Mitch, AJ, & Jim - Legbone

January 5, 2006


Photo Credit: www.myspace.come/legbone

Tell me a little bit about Legbone.

Mitch: I have a couple of other Legboners here. I've got AJ and Jim.

Hi Legboners. How are you guys?

AJ: Good. Getting attacked by the dog right now.

Oh, the puppy is already getting vicious. He should fit right in. He will be the punk dog.

Mitch: Yeah, he pees on floors just like drummers.

Jim: Don't print that.

Mitch: You think I'm joking.

Now we know what drummers do back there. They drum and pee on the floor. Tell me about the band and what you do when the drummer pees on the floor.

Mitch: Well, we haven't been back to that place I'll tell you that. I think that was the last night we stayed there. I don't know. We formed back in 1991. There are two guys in the band, myself and the singer who are from the original band. Now we have three new guys. We've been playing music for a long time and let's have fun and play music I guess.

And get drunk and pee on the floor.

Mitch: Correct. Television. Right AJ?

AJ: Yeah.

Mitch: But he did that in his own house so I think it's okay.

Yeah, as long as it's in your own house. So why did you guys have a lineup change?

Jim: The bass player left and then AJ who was playing guitar in another band came in and started filling in on bass. Then at that time the drummer left so they got a new drummer. AJ wanted to play guitar again so I came in and started playing bass.

Mitch: We've only been a five piece for about four years. Pretty much the band the way it is now has been together for four years.

AJ: Actually kind of five years total. It's about five years old.

Mitch: Yeah, the band's current lineup has been together for about five years.

Damn AJ, they just push you around. Take the bass, take the guitar, take the bass.

Jim: He's really a guitar player.

Mitch: Yeah, he wanted to play guitar. Plus two guitars at a live show just sound so much better. It really does. So yeah, it's really great.

Yeah, it does sound better. Well, you guys came out with your album Different Path. Tell me a little about it.

AJ: Yeah, that's actually pretty much all the first songs we wrote after becoming a five piece from a four piece.

Mitch: Right, that was the first album we've put out as the band in this form. As a five piece.

Did you guys write all of the stuff together or are there just some guys who do a lot of the writing in the band and some guys who don't?

AJ: Everybody worked on all the songs but some of the songs on the album were ideas before we became a five piece and then they were finalized. When the band became a five piece that's when all the songs got finished.

Mitch: Yeah, we write in all different ways. Sometimes somebody will come in with a whole song or sometimes somebody will come in with just a lick. Sometimes we'll just be jamming and stuff will pop up. There's all ways but we try to put in everybody's input when writing songs for sure. It's not like just one person telling everybody what to do.

This is the way I want it.

Mitch: Right.

Bwahaha. Tell me about the artwork. I mentioned that the other night because I loved it.

Mitch: Oh, the toilets?

Yes, tell me about the toilets.

Mitch: It was my final project in my photography class. I was going to Sinclair Community College at the time and yeah, my theme was toilets. Actually I think I took one of those pictures and it was black and white but I took it into Photo Shop and I made it red like that. I think we used it for a flyer for a while. Then we went and recorded this and we were thinking of ideas and it was like oh well, why don't we just use that because we already have the artwork and it's all done.

Jim: Five urinals, five guys.

Mitch: Yeah, there are five urinals and five us. It seemed perfect. Then I put the little leg bones in each urinal.

Jim: The two on the end are together.

Mitch: Oh yeah, the two at the end don't have a space in between them. I'm not sure what that means. You know, that privacy space there.

Now who do those two urinals belong to?

Mitch: I'm not sure. I think it rotates. I think everybody has their own turn.

The rotating urinals. That would be an interesting name for a band. Why did you decide to do urinals for your photography project?

Mitch: Pretty much a lot of places we've played, the bathrooms are just absolutely disgusting. I mean, just bad. You wouldn't shit in them by any means. For that photography class, I wanted to choose something different that nobody else would have. It just so happens we'd play out every weekend and I had access to these unusually filthy, disgusting bathrooms. I made that my theme.

I bet that was totally different from everybody else's.

Mitch: Yeah, nobody else had toilets. I think I got an A on it.

I hope you did.

Jim: Very artistic.

