Thanks to Hector at Epitaph for setting this up. This is an interview with The Pete from The Bouncing Souls. It went down on September 25, 2002 at the Avalon in Boston, MA.
Barbara: You just finished playing some dates on the Plea for Peace tour. How did you end up doing those shows, and what did you take out the most from playing in that tour?
The Pete: That happened by chance, 'cause we were doing shows with Anti-Flag before anyways, so they just asked us if we would do the tour with them, and we were like, yeah, let's do the Plea for Peace tour. There were a lot of good bands playing on it, so it was a good time.
Barbara: Yeah, you've toured with Anti-Flag a lot in the past. What do you think about you two makes for such a great combination at a show?
The Pete: Uh, I think that we're similar in the way that we look at how to do things, like, both bands, well, for instance, we did that split together. So, yeah, we like to do stuff together a lot, we've played a lot of shows together; we just seem to work well together.
Barbara: Yeah, a couple of weeks ago you released that split with Anti-Flag. How did that come about, who approached who? How did you decide on what the covers would be for the album, and why did you pick to play "That's Youth" by Anti-Flag?
The Pete: We decided to play songs off each other's in the spirit of the last split with Rancid, we wanted to do the same thing since it was so fun. We picked "That's Youth" by Anti-Flag, at least for me I can really relate to that song, so it was a logical choice for me.
Barbara: How satisfied have you been regarding your relationship with Epitaph Records? Do you ever see The Bouncing Souls leaving Epitaph?
The Pete: Pretty satisfied. I don't see where else we'd go. I like Epitaph; I like the people there. I can't think any other place I'd rather be. I wouldn't ever want to be on like a major label.
Barbara: You guys will be releasing a DVD in the near future. What can we expect to be included in the DVD? Are you editing most of the material yourselves? Do you have a release date yet?
The Pete: A friend of ours is doing it. And uh, he has done some documentarily and stuff and their really good. We have like 10 years plus worth of video footage, we have that and he did interviews of all of us and of our fans, so that's gonna be just one big "rockumentary", and that's coming out in February.
Barbara: That's great. What's currently happening with Chunksaah Records? Any new releases or signings that we should know about?
The Pete: Um, we just put out this thing called Philadelphia Sound. It's a 4-way split with The Curse, Knives Out, Painted Black, and Go! For the Throat. And like, we have something coming out by a band called Wanted Dead from California. And the DVD is going to be coming out on Chunksaah. We just put out a Madcap/Bosstones split, you know, just 3 songs each. We're always looking for new stuff, you know.
Barbara: What do you have so far regarding new material for a new album? Have you written anything yet? Do you plan on continuing in the same direction as How I Spent My Summer Vacation and the split?
The Pete: Yeah, it's kinda hard to say what direction we're going really until it's done. You may think you know what way its going, you might have a picture in your head of how its going to be, but until its done you really have no idea, you know what I mean? We have like 8 songs written, a few more are on the way. After this tour we're going to go finish writing and recording and getting on the ball. We're pretty excited about it.
Barbara. I heard Greg's wife Shanti is recording an album. What can you tell us about that? What type of music can we expect from that?
The Pete: It's like, power pop, its really poppy but it's also hard - it's really good. I like it. I play guitar on one of the songs too, its pretty cool.
Barbara: This question comes from your message board, we went to the message board and asked people if they had any questions.
The Pete: Cool!
Barbara: Yeah, so here's a little bit of what they asked us: A year ago or so, it was posted on Chunksaah's webpage that the Souls and Vision were going to release a split 7" representing Jersey. The Souls were going to cover Bruce Springsteen, I don't' know what Vision were going to do, but whatever happened to that 7"?
The Pete: That was a concept that never came to fruition. It was a good idea, but it never came to life. That's a thing we're trying to do still. It'll happen eventually but it might be a while.
Barbara: Another thing that many, many of the message board users wanted me to ask you was, Bruce Springsteen or Bon Jovi?
The Pete: That's so easy. Bruce Springsteen.
Barbara: I know, definitely Bruce.
The Pete: Definitely Bruce Springsteen.
Barbara: I know, some people were laughing, knowing that was how you were going to answer, but I guess there is some huge debate going on there between the two.
The Pete: I couldn't say...well, I don't like Bon Jovi at all. People from New Jersey like me, can't compare the two, because Bon Jovi is everything I hate, and Bruce Springsteen is everything I love. It's like black and white to me. Not to be negative or anything. Bruce Springsteen is like everything that's awesome about music.
Barbara: For years now you've taken out the song "Olé" from your live repertoire. Being such a recognizable Bouncing Souls song, what were the motives for its exclusion?
The Pete: I think the best part about that song is the Ole part, you know? It's more fun for us to have the crowd chant it. You know, and then do a different song because that song is a cool chant, you know, but the rest of it, we don't like it really. It's the best part of the song. Every now and then if the crowd is doing it, then we'll play that part of it, we'll come into something else after that.
Barbara. Can you tell us a recent crazy tour story?
The Pete: I can never think of one when asked. Something happens every day. Usually involving too much to drink, or breaking down on the highway. There are a million of 'em. Sorry I can't think of anything specific right now.
Barbara: That's ok. How about 3 underrated bands or bands that people should watch out for; bands that are not getting enough attention?
The Pete: Um, The Explosion. Um, I'm trying to think. Three? The Curse. That's a band that's coming on tonight. And actually really a lot of good bands are actually getting recognized now. There's this whole new wave of kids that are getting into Punk rock, emo, whatever, so a lot of bands are actually starting to get their due.
Barbara: After you finish playing these shows with Anti-Flag, what's next in your schedule?
The Pete: We're going to Japan next week, and we're going to be looping back, working on our record, and then going to California with Anti-Flag for two weeks in December. Then we're going to work on our record.
Barbara: Is there anything else you'd like to say in closure?
The Pete: No, not really. Can you put a link to our site, and to Chunksaah?
Barbara: Definitely. Thanks a lot for doing this!
The Pete: No problem, thanks!
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