So the groundhog saw it’s shadow the other day. Yup, that means more winter for some of us. Don’t threat though, the Bouncing Souls have released their second song on their website called “We Sing Along”!
Last month I wrote a little blog here about the Bouncing Souls celebrating their 20 years as a punk rock band by releasing a single a month (you can read about it HERE). As promised, each month I will be reviewing their singles until the year’s end.
What is it about the Bouncing Souls that is so appealing to me? I know, they are a great bunch of musicians that continue to create great punk rock and “We Sing Along” is no exception.
The track starts out a little less polished giving for a gritty entrance to the newest punk rock singalong but smooths out nicely. This punk anthem is aimed at everyone who has their own problems or misguided plans and dealing with them in a positive way.
I loved the line, “but the world has its own ideas, we all must play the hand fate deals. When our plans have come and gone we all sing one heart song.” The positive upbeat approach this song has is perfect for all of the folk out there who have dreams but have not accomplished them just yet. The song is very likable and honestly now one of my favorite Bouncing Souls songs to date.
Want to hear it? Like I mentioned before you will have to buy it in order to listen to it. The song costs $0.99 and you don’t even have to leave home to buy it. Check out the websites of the Bouncing Souls or their label Chunksaah Records to purchase “We All Sing Along” and be sure to remember to return to either site at the beginning of each month to grab their next single for the rest of the year.
Also check back here on good ol’ brokenheadphones.com as I will be reviewing each song every month! Two down, ten more to go, I can honestly I say I am very excited to hear next month’s installment.
Since I can’t share the song I thought I would at least throw in a couple of videos for your visual pleasure:
One of my favorite punk rock bands ever, the Bouncing Souls, recently have celebrated their 20th anniversary as a punk rock band. With such a high accomplishment in the music world the band thought they would celebrate their success by releasing material a little differently from the norm. They announced that on the first of each month for the entire year they will release a single. This might very well be the longest album you will ever hear seeing how they have decided to discharge the songs month by month.
About 16 years ago the Bouncing Souls released an album called The Good, The Bad, & The Argyle on their very own Chunksaah Records. Their DIY attempt proved that the band could do it on their own without help from major record labels. In remembrance of their DIY effort years ago the band will be releasing a song a month for the entire year of 2009 exclusively on their website for a mere $0.99 a song.
They also announced that every four months the songs released for this specific project would be pressed onto a 7” vinyl and available for sale on their website. This is indeed a great idea, now all I need to do is remember to visit the Bouncing Soul’s website at the beginning of each month.
The first song released, called “Gasoline”, is punk rock satisfaction from start to finish. The Bouncing Souls prove with this single that even if 20 years have passed they still are capable of pushing out great tunes. Greg Attonito sings of being bored yet sheltered from reality and screaming for an explanation or maybe just a distraction. After hearing this song I can not wait for the next installment.
The New Jersey punk rock band has always been a favorite of mine not just for their musical style but for also doing things themselves with limited help. They stayed away from the mainstream, chose to not be seen on corporately owned music television channels, and refused offers for assistance. Traveling in vans over big fancy tour buses may not be a luxury for anyone but feeling a sense of self accomplishment for 20 years sure is.
Check out the websites of the Bouncing Souls or their label Chunksaah Records to purchase “Gasoline” and be sure to remember to return to either site at the beginning of each month to grab their next single for the rest of the year. Also check back here on good ol’ brokenheadphones.com as I will be reviewing each song every month!
I’d offer you a sample of the song or a link where you could hear the whole thing, but for $0.99 you might as well just buy the song and help support the band!
The Bouncing Souls will be touring this year in celebration of their 20 year accomplishment including first time shows in South America as well as finally making an appearance in Alaska. Check out HERE for info on buying tickets (see below for tour dates).
One show to mention in particular that the band will be playing this spring is at the Harvest Of Hope Festival 2009 taking place the weekend of March 6-8. I will have more about this great benefit festival in a later post as I am working on interviewing some of the acts that are performing, including the Bouncing Souls. Stay tuned for that.
Bouncing Souls Tour Dates:
01.20.09 – Salt Lake City, Utah – Club Elevate at the Hotel
01.24.09 – Minneapolis, MN – Triple Rock Social Club
02.06.09 – Mexico City, Mexico – La Capilla
02.07.09 – San Jose, Costa Rica – Latino Rock Cafe
02.08.09 – Panama City, Panama – Cancha De Futbal Femca Coca Cola
02.10.08 – Bogota, Colombia – Gotica
02.11.08 – Lima, Peru – Mao Bar
02.13.08 – Sao Paulo, Brazil – Hangar 110
02.14.08 – Rosario, Argentina – Willie Dixon
03.07.09 – Elkton, FL – St. John’s County Fargrounds – Harvest of Hope Festival
03.10.09 – Louisville, KY – Skull Alley w/ Dillinger Four
03.11.09 – Pittsburgh, PA – Mr. Smalls Theatre w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.12.09 – Balitomore, MD – The Ottobar w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.13.09 – Norfolk, VA – The Norva w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.14.09 – Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.16.09 – Orlando, FL – The Social w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.17.09 – Orlando, FL – The Social w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.18.09 – St. Petersburg, FL – The State Theatre w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.20.09 – Austin, TX – Red 7 w/ Dillinger Four and AKAs
03.24.09 – Honolulu, HI – Anna Bannana’s
03.27.09 – Fairbanks, AK – Wood Center Ballroom
03.28.09 – Fairbanks, AK – Pub
It is not often you hear about couple who happen to both be musicians/artist create a book together. I Went For A Walk is a children’s story book full of great illustrations by one of the cutest couples ever, Shanti Wintergate and Bouncing Souls lead singer Gregory Attonito. The book digs deep into your imagination and takes you on a wild journey for both kids and adults of all ages.
