So here it is - the Bigwig interview. First of all, they do deserve some level of vindication and were very candid about doing this interview for all you guys. For being directly involved in this, I can say after talking this out with Bigwig this incident that before affected my opinion of them, no longer does. They're still the same debonair hard-working guys I've always known them to be. As soon as I saw Tom, the discussion to clear the air began before I could start recording, here's when it started..."
TOM: No one told us about it and someone fucked up, and if that's our tour managers fault and she didn't even tell us about it then that's fucking bullshit. We found out about it from Duncan (booking agent at Union Label) in Montreal. He was like 'dude, everyone's pissed' and we were like 'what?' and he was like 'you denied an interview', we were like 'we didn't deny an interview'
ANGIE: So, no one, your tour manager, told you about this?
T: We just found out about this at Club Soda, we didn't even know there was an interview offered to us from punknews.org. No clue…
A: Cause we were sent an e-mail quoting your manager to say that Bigwig doesn't want to do interviews, that you were taking a break from interviews. I was also told that previously a writer was rejected at a show from similar reasons, cause of this…
T: Busting out on interviews is semi-true, but it wasn't this interview. We're picking and choosing interviews…
A: I could see that, I interviewed TFP and there was like 5 kids after me who wanted to do interviews, I was like holy shit what's going, that's a little too much…
BRENT: There's like honestly just a lot of people who come in and waste our time, they come in with nothing prepared.
JOSH: A piece of paper and a pencil…
B: Yeah, and they'll come up with the stupidest questions…
T: Just scratch all that, we just never even heard of this interview to deny it, so…
A: So you're saying that you would've, in a heart beat accepted this interview?
T: Yes. We don't give a fuck what people say, that we're doing this cause it's in our best interest, we are doing this cause we want to do this. This is a cool site; I mean everyone bases their fucking shit off this internet site. This is an interview that we want to do, you know something that a bunch of people are going to read, something that punk rock kids all go on. Not like, some kids fucking 3 page stapled zine that's about veganism and being straight edge which we're not, you know what I mean. Remember that emo zine the other day at the rave?
J: At the rave?
T: Like this total emo zine tries interviewing us and he's just asking all these dumb questions, trying to be all fucking…
J: Instigating us…
T: Yeah, instigate us into saying some bullshit story…
A: Yeah, that does suck. But I was so upset when I first heard you guys said no, it's like hundred bucks out of my pocket booking a day off work to do this, it's for the kids on the site, why would you not want to do it? I mean, I am happy though I'm getting to clear this up…
T: You know us anyways…
A: That's the thing! When I first heard, I was like fuck this there's no way they'd do that?
T: Let me tell you this, Fearless ended up turning down a 'Musique Plus' live interview. Like we would have never said no to that! You know what I mean…
A: Damn, 'Musique Plus'… Okay now, um well, Matt is gone?
A: How's that?
T: We miss him, but we are very, very happy and were all on the same page and we're ready to destroy the world now.
A: Was it hard to find a new drummer?
T: We've known Keith for years, he knew all the stuff we all kind of grew up in the same music scene together and all four of us have been bro's for years all of our old bands used to play with each other. It just kind of worked…
J: It was pure Darwinism!
T: Yeah, it was natural selection band wise (laughing).
A: Because you guys all played in bands before, Josh was in The Overdrives, what we're you in (Tom)?
A: Do you think that helped with getting Bigwig so far, gaining experience before and being able to make this last.
T: Yeah, I think everybody in this band has a good knowledge of what we want to do as far as music.
A: Your song 'Freegan' are you not vegan?
T: No, I'm pretty vegetarian…
A: What's the meaning behind that song?
T: It's just about getting free leather products. I mean why waste it it's free, I don't think I buy that many leather products.
B: I do, I like belts.
A: And I just found out, I had no idea, that Jim Cherry helped you guys get recognized by Fearless?
T: Yeah, we played a show with Strung Out and he called Bob that night and sent our demo to him and our demo became our record.
J: Didn't he call like while you guys were playing, like straight out Back to The Future?
T: Like literally as soon as we were done playing Jim dragged me to the phone and put me on the phone with Bob…
A: And Warped tour this year, why the fuck did they have you on the Build It stage I don't think you guys have any say in that anyways…
B: Actually we were only on it for one day?
A: Okay because I never thought the Build It stage could handle your size of crowd (Mustard Plug incident).
T: Warped Tour's not where or what time you're playing, everybody gets the same rotation. They pick where you're going to be playing at the beginning of the day. It's kind of the luck of the draw for a band our size, which is small.
J: We got booked on the tour last minute too though.
B: And that stage actually really rocked!
J: Yeah, we almost started a riot (laughing)
A: So any new LP's, when will that be happening?
T: Probably, by this summer…
A: Are you doing any EP's, EP covers?
