author: ethan butterfield | a&c writer
Jaret Reddick tells Banding with Butterfield about overnight success.
Well, I must say, this weeks Banding with Butterfield is another great one. I have the amazing opportunity to present an interview with punk-rock group Bowling for Soup! For those who aren’t sure, Bowling for Soup has been a staple of punk music since the mid-‘90s and have been releasing hit after hit, year after year. So, without further ado, here’s lead vocalist Jaret Reddick of Bowling for Soup:
How did you guys come up with the name Bowling for Soup?
It was pretty simple, it was a play of words from a Steve Martin comedy album where he was talking about a television show he was working on called Bowling for Shit. We were sort of in between band names, so as we were forming Bowling for Soup, we just kinda went with something that we thought would be kind of a place holder. But, we booked a show fairly early so… we had to change shit to soup, but we only had to change three letters.
How did you guys know this genre of music is the one you wanted to get into?
Well it happened really organically, because two of us came from one band and two of us came from another and it was kind of a combination of putting styles together. When we first started the band, my idea was for us to be the punk-rock Beatles and me and Eric both sing lead, and it turns out that the whole us doing harmonies…was more the direction that the band should go. So after the first record, that’s just where the evolution went. It went from, instead of just trying to have two lead singers, to being like, we’re really super melodic and somewhat fast but…lots of harmonies and lots of vocals and just, fun music.
Did you know that “1985” and A Hangover You Don’t Deserve were going to be the juggernaut hits that they are?
Definitely not, I mean, we had gone in and done the album and that song, you know, wasn’t even on the record. My friend Mitch from SR-71 had called me up and said “We have this song that really is more of a Bowling for Soup song,” so I heard it and I thought it was good. I just, you know, like lyrically, it really wasn’t the way that I would present everything. So I was just like, “if you don’t mind me having my way with it, let’s see what we can do.” I don’t know, I still thought I had bigger songs on that record but I’ve never been able to figure out a hit, I’ve never called it a single.
You know, I’ve never been one to be able to go like “this is the single,” and then, like even when “Girls All The Bad Guys Want” was a huge hit, I thought “Emily” was going to be the hit off that record. So no, I had no idea that it would take on the life that it did, but I think it was just perfect. it was great timing. It was an amazing song and, you know, it struck a chord and it’s been great to our band, you know, it’s nice that it’s still one of those songs that you hear when you’re out at the bar. Super cool.
What’s it like being that staple of punk rock music and having that fanbase?
You know, that’s the thing is like, being pioneers of pop-punk is not something that we even realized until late, like even after sort of our heyday. We would go to play a couple of Warp tours or whatever and other bands would come up to us, and these are bands that, you know, play heavier than us and do really well today and they just like “You’re the reason we started playing guitar’. It almost is one of things where…I don’t know, it’s a hard to question to answer, because, I realize we are pioneers and that we’re an institution, but we’re still doing it…It feels amazing! To answer your question, it feels amazing. It’s the best thing ever.
As far as new material, do you guys have anything planned in that regard for the future?
Well we just released Drunk Dynasty last year, our seventeenth album and right after that, our album called Live in a Frickin’ English Church came out. So, I mean, no, I think the idea right now is to get some videos for Drunk Dynasty out there and keep working that record. We’ll be touring this year and, you know, just excited to play a few of those songs but also just bring people the hits that they want to hear.
Aside from the new music, what does the future hold for Bowling for Soup?
Just keep doing what we’re doing. I mean, like I’ve said, you’ve been great about asking about touring and stuff like that…we’re doing enough shows each year to keep us busy but not enough shows to where it’s the burnout that bands go through. We’re still having a great time, still feel like people are still coming to the shows and buying tickets, so you know, that’s the plan, just keep doing what we’re doing.
So there you have it! Don’t forget to check out Bowling for Soup’s newest album Drunk Dynasty available now! Until next time!