Recently I was able to interview the punk rock couple about the book via email and they were more than happy to reply to me. I asked a few questions pertaining to the book as well as personal life inquiries.
Musicians have done a lot of projects on the side but writing children’s books is not something you hear about a lot. Did you two ever think that you would be creating a children’s book?
Greg: I don’t think we talked about it at all before Shanti wrote the story but we always enjoy exploring creative things together. It was just a matter of what might take off for us. We make short films, have comedy skit ideas and write songs together all the time.
I am curious as Google only allows me to find so much — do you guys have children of your own? How long have the two of you been married?
Greg: We have been married for six years and we have no children.
I Went For A Walk is a great story that intrigues the imagination. Is this story about anyone in particular?
Greg: That’s a good question! In my perception the story is about all of us and it’s for all of us. You, the reader, are on the journey as you turn the pages of the book.
Do you guys have certain parts of the book that you like the most?
Greg: The part where the character is picked up in a cloud of dust and ends up shrinking down to the size of a tiny little atom. From this vantage point we see another amazing universe to explore just inside the space of a tiny little atom. I love the way that part shifts my perception and the way I see the world. It helps me remember there is so much that makes up the tiniest little thing.
Shanti: I love so many parts of the book but I think my favorite is waking up from what might be a dream and pancakes are waiting for you! Maybe it’s just because I’m really hungry right now.
Shanti, when you wrote the first bit of this story did you anticipate it turning into a children’s book? Did it take very long for the entire story to be written?
Shanti: As soon as the first few lines were written, some part of me knew it was going to turn into something more. Thinking back now, after those first few lines were written I remember looking at them and thinking, “This would be a fun children’s book!” It only took a few more weeks for the story to be “mostly” completed. I say “mostly” because I continued making slight adjustments throughout and up until the project was sent to press.
Greg, can you tell me how you came up with some of the illustrations for the book? I heard you like to draw a lot on the road. What did you use to draw them? Were the illustrations created before the novel or after Shanti told you she was writing the book?
Greg: Shanti wrote the story first and I brought it with me on tour, along with a sketchpad and a bag full of paint pens. I used paint pens and markers but mostly paint pens because I love the bright colors and the convenience of them. Some visual pictures came into my mind and translated to the page very easily and some did not. There are a lot of pages of art that did not make the book. Developing a look and a style to the book took a lot of trial and error for me. I’ve learned so much.
Your slogan is “Creating Something From Nothing Since 1997.” Can you tell me why you came up with this slogan?
Greg: Shanti and I have known each other since ’97 so you could say that was the start of our creative collaboration together. We came up with the slogan to go with our company name “Hollywood Jersey.” It can be pretty fun to see one of your ideas come to life and bring some positive energy into the world. We are celebrating and exercising our ability to manifest love and all the rad stuff that comes with it. We created this book by using our love and our minds, two things that aren’t necessarily tangible — essentially “nothing”
Making something from nothing is definitely our favorite pastime.
On average how much time do the two of you get to spend together during the year?
Greg: In the past six years the Bouncing Souls have been on tour for six to ten months out of every year, give or take. There has been some pretty long stretches of time apart. Last year I was away from home for 250 days. Long time.
You have been touring together a lot in support of the book. How are the readings going? To my understanding Shanti reads while Greg plays acoustic music. Is that correct?
Greg: The readings have been a blast. The kindergarten kids are so much fun because they have no social filters. They just say what they are thinking and share their feelings. We have had some amazing off the wall comments during our readings. For example: Shanti asked a class if they understood what the future is. One of the responses was, “It’s where cars fly.” I love that. Shanti and I have been trading off with the reading but she ends up reading most of the story. We both stop to talk to the kids and ask them questions during the reading. The music comes after the reading and we both play acoustic guitars and sing new children’s songs that we’ve written.
When was the last time the two of you toured together? I imagine that this tour is a lot less stressful than that of a punk rock tour.
Greg: Shanti was on the Warped tour for a month in 2006. I was on with the Souls so it was great to be together for that time. I even had the opportunity to play guitar in her band. Yes it is less stressful than a punk rock tour. It’s a lot simpler.
Have you two ever thought of putting out an album together? How about a children’s album?
Greg: Yes! We have loads of ideas for all kinds of music! We have a handful of children’s songs that we will probably start recording in the next few months. Everybody who heard the songs on our tour wanted to know where to get the CD, so we better get busy. We have a great numbers song!
What plans do the two of you have once you are finished touring? Can we expect to see another adventure by the both of you?
Greg: Yes. We a have a few more book ideas already and we want to start printing up bilingual versions of I Went For A Walk. There is always another adventure around the corner.
You two seem to have a lot of love and happiness in your relationship. Any tips for the rest of us?
Greg: Well you have to like being together. It sounds kind of silly but I don’t know if some couples do sometimes. Honest communication about everything! We always have to look into ourselves and be honest about what we really want out of a situation and go from there. Without that real honesty issues will arise. Through love and honest communication we can all achieve things that seem really difficult and maybe even have a good time with each other along the way.
Shanti: I couldn’t have said it better myself. Oh and of course… I’m always right! Wait, I will add one more thing — don’t take yourself too seriously. Life is hard no matter how you slice it, so appreciate what’s good about living, loving and laughing.
I Went For A Walk is available for purchase on their Myspace page. You can also check it out now via a narrated video of the book: