles)

Let's talk about your new solo album, Bridge, for a second: what was the inspiration behind it's creation, and what exactly took you -- arguably one of the best songwriter's to come from the California skate punk scene -- so long to release such a record?
Wow, thank you. Um, I don't know. I guess it always seemed cliche, you know? Eventually my
desire to make an acoustic album outweighed my insecurities.

Did "B Side," "Memoirs and Landmines," "No Little Pill," "Errands" and "Mission Unaccomplished" originally start as a Lagwagon songs or did you strip down some old gems from back in the day?
They were originally written and recorded for the acoustic album. The band [Lagwagon] learned them from those versions [because they loved them so much]. Ironically, the Lagwagon E.P. came out first. I hadn't planned for that to happen. (laughs)

Classic 'wagon songs like "Move the Car" and "Violins" seem to resonate more and have a lot more life when they were stripped down. Do you have a preference with any songs you've written to be acoustic or full-band?
Not really. I do think all of the new songs work better as acoustic songs, with the exception of "Memoirs and Landmines".

Yeah, I agree.
Maybe because they were written with that intention. But other songwriter friends of mine who heard them second [after the full-band versions] agreed. I don't know -- it doesn't matter really. I suppose it's nice for some people to have two versions available to them, right? (laughs)

Much of your recent material is more introspective and poignant than some of your ... how do I say it... "wittier" stuff with the band. Which of the songs off Bridge has the most personal value to you?
(thinks) I'm not sure. They all have some personal value, you know? Maybe "Who We've Become", because the original recording and lyrics were for my daughter for a school project. It was originally called "Firetrucks and Princesses," but I liked the song so much, I gave it more adult lyrics later as tribute to my wife.

What Lagwagon/Bad Astronaut songs mean the most to you on a personal/professional level? Any you'd like to forget?
Off the top of my head... Bad Astronaut: One Giant Disappointment. Lagwagon: Twenty-Seven. I would like to forget "Beer Goggles" and "Stop Whining" to name a few. (laughs)

What was the catalyst that set the tone for Bridge? Did you write or re-write much of the material after any incident that personally happened to you or inspired you?
There wasn't a common inspiration for Bridge; there wasn't really a catalyst either. The songs were recorded a few at a time in between tours when I could find time. Any continuity is accidental and lucky, really!

This won't be the only solo Caper album we're gonna see, now is it? I think I speak on behalf of all diehard Joey Cape enthusiasts when I say we pray for more soon. (laughs)
Oh definitely, I think I will do more of this. But it will be a while. I want to tour and get more experience performing alone before I record more.

Well, speaking of which, do you plan to tour for Bridge at all, perhaps small clubs and intimate shows where audience participation adds to the atmosphere?

Yes. It looks like February through May of next year. Small clubs and bars I suppose. Whatever works.

Now, are there any plans to release a vinyl copy of Bridge in the near future? Any plans Fat Wreck has to re-release any of Lagwagon's old albums?
Bridge is currently available on vinyl through the label Vinyl Collective in the States. I think we are re-releasing the first five Lagwagon albums with all the outtakes and compilation songs from each album's period. I think... (laughs)

I wouldn't hesitate to label you as modern music's version of Snoopy's alter-ego "Joe Cool". How do you continue to maintain such a laid-back, uber-cool image in a Warped Tour scene Fat Wreck used to rule, that is now consumed by trend-lurching tweens?
(embarrassed) Well, I'm not that cool or laid-back but thanks. (chuckles) I appreciate that. I wish it were true. If I seem at ease with the current climate of music and my waning identification with it, it's only because I never took it all that seriously to begin with. I have been around long enough to know it's better to be self-indulgent and not to worry about the popularity contest. It doesn't matter
and if it does to you, it will affect your ability to create real art. It affects a person's ability to be real, to be themselves.

Any up-and-comings bands you think people ought to give a listen?
Ninja Gun -- they are from Georgia. Logh, who are from Sweden, and Revolts, from my hometown [of San Francisco].

