Every summer Warped Tour rolls into town with it’s cast of merrymaking, music and shenanigans. For a music fan, it’s an all you can eat buffet of your favorite bands melting your faces off with their rock, metal, ska, pop, crowd-surfing goodness, call it what you will brand of music. Warped Tour has turned into more than just a music festival, it is now it’s own subculture with the bands on the tour making up their own self-sufficient community that seems to takes care of each other in the true sense of brotherhood (AND the occasional sisterhood!). It’s a lesson that could be learned by a lot of us about doing the things we do for the love of it, rather than for the paycheck.
author: Stacie Caddick Dowty
This year we spent a whirlwind day at Warped Tour in Mansfield, MA catching up with bands, watching a lot of great music, and interviewing as many bands as we could between the tornado warnings and torrential downpours. In part 1 of our multi part Warped Tour coverage we bring you the comedic genius of Alex and Jack from All Time Low and We The Kings.
What’s it like to be thrown into the music industry at such a young age? (Touring with guys that are 5-10 years older than you, learning what is legit in the industry and what isn’t…)
Alex: At first it’s a little bit overwhelming. I think as time as gone on, over the past two years, it’s become a little more normal for labels to snag bands when they are younger. I think there a lot of bands our age or even younger that are getting signed, and getting put on the road immediately after high school just like us. I think it’s going to become more of a regular thing, cause I think the sooner your start the better you are going to be at that prime time, when it’s time to actually go to that next level.
Jack: We’ve been dealing with the industry a lot, because we started our band like five years ago, and we got signed like three years into it. So we got in pretty early.
Alex: What he said…
I see that you are currently involved in a charity event, with an autographed guitar to benefit “More Than A Zodiac Sign” which benefits the American Cancer Society. What are some of your other favorite charity organizations that you are proud to be involved in and why?
Alex: One of the organizations that we’ve tried to have an affiliation with is “Keep A Breast”, because we really value breasts.
I bet you do!
Alex: …and we want as many people as possible, to keep them.
Jack: Also, To Write Love On Her Arms.
Alex: Yes To Write Love On Her Arms is another one. Invisible Children. It’s really cool being back on Warped Tour now, because a lot of these organizations we met on the tour last year. That is how we got to know these people and what they are all about, so it’s cool to be back out here and support them with the knowledge of what they do.
What are you thoughts on cell-certs? (Fans calling fans that can’t attend shows.)
Alex: That’s awesome! It’s bad ass!
Jack: That happens?
Alex: The craziest thing now is that you can do the video chat on some phones! People are video taping the band playing and it’s going live to this other person. It’s definitely a new age!
I’ve been a part of one that was being broadcast over Yahoo chat, and we had people listening in Sweden and India.
Jack: No more talking shit about Sweden or India…
Alex: We have to watch our mouths now…
Adam Lavine has said that every band has an attention whore (someone has to be!). Who in the band fits this description?
Alex: It’s me.
Alex: Yeah, no doubt!
Jack: I love Maroon 5!
I see you guys are pranksters…
Jack: More like gangsters! Arghhhhhh….chika chika yeah!
What are some of the best pranks you have pulled, or had pulled on you, on tour?
Alex: We killed We The Kings but they were resurrected.
Jack: That was a funny prank.
Um, I was gonna say I just talked to them!
Jack: We were like ‘Ha, now you’re dead!’
Alex: We went on stage for the last song and just cut all their heads off.
Jack: Everyone was like “Oh My God!” – then a few seconds later their heads came back on.
Alex: Someone shit on our van. It was our old merch guy, and it was his last day working for us. So to commemorate the occassion he took a shit.
Jack: So we killed him and his family.
Alex: We beheaded him too, but they weren’t resurrected, we left them.
Being that you guys never yourselves too seriously…
Jack: What makes you say that? How dare you!
What about fanfiction scares you?
(Ed. Note – Q: Wtf is fanfiction? A: Fanfiction is Fans writing fiction about band members getting in on with other fans or bands. That’s the official Websters Dictionary definition at least.)
Alex: It’s not so much that it scares me. It’s that it arouses me to the point that I question my own sexuality. I’ve has sex with so many other people in bands that it scares me.
Jack: It’s awkward. Like “Hey Travis” from We The Kings, “How you doing man?” Uhhhh…
Alex: I’ve fucked Panic At The Disco, I’ve fucked Cobra Starship, I’ve fucked Fall Our Boy…
Jack: So now when we meet those people it’s awkward.
Alex: It’s like so… I’ve fucked you in theory, then their weirded out and it’s awkward for the rest of the day.
Was anyone else besides Rian a High School marching band guy?
Alex: He was in the middle school band. He played the idiot. Rian was like Lead Snare. He was bad ass! Rian was Nick Cannon!
Jack: Nick Cannon is hilarious!
Now that you’ve been touring bigger venues over the past year, hitting Warped this summer, do you still go home and practice in the basement?
Alex: No! Mostly because we were eating all the food in our parents houses and they were like “Please just get the fuck out!” No, I think the big thing is that we tour constantly enough now that practice is just the first couple days of tour. You just kinda get into it and get into the swing of things. Once you’ve done it that many times, you really don’t forget it.
Jack: When you are as good as us, you don’t really need practice.
Alex: I once learned to play Eruption with a blindfold on and no fingers. Eruption is an Eddie Van Halen solo for those of you who don’t know. It wails!
Jack: I need to shave my pubes.
Where did THAT come from? That was random!
I read that as youngsters you were into hip hop and top 40 stuff like Backstreet Boys, is that true? What turned you into the direction of playing pop-punk?
Alex: Jack turned me in that direction.
Jack: Yeah I was into Top 40 and Blink-182 was in the Top 40 at the time. I got Alex into Blink by…
Jack: I got Alex into Blink by having him listen to the “Mark, Tom and Travis Show” which is their live CD. After that he was like “Wow, that’s the best band ever!” and we were like “Let’s start a band like that!” and we were like “ok!”
Alex: That is exactly how it happened. Yeah, before we hit puberty our voices were really…now we all sound like Barry White.
Jack: Hey baby.
Do you have any special plans while you are on Warped to hobnob/chin wag with anyone in particular? Or is there any particular band you are excited to see perform?
Hobnob and chin wag…
Alex: I’m not going to hobnob it with anyone! What are you saying Madame?! I’m going to hobnob the shit out of Gym Class Heros.
Jack: Gym Class, Cobra, We The Kings, Every Avenue, The Audition, Just Surrender *big exaggerated deep breath* Set Your Goals… I think that’s it.
Alex: I want to kiss Katy Perry!
Jack: That’s a very bold statement sir, because Travis is dating her, so we may want to lay low.
Alex: I want to kiss Travis as well.
In closing we’re making a summer mixtape..
Alex: a laser… Magma… Mix Tape…
..from the bands on Warped, what’s one song from any band on the tour that you think should be included?
Alex: Is Tyga on Warped Tour?
Alex: Damn because I was going to say Coconut Juice would be a great summer song. Lets go with Skyway Avenue by We The Kings.
Do you have any particular song you would like to include my friend?
Jack: No… Damn it! I’m really bad off the top of my head. Cobra Starship! Paparazzi!
(Alex and Jack bust out into song, singing Paparazzi.)