Q: How did you get
started in the music business?
A: When I was young I was into the punk rock scene because
there were no other psychobilly oriented youth in my area, so I was hanging out
with the punk rockers. I took a punk rock
drummer and a rockabilly bass player from the Hill and formed my first
psychobilly band and played with a lot of punk rock bands at local shows around
town. Seeing Reverend Horton Heat on TV
was really what knocked my socks off.
That was the thing that really got me into psychobilly when I was about
14, but it wasn’t until I was about 17 that I formed my first psychobilly band
and started playing punk rock shows.
Q: Do you have a band
now that you play with?
A: I played in a 3
piece group for about 10 years. Lately
I’ve been playing solo when not doing my instrumental music.
One band that I formed was Johnny Saint and the HellRazors. We played at a psychobilly festival in
Anaheim, California in 2003, and that was the most psychobilly bands I ever
played with. It was really a fun experience. Another band was Johnny Saint and the Princes
Q: Please describe
your style of music.
A: I play guitar and
sing. My Solo projects, when I play solo
projects, quite often I’m pretty Rockabilly centered, because I play a Gretsch
Nashville Chet Atkins signature guitar.
Actually I should describe further it’s actually a Reverend Horton Heat
Signature Guitar which is based off of a Chet Atkins signature guitar. But the guitar I play is the only signature
guitar in the world from a psychobilly artist.
Well it was the first one. I’ve
seen some others.
Psychobilly is a genre of music that was popular post-punk,
so late 70’s in Europe where Europeans were emulating the American style rock
and roll that they heard and they were sick of political punk music. Political punk music had become too intense,
too many factions to it, but they wanted to have a punk feel and they really
liked American culture. So they
absorbed American culture in punk rock music as apolitical punk rock with a
My instrumental music I do with a musician in Collinsville,
a great musician named John Bartley. We
play Tiki Lounge music. It’s music that
was popularized whenever soldiers were coming back from World War II, and they
wanted to have fond memories of the exotic times they had in Japan when they
were stationed in the South Pacific.
This was in the 1950’s when Hawaii was about to become a state. Jazz musicians were playing exotic sounding
music in Hawaii based off of a minor 2-1 progression in jazz. They just wanted to play something that
sounded exotic when soldiers were returning from the Pacific, quite a few of
them with Pacific Rim wives, that would have something to take them away from
all the stress that they came back to after being in the war.