Mitch: Yeah, artsy fartsy crap.

A for effort anyway. Tell me who some of the bands are who have influenced you guys over the years.

AJ: All kinds of bands.

Mitch: Circle Jerks, Black Sabbath, Minor Threat, Ramones, Misfits. D.R.I., Suicidal Tendencies, Motorhead. Anthrax, Exodus. A lot of old school punk and thrash.

When I ask that question I always get really interesting answers.

Mitch: How was ours?

Pretty good because you mentioned Black Sabbath. That fucking rules in my book.

Mitch: Oh fuck yeah. I think you can hear it in our music. It's a mixture of the fast stuff and then it's something hard and heavy. Kind of metal.

When you guys go to write a song, what kind of shit goes through your minds when you're in the writing process?

AJ: What would the crowd do if we played it this way?

Mitch: Right, what response would that give? A big thing too, somebody will write something and it's like "oh, that sounds too familiar" or "I've heard that somewhere" or "no, that's this song." It's like ah, shit.

AJ: Trying to make our stuff sound original.

Mitch: We're slow writers because we are I'd probably say hypercritical of the stuff we write.

Jim: We probably throw away 60 percent of what we write or more. We have songs that would be great for someone to listen to and record and listen to them later, like another band. That might be a great song for them but it just doesn't seem to fit us. It might be completely finished and everything. We just scrap so much stuff.

So you guys are kind of anal about your writing.

AJ: I guess we are to a certain degree. We don't just write anything and play it I guess. It's got to really grab us. People around here who expect stuff out of us, it's pretty much going to be kickass and we're not going to hold back and just write something that we could have 100 songs where if we could have 20 that's all really good. I don't even think a live show closely translates between that album. I think our live show blows that album away.

The last album you guys put out was an album called Beer:30. How did Different Path differ from Beer:30?

Mitch: That was when Legbone was a four piece and then Different Path is our current lineup of five people. I think it's heavier. The heavy stuff is heavier and the fast stuff is faster.

Jim: I wasn't there for Beer:30 but just knowing the band and Kyle, I think he was better this time around. He knew what he wanted to do more. The first time he didn't have it really planned out as well. He just kind of sang everything where on Different Path he knew where he could do his yells and his singing and everything lined up together. He could do more with it just being in the studio more and knowing he wanted more of a loud, raw sound and not ends up quiet singing.

Mitch: Beer:30 is more amateur.

AJ: We wanted it to sound as live as it could and not overproduced which it wasn’t going to be anyway because we had no money.

Mitch: When we go to record, it’s like okay, we’ve got this much money. How much time does that get us? 30 hours. All right, go. And it’s go, go, go. Do as much as you can as fast as you can in the time allotted. That’s what you get. That’s all we can afford.

AJ: And Kyle usually gets screwed because he’s the last guy to go on what we have.

Mitch: He’ll have to wait around.

AJ: He’ll have the remainder of the hours to finish his vocals. The pressure is on him.

Yeah, you guys lay down the drum tracks first and then the rest of the shit next, and he’s the last one.

AJ: Right, he’s last. I definitely think it’s progression from Beer:30 just the way it was recorded as far as going for more of a live sound and raw sound. It feels like everything is better.

Punk music should be raw anyway.

Jim: You hear a lot of it coming out anymore, it’s definitely overproduced.

That’s what happens when people get a shitload of money from the label and then everything is nice and slick.

Jim: They re-record things 4,000,000 times or just patch things in and they can’t even hit it live. But in the studio it sounds great. You go see them live and you’re like “man, they’re not half the band they are on their CD.” We’re probably the other way around.

Mitch: When we play live, it sounds exactly how it sounds on the CD. It’s total cheating to do something on a CD that you can’t reproduce live. What you hear on that CD, you come to a live show and people are commenting “Jesus, just like listening to the CD.”

I think a lot of these people use their Pro-Tools shit.

Mitch: Right. We don’t have time for shit. When we record it’s go, go, go.

What three songs on the CD do you think best represents Legbone as this point?

AJ: “What You Are”, “Different Path”, and “Do You Choose”.

Mitch: There you go.

You guys have been touring up in Kentucky and Ohio and stuff. Do you guys have any major tour plans?

