Interview With 'Army Of Freshmen'
Where the Fuck have you been? You haven't called, you haven't written to us... we were worried sick. I almost called your mothers!
You didn’t write shit! You’re like the homie that swears to his boy that when he gets locked up, he will write every day. He doesn’t write at all then three years go by in the joint and suddenly when you’re almost out, the dude panics and writes one letter so you’re not mad when you get out. Well damn it. I’m out of the pen and I’m mad.
Millie (Mike Milligan) is back on drums this tour, is this a permanent thing?
Yes. In all honesty we never wanted him to leave but we did ask him to leave the band cause he decided to move back to Chicago rather suddenly. He wanted to stay but we just felt we couldn’t be an effective band with a drummer who lived half way across the country. Very hard to do when you have no money and none of us did nor still do for that matter. It was a bummer. We were bummed. He was bummed and it was definitely weird for a while but when we went on a hiatus so to speak, I know we wanted to do something for our 20th Anniversary and we talked a few times kinda bounced around some ideas. When the the call came in from Jaret last year to bring back Get Happy, we knew we had to ask Mike. He was there for our biggest years, all the Get Happys and deserved to be part of it. So, short answer. Yes, if and when Army of Freshmen does more, he will be the drummer and he’s officially back in the band. First practice with him was amazing. He’s such an incredible drummer and great guy. Couldn’t be happier to have him back.
There's a new song coming in your set-list, are there plans for more new tracks/ a new album?
How the hell do you know what our set list is? That’s top secret. Apparently we have a mole who must be dealt with. No plans for new tracks or a new album but never say never, gotta see how things go on this tour and I personally have been itching to do some songwriting so maybe I can convince the fellas to see what we can come up. We’re just taking things one thing at a time. We’re too old to multi task.
How much would it cost to freeze dry a human poo and then set it in a resin sphere?
These are the questions that keep good men up at night. (Ps the answer is around £2000 for reference)
What are each of the band members favourite songs from the full discography?
Well I’m not with them now but we discussed just that in an upcoming episode of our video series and if I remember correctly some of the songs that everyone agreed on, at least for live purposes was, in no order, “Body Parts”, “10,000 Years”, “Concrete Hope” but I know songs like “Condition Christine”, “Close Encounter”, “Ava” “Paperweight” are favorites. Your own songs are like kids, even the shitty ones you a got soft spot for. You created them. Personally “Close Encounter” is one I’m really proud of and wish would have gotten more of an audience. I like some of the more obscure ones like "On The Night The Boardwalk Died" and "Deland Avenue". Lots of song on the last record, “Happy To Be Alive” that I’m really proud of on a lyrical level.
Favourite songs to play live?
I mentioned some for the other guys above but I like playing songs that people in the crowd sing along to. I love hearing people singing words that I wrote back to me. It’s one of my favorite things in the world. Not that everyone knows who we are but you look for those people who know the words, especially if they’re next to each other and it’s the best.
Best show they've ever played live?
Man. Tough one. Not sure the best we ever played but notable ones for sure. Summersonic Festival in Japan in 2003. Download Festival in 2007 and 2008. Some of the Get Happy UK Tour Dates in 2007. So many really. Oh and the biggest crowd we ever played to in China at the Midi Festival. I got one perfect rock star photo of me throwing up the metal in front of a festival crowd. Armed guards front of stage. Flags waving. Probably gonna need that pic over my casket at the funeral. I shall make a note of it.
Choose one song by another band you wish you'd written.
Good one. How bout another artist not necessarily a band. “What A Wonderful World”. That’s a pretty perfect song. “Time” by Tom Waits. “Marie” by Randy Newman. Probably would pick some ballad. I love a good heartbreaking ballad. I listen to a lot of old singer songwriters. There’s just too many. Everytime I hear a great song I think, man I wish I wrote that!
NBA related, should Lebron go the Warriors next year or is he now just chasing another ring?
Should Toy Story just stop now, instead of the latest sequel being made?
There’s another one coming? I thought they killed everyone off.
Favourite member of BFS/Aquabats?
Impossible to answer. They are equally amazing. But I always thought when Jaret went by Jaret Von Erich as a homage to the legendary wrestling, on name alone, I’d have to go with him.
Favourite British Sit-com?
Hmm. Not sure if it’s a sitcom but the original Ali G show was brilliant. I remember our agent insisting we watch that at his house and explaining to us what it was. Took us a bit but once we understood what was happening we were in love with it.
In a world without Koala Bears, Who wins the gold in the 100m Sprint in 2016?
I feel as if that’s some Mr. Robot type code that contains a message of great importance on national security but taking it on face value, Mr. T.
Worst ever, ever, ever venue and gig?
Damn we’ve seen some rough ones. There was a club in Cincinnati years ago called The Void and I kid you not there was mold on the poop on the toilet seat. Meaning the poop had been there so long it was now molding. In a bad area too. That one always sticks out or should I say stinks out.
Any future film making plans?
Thank you for asking. I assume you’re referring to the movie Aaron and I wrote and co-produced, The Bet. That movie was such an undertaking. I mean we had no background at all but we found a way to make it happen and for an indie comedy, we’re really proud of it. Roddy Piper’s last film appearance too which is crazy. If you’re reading this in the UK and you haven’t seen it. Please check it out on iTunes. To answer your question, yes as much as it almost killed us to get released, we wrote another film, Wedding Or Not, which we believe is funnier and crazier than The Bet. When the tour is over, we will be starting the hunt for financing which is the real hardest part of making a movie. Love to start filming before the year is out if we find the right backers.
Finally, tell us all about the get Happy tour.
Get Happy! Get Happy Tour was a co-creation between Bowling For Soup and Army of Freshmen. It did two USA tours and two UK tours in 2006 and 2007. It was package tour that focused on fun bands, interactive shows. The lines ups were great, it was always us and BFS but other bands like Bloodhound Gang, Zebrahead and Wheatus to name a few who joined on the 4 different runs. When the music industry began to fall apart and taste in many ways changed, the tour kind of drifted away but as you know it’s back and back in a big way. We couldn’t be more excited to be celebrating on 20th Anniversary on Get Happy. It just feels right on all levels. Can not wait to see everyone. Even you Oli. Strangely enough, even you.
Army Of Freshmen 20th Anniversary - Get Happy Tour UK Feb. 2018 with Bowling For Soup & The Aquabats!