Thursday, July 1, 2010

Here we are again, part 2 of my interview with Rich. Sorry for the delay but we should have part 3 up next week and I plan on finishing the interview soon. Again, I want to preface this by stating that the opinions expressed belong to Rich and do not reflect Stuck In The Past as a whole.

EDIT: For some reason, the second half of the interview was cut off. Its fixed now and part 2 in its entirety is now up.

Stuck In The Past: So you guys released Born Of You with Conquer The World. Did you guys start touring right after?

Rich: We never actually did a full tour. We did weekends. To be honest, we never really played anywhere. Chicago, Indianapolis, and Dayton/Cincinnati. We never did a full US tour or anything. We played Syracuse and a few other East Coast cities but again it was all done on weekends.

Stuck In The Past: Who was doing the booking at that time?

Rich: I believe it was (John) Wylie mostly. I did a few here and there. Mostly John though.

Stuck In The Past: After the full length, you guys did a split with Roosevelt.

Rich: yeah. We were good friends with those guys. It just seemed natural to do it. At that time we were down to record and release as much as possible.

Stuck In The Past: Its nice to see a split between bands that play different styles. You guys sounded nothing alike.

Rich: I know. Ha. There were so many bands back during that time and what was the coolest thing about it was that no one sounded the same.

Stuck In The Past: Was it after the release of the split when John and Damien left the band?

Rich: I'm pretty sure thats when yeah, Damien first then John. John's last day in the band is when we opened for Shelter in Melbourne.

Stuck In The Past: Why did they quit?

Rich: Well therein lies the big story. Ha, I think John and Damien just butted heads, Damien quit in Johns car after we had practice one night. I remember it like it was yesterday. John quit after I got arrested and all my bullshit started. John was smart like that. He knows how to play his cards correctly.

Stuck In The Past: And you were arrested because....

Rich: Well...I was with someone that did something and I got arrested for it too. Basically, I got into a fight with a guy and someone I was with, not even a friend, pulled a gun out. Someone else stole something out of the guys car. It turned into an armed robbery charge. Ray from Tension and later Vietnom was also arrested.

Stuck In The Past: Because of the same incident?

Rich: Yes sir.

Stuck In The Past: After John and Damien quit, Mark re-joined?

Rich: Thats all about the arrest? Ha. Well we tried some other singers. Louie that played drums for the original Morning Again lineup sang and I think there was one more. Mark joined eventually.

Stuck In The Past: Whoa theres more about the arrest?

Rich: There is plenty if you reallt want to get into it.

Stuck In The Past: Hell yes I want to know

Rich: Ok.... this may take a while to type so bear with me. All the drama for me can be summed up pretty simply. I was dating a girl. That girl traded up for a more notable scenster. I was friends with said scenster. Now you know the rule about dating your friends exs etc etc. Instead of following that he used my arrest as a way to rally the troops against me. There was a guy named Scoot Haak. He was living in Hollywood, FL. and he was friends with all of us. He got shot and killed at a show in the courtyard of Far Out Records. When I was arrested for armed robbery said scenster used that saying I should have known better. I was involved with guns and after Scott was killed, I should have known better etc etc. One by one, all of my old friends listened to this guy and I eventually lost everyone. It was so frustrating because not only was I arrested for what someone else did but it was so hypocritical. Every single one of my so called friends had guns and sold guns. It was just easy to use me as an example.

Stuck In The Past: Holy shit!

Rich: You have to understand that time in South Florida hardcore. It wasn't safe. It wasn't all stage dives and sing alongs. It was dangerous. Gangs like Zulu Nation and shit like that had people involved in hardcore. Anything could happen at anytime. Have I done things that were shitty? Of course. I made alot of bad decisions. Maybe what happened to me was karmas way of getting me back. Who knows. What I do know is that I was for sure a scapegoat for some people. I have a milloin stories...

Stuck In The Past: I think we should do a regular feature called "Storytime with Rich".

Rich: Well I have plenty of them. I mean some real good ones. Looking back it was a crazy ass time man. It was really out of hand.

Stuck In The Past: So what became of the whole incident?

Rich: Well I had always admitted to punching this guy in the face. I was willing to pay for that crime which I did. Two weeks time served and 3 years probation. I never ratted. I never lied. I had nothing to do with any gun and eventually it came out. Thats why I got probation. I was two months into my probation when we (Culture) went to Europe for the first time. I had to go to court and shit to get permission to go.

Stuck In The Past: And they were okay with it?

Rich: I guess so. Ha. It was job related as far as there were concerned. I played the Shelter show in Melbourne with an ankle monitor on. I got released from jail like two days before the show.

Stuck In The Past: That didn't leave much time for practicing haha.

Rich: Well I was only in jail for two weeks so it wasn't like I forgot the songs. My life back then was lawless and insane. From about 18 to 24 or so it was crazy. I'm really surprised i'm alive to be honest.

Stuck In The Past: What about Greg Fish?