Mitch: Right now, no. Not major. Not months at a time or something. Right now we’re trying to establish markets and then get those markets in a rotation.

AJ: Yeah, we’re still trying to just hit enough markets and get everything to where we can start going out for longer periods of time.

Jim: We do a lot of really short runs and play a lot of heavy weekends.

Do you do the band full time or do you hold down day jobs?

Mitch: Oh yeah, we all have day jobs. Totally. Yeah, we’re working class.

What kind of fascinating shit do you guys do when you’re not in the band?

AJ: You’ve got three printers, one cook, and a guy that drives a beer truck.

Who drives the beer truck?

Jim: I do.

Mitch: We make our own merchandise too. We make our own t-shirts and we’ve made our own stickers before. We’ve got a label that does some of that stuff now but we still make our own t-shirts and hoodies and stuff like that.

You guys opened for GWAR?

Mitch: Oh yeah. That was awesome.

Are those guys not fucking kickass?

Jim: That was great. Yeah, all the guys in GWAR are really cool guys.

I have seen those guys three times and absolutely enjoy them. I don’t understand how anyone could not want to go and see those guys.

Jim: They’re such a good band to watch.

They’re so much fun especially when they go around killing George. I’m surprised they’re not on his most wanted list by now.

Jim: They probably are.

You released the album on June 21. Are you guys writing any new stuff right now?

Jim: Yeah, actually we’ve been working on writing more than anything lately. At least trying to when we have time.

AJ: It’s hard to juggle all this stuff.

Mitch: Yeah, we got stuck in a rut for a while playing too many shows to where we didn’t even have time to practice anymore. The time we did have to practice, we were out playing shows. Now that we've had time off from shows, we’ve been busy with our writing.

That was your practice. Doing the shows. What is the craziest experience you’ve guys had out on the road?

AJ: Going to Skatetopia. That was crazy shit. People burned up cars. A guy got set on fire. It was madness. Did you ever watch that Viva La Bam stuff when Bam and Tony Hawk went to that place out in the middle of nowhere?

I saw one episode of Viva La Bam and I think it was a rather tame one. It was where he was ironing hamburgers on his father’s clothes. They also did something to his van that made it start bouncing up and down when he and this other big fat guy were in it. I thought that was pretty cool.

AJ: Yeah, the Skatetopia was pretty wild. I’d have to say just Florida in general. All they do is go out and skate, play shows, and skate.

Mitch: Yeah, those guys are going 90 miles an hour.

AJ: With their hair on fire.

Mitch: We’re a little more laid back up in here in Ohio I guess.

I think people in Florida are kind of crazy anyway. Some guy runs around on an airplane so you fucking shoot him. That was weird. What kind of future plans do you guys have?

AJ: Probably just writing and getting something new out.

Mitch: Yeah, trying to keep the ball rolling I guess. I think what we’re looking for right now is a booking agent. I think it’s the only piece of the puzzle we’re missing.

Isn’t that something your label can help you with?

Mitch: Yeah, to a degree.

AJ: Our label is really more like artist development. When it really comes down to everybody else, if you have a manager or somebody else trying to help you to get a booking agent or trying to get out there more but our label really is just more of a distribution deal than anything else. We have a good distribution and a good publisher and management just working on that. We had a couple of slipups with a booking agent and now we're trying to get back with one. It should be good this year. Things should be going good for us. We got snuffed on a lot of stuff last year. Kind of had a bad year in a sense on a lot of stuff but we still got to play with a lot of bands.

Mitch: Yeah, we continued to progress out of the region. We're getting bigger on more of a national level.

Jim: We just need to make more house so we can actually get some decent guarantees and get to the really good markets.

I hope you do because the CD was really awesome. I still have it in the car.

Mitch: I don't know. We've talked about if we ever go out, like we're talking about going out to California, we'd probably go through Texas.

Yes, you need to come through Texas. You need to come to Dallas. We're cool here.

Mitch: Yeah, there's a cool town.

Any other thoughts or comments?

Mitch: No, but you can pick up our new album at all Best Buys or Tower Records, Sam Goody, FYE. This is our first album that's been released nationally. We're pretty excited. People can find us on MySpace and www.legbone.com.

Legbone