Many bands dream of going across the country on Warped Tour, but Los Angeles’ own No Bragging Rights has made the trek three years in a row now. On the outside of the tour for the first two years, the band connected up with Atticus clothing, and found themselves on the inside – well within the thick of things – selling their latest CD The Consequence Of Dreams and meeting potential fans all across the nation. Here is an interview we did with two of the members right after their return to home show at the Knitting Factory.
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in No Bragging Rights, and what’s the most embarrassing song you have on your IPOD?
Rick: My name is Handsome Rick from No Bragging Rights – I play bass in the band. I don’t have an IPOD, but have three IPOD’s that we rotate in and out. And I’m gonna say that it’s not really the most embarrassing song – we aren’t easily embarrassed – other people might think it would be embarrassing – but I think it’s You’re My Inspiration by Chicago. It’s an awesome song!
Mike: I’m Mike Perez and I sing in No Bragging Rights. I’m not embarrassed by my music – I guess one of the most random ones that a lot of people wouldn’t know is probably like You Raise Me Up from Josh Groban – I will openly bump it – I don’t care.
What gave you guys the idea to follow Warped all across the country?
Mike: In 07, it was our first time doing it. We just put out our self-released EP Anatomy Of A Martyr. Our big release show at Chain Reaction, we had no CD’s. And then our LA show, we played at House Of Blues – and again we had no CD’s. Obviously we didn’t sell anything, so we decided let’s try and sling some of these things out at Warped Tour.
What is your best sales technique in selling CD’s at Warped Tour this year?
Rick: The best sales technique – we have a sign that we made that we hold up right outside of our tent that says Fans of A Day To Remember, The Devil Wears Prada, Chiodos, and Underoath – the four biggest bands that are on the Warped Tour that are a similar genre. People come up and they say, “I like those bands!” And we’ll be like, “Okay, if you like those bands, come check us out. If you listen to 20 seconds and you absolutely hate it, we’ll let you spit in our faces as you walk away.” And we’ve never had been spit in the face. The fact is that if you like those bands, you are generally going to like us. We’re not exactly like any of those bands, but we fit into the whole genre.
What is The Consequence Of Dreams, and where did you come up with the idea for the title?
Mike: The title came from the idea of Warped Tour in 07. We had to literally drop everything. We all had jobs. We literally dropped everything to do this summer tour, because we knew it was going to be beneficial. It was one of things where you have to do it full steam. The Consequence Of Dreams – the album I wrote – basically reflected on the last three years that we did this band literally nonstop. All of us pretty much just do the band now. We all work little side jobs here and there to get us our cash when we’re home. This is our job. This is what he do like 200 days of the year. We’re doing what we love and that’s great – but it’s not all wonderful. We live in a van – we go like a long time without showering or doing laundry or eating. I’d be embarrassed to show you my bank account right now. But no one put a gun to our head and told us you have to tour and to live like this. We’re choosing to do this. So on the album – each track has an aspect to it – basically all of the sacrifices we’ve made while pursuing this dream that we have. One of the tracks, Constant Distance, was the idea of how it’s hard to have a relationship – and not just romantically – even with your friends. A lot of our friendships are tested while you’re gone – because you’re literally not there all the time. And who wants to date someone who’s gone 200 days out of the year? The song’s idea was the struggle of keeping a relationship but still staying focused on what you want. Somehow we have girlfriends who understand what we do and love us for it. I’m excited! We’re not homeless. We’ve made a lot of friends, but it’s just been a really big struggle. But that’s what we signed up for – and that’s kind of what we all like too.
What’s up next for you guys?
Rick: Right now we are in the works of jumping on any other decent tours that may be coming up. Mostly we are looking to package with somebody bigger than us so we could gain some more exposure and some more fans. But that’s pretty much what every band is doing with now. We’re doing some dates on the Malus Tour with Sea Of Treachery and Suffokate. And in the winter we’ll be demoing some new tracks.
What is the one piece of advice you would give a band who would like to do what you have done and sell their CD on the entire Warped Tour?
Rick: Don’t. If your band is not the greatest band that anyone has ever heard, don’t do it. Like we’re not the greatest band that anyone has ever heard – and we did it – and it took us three years to make anything out of it. And honestly, a lot of bands ruin it for bands like us, because they go out and try to do things before they’re ready. Be prepared.
Mike: If you’re going to do it, you better be fucking ready. You’ll either come back a better band or you will break up on that tour.
Rick: For us, we know what to expect and we love it. But it’s also really hard at the same time. It’s pretty much what you put into it. Warped Tour has been a great promotional tool for us, but it can also be hindering too. There’s a lot of people that you’re exposed to – that if you don’t give them your best product, they are going to remember that. So the next time around, they’re going to be hesitant to look at you again – even if you have something better.
Do you have any messages for people who might be reading this now?
Mike: Don’t support passionless music.
Rick: Don’t support people who don’t put their hearts and souls into what they’re doing. I think people are forgetting that music is created by artists and musicians and people that have talent and skills to play an instrument or sing. Listen to and support real music. (Interview and Photo by Kenneth Morton)
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