Rich: I was best friends with him for a long time. He was the "scenster" I was speaking about earlier. I loved that guy man. He was one crazy bastard. Half the shit I got into was because of his influence. The only thing I would change would be I would like to have reconciled with him before he died. I found out he died a day or so after we got back from Europe.

Stuck In The Past: I heard he died in the back of someone's truck.

Rich: Yeah. He was drunk and choked on his own vomit from what I was told. I always knew he would die young I just thought it would be in a hail of fire

Stuck In The Past: I remember being at the Earth Crisis show at Cheers in 1997 where Culture got up to play a song and Fish threatened to kill you if you he saw...or something to that extent?

Rich: Ha. Yeah. The funny thing is I dont think he really wanted to. It had built up so much that he had no choice but to continue the nonsense. Before we played I saw him outside. We had words. I didnt back down and nor did he but I know Fish. If he really wanted to fight me he would have right then and there. I had stood next to him so many times before and we would fight all the time. Hell we would go to South Beach and just randomly fight club goers. I know if he really truly wanted to he would have. We played three songs then I left. Being involved in the South Florida hardcore scene back then was not all fun and games. You were constaintly being tested and watched by other people. You could never show weekness and you could never back down. No matter what. I have a great Rich and Fish story if you want to hear it.

Stuck In The Past: Absolutely

Rich: West Palm Beach, Florida. Not sure of the year. Pantera, Biohazard and Machine Head show. For those that don't know, at that time West Palm had a ton of sudo nazi skinheads. Like they were only nazis when there was 20 of them together. Ha. So It was Greg, myself, Josh Williams (Culture drummer)and I can't really think whom else but only like one or maybe two other guys. I was the biggest one. There were easily 30 or so nazi skinheads there. During the Machine Head set they must have recognized either Greg or myself. To make a long story short...the lights go down for Biohazard. We can see these guys circling around us. We were screwed. I remember Greg saying to the other guys..."If any of you pussies run i'll kill you". Ha. The lights come back on. To our pleasant surprise, all of the Non nazi West Palm skinheads were there. Eventually South Florida would know them as Colorblind. Fyi... I was the first person to have a colorblind tattoo. Anyways....It was like 30 on 30 now. We beat the holy hell out of
these guys. I'll never forget the looks on their faces

Stuck In The Past: Was that the Slayer show?

Rich: No, it was Pantera-Biohazard-Machine Head. I'm sure something similar happened at Slayer too though. Ha.

Stuck In The Past: So you guys kicked their asses?

Rich: It was so bad. Those guys got demolished.

Stuck In The Past: Did you ever worry about running into those dudes at a show after that incident?

Rich: Nah. We never really went to West Palm back then for shows and if we did we rolled so deep we didn't worry about shit. Those guys came down to Miami a couple times and got beat so bad that they never came back.

Stuck In The Past: Was it pretty much a fistfight or were weapons involved?

Rich: Good old fashion fists.

Stuck In The Past: Kinda makes you long for the old days...

Rich: Yeah...I mean sometimes there were knives and whatnot but no guns. It was more one on one...hand to hand back then. Like I said...shit was crazy back then. The most important thing to remember about the scene back then was it was so incredibly chaotic. Constant scheming and craziness. You never really knew who was your friend or out to get you. No one hardly ever made good decisions. Did I do alot of shady shit.... absolutely. My middle name was bad decision. However... I took alot of blame and heat for shit that everyone else was doing too. Thats all i'm gonna say about that.


Anonymous said...

Im a little confused on this interview. Did rich pop fish for stealing his girl and another person pull a gun? fish was never one for pressing charges, it was always in his favor.

Alex said...

i think this interview will be longer than 4 parts haha.... i hope you interview him all the way through the mid 2000s. i wanna know all about his time in walls of jericho and diecast.

mikectw said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
sfdoomed said...

Nice. Good to hear Rich's tales of Fish and Scott Haak and all of those faces I'll remember from those days.

Rich's band Ego Trip started at the exact time the band I was in, Hangman, did. The S.Florida scene was happening then, but he's definitely right about how much bullshit violence affected everything. I was psyched when I moved out West and people were more into being cool with each other than being stupid tough guys. "What a boring life, hating every day!"

Cool blog, by the way.

Anonymous said...

Nope, it was Slayer, I was there and in the middle of that bazi confrontation. I remember Bean being in it too! I remember the only person the cops got to out of everyone involved was Rich. He had beat one of the nazis from the front by the stage, where the fight started, to the back of the place. There was a trail of blood to prove it and that nazi lied there pummeled and lifeless as they wheeled him out. Rich was taken out in cuffs...and somehow got out of it and came back in for Slyer. That night was NUTS!

Anonymous said...

I was at a lot of the shows he mentioned. The chokehold show in that redneck bar. The guilt show at the brothel (the skate park). I was also at that shelter show it was in some random club that never had a show again I think. I was in a band with James from Roosevelt(never did anything because he moved shortly after)It's so funny reading this because it's all stuff I haven't thought of for so long. Fun trip down memory lane.