88 FINGERS LOUIE

Interview by Natalie K.
August 14, 2009
http://www.myspace.com/88fingerslouie

Estrella: Can you please state your name and what you do in the band?
Dan: Dan Precision, I play guitar and sing some backing vocal.

Estrella: How did the reunion shows come about?
Dan: I actually can’t really remember; I know Dennis and myself were in a band together called Zero to Sixty, so we hasn’t played with each other in so long, and that was falling apart due to several reasons. Somehow someone brought it up, I don’t know if it was Dennis or myself and we were like, maybe we should give it a shot. We talked to a few people, some of the other members to see who would be interested and it kind of worked out so just let it roll.

Estrella: I know that Joe is the only one not playing with you guys?
Dan: Yeah, we actually contacted him, he is in Rise Against so obviously he is pretty busy, we contacted him several times and he was always, “I don’t know, I don’t know,” and finally he was like, “I can’t I’m too busy,” so yeah. He was like, “If you find a bass player make sure he can play my parts,” or something like that.

Estrella: Who did you guys find?
Dan: We got John Contreras who used to play in a band called Divide by Zero and that was a band I actually recorded at my recording studio a while back. I always knew him, he was a really nice guy, great bass player and I’m like, “You know what? This is the guy.” We tried out a few others but we ended up going with John and we’re really happy.

Estrella: How are you guys figuring out what songs you are going to play?
Dan: Well, that was a little hard because I did not even realize this until I started writing them all down; without any of the covers we recorded, we recorded fifty-seven original songs. We started trying to figure out what we wanted to do, and then what we did was I put up a link to a voting thing on myspace where fans could vote for their top 10 songs. So we would take their top 10 songs and then add some more, so that is pretty much what we did. We figured on which one’s we liked playing, tried a couple of them out and some did not sound so good, than tried a couple of other one’s and we have our list.

Estrella: Which one’s did you want to play?
Dan: I like most of them, there are a lot of good one’s coming up, I don’t know exact names. I love like, “Tomorrow Starts Today”, “Selfish Means” we are also playing “Slow Chorus Overlap” which if off of our split with Kid Dynamite. Some of the older ones we are not playing as many of, obviously we want them because we like some of it, and we know some of our fans will like some of the older stuff but it was definitely a different time period so it was a little different writing style whether it be musical, or lyrically.

Estrella: What was your reaction to how the fans reacted?
Dan: I was quiet shocked because I knew as 88 we had a bit of a fan base and following which was cool but it was just really that so many people were like, oh I can’t wait for the show and I’m so glad you are doing a reunion. So many people tell us we have to go on tour, and record at the reunion, and there is a lot of stuff that people want but I don’t know if we are going to be able to fulfill it.

Estrella: How did you guys end up being on Riot Fest?
Dan: Mike from Riot Fest asked us, and I know he has always been a fan of 88 Fingers Louie, and I’ve known him for awhile. I actually recorded one, I forgot which one, maybe 2006 when Raygun headlined, I recorded all the audio for their DVD and CD. He was always asking me, “So when is 88 going to do a reunion?” and I’m like, “We are not doing one, we are not going to do one!” Obviously it came about and we were going to book our own show and we did, but when Mike heard about it he was like, “What the hell? How come you didn’t tell me?” and I was like, “I know you would find out!” so he is hooking us up with the Riot Fest as well.

Estrella: What do you think the major differences are between the band you are now and the band back then?
Dan: Well with 88 now it is definitely, well we are all older and some of us have wives, kids, girlfriends with kids so it is definitely a different feeling in that aspect. We are not writing anything new as of yet, maybe we will I don’t know. It is a more mature way of looking at it and I think it can go back to when you were asking me the songs we were playing, I think that is one of the reasons we did not want to play some of the older things because some of the lyrics are kind of childish and shit. A little bit more of a matured feel but at the same time I think the songs we are still rocking them out, still playing them fast, we are not wussing out. I know a lot of bands when they start getting older they start slowing down, and we may have gotten older but we are still going to keep the pace up.

Estrella: Do you think there might be a tour, or are you hoping for a tour?
Dan: I’m hoping for a tour, there is a lot of external things that are happening. It’s harder, we are older and we cannot just go and sleep on couches so we will see. Right now all we are doing is a few of these little reunion shows and we will see what happens after that.

Estrella: If you did do a reunion tour what cities would you want to hit?
Dan: Oh, I don’t know we have people from California to New York to Florida to Texas asking us, even Europe is asking us back, we have even had some requests from Australia and Japan, I mean there is a lot out there to cover so who knows what we would do.

Estrella: What is everyone else in the band doing currently?
Dan: Well I am kind of in another band called Soulscape it is a project that I work on with my friend, he lives out in California it is pretty cool, but we don’t do that very often. Most of my time is consumed with my recording studio The Bomb Shelter so I record a lot of bands, I do live recordings. Beyond that the other members have full time jobs like our drummer John is a music teacher.

Estrella: Why do you guys think the band ended up not working out back in 1999?
Dan: Yeah, well we broke up once in 1996, got back together in 1998 and broke up again in 1999. Again it was very tough, again there was the kid thing there too. Some of our members had kids or wives and it’s really hard to go on tour and leave your family behind, that was the major point of it. You’ve been with someone for so long, meaning the band members and you can get on each others nerves and I think again we were younger and could not handle it as well. Now that we’re older things are being taken easy. One day at a time, let’s just see what happens.

Estrella: Just for fun, if you could see any band or artist perform any song live what would it be and why?
Dan: I’m really not good with this! I have a flurry of thoughts in my mind right now. I don’t know if this is going to be the best one, but this is what comes to mind. Probably, Supertramp “Breakfest in America” because that is the first LP I ever bought when I was very young, I won’t even say, oh god I just gave away my age. But that was the first LP I bought and it’s weird because I knew nothing of recording at that point but at that point they said it was one of the best recorded LP’s and it would be really cool to see them perform. I think that’s what really got me into starting the rock genre of music and then just flowing outward from there.

Estrella: Do you have any final comments?
Dan: Thanks for the interview I am looking forward to playing.

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