Interviews

Pop, Drunk, Snot, Bread & a UK Tour… Interview with Jaret Reddick, Bowling for Soup

Interview by Adrian Hextall

The latest album from Bowling for Soup, ‘Pop, Drunk, Snot, Bread’ (yep really), is out at the end of April and contains, as one might expect, a collection of high energy tunes from the masters of pop punk anthems. Latest single ‘I Wanna Be Brad Pitt’ is so damn infectious you’ll be cursing the band when the song fails to remove itself from your head after a week of continuous playback. 

To celebrate the new album, BFS will be gracing the UK with a tour culminating in a show at London’s famous Brixton Academy on April 23rd. 

We caught up with the jovial Jaret Reddick to explain why, when you want to call your album ‘Pop Punk’s Not Dead’, it morphs into ‘Pop Drunk Snot Bread’…. only BFS ! Combine that with the glorious artwork that harks back to the days of the ‘Garbage Pail Kids’ the collectible cards that spoofed the ‘Cabbage Patch Dolls’ and we have a great start to the interview…

JR: Yeah, the title sort of lends itself to the artwork. I knew that I wanted to call the album something that was based on Pop Punk’s Not Dead. The final title sort of takes the piss out of that a little bit. Of course, ‘drunk’ appears in most of our titles in some form of another, (Drunk Enough to Dance (2002), A Hangover You Don’t Deserve (2004), Lunch. Drunk. Love. (2013),  Drunk Dynasty (2016) ). So then it nearly changed to ‘Pop Drunks Not Dead’ and then Gary (Wiseman – drums) was like, “We should call it ‘Pop, Drunks Not Bread'”. And I’d already thought, ‘hey, it’d be cool if we were just Garbage Pail Kids on the cover’. So [laughs] that all just kind of made sense.

New Album “Pop Drunk Snot Bread” To Be Released April 22nd 2022

Long term BFS artist Dave Pearson created the cover for the latest album above and it’s fair to say he’s done a fantastic job of recreating the typical sort of pictures that would have suited Garbage Pail Kids characters back in the day. We’ll call it a ‘homage’ to the original because as Jaret puts it..

JR: Yes, that’s great, that’s much better. Keeps me out of any legal problems. [Laughs]

For those people who have been waiting for new BFS material, latest single ‘I Wanna Be Brad Pitt’ was released at the end of February this year. An infectious ear worm if ever there was one, the single and it’s accompanying video follow the exploits of Cyrus Hobbi who plays Bradley Pitts a Hollywood wannabe who clearly does just want to be Brad Pitt.

Filmed by Cory Gehr and directed by Scott Felix, the video also dips into ‘homage’ territory as it has the look and feel of Quentin Tarantino’s ‘One Upon A Time In Hollywood’ which of course the real Brad Pitt starred in.

JR: That’s right. Yeah. And the band are all dressed up like Brad as well [Yellow Hawaiian shirts all round]. The casting just ended up being perfect because Cyrus had actually worked with Brad Pitt in the past which was super cool. And then there’s a guy at the end of the video that says “Gets kind of old doesn’t it?” He actually has been a Brad Pitt stand in in a bunch of movies.

We were pretty lucky to, to find some guys for the video that really fit the role. They just absolutely nailed it. The director Scott Felix, you know, it is his treatment. We were kind of all over the place with what to do for the video,  and man, he just came in, had the idea and it was absolutely perfect.

Flicking through some of the feedback comments on YouTube as we were watching the video, one in particular, really stuck out for me that had been posted by fan, Gunther Holbrook. Clearly they’ve been following the band for some time, and they started with feedback that said; 

“Everything in my life is going wrong right now.”

When you read something like that you think, ‘oh, where’s this going to go?’ But then the second paragraph Gunther added said;

“This upload put a smile on my face. I laughed for the first time in a long time. “

That’s probably what BFS offer to a lot of their fans. That escape route for when they are feeling down because let’s face it, a BFS song, especially one like ‘I Wanna Be Brad Pitt’ can lift the spirits of pretty much anybody. It’s something Jaret can all too well understand and relate to. 

JR: Yeah. Yeah. It’s pretty overwhelming. Especially, you know, this day and age where mental health is at the forefront of what we’re all talking about. After the last two years, especially people need outlets for it but don’t always have it. But we figured out who we are pretty quickly in that, you know, that was going to be our role as the band that people can listen to after a long day, or after, maybe, a fight with their girlfriend or whatever.

It can  get that light-hearted smile going again. When we’re asked, “why have we not really evolved?” I feel like we have evolved in that we’re better players and I think I’m a better songwriter. I’m definitely a better singer than I was and a better guitar player than I was 20 years ago. I don’t feel like an evolution of the songs is really what what this band was about and I think the same thing when I think about bands that I love. Take Bad Religion and Social Distortion. When they put up songs I know what I’m going to get. It’s not that there’s not a place for that, I love the fact that, Blink-182, for example, has gone in so many different directions and Sum 41 is pretty much metal band now. And it works for them. But Bowling For Soup is what it is. And I think that people, as you said, I think you nailed it, I think we’re just that band for a lot for a lot of people that listen to us. And and that’s that’s definitely something that’s on my mind. Pretty much any time.

