Papa Roach

Interview date

22 Juin 2013


Didier, Evanessa


Interview Tobin Esperance & Tony Palermo (face to face)

2012 was a stressful year for you and especially for Jacoby because of his health and other issues; we hope 2013 is a better year for you all, how do you feel now?

Yeah it is going much better. Back in 2012, at the beginning of the year, when we were writing for the new record, that’s when it became stressful. Jacoby was going through some hard time with some personal issues. And he recently got sober and that helps. But then along with that came the vocal issue with his throat, he got a node on his vocal chord, he had surgery, we had to cancel a tour… So yeah, long story short, yes it was a stressful year so now we try to pick up where we left off and on a much better note. His singing is now better than ever and we are good to go.

So how is the Hellfest? The last time you came to play here was in 2009, am I right? Are you happy to be back?

So far it looks pretty cool. Yeah we‘ve been here before but I don’t remember the last time. I think it was when we played with Heaven and Hell, and Mötley Crüe was headlining. I remember seeing Dio in a hotel. That’s about it. But it’s cool because they have a lot of art and stuff like that. Somebody came with some steel work, it looks cool. The organization is nice except for one thing, our guitar player Jerry and I, we were at the sandwich spot and we asked for some hot food. And they told us there was no hot food. The last time we played here it was kind of confusing because we played right after Cannibal Corpse and we thought there would be an issue about not being heavy enough. But I remember the show being pretty good, and the fans were very responsive. But this time there are more people that we know, different bands, friends of ours like Bad Religion. So we get to meet up with them today.

How long will you stay in Clisson?

We came here last night, we had a day off we went to Nantes, they’re having a festival there and that’s great. And we want you to know that we will come back on November 28th to play in Paris. So buy your tickets!

Did you come with your families, or only the band?

Only the band came. Oh actually that’s not true our singer brought his eleven years old son. So he is travelling with us.

Everything is ready for the show tonight?

Yeah I am pretty confident that we have one of the best slot of the night.

Are you happy with the schedule? Do you have enough time?

I think it’s brilliant.

Are you nervous before this show? How do you deal with stage fright? Bigger audience, bigger stress?

No we are just anxious to get out and do our thing. It’s anxiety but not in a bad way, it is an anxiousness to get on stage because all we wait for is that moment, to connect with our fans and play music and do what we came here for. It is all the time around it that makes us crazy.

How did you prepare your set-list for such an event? Did you make a special one?

Yes we did. We added a few more interests to our setlist. We have a fucking huge rock cock over fucking presentation for you. (Laughs)

What do you think about the Hellfest organization? Did you appreciate it?

In 2009, it was in a field and it was hot, this year it is configured differently. It has come a long way, it looks a lot better.

So do you prefer performing at large events, such as the Hellfest, or for a longer time at smaller shows, when you are the headliner?

We released many records and we have a lot of different types of songs that we like to perform live on our own, we like to prepare our settings for our own shows. I think we would prefer to play as a headline act, because we get together more in depth and dynamic. Tonight it’s going be quick and heavy and in your face. We are going to smack you in the head and we will be out. For this festival we chose to play the singles, and a lot of newer stuff which is fun for us.

You last album “The Connection” was released in 2012, are you here to promote it or do you have new material already?

Nothing brand new, we are not going in the studio and start writing and recording until the beginning of next year.

In 2011 you wrote a song for The Avengers movie soundtrack, did you enjoy this experience? Will you do it again?

We didn’t see the movie before this, they needed a song and we sent them something that was not finished yet. We sent them a song that was not going to be on the record. And they really liked it so we finished it and gave it to them and they liked it. Yes we would do it again, if we have music that fits with the visuals of a movie, whatever the story line is. For The Avengers, we didn’t get any preview of the movie, they just heard the song and they thought it would fit. It would be cool to know about the storyline or the script of a movie before writing a song for it. I am sure we will have the opportunity someday soon to do it again.

Will you play for another show in France this year? What are your tour plans?

We will come back in November heading for Paris, the UK, and Germany. I don’t know where else yet. But yes we will be in Paris on November 28th.

This year it is Papa Roach 20th anniversary; will you do something special to celebrate it?

We are going to shoot a DVD at the end of the tour which wraps up Brixton Academy in London. We will not do anything else; we celebrate every night with our fans. Come out to the shows and buy our record, yeah!

Have you met some of your favorite artists? Who?

Last night we were in the same hotel than Danzig, so we hung with the crew. I also ran into my friends P.O.D.

Did you taste Muscadet, it’s the local wine.

No, but I think there is a bottle in our room, the special Hellfest bottle. I would try that. We love liquid souvenirs!

Do you have something to say to people who want the Hellfest to be cancelled because according to them it is a Satanic festival?

Yes it is a satanic event; have you noticed the red carpet? I think all this stuff is brought out of proportion. I have never seen any sacrifice, or any sacrificial ceremony in any festival or in any rock shows. It might happen somewhere but it is just kind of silly to want to ban something, maybe just because of its name: The Hellfest. The cult of death is part of what metal is, It adds a certain shock value to the entertainment aspect of it. And it is going to make it more popular, because it is fuel for the fire. It is like back in the days when the PMRC (The Parents Music Resource Center) said that they wanted to put an "explicit lyrics" sticker on the records. I remember Nikki Sixx from Mötley Crüe saying: Please do it! And they sold more, it was brilliant.

Do you have something to say to the people who download your music illegally?

I think if you really believe in a band and in a record it is a good thing to support that band because it costs money to make a record and to put out songs, so a little contribution would be nice. There is always a way to listen to music for free if you want to try a sample of an album, you can go on YouTube , on Spotify or whatever. But if you really are fans of the band and believers of the music I think it is only right that you contribute by purchasing the music. It is true that we don’t get all the money because some of it goes to the label, but that is why it is even more important to have people buy our records. We used to be able to have some extra money to make bigger shows, having the shows sound and look better or play in a bigger venue for a lot of fans. But now a lot of bands are not able to do that because they don’t have the extra money anymore. A lot of bands are on the road constantly, we are hardly ever home to see our families because touring is the only way to make money now. And that is still our job, the entertainment business. But f I want a pair of shoes I have to go to the store and buy them, it is the same for music and everything else.

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