Weege (880 South) - conducted by Nima Fadavi  

Weege (880 South)

October 2006

MVRemix: Are we going to hear any of the old Floppy Rods songs on there?

Weege: No...not on this album, sorry. But...we did feel that we need to release the songs we did record as a full length album. So there was 6 tracks never officially released, although somehow they found their way on to Limewire and Kazaa and shit. But that's cool, it's good promo. We wanna release the old jams, but we would prefer to re-record them with our updated studio we got at Street Noise Studios. So all together we're looking at the 5 OG tracks on the Sinus album, 6 unreleased tracks, and a couple of songs that never got into the studio which were Migraine and Amigos Borrachos. It's all talk right now, but it'll see light someday. I always wanted to do a dub reggae version of Barrio, or a reggae version of Amigos Borrachos. We've also recorded some covers for fun, but with licensing and all I doubt they'd see light for a while. Our priority is all 880 South right now.

MVRemix: It seems like you guys have pretty good connections with a lot of bigger bands in the reggae-rock scene like Fishbone, and The Expendables. How did you guys build those connections?

Weege: Well first off the Expendables are our bros. I don't use that word lightly. Other than WhoGAS & Whiskey Avengers, and maybe a few other select bands from the Bay Area, we don't have a lot of bros we can rely on. The Expendables have always been there for us and still are. We actually met the Expendables through Donovan Haney. He was their "manager" at the time and we used to take him on our little road trips to Long Beach and San Diego to play with Slightly Stoopid and Bargain Music and a few other bands out that way. [laughs].. We had some good times hangin with Donovan. It's funny to see how far he's come since then. I'm proud of his success. He wont' admit it willingly, but he's from San Jose too. Ha! Fuckin Tranny. We love that guy, so much that he even managed us for a while. He used to brag so much about this band he was working with. Finally I gave it a listen. I remember the first song I heard and it was the Malibu song. I wasn't totally blown away at first, but then I'd suddenly be driving in my truck humming some shit, and I could never pinpoint where it was from! Low and Behold it was the Expendables. So I gave "In the Weeds" another listen. It was a pretty cool summertime album. Clearly they were influenced by the kind of music I actually listened to at that time.

In many ways that's what I wanted to mold our style with in the Floppy Rods. I was always a big fan of reggae but I could just never get the Rods to make the transition. We were definitely a funk outfit. So a lot of our friends ask us if it's weird to see this band we kind of used to play with start seeing some success on the national level You know, cause we came from the same time and era and shit. However I don't feel any animosity, I love those guys. They are genuine and they never lost touch with their home. That's what is appealing about them; they are good to their people, loyal to their roots. That's how every band should be and even though they are younger than us, I look up to that kind of characteristic. It's respectful and admirable. I saw the hunger in them from the moment I met them. I know they aren't blowing doors on record sales just yet, but they are well on their way, and doing some solid things right now and it's mostly because they have worked their asses off to get there. You don't see that in the music industry anymore. Unfortunately our band took a turn for the worse and we broke up, otherwise we'd probably be rockin the national circuit with em. It's a shame that the Floppy Rods ended so abruptly, lots of recorded material didn't see light. So yeah, we had a lot of good times with the Expendables, we still do. It's bands like them that keep me motivated. I don't see bands in our genre as competition. If anything I feel we're stronger as a community.

I feel like when we started out, a lot of the bands we used to play with were all pretend and hunky dory and they acted like they were our boys. In truth, when the band broke up, the Cactus Club closed, and we had no venue to trade with folks, all of the sudden the phone calls came few and far between. It was kind of hardest on me, because I spent most of my time building those relationships and hooking up a lot of bands. I don't want to feel betrayed, but that's how it felt. In time I realized that I was surrounded by the reality we call the Music Biz. I try not to be bitter, I still talk with a lot of the bands we used to play with. I still owe a few some favors even, and good things are on the horizon for this band. 880 South is coming strong for the 2006/2007 season.

Fishbone, we actually weren't connected with them. Just absolutely in awe with their music. The first time we played with Fishbone was in 2000. We played at the Usual. It was the worst show for me ever because I lost my voice that night. My drummer had to sing like 40% of our songs. I got to make up for that show the next year when we played with Fishbone @ the Cactus Club. It was a memorable experience. Our drummer Aaron has been a fan of Fishbone since I met him. That was, too long ago to even remember a date. Anyway, I got to shout out to the people that buckled down and made this happen. Myself, Aaron, Donovan, Margil and of course Jon Phillips. So after a few phone calls and emails we somehow got Fishbone to record a song at Street Noise Studios (Aaron Liebelt's studio). "Let Them Ho's Fight!" I got to meet the guys again. It was a good time and I even got the pictures to proove it. By the way. Angelo Moore, if you read this, your jacket is still at the studio.

MVRemix: Any future plans for a tour with any of them?

Weege: Touring, probably not at this point. We always plan, and think of ideas, but right now we want to tour, but funding is tight. That's why CD sales are so important. Now if Fishbone or the Expendables wanted to have us jump on some tour dates. We'd gladly do it in a heartbeat. But there are no talks of it right now. I think a tour for us would be a major success. By way of this amazing internet network, we have built quite a fan base online without even touring. Imagine what we could do if we got a tour going? So hopefully we sell enough CDs in December to hit the road properly. To all our Florida, Philly, and East Coast folks....Hang tight, we're coming! Just buy the CD!

MVRemix: I know you guys have a strong fan base in your hometown, San Jose. It seems like everyone is always loud and having a good time at the shows. What's your favorite venue to play at and how do you feel about the rowdy fan base?

Weege: Rowdy? You mean drunk right? Loud is good, it gives me energy! I feed off the crowd. If the crowd is quiet, it's definitely harder for me to get into it. But I find a way I guess. [laughs]! I fucking love it. Pardon my potty mouth, but picture yourself at an 880 South show! You're at the bar, and you meet a fine little honey pot and the music is just bumpin. Sure it's nice to have a conversation and small talk, but when bodies are gyrating and bottles are unloading, you can't avoid that great feeling in your body. It's natural glee (well not really natural). Even if you're not single, good vibes bring good times. Laugh, Drink, Sing, it's what we're all about! I think a lot of that plays into atmosphere too. A good time can be pretty much created anywhere, but when the venue is clean, and the beer is drinkable, and the bartenders are a sight for sore eyes. It makes a huge difference in your attitude. You ever walk into a total dive bar and just lose the urge to drink? It's personally never happened to me, but I definitely go in there with a negative and defensive feeling. How can you have a good time in a stinky, dark, cold, unwelcoming venue? Well we used to do it in the 90s, [laughs] I mean...we always left our hearts in the Cactus Club. I won't lie to you. That place stunk, it smelled like puke, piss, beer, and old man farts. The sound system was totally shot. But that club loved local music and it didn't matter what genre you played in. So our heart will always be at the Cactus.

As for the 880 South era, we play a lot of the local spots at this point like Smoke Tiki Lounge. It's the right spot for the summertime atmosphere all year round. Now with the change in weather we play more indoor spots like Tres Gringos and VooDoo Lounge (great sound system). I don't really have any gripes about any of these venues. They're all great, and great to the local bands. I just wish there was more of a buzz created on the weekend nights. Seems like local music is weekdays lately. It's probably because of the young college crowds that occupy the SJ scene. I know the Blank Club is pretty hot on the local hard rock scene, but apparently I'm not welcome there, [laughs]! I guess I talk too much shit or something. Go figure.

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"I don't want to feel betrayed, but that's how it felt. In time I realized that I was surrounded by the reality we call the Music Biz. I try not to be bitter..."