It’s a wonderful thing when people find inspiration and hope in the music from a band they follow and that fact is something that’s not lost on Jaret at all. 

JR: For sure. It’s one of those things where at first you don’t really know how to take it. The first time someone comes up to you and you’re there thinking that you’re just a silly band but then to have people come up and say to me, “Hey, you know, you saved my life.” Obviously, that’s the extreme but that comment happens quite often and that means a lot to me. It’s a heavy responsibility. I’m just doing something, right? I’m going to keep doing it. Obviously, I can’t actually take credit for saving someone’s life. But the fact that they found some sort of happiness or some sort of something that that took their mind off, whatever it was, that got them to a really dark place. If they got that from my songs, then that’s a pretty fantastic feeling. I mean, it’s one that you can’t really describe.

In the same context as the age old question of “who watches the watchers?” the same can also be asked about the bands that provide this avenue of hope for their fans. Band members are human too. They face the same trials and tribulations as the rest of us, yet… who do they turn to when their minds are in that dark place? 

JR: That’s an interesting question and, as you know, I’m open about my mental health and things that go on in my life as well with depression and anxiety. You’re exactly right. I mean I didn’t experience any of that until I was almost 40 years old. I remember being one of the people who would have thought you know, “that guy’s so funny and he’s got to be loaded and what could he possibly have to be sad about?”

Then once it hits you and you’re in a situation in your life where you’re asking “Why am I like this?” It just goes to show that people just don’t have that kind of control over it. You do have to get out there and seek out those things that can help. I’m really lucky. I have great friends, in and out of the business. Friends that live in my neighborhood and then friends like my band who tend to be able to do that for me.

Movies are helpful for meas is getting outside taking a walk. Musically, you know, Frank Turner has been a big thing for me over the last eight, maybe ten years. I feel like he’s a poet more than he’s a songwriter and he’s found the right way to present it. Then of course, just my old my old standbys, you know, Descendants Green Day, Molly. You know the classics. I just I love music, and and I love what music can do for people and to people and so it’s it’s it’s awesome that I actually get to do it, as well as being a fan.

A word to the masses from Jaret comes from his views on social media and his mantra of “don’t hate congratulate”. He’s always rooting for everybody else, wanting everybody to win.

JR: People tend to want to tear down something if it’s not their own achievement, whether it’s jealousy or whether it’s as a result of their own insecurities, you know, whatever that is. Why are we so negative? Why even put the effort in? I guarantee you, it takes more effort to think of that negative comment than it does to just not say anything or say something positive. You could have just not said anything, or you could have said, ‘Hey, you know, good job or, hang in there or whatever. We’re an interesting species, humans….

As we discuss interviews and reviews and how journalists often find a reason to drag an artist down to make them seem edgy and relevant, we discuss the point that there has to be enough music and artists that a reviewer likes for them to not need to focus on genres, artists or music that they are unlikely to view favorably. Favouring the approach we at MGM take of “only reviewing the material \ genres we enjoy as fans”, Jaret makes a solid observation.

JR: That’s so refreshing from a musician’s standpoint because you know Bowling For Soup, being together 28 years, we’ve gone through those times where critics can be somewhat holier-than-thou and feel like they need to find something negative just so that it can seem like they’re doing the work. Just listen to the album’s opening track ‘Greatest of All Time’. You’ll see exactly what he means. 

I always thought what a crime that is. You’re not a plumber, you don’t have to find a leak, just bask in the fact that the water runs. That’s the way it should work. Don’t find fault where there isn’t any.

If you’re going to see the band on their upcoming tour, go with the right intentions. The fans should and will be there to enjoy themselves and have a good time. We have every intention of doing exactly the same and look forward to a night of pop punk that will also see support coming from The Dollyrots and Lit. Details and ticket link below: 

Crowdsurf The UK‘ Tour in the company of support acts Lit and The Dollyrots and DJ Matt Stocks take place in a few weeks. A new show in Bristol (In place of the cancelled Torquay gig) has been added for the same day. Information about the full run of shows can be found below:

Bowling For Soup Crowdsurf The UK – April 2022 Tour Dates

12th – Empress Ballroom, Blackpool
13th – O2 Academy, Glasgow*
14th – Grimsby Auditorium, Grimsby – Low Ticket Warning
15th – Scarborough Spa, Scarborough – Low Ticket Warning
16th – O2 Academy, Birmingham*
17th – O2 Academy, Bournemouth – Low Ticket Warning
18th – O2 Academy, Bristol (New Show)
19th – Swansea Bragwyn Hall, Swansea – Low Ticket Warning
21st – De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill
22nd – Margate Winter Gardens, Margate
23rd – O2 Brixton Academy, London*

* Extra shows added due to huge demand

Tickets for all shows are on sale now from AEG – https://www.aegpresents.co.uk/events/detail/bowling-for-soup-3.

Tell Us How You Feel

Comments