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members present:
Tony Lovato

conducted on:
December 2001

by: Stephen Reter
official website
shout-out to PZO


PZO: What’s up dude?
Tony: Nothing much.
PZO: So how has the road been treating you so far?
Tony: Good
PZO: And when did you go on the road again?
Tony: um … on this tour?
PZO: Yeah, this one with Good Charlotte
Tony: This one we started out on I think October 16th or 19th
PZO: And you’ve been on every show with them.
Tony: Yeah, I think we flew out for one show to do a radio show and then we missed two shows cause of my throat and in order to get better I couldn’t keep singing so I had to take two days off so everything would be ok for the rest of the tour.

<Steven sets up audio recorder> <Tony burps into recorder to break it in>

PZO: Yeah, so I just checked out Not Another Teen Movie the other day and noticed the “Melt With You’ song on the soundtrack, how did that come about?
Tony: Well since our record label was doing the soundtrack, and the guy putting it together is a fan of our band, and he was like hey there’s this movie coming out and we’re doing the soundtrack, you guys wanna do a song on it. And I was like ‘Fuck yeah, of course.’ And so he was like think of some songs, and we thought of some songs, and I was like whatever song you want us to do we’ll do, cause it’s a cover song and whatever it is we’ll just do our own version of it. And when he told us we were doing that song, I was like ‘cool’ cause I’ve always liked that song anyways.

PZO: Were you a big fan of that type of music, like the 80’s pop?
Tony: Nah. No, but I like that song though 'cause it sort of reminds me of The Cure, and I like Cure. But yeah, we just did our own version of it.

PZO: Have you seen the movie yet?
Tony: Yeah we just seen it like … yesterday? Right Chels?
Chelsea [girlfriend]: Yeah.
PZO: And what did you think?
Tony: I liked it. It was pretty funny. But I just like that dirty shit that’s in it. It’s pretty funny. Like that turret girl and then when that girl is like ‘I just want a man to take me out and I want a man to shit on my chest’ and the kid is like ‘I am appalled by that. I am appalled that a man won’t shit on your chest.’ That shit’s good.
PZO: Yeah that part definitely got a response from the audience.
Tony: Oh yeah.

PZO: I wanted to ask you about a couple songs you have written. “Opinions” is one of my favorite songs off of the new album. What inspired that song?
Tony: “Opinions” is pretty much like the song “Drawing Board”. Um, It’s about the pressure of writing songs and hearing the record labels opinions of songs. To me, its like sometimes I show someone at the record label a song and I think it’s a really good song and then they are like ‘It doesn’t have this, it doesn’t have that.’ Sometimes I just wanna be like, can I hear you play the guitar, can I hear you write a song. It’s just that people’s opinions piss me off sometimes, and its just like, let me do my thing and if I know that there is some potential there, then you know just stay behind us and stay behind it and whatever I’m thinking at the time and things will work out. It’s just dealing with so many people’s opinions and just being like no matter what I do, it’s just not good enough.

PZO: Has it ever come about that you wrote a song that you thought was just so good, but never made it to the light of day for the reasons you just said?
Tony: Yeah, a million times. But there are also songs that I thought were shit, but turn out to be great after I show half of it to a producer. We’re just sitting in John Feldman’s room [the producer], and I was just playing the guitar; playing these half songs I had. Songs that I had pretty much totally given up on but I was just fuckin’ around and he hears it and was like ‘Wow dude, that’s awesome, you should work on that.’ So I finished writing it and it turned out to be the song “Another Day”. It was just a song I started a year and a half ago and I was just singing the chorus and he was like you need to finish it.

PZO: Now what about the recording process itself? I mean I know you go in with John, but I mean is it broken down by an instrument or vocals or by person?
Tony: No, it’s like I’ll just write a shit load of songs and bring them to the band so we half ass know them. I mean that’s what we did on this record, cause we didn’t have a lot of time for it. So we half-ass knew the songs, went up there, showed him all the songs and he’d be like ‘Lets work on this song today’ and we just sorta picked and chose between songs because we’d work on a song a day. We’d just sit there in pre-production and figure out the whole song and once we had every song down then, um, Nick would go in an do the drums, then the bass guitar, then the guitars and vocals. All that shit’s separated.
PZO: Then it just flows all together?
Tony: Yeah

PZO: Now we touched on this before, but with actual songwriting, when you write a song, do you have to write the music first or the lyrics first?
Tony: No, it’s both, all at once. Just start playing the guitar and I’ll be humming a melody and just start singing whatever’s in my head. Somehow, no matter what I’m thinking, I don’t specifically write about one thing, but after I write a song about a girl, obviously that’s what it was about, it’s just sorta right.

