Pete Wentz & Patrick Stump - Fall Out Boy

June 24, 2005

This is another interview that was conducted at the Warped Tour in Dallas as a press conference interview. Here are the questions that were asked and the answers we got.

How would you describe the Warped Tour from the band's perspective?

Pete: I think that when you're in a band, I think that you get to play in front of all kinds of different kids that you wouldn't ordinarily get to play in front of. Personally from being in a band, I think it's cool to have a variety of bands to play with. Where else would you sit there and be amongst Tim Armstrong and then the guys from My Chemical Romance. It's kind of weird.

Patrick: Yeah, I think it's a level playing field. You can't really afford to have any ego about it. Likewise, other bands can't. It's awesome because when people say it's a summer camp thing, it really is like that. You're always eating the same food and you all get up around the same time. It's all cool so last year I would sit down to lunch and then the guy from Good Charlotte would sit down and there was a guy from Anti-Flag. It was cool.

Congratulations on being number one on TRL. How did that feel? You guys have been pushing it for a little bit.

Patrick: To me it felt weird because a lot of people would be IMing me and they'd be like "you're on TRL but we're going to take you to number one." I don't know. I've always appreciated our fans and known what they've meant but I think they showed the world because it's such a big impact that you make on people I think. It was just a very big shock. Our label called us that day and they were like "I guess we're going to send out an e-mail blast to try to get you guys voted number one." Then they called us back five minutes later and said "okay, you guys are number one on TRL. We didn't send the e-mail blast." We just laugh about it in a weird way too. The artists that we're surrounded by, normally I guess we wouldn't be put in sentences with people like Kelly Clarkson and stuff. It kind of feels funny. We're in on the joke it feels like.

I got a kick out of the sexiest vegetarian thing. What's that all about and why are you guys vegetarians?

Pete: It's weird because actually one of the guys that's up is not a vegetarian. Andy our drummer is vegan and he's the most involved of any of us in animal welfare and rights kind of stuff. I'm vegetarian but he's more into it obviously.

Patrick: We grew up around hardcore bands and stuff and there were just certain ideals with the music I think. For the people in our band, it seems to be more of a political or socio-political ideal that they hold rather than a health issue.

Which band are you guys looking forward to watching the most on this tour? Patrick: I'd say every day we're all stoked to see My Chemical Romance.

Pete: Motion City Soundtrack I got to see the other day. I love them. I like The Matches live. We're friends with Senses Fail and it's good to see those dudes. The Starting Line.

Patrick: I like to see a lot of those older bands. Underoath isn't one of the littler bands but I think they're definitely one of the underrated bands. They always get put on a side stage most of the time and it's crazy because you see the reaction. You can see it boiling and that's really cool. I like it. Like The Academy Is. They're just bands that are younger and I don't know. It's just cool to see the freshness coming out of people. Then there are some dudes who are older and who are just as fresh and just as excited and are definitely not in a shadow of anybody at all. It's cool to see all kinds of cycles going.

You guys have a lot of really interesting song titles on your albums. Does that come from anything in particular or just to be fun?

Patrick: I think it's just boredom or poking fun at the usual song titles that people have. I think that a lot of times song titles are orchestrated simply so they can fit inside DJs mouths and I think it's time to really stop caring about those kind of people. If you can't read a sentence then you can't understand our lyrics or what we are about. We don't really care if you're playing our music anyway. There are certain bands that are around regardless of radio and video. Not necessarily even bands that I'm super into. A band like Phish or something. It's not a band that I'm really into but that band just exists outside of it all and it doesn't really mind and I think that that's awesome. It's just about the music and the vibe that the band has that they're proud of. I think it's cool.

Do you feel that radio still plays a fairly important role or do you think they're getting left behind?