T: Yeah, we're hoping too, we're hoping to get an EP and a live record.
A: And when do you think that will be?
T: We'll try to get on it in a couple of months.
A: And what direction do you think your sounds going to go?
B: I think I'm going to go West…
T: It will be a lot like the last record, but now we have more writing from everybody. Keith adds a new element to the speed.
A: Cause I'm wondering too now you have Brent and Josh the sound will most likely change in a way from what you guys contribute?
B: We're speed freaks, music wise… speed freaks.
T: I don't think the sound will change too much except with the addition of everybody's new vocals, we all have the same style still. I think it will get better.
A: Do you think you'll go with Fearless?
T: (long period of silence), the music is going to get better… (laughing)
A: So that's as far as we get on that. Do you think Ryan Greene will produce it?
T: I don't know, he said he was going to, I don't know if he still is? I hope so I'd love him to though.
A: Did he produce your last record?
T: Well he didn't produce it, he mixed it. We'll probably end up producing this ourselves.
J: And then hopefully he'll mix it again.
A: I heard you write lots of your songs when you're pissed off. Did anything ever drive you to write 'Sellout'?
T: Well, I just the fact that… I don't like stadium shows, they're kind of corny, there's way too many people it's too expensive. You know, I kind of like being able to see a band in a small atmosphere.
J: Weezer, case in point, one of our favorite bands, we went to the same show and me and Tom didn't even see each other the whole night, we couldn't even find each other. We had the worst seats it was probably the worst show of my life just because of the crowd.
T: I had to sit down.
J: You couldn't even hear cause it wasn't even loud and the kids around me were screaming and I saw Weezer four or five years prior to that with the Blue Album in a club and there was like three-hundred and fifty kids there it was great.
T: Yeah, I saw them in Jersey, there was like 700 kids and I was right in front of Weezer, it was great.
J: You can't take the two and even try and compare them…
T: The whole song 'Sellout' though it's like kids don't realize that sometimes a band is on the road for a real long time and they may be worn down and miss home blah, blah, blah whatever sob story, but the point is the band is still doing it, you know a lot of bands still do it just for fun and it's not all about money and it's shouldn't be all about money. And then the 'food on the table' part is, if you can be in a band and do something you love for the rest of your life and no longer work and it still pays the bills then I think that's fine I think that's okay for a band to make it into their life long, I don't want to call it work but, I guess it's like a hobby, it feels like a hobby…
J: It's your passion, nobody calls artists who paint or photographers sell-out's because they become famous.
T: The music industry seems like an industry where people just want you to stay down, want you to be poor and eat shit during the duration of your existence, that's kind of lame. You don't necessarily need money to be happy but you know where we grew up just paying the bills is a rough thing as it is. Being in a band and leaving your home and your apartment, your dog, everybody's got responsibilities so you know…
A: Any European tours in the planning?
T: No not yet, we haven't been to Europe yet.
A: Is any of your stuff being distributed out there?
A: How far out is your shit distributed?
T: Everywhere worldwide, we get mail from Japan and Australia, Spain, Italy.
J: It's kind of really our fault in a way cause we don't pursue it cause none of us really like to fly…
T: Well, the real reason is we're just saving up the suspense.
J: You know but I think at this point I will though. I'm ready to do it. I think we all are. So anybody who reads this online and wants to bring us to Europe let us know.
A: Is there anything else you want to let the kids know before we sign off?
J: This is the best interview in a long time.
T: Let's clear up the rest of this scenario. We've been on tour with the Bosstones's for two months none of us have really gotten the chance to go on-line. I put my personal email on our webpage (www.njbigwig.com) in case anyone needs to get in touch with us for a show or because they're pissed off about something or they have questions, if they want to just bullshit ask the band a question, I return all of our e-mails as soon as I can but sometimes, we're out on tour but it takes a long time sometimes I get like three hundred a week. So if people could just be patient with us and realize that you know, we're touring sometimes with sleep in the RV or the van, we don't get the chance to actually just sit down on a computer all the time, which would be nice and we don't always get hotels so we don't have access. So if people could just be patient and wait till we get home sometimes or write letters. Um, we never denied the interview! We love punknews.org…
A: So, finally you guys didn't know about the interview, did your tour manager tell you, like now did you know coming here today I'd be here?
T: Oh yeah, we just found out someone was pissed when we went to Montreal. So then I wrote a letter to Scott when I was at Club Soda we set up a computer and I just let him know that we wanted to do the interview and then someone called and said you'd be here today. We were psyched. So I understand why everybody's pissed, I would think the same thing about a band but don't believe everything you read and you know we try to do all this shit ourselves we try to stay independent as possible if anybody understands how our band is run and the way we do things it might be a little bit ass backwards but we benefit so we can have control over our band and stay independent…
A: Well thanks guys…
T: Thank you and please don't be pissed at us, guys!