All this week, I’ll be doing track-by-track commentary on the new EP. You should go grab the new EP at my bandcamp site, PHYSICAL COPIES OF THE CD WILL ONLY BE FOR SALE ON MY SITE UNTIL END-OF-DAY FRIDAY. If you want a copy of it, get it now, or get it at a show.
I’m literally traveling as this posts, so it will probably be a bit short. Believe it or not, I’m not traveling to do shows, but traveling for personal reasons. What? Not for touring? People do this?
Anyway, during the making of Gifted Student, Mikal and I were pretty dismayed by the constant news of police shootings. Dismayed is probably not the right word. Upset, angry, betrayed, whatever word fits best. We both talk daily in kind of a stream of consciousness running email chain, and for a bit, it was a daily dose of reading about how our justice system had gone so wrong.
I never grew up around guns. I’ve had a gun flashed on me in San Francisco, and I had someone shoot a gun at a hardcore show when I was a teen. That’s about my knowledge of guns. I’m not really for guns as a concept, but I respect that people have a heritage, history, and personal connection to owning guns. It’s just not really my thing.
This song was never meant to be just a straight-up anti-gun song. It’s a song about three people from different walks of life, using a gun and violence as a solution to their own personal issues. The gun can be literal, as in shooting and murdering someone. Or it can be a metaphor for whatever destructive, horrible thing people can use to represent the thing that’s missing inside themselves. It’s not an anti-gun song, it’s an anti-people-using-guns-wrong song, but then — I can’t really say I’m for guns in any capacity.
Both Mikal and I are people who have worn our politics on our sleeves, unlike a lot of other artists we personally know, or whose art we really dig. Because politics gets dirty, it offends, it creates divides. I’m okay with it creating a divide in my audience if it means someone who is bigoted, someone who is homophobic, someone who is misogynistic, someone who I think is a “bad” person won’t listen to my songs. It’s a choice he and I make about our art, and if we lose out a certain number of sales because we offend or turn off people, then so be it. I’m okay with that. I’m grateful for the people who listen, and if you listen and even disagree, I have the utmost respect for you.
Anyway, that got serious. Off to Chicago!
Feb. 27 – Pittsburgh Comics – Pittsburgh, PA (facebook event) FREE
Feb. 28 – Shumatsucon – Columbus, OH
Mar. 1 – Green Brain Comics – Dearborn, MI (facebook event) FREE
Mar. 3 – 42 Lounge – Milwaukee, WI (facebook event)
Mar. 4 – Legend Comics – Omaha, NE (facebook event) FREE
Mar. 5 – Challengers Comics – Chicago, IL (facebook event)
Mar 6 – Singers Karaoke Club – Syracuse, NY (facebook event)
Mar. 7 – Bombers Burrito Bar – Albany, NY (facebook event)