Pete: I think we're right in the middle of it right now. It's bands that are coming up right now where it's changing for. It's funny. The week we tried to get added to Modern Rock, two of those biggest stations went away. We tried to get added to KROCK in New York and it disappeared. I think there are millions of reasons why and it's just one of the problems with the music industry in general. You go in and you talk about how radio only caters to people who can buy alcohol because most of their advertisers are alcohol companies and most of the people who listen to some of the newer bands like Audioslave that are playing like rock or death aren't over 21. They aren't be catered to on the radio and they're not playing the bands they want to be played. There are call backs. That's like the Nielsen Ratings for radio. Most of the people that are picking up those phone calls don't think are of the right age or the right demographic either and then on top of that, I think a lot of the DJs you had were doing cutting edge things like 10 or 15 years ago are not getting out there or going into these tiny clubs or these sweaty rooms anymore. That and then compounded by Sirius Satellite Radio. All that altogether and just video, I guess radio is definitely going to fall off the planet if they don't catch up. There are plenty of bands like My Chemical Romance that broke without radio and now radio plays them but they're a video band completely. Or a band like Taking Back Sunday. That band didn't have either and they're selling 400,000 copies. If radio doesn't catch up, I think that they'll get left behind. I think it's really complicated and probably could be understood in a couple of sentences much less like my brain.

Do you guys have a tour story that stands out?

Pete: My tour story, I found a picture of it actually the other day. We can totally tell it now because the guy's cool with it. This guy, Brian Diaz, he is in the band Reunion Show and was the tour manager of Motion City Soundtrack. We were really green and they took us out on tour and we didn't have any clue what was going on at all. We didn't know what a sound check was. We were really dumb about everything. We walked by their van one night and he had passed out in the seat belt. He was slumped over and we were like why is that guy sleeping like that? Everybody said that guy was just drunk and passed out right now. We were like what's going on? We opened the door and he was really sweaty and it was hot outside but at night. We were like ah man, we should help him. No, maybe we should draw on his face. So we drew I Love Fall Out Boy and a penis mustache and all this stuff. We were at Denny's and we're joking around. We were like that guy seems like the total type of guy who would flip out but he won't. We get back and he's flipped out. We thought he was kidding around. He was like "get off the fucking tour. You guys can go to your fucking hotel room. Fuck you." We're thinking he's kidding around. He was not kidding around. We go into our hotel room and we're like oh my God. Secondly, our hotel room window smashes. We're like oh my God, this guy is going to come in here and murder us. The tour manager threw a bottle through it. A minute later he comes in our room and goes "fuck you and everybody in the room."

Patrick: He's going down and he's like "fuck you, fuck you, and especially Scully fuck you."

Pete: He's the nicest guy in the band so there's no reason for it. Then he's like "shit, I'm getting a plane ticket and I'm fucking going home tomorrow." We're like oh God we just broke up this band and we didn't know what was going on at all. We're barely on the tour. The next day there's a 50 cent movie theater. We were going to go see something and their merch guy calls us and says they're coming to see a movie. Scully was like "and Diaz is with us." We go in the movie theater and he comes running up and just hugs everybody and apologizes. For the rest of that tour, whenever he asked song people would like to hear, we'd be like "play another one or we'll throw a bottle through your window." It's been an ongoing joke. He's totally cool with us and it's totally funny now. We're better friends now but it's just funny. Lesson learned. Other bands don't draw on people's faces. Other bands maybe don't get wasted.

With you guys selling out a lot of shows, you'll probably be moving up to bigger venues. Do you think after you do some bigger tours, are you going to go back and do the small clubs again?

Patrick: I don't know. We haven't really had a plan for any of this. We'll play the size room that fits because the problem is, if you play a really small room, everybody who's not in the room complains about how you played it. It sold out right away. If you play a really big room, everybody complains about how it's not intimate enough. We'll try to switch it up as much as possible obviously and doing things like playing secret shows and playing fan only shows and smaller shows is probably how we'll do it. We want it to be safe and to be inclusive for people.

Do you have any tour plans for after Warped Tour? Are you planning any tours or writing or resting?

Pete: I don't think we're going to rest but we're going to do us and The Starting Line and Motion City Soundtrack. We're going to do a big fall tour.

Patrick: We'll periodically write but we're booked.

I know with a lot of bands it's hard to maintain a love life. Especially with you guys being where you are.

Pete: I have zero love life. My band is my girlfriend.

