Bowling For Soup are responsible for some of the most catchiest and fitting tracks of my childhood, high school years and beyond. With countless hit tracks such as ‘Girls All The Bad Guys Want’, ‘High School Never Ends’ and ‘1985’. The Texas four-piece have been one of the most consistent bands throughout my entire life, leading them to be an artist that I frequently revisit and enjoy just as much as my eight year old self once did.
Following the release of the fantastic ‘Songs People Actually Liked (Volume 1)’ where the band reworked and re-recorded some of their most cherished work, the Texas quartet have announced a return to the UK in the form of the ‘How About Another Round’ Tour. I spoke with Bassist, Erik Chandler about their return, their career and much more…
Hey Bowling For Soup, how are you today?
Doing well. Sitting on my front porch and enjoying an unseasonably cool, almost chilly, evening.
I’ve been listening to you guys since I was like 8! …Ever since I first heard ‘Girl All The Bad Guys Want’ on Kerrang TV back in the day, how do you feel when you look back at your career?
I’m very proud of what we have accomplished and that we’re still here 21 years later to continue what we set out to do. We’ve tried to play by our own rules, and for the most PART, we’ve been able to do that. So, I can proudly say, no regrets.
I think of you as one of the bands of my generation because everyone my age knows the words to your songs and your music was always synonymous with parties, high school drama and general fun antics…how do you write such catchy songs?
That’s hard to say…I guess we just write about what means something to us, or personal situations that seem to have a general appeal. There is never an idea of “we have to write a catchy song” but I guess we’ve been very lucky in that aspect.
As a band you obviously have a comedic under-body to your music but I think your talent shines through due to the amount of ‘hit’ songs you have actually released where as some other bands doing the same kind of thing only really have one or two ‘hits’, has it been hard to stay relevant and to continue to release songs of the same calibre as ‘Girl All The Bad Guys Want’?
We just try to do what we do, and we’ve been lucky that audiences have been so receptive.
One of my favourite songs by you is Belgium, a track I had on a little 32mb MP3 player with your ‘Let’s Do It For Johnny’ album…needless to say I spent my entire holiday that year listening to that album and notably that song. Something I have always wondered is, what is that song really about from your point of view?
I wrote that song about a girlfriend at the time who was attending Uni in New Zealand. This was in the mid/late 90s before email and the internet was just a common thing. So, in order to keep in touch I was always having to do math about what day it was there, across the international date line, and I was always a day behind her. Hence the line “You’re halfway ‘round the world and I’m just a day behind”.
I saw you at Download Festival 2014 and that was absolutely brilliant, do you have any inflatables for the UK Tour coming up? – also, what made you decide to come back after all?
I will reveal nothing about the stage show for the upcoming UK tour, but I can tell you that once we decided to cut back on our appearances out of the US, we immediately felt the love and the want from our UK fans for us to return as soon as possible. After a few years away, right now, it just makes sense for us to return. On our farewell tour, we never said goodbye, we just said it might be a bit before we returned for a full tour and now we’re coming back.
You released ‘Lunch. Drunk. Love’ in 2013, are there any plans for a new album/release?
Since that release, we went back into the studio and re-recorded a “band and fan” decided best of BFS release, “SONGS PEOPLE ACTUALLY LIKED”. That was all about being able to take some of our older songs and bring the recordings up to par with what we can accomplish now…to give them the life we always wanted them to have, but weren’t able to due to time, money, technology, whatever. But to answer the question directly, YES, there are plans for more recordings, but we won’t be able to begin to address that until we finish our US tour.
You formed all the way back in 1994 and found fame in 2002 to become a household name for the last 13 years, are there any plans to retire or are you gonna keep just rocking?
As far as plans go, we intend to continue to do what we do, for as long as people want us to do it. In one of those private moments that I’ll share, after walking off stage from our 21st anniversary show Jaret gave me a hug and said, “That’s 21 down. Let’s see where we are at 25.” We have always said that we would do this until it wasn’t fun anymore. As we’ve grown older, we’ve slowed down a bit, but that’s just to ensure that we don’t get burned out and still have a great time doing what we love. And we’re all VERY excited to return to the UK.
Your experience within the music industry is overly vast, what is some advice you’d give to some upcoming musicians?
The best advice I can give comes from SPINAL TAP “Have a good time all the time.” It’s really easy to say, but it’s not that easy to do. To me, that breaks down to this…