Interview With Bowling For Soup - 16th October 2011
Photo Of Bowling For Soup © Copyright Bowling For SoupJames caught up with Erik Chandler from Bowling For Soup to talk about Download Festival, acoustic music, and future plans for the band.

You guys have been around since 1994, when you first started up did you ever think the band would still be going after this amount of time and be as successful as you are?
Not at all; that’s one of the things we discuss amongst ourselves like, “how have we managed to keep going this long?” We’re all still best friends after all these years which I think is how we’ve managed it because many bands just hate one another. We only have one bus which includes us and the crew, we handpicked everybody and we’re all really close so we have no problems.

Back in the summer you played at the Download Festival, what is it that makes you keep coming back to the festival and how did you enjoy the weather and abusing your blow up sheep this year?
This year was a little weird; we got there the day before we played the main stage so me and Jaret could do an acoustic set, the weather was amazing that day but the day of our main stage show it was awful, that’s one of the things you deal with at festivals. The reason we keep coming back is because Download evolved from Monsters of Rock, as kids we knew of that festival and that’s where all the greats were playing so it was the place to play. That’s why it’s really special to us to play there and the fact we aren’t really one of those big heavy bands and they like to include us which we really appreciate it. The killing of the sheep was one of the most expensive onstage incidents we’ve ever had!

Tonight is the first show of your headline UK show, what can we expect from the tour and will you be using any stage props this time?
This tour is based around playing all of the singles every night. It’s a little bit weird, we still don’t use a set list but there is a list of songs on stage so we don’t miss anything. We’ve had a bar built and it will be on stage every night, there will be 3 or 4 lucky winners every night that can sit there all night drinking whilst we play, different members of our crew will take it in turns being bartender.

You have Orange out supporting you this time around, are you fans of their music?
We’ve been friends with Joe for years now; it’s just that it never worked out to have them with us but this time it did so we’re stoked to have them out here with us. Till today I only knew Joe, the reason I was late for you guys was I was talking to the drummer he’s pretty cool.

You guys seem to be forever out on the road touring, what do you do to keep yourselves busy between shows and do you ever squabble due to spending so much time together?
Not in big kind of ways no, more the way you have disagreements with your friends. There’s never a band argument, if there is an argument it’s because someone’s drunk and is being an asshole to be honest. Everybody knows when to push somebody’s buttons and when not to, everyone knows when to leave a person alone for a bit to cool down. If somebody screws up, most of the time you can tell that person’s hiding behind their shame and you know not to fuck with them too much about it, there’s no real yelling at people because that only happens if somebody screws up and they don’t know it and it only lasts about 30 seconds and then we carry on.

You have family lives at home so do you see your tours as just times to party and hang out as friends?
Yeah you know because when everyone goes home they live really normal suburban lives. The neighbourhood I live in, when I’m out walking the dog in the evening the people living there when we first moved in they were very intrigued at the guy with the tattoo’s and the girl with the tattoo’s walking the tiny dog on a leash that most people would carry; they are finally coming around to the fact we are actually productive members of society ha ha. You have to have that I guess because you can’t be constantly going at this breakneck speed that we have on tour; we drink too much, you don’t sleep, you don’t eat well and most of your days consist of “Where do I eat? When do I start drinking? Where do I shit?” once those are settled everything’s cool. Once you’re at home you go to bed at like 8, you don’t touch alcohol for weeks, our home lives to us are really interesting but to talk about them they seem so boring ha ha.

If you weren’t a musicians and weren’t in Bowling For Soup what do you think you would be doing now instead?
The last job I had was being a server in a restaurant and a bartender. I’d probably be a chef, it’s what I was talking to the drummer of Orange about because he does that too, it’s something I do want to do when I have 2 years of time I want to go to culinary school just to have it under my belt because it is a passion of mine.

Recently you have been well known for playing acoustic shows, do you have any plans to release an acoustic album or EP in the future?
We released an acoustic album a couple of years ago and it was just reworked versions of existing BFS songs, we are talking about doing something else with it but we don’t have anything solid decided yet.

You released your latest studio album ‘Fishin For Woo’s’ back in April, are you happy with how the album has gone down with you fans and the press?
It’s been really interesting and crazy because this is the first album that we’ve released I don’t think we got a lot of bad reviews for. I don’t know if it’s because people got tired of writing bad shit about us or because those people left and new people came in or if they finally accepted that this is who we are and this is what we do. Almost 20 years in people are starting to get it ha ha!

How did you find the writing and recording process for ‘Fishin For Woo’s’ compared to your previous albums and what would you say your favourite tracks from the album are and why?
“Turbulence” is probably my favourite song that Jaret has ever written, there’s a song called “Guard my Heart” on there too that I wrote back in the 90’s that we decided to put on this album; they aren’t your typical Bowling for Soup song’s but they definitely express a part of the band and it’s amazing that both of those songs made it onto this album. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why people have started to understand us as well. We’ve had power ballads before but I do feel that this time we really nailed it; “Turbulence” is so far removed from our other songs, when we play it in the set it’s – without getting to stupid – it’s a very special emotional time towards the end we get to take it down a notch and really connect with the audience.

One last random question that we ask every band, if you could be an animal out of a zebra or Giraffe which one would you be and why?
Oh damn; shit, I’d probably, that’s a tough question! I’d probably take giraffe, because zebra’s seem to be taken down by lion’s a little more than giraffes do, I don’t think lion’s can jump that high. Also giraffes get to swing their big necks around ha ha.

Thanks for your time is there a message for your fans reading this?
Follow us all on twitter; visit the bands websites and and I’ve got a solo album out soon; go to which at the moment will take you to Facebook because the site isn’t build yet and thank you so much!

Interview by James Webb
 Band Members

Jaret Reddick
Chris Burney
Erik Chandler
Gary Wiseman
 Latest Releases

Bowling For Soup - Fishin For Woos
Release Date - 25th April 2011

1."Let's Pretend We're Not in Love
2. Girls in America
3. S-S-S-Saturday
4. What About Us
5. Here's Your Freakin' Song
6. This Ain't My Day
7. Smiley Face (It's All Good)
8. Turbulence (feat. Gabriel Mann)
9. I've Never Done Anything Like This (feat. Kay Hanley)
10. Friends Chicks Guitars
11. Guard My Heart
12. Graduation Trip"

 Band Related Links
Bowling For Soup MySpace