Minnesota Music


Gel - Brett and Eric's interview

This interview was done with them before their show.  Thank you Brett and Eric!  This was a lot of fun and they made sure to include a lot of laughs!

"Birth date?"

Eric:  "July 3rd."
Brett:  "June 26th."

"City you reside in?"

Brett:  "Brooklyn Park."
Eric (with an Austin Powers accent):  "New Brighton."
Brett:  "That was New Brighton in case you didn't understand the translation."

"Marital status and family?"

Brett:  "I have a cat."
Eric:  "I have two."
Brett (laughing):  "He needs more than me.  He's the drummer.  Besides that, he never gets any outside of that."

"Favorite color?"

Eric:  "Blue.  No, red.  Aaaah!  Green."
Brett:  "Green means...go."  (laughing)  "Purple."
Eric:  "So you wear lavender shirts?"
Brett:  "Only on Tuesdays."  (laughing)

"Favorite food?"

Eric:  "Thai."  (Rumor has it that he also likes...Chili Dogs...)
Brett:  "Cookies."

"Favorite drink?"

Eric:  "Barley John's Beer.  That's a micro brew pub near my house."
Brett:  "Yag's pretty good.  Lager's pretty good.  Southern Comfort's pretty good."
Eric:  "Captain."
Brett:  "Mmmm, Captain's really good.  We'll go with Captain."

"Favorite movie?"

Brett:  "All I could think of was 'The Anabolic Gang Bang Fifteen'."  (laughing)
Eric:  "'Army of Darkness' is one of my favorites.  Or 'Braveheart'."
Brett:  "I like the old cheesy movies, like 'Cool Hand Luke.'  I like the classic stuff."

"Favorite band?"

Eric:  "I guess mine of all time would be Zepplin.  I like Fuel a lot."
Brett:  "Government Mule."
Me:  "Government what?"
Brett:  "Mule.  Like donkey."

"Favorite song?"

Eric:  "Tough question."
Brett:  "'I Just Wanna Drink Beer and F***.'"  (laughs)
Eric:  "Or the PG version, 'Fart.'"
Brett:  "Songs?  There's just too many different songs.  Music is just emotion.  There's too many different songs and there's too many different bands that represent too many different things and I've never been able to have just a favorite of this or that.  There's just way too many things that are beautiful and perfect or angry and evil and..."
Eric:  "It just depends on your mood."
Brett:  "Yeah.  So I have a hard time with favorites."

"Day job?"

Eric:  "Newspaper."
Brett:  "Masturbation."  (laughing)
Eric:  "Oh, that's what you do now..."  (laughing)
Brett:  "My day job is just, I live on the phone arranging all this band stuff."


Brett:  "There's only two and a half things that I like to do, so it's going to be a pointed question for me."
Eric:  "Obviously music.  I don't know, nature boy stuff."
Brett:  "I like cars."
Eric:  "Girls."
Me:  "Isn't that part of your job?"
Brett:  "Yes, it is, actually,"  (laughing)  "That's PR work."
Brett:  "I like to read, if that counts."
Eric:  "Does Playboy count?"  (laughing)

"Favorite thing about entertaining?"

Brett:  "One of the biggest things for me is just that I can get away with anything I want to.  Within extent."
Eric:  "I think it's meeting all the people.  The people appreciate what you do, and in return you appreciate them."

"Least favorite thing about entertaining?"

Eric:  "Tearing down."

"Most memorable moment on stage?"

Eric:  "Most recently, I got flashed two nights ago from like, two feet away."
Brett:  "That happens all the time, but you never see that stuff because you're in back."
Eric:  "I know but someone felt sorry for me so they crawled around to the back of the stage and goes 'Here ya go, are you ready?' and I was like, 'What?' and she flashed me."
Brett:  "My favorite moments on stage are like last night when the four of us are just having so much fun.  Last night for the first time I actually heard him laugh, over the sound of the drums and everything else."
Eric:  "I think a couple of the top ones with this group are like, this really stands out with this group, when that flute girl got up and played the flute.  And then when that girl got up and did a strip tease."
Brett:  "Oh yeah.  She was up on stage dancing, and that's cool, but then she started doing this strip tease."

"Most memorable moment off stage, music related?"

Brett:  "Meeting Steve Morris was really neat.  He plays with Deep Purple.  I met him three times.  He's just great.  It's nice to meet musicians that don't have egos and are really laid back.  We get the s*** a lot as a band.  You've got to have an ego to perform, but I think we all try really hard to not have an ego.  To keep it in check.  Because it's just, we're having fun and we're not going to let each other get the big heads."
Eric:  "Yeah, you put on a sort of character about yourself when you go on stage.  When you're yourself, but you're yourself magnified because you're on stage.  You know, who couldn't feel that rush?  Like when we played in St. Cloud one of the last times and Duff got up and played the drums.  I was jumping around with Johnny, I wasn't even doing anything, but while I was up there, it was like, this is really cool.  It was like a natural high."
Brett:  "Yeah.  Or like, opening for Jackyl at The Jungle and they hit the first couple of notes on the guitar, and about 200 people just rushed the stage.  I've never had that happen before, you know.  You're just standing there nodding your head, going, DAMN.  It's a trip.  It really is.  We're supposed to be the entertainers, but I feel like I'm the one being entertained."
Eric:  "As for off stage, it would be, being received as an entertainer for the first time after a show.  You'll always remember that."