Allow me to just thank you for taking the time to answer these questions -- I know you're a busy man, and I wish you all the best in the future. You have been a monumental influence for many musicians and people. One final question: do you still need a smoke?
Oh, well, thank you very much. (chuckles) And yes on the smoke. Sadly, I may always [need one]. (laughs)

Thanks so much, Joey. It was an honor.
You bet. Thank you.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 11 of 11
03:36 AM on 10/17/08
#2
Özgür Kurtoglu
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Quote:
I will never play any Bad Astronaut songs with Lagwagon. However, I will do some when I play solo shows in the future.

Oh, awesome...!

Quote:
Off the top of my head... Bad Astronaut: One Giant Disappointment. Lagwagon: Twenty-Seven. I would like to forget "Beer Goggles" and "Stop Whining" to name a few. (laughs)

Yes! Twenty Seven just might be one of my all-time favourite songs from this genre, and the acoustic version is fantastic.

I need to see Joey live. Not that I didn't know that before reading this, haha.
04:47 AM on 10/17/08
#3
ugman_2000
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Awesome review Chris, sounded like he was a nice guy - Cheers for asking about the BA songs

Quote:
Now, although Bad Astronaut is now in the past, do you ever plan on bringing some of those songs to the forefront during Lagwagon shows or solo tours?
I will never play any Bad Astronaut songs with Lagwagon. However, I will do some when I play solo shows in the future

I had a feeling this would be the case but it's cool to know that he does intend on playing a few of them

Quote:
This won't be the only solo Caper album we're gonna see, now is it? I think I speak on behalf of all diehard Joey Cape enthusiasts when I say we pray for more soon. (laughs)
Oh definitely, I think I will do more of this. But it will be a while. I want to tour and get more experience performing alone before I record more.



Quote:
Well, speaking of which, do you plan to tour for Bridge at all, perhaps small clubs and intimate shows where audience participation adds to the atmosphere?
Yes. It looks like February through May of next year. Small clubs and bars I suppose. Whatever works.

I hope he brings this overseas or at least does a couple of random shows next time Lagwagon come over
05:09 AM on 10/17/08
#4
CellarGhosts
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Awesome! It's pretty direct like you said, but yeah, he's busy and you took the time you needed. Good questions, and he seems like a really down to earth, humble dude.

I definitely hope he does a show somewhere near me. I need to see him live already. If not, oh well. There's still plans for another solo album in the future apparently, so that's good news too!

Oh and thanks for asking my question! haha.
09:52 AM on 10/17/08
#5
brentstailing
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joey seems like the coolest, most down to earth guy ever. thanks for the interview, it was awesome
10:00 AM on 10/17/08
#6
lew_1987
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Some good questions there.
10:29 AM on 10/17/08
#7
mybreakingpoint
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Love Joey, I just wish his answers had been a little more in-depth.

Or maybe I'm just weird and people don't want that?

I did an interview 2 days & all my responses were crazy-long.
11:32 AM on 10/17/08
#8
lew_1987
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Love Joey, I just wish his answers had been a little more in-depth.

Or maybe I'm just weird and people don't want that?

I did an interview 2 days & all my responses were crazy-long.

Maybe you get bored after years and years of it

Although this one did have some interesting questions.
02:09 PM on 10/17/08
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CellarGhosts
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Love Joey, I just wish his answers had been a little more in-depth.

Or maybe I'm just weird and people don't want that?

I did an interview 2 days & all my responses were crazy-long.
Chris mentioned that in the Joey Cape thread in the music forum. I think it was just that they didn't have a whole lot of time on their hands to really go super in-depth with the interview.
02:29 PM on 10/18/08
TheOtherAndrew
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Chris Fallon and Joey Cape in the same place makes my sex drive go bananas.
10:48 AM on 10/20/08
smelltheglove
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"wrong answer, Joey Cape IS God!"

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