Shiprocked 2015: Interview with Buckcherry Frontman Josh Todd
February 20, 2015
By: Nicole McKay
MPR: We’re on a boat right now, which is pretty awesome. What’s your favourite thing about Shiprocked?
Josh Todd: Favourite thing… Y’know, just being a part of multiple shows, there’s a lot of musicians, and being able to fit into the mix. Get here and get to do something that not a lot of people get to do, y’know?
MPR: Were you kinda skeptical when you first heard about the cruise?
Josh Todd: I was really skeptical.I thought I would hate it. Cause I don’t like being confined, I like being able to break away and do my own thing, I thought it was gonna suck. But everybody is super cool, there’s lots of activities, which I like.
MPR: Have you checked out any of the bands?
Josh Todd: I have, I checked out a little bit of the Crobot show, Living Colour, watched a little bit of Lacuna Coil last night. Let’s see, what else. Sevendust is great.
MPR: You guys are all done with work, you gonna go to any shows tonight or just chill for the rest of the cruise?
Josh Todd: I dunno, I’m kinda tapped out. I’m pretty tired. We’ve gotta pack and then we’ve got a pretty early bus call, so maybe I’ll go see something, we’ll see.
MPR: Your last full length album was centered around the seven deadly sins, and I may be wrong, but I believe the four elements as well.
Josh Todd: Yeah
MPR: What made you decide to go with that?
Josh Todd: We just wanted to kind of do something off the beaten path and it was time. I wrote a short film around it, it’s called Confessions, it’s loosely based on my childhood. We were trying to make a movie, we had a director, location, casting, but it’s just a lot of money. So it’s still something that’s on my mind. Actually when we get home I’m gonna talk to another director who I won’t mention and see if we can do it bigger than just like a film short, which really was my main goal, so we’ll see.
MPR: You had a pretty strict foundation for that album. Was it hard to write songs when you had to go with certain themes in each one of them?
Josh Todd: It was really challenging and um, the sins are so timeless that’s special to me cause they’ve been represented in films and other records and I’ve just seen so much on the sins and they’ve just been such a huge part of my life that I felt like I really needed to do my due diligence as far as digging as deep as I could and it was a really emotional record for me, I had to really go to some dark places. But I’m so happy with the outcome, it’s one of my favourite records.
MPR: What do you think is the worst of the seven deadly sins if you had to choose one?
Josh Todd: Um. Probably lust. It’s tough. Lust is a tough one.
MPR: You guys are independent now, not tied down to any major record label. What’s the most challenging thing about that?
Josh Todd: There’s nothing challenging about it. I mean I grew up in Orange Country, California, and all the records I listened to up until I was like 17 were independent records. I listened to bands like Black Flag and 7 Seconds and GBH and The Toy Dolls and The Replacements, like I didn’t even listen to a major record until I was 17 so it’s kinda what I know, I mean I’ve always listened to really honest records. And I feel like, y’know, all those bands, they weren’t putting out their art for the man, they were doing it for themselves. So it was really raw and cool. A lot of records on Discord, which is a great record label. So this has been my dream to get to with this band. Everything’s in house and you don’t have to answer to anyone, you get to say and do whatever you wanna do, and it’s really awesome.
MPR: So you just listed a lot of positive sides of it, but what’s the best thing about being independent?
Josh Todd: Actually the worst thing would be major distribution. But with the way the music business is right now it’s the perfect time to do it, because you can distribute digitally now and all that stuff. If you’re already an established band like we are it’s easier.
MPR: When you’re buying music do you prefer to have a physical copy or do you like downloading?
Josh Todd: I don’t buy physical copies anymore. I mean I hate to say that, but I buy a lot of music online on ITunes. I’m always visiting and revisiting old stuff as well as new stuff.
MPR: I love having a hard copy, you guys put so much work into the album art and all of that.
Josh Todd: I know, I like a hard copy. That was more so when I was really younger when I would sit and lyrics. Now I just hear a song and I want it, I just go get it and listen to it.
MPR: What’s your favourite song at the moment?
Josh Todd: Right now I gotta tell ya, nothing in the rock genre’s really getting me going. But I really love pop music so I’m really into Bruno Mars and Sam Smith and this really amazing singer Jim Cessarian.. I think that’s how you pronounce it. But he has a fucking incredible range like probably up there within the Prince range, it’s really exciting. I like great singers, people who can sing, that’s what I want.
MPR: Yeah get a little change from rock too. You guys have so much material now, does it get hard to chooseyour setlist, especially for the shorter festival sets?
Josh Todd: No. We’ve got it pretty much down. Now it’s like, you just do the hits for those small sets. And I try to take little flavours of each of those records and sprinkle them in for the headlining sets.
MPR: Are there any songs that you miss playing since you have to play all of those hits that people wanna hear?
Josh Todd: Yeah, I was talking to Keith about how fun it would be to maybe just do like some major city tour and just to B-Sides. Like do the B-Side tour where you don’t do any hits and just do stuff that we haven’t done live. Cause there’s songs we’ve never played live.
MPR: Do you still remember how to play them?
Josh Todd: No, we’d have to rehearse. I like to practice a lot.
MPR: So you also released the Fuck EP pretty recently, what made you decide to do that rather than a full length album?
Josh Todd: I think we always wanted to put out an EP cause we all had a lot of them growing up, so that was one thing, and Confessions was a very long tour, very emotional record, and we just wanted to do something that was a lot of fun. I love the Fuck EP, it’s such a piece of a puzzle.
MPR: It’s a really fun EP, very random!
Josh Todd: And not even one song about fucking! I can’t believe that passed me.
MPR: I never actually noticed that. Just a couple of random questions and then I’ll letya go. If someone were to make a movie about your life, who would play you?
Josh Todd: I’ve been thinking about that recently. It all depends on what period of my life. So as a teenager who would it be… Um.. wow, I don’t even know the younger kids. But probably that kids in The Wire. It’s an amazing show. In the second season when they’re on the boat and they’re moving all those cans, what was his name? He was this really skinny kinda reckless dude that wound up going to jail. Skinny. I think that was his name, I’m not sure. He’d probably be good.
MPR: And finally, if you could be a fly on the wall in any room for a day, where would you go?
Josh Todd: That’s a great question. It would probably be in the vocal booth when Prince is recording his vocals, because he doesn’t allow anyone to do it, he records it by himself. At least that’s what I heard.