Patrick: I'm the only one that still has a girlfriend. It's one of those things where she hates when I leave and I'm excited about it. At the same time, it's cool. I love doing it. I love doing my job so it's awesome to get to do it. It's weird to have that kind of in between. When I go home, I run errands. I have to get the cats food. Stupid stuff like that. I'll be at the grocery store and someone will go "you're the dude from Fall Out Boy." I'm like "yeah, yeah. I'm out running errands."

Pete: I think it's funny. You get to some level and girls feel like the only way they can interact with you is to try to come on your bus and get naked. I think it's a lot cooler that girls are doing interviews and doing zines and promoting bands. 90 percent of the time when girls try to come on our bus, we're like can we get these girls off so we can watch the movies? I don't know. I think a lot of the newer bands are falling into that.

Patrick: It can get a little frustrating. I think there is that kind of hold. "Oh you're in a band? Totally, we're get naked." You always say that thing on stage about girls coming to shows to be coat racks. Fuck the dudes. Not like fuck the dudes. Fuck, the dudes.

I think it's so funny to hear that. I come from the '80s era where guys in rock bands were all about girls coming on the bus and getting naked. The younger kids are so totally not into that. That's kind of interesting.

Pete: It's not like not being into girls. Obviously it's probably the different ages you get raised in. Obviously it's just more conscious about gender issues. My mom would not be having the way that the dudes from Warrant treated girls. My mom would kick my ass. That would not be cool with them.

A lot of bands follow that DIY concept to start off. A lot of bands feel that MTV and VH-1 kind of take away from the creativity of an artist. Being featured as number on TRL, how do you guys feel about outlets like MTV and radio and all that?

Pete: I think it's awesome. Like MTV, M2 especially because they play a lot more videos, I think they've always been an outlet for fresher music. If you're going to do something really crazy, MTV has always been the place where it would come down at first. "We've got this video that we can't play. We're going to play it one time." Rather than limiting you, I think it adds this whole other artistic element where you can have this visual concept. Almost like a B movie. Videos are what I was raised on. That's all I would watch. I think it's a cool extra outlet for you.

Patrick: I think there's that aspect of it where you get to present your song. You don't just have to play it. You get to add something to it. It's all context. We were talking about that Comet song the other day with the video where the whole time you think he's just coming onto this chick with signs and it turns out she's deaf. You can put another spin on it. I also think too as far as the DIY thing goes, when you say you're doing it yourself, what are you doing? A big tour and we toured for three years straight. When it comes down to the creative thing, we didn't write with anybody else. We did everything ourselves. We toured. DIY has evolved into meaning so many different things but I think that's why you see a band like The Transplants and they're doing everything they damn well please on their own. But they get played on MTV but it's not hindering their creativity.

Pete: Blowing off MTV is a luxury of kids who are bombarded by rock bands but a kid who's living in Wherever, Kansas and who can't go to shows and doesn't have a Hot Topic five minutes from their wallet, who otherwise wouldn't get to see bands is kind of a cool thing. Even with a channel like Fuse which is direct competition that plays every band in the world. I think that's really neat.

When a lot of bands get moved up to a bigger label, indie labels focus on their biggest band on an indie label. What's it like to have people at Ramen so totally behind you guys' band?

Pete: I think it's cool and I think one of the reasons that people at Ramen are so behind us is because of the legacy of Fueled By Ramen is really important to us. It was something that we believed in and I think we want to believe in it past the era of Fall Out Boy. We want it be like Def Jam where the next era is better than Fall Out Boy. I think that they think it's really cool.

You guys did a video for "Sugar We're Going Down".

Pete: We didn't want to have a boy/girl video or the kids are having a party behind the house by a pool. We were seeing that all the time so pretty much the only treatment that wasn't like that was this really weird one that involved this boy with antlers who would metaphorically commit suicide by cutting them off. This isn't related to the video but there was this kid who came to us the other day and said "I kept for him to cut the antlers off and watch him spurt brains and blood all over the place. That's what it's really like." We signed a bunch of stuff and the kid was really awesome.

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