"Musical influences?"

Brett:  "My cat." (heavily accented again) "Yeah, like if I'm writing a song, right, and if the cat gets up and leaves, it's not a very good song.  But if she sits there and listens to it, then it's ok."  (laughing)
Brett:  "Jimmy Page, Richie Blackmore, Steve Morris."
Eric:  "Yeah."
Brett:  "I'm really into acoustic music.  I'm not into any one thing, mine are all the big names."
Eric:  "John Bonham, definitely.  Mike Portnoy.  Max Weinberg, definitely, even though I could never play like that!"
Brett:  "Angus Young."

"How long have you guys been with this group?"

Brett:  "Sock Monkey officially started in December of last year."
Me:  "Sock Monkey?"
Brett:  "Sock Monkey.  We were drunk, we needed a name, I wouldn't let the boys leave until they thought of something.  We had a show the next night.  We played two shows.  We opened up for Boogie Nights at The Rock in Maplewood at their big Grand Opening, and then we opened up for Gemini on their big return at Sharkey's.  Our first drummer's name was Eric also, and, it just wasn't working, it just wasn't clicking, you know?  Personalities are more important than talent.  Obviously everyone has to be so good."
Eric:  "What was the question again?"
Me:  "How long have you been with this group?"
Brett:  "Oh yeah.  February is when Eric started with us.  Tonight is our 108th show I believe, in like 10 months."
Eric:  "So in reality, we're still a "new" band, no matter how many shows we've played.  My old band, we played maybe 120 shows, but that was in like, 3 years."
Brett:  "Yeah.  So all of us have only known Eric since like February.  I've known Jim, our bass player, for like three years now.  And I've known Jonny for about four.  But just known who he was, never really hung out with him until this started."

"How old were you when you first became interested in music?"

Brett:  "Interested in music, like listening to music, I stole my sister's Pink Floyd 'The Wall' and Queen when I was like 11.  I think that really messed up my pre-teen years, listening to 'The Wall.'"
Eric:  "It was a very non-rock genre when I first discovered music.  Which, it wasn't a realization at the time, until a lot later I think.  Like, maybe junior high before I started thinking that music was really cool.  But it was always with me."
Brett:  "And Jonny still isn't interested in music."  (laughing)  "I love Jonny, but he's so easy to pick on."

"Before this band, what kind of experience did you guys have?"

Eric:  "The group I played with before this was a cover band.  The other bands were pretty much original music with a few cover.  It didn't work out in the end but it was a great time & a good learning experience."
Brett:  "I've done a bit of everything.  Alternative rock like this before this for about four years.  I played 90's country before that for about a year.  A lot of classic rock bands."
Eric:  "Yeah, as for the styles, I think we've all pretty much covered the different genres."
Brett:  "Yeah.  In college I studied classical guitar."

"What's your favorite place to perform?"

Eric:  "I would say, it's kind of a toss up.  The Main Event is probably one of the best places.  We play there every week.  We've worked with that sound guy for like 45 shows now, and he dials us in really good.  The stage is really big.  It's just a great system there, great sound."
Brett:  "So relaxed."
Eric:  "Yeah, it's so relaxed there.  Hopper's is another one.  Even though sometimes it's a pain in the a** to drive all the way out there and stuff.  That little hometown bar."
Brett:  "Favorite for me is The Main Event and Diamond's, because that's out where I grew up in Ramsey.  But there isn't a place that I don't like to play.  I like going into the bars like Al's where they're expecting something mellow the first time we're here and then we lay the heavy, anger crap on them.  In a sense you're beating them over the head with it."

"Is there any one thing, besides flatulence, your fans don't know about you that you think they should?"  (laughing)

Eric:  "That it doesn't matter if they're intimidated by us, they shouldn't have to because we're by no means intimidated by people, unless they give us a weird feeling.  Because we're just people.  Just like them.  I guess that's one way to put it.  People don't come up because they're shy or intimidated because we're entertainers and they don't have to be.  Personally, myself, I'm shy and music has helped me over come that."
Brett:  "That's a very good point, I mean, it's the old Van Halen cliché and it sounds stupid but it's so true.  We're having fun, and you're going to have fun whether you want to or not.  It's just all about having fun, because there's not enough fun in this world.  We can all just have fun together and not being worried about everyone's daily pressures and BS and it's just a time for everyone to relax and let loose.  That's what it does for me and I think that's what a good band does for other people too."

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Last updated on:  10/07/2002