PZO: When you got signed, did you guys notice any people coming out of the woodwork, like back in Chicago?
Tony: Yeah.
PZO: Like people that never really paid attention, cause I mean you hear about it all the time, but any experiences with that?
Tony: Yeah, family members too.
PZO: No shit?
Tony: Yeah, like a lot of family didn’t accept us and it was like you know cause I quit school at a younger age, but I knew this is what I wanted to do. And they didn’t support that, and now they are all like, fuckin’, pretty happy.
PZO: And behind you
Tony: Yeah, and just like being disowned by certain family members and then they’re like coming to the shows and I just have nothing to say to ‘em. I’m just the kind of person that, to me, family isn’t blood anymore at all. Some of my closest friends and family members aren’t blood. And you know, so I’ve learned that…you go through it.

PZO: Back to your record label, what’s your experience been with your record label?
Tony: Um great … because we have sorta had to always prove ourselves 'cause with anything we do nobody believes we can do this and nobody believes we can do that, but we can pull it off. And you know like our first week, we were only able to ship 16,000 records cause nobody would buy them cause we weren’t on the radio, but we’ve been touring our asses off and that’s what really will sell records. And then first week, like the next day we get this call and they are like ‘Wow something happened.’ Like everybody, like all the stores are sold out and all these new buyers came in and was just a huge thing. So then everybody started backing us, and we were trying to go to radio again then Maverick lost their radio department, so now Reprise and Warner Brothers, it’s between them and nobody really wanted to pick it up because we’ve already gone with two singles and it’s like they don’t know if we can do any more singles. Now Warner Brothers is backing us cause the record is still doing good.

PZO: Yeah, myself and the other Mestheads have been talking about that a lot on the MESTCRAPP message boards. Wondering if there is going to be another single released and if so, which would it be?
Tony: Yeah, “Mother’s Prayer.” We remixed it though and redid the drums. It’s like way harder.

PZO: And any possibilities for any other videos?
Tony: Um that’s up to Maverick and Warner Brothers. I don’t really know. I mean Warner Brothers just picked up the single and said they were going to promote it. So, it’s up to them when we’re going to release it and what we’re going to do with it and shit, so ...
PZO: And they are going to try and push it really hard?
Tony: Yeah

PZO: Right on. So what are you guys after this tour is done? When does this tour end?
Tony: This tour ends two days from now. I go home for a week. Then January 2nd, me and Paul from Good Charlotte, and Chelsea and his girlfriend…
PZO: Chelsea from the song right?
Tony: Yeah
PZO: Right On
Tony: We’re going to Jamaica for like a week and then coming home and starting another tour ‘til the end of March, and in March we are going over to Japan. Cause' in Japan things are blowin’ up and we ended up being number 12 in Japan and shit, so it’s cool.

PZO: Yeah, so how does that shit happen, like bands becoming huge in Japan?
Tony: Um ... It’s just a totally different record label. Whoever just wants to really, like Maverick signs bands, but internationally Warner Brothers is everywhere, and if somebody at the label sees something PR hears something they like, they pick it up and start working it. And obviously somebody in Japan liked it, so they started working it and so far things are going pretty good. First week sales we had like 8,000 records and in Japan that’s huge, cause it’s so small, so that’s awesome.

PZO: And do you know who you're going to be touring with? Any ideas?
Tony: H2O
PZO: Are these east coast dates or all over?
Tony: Well, east coast dates we are doing with Circle Jerks starting January 9th for like 6 dates.
Tony <to tour manager>: you can turn the heat down if you want, it’s fuckin’, the heat, I’m dying …um …
<All Laughing>
Tony: But yeah we’re doing 6 dates with Circle Jerks then we have like a week off then we start the tour with H2O that’s not east coast, that’s why we’re doing shows with Circle Jerks.

PZO: And these shows are going to be at the smaller club venues, right?
Tony: Yeah …uh … pretty much.
PZO: Aight bro, that’s about it.
Tony: Cool Cool
PZO: Thanks so much, dude.
Tony: No problem.

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