Please visit and use our sponsors.
The help us bring you Concert Listings, Interviews, Reviews and More
March 7, 2007 - It's not everyday you get to talk to a Grammy nominated band but that's what we got to do today when we chatted with Keith Nelson, guitarist of Buckcherry. Below is what he had to say to us.
FES: With the success of “15” does this mean Buckcherry is back for the long term?
Keith: I would hope so, you can never tell in this business. It was never our intention to go away in the first place but I think the time off severed us well. We have a great lineup now the vibe between all the band members is so good and they’re just great musicians. I hope to make a bunch more records.
FES: I interviewed Josh about 3 years ago, he told me before Buckcherry had broken up you and he had written several songs that was suppose to be for your third album, but then the band broke up. Did any of those songs make it onto ‘15’?
Keith: Only one and that’s Crazy Bitch.
FES: “15” has remained on the Billboard top 20 for over 30 weeks as the band was recording the album did you think it would have this kind of staying power?
Keith: We didn’t really get that far ahead with the process. We were kind of in the moment making the record. We didn’t have a lot of money to do it and we didn’t have a lot of time. It was really important for us to just to make a record that meant something to the five guys in the room making it. The goal is always to make a timeless record. Beyond that I wasn’t really thinking about Billboard charts or radio play, Youtube or anything else.
FES: How long did it take to record the album?
Keith: It took us 15 days. With a few months in pre-production writing, rehearsing and stuff. When it time to make the record it took only 15 days.
FES: What was the inspiration behind Crazy Bitch?
Keith: I think it was basically a composite or mosaic of past relationships with women that you have a really good physical chemistry with but outside of that things tend to go awry. So it wasn’t necessary one person, I know there were some rumors about it being about one particular starlit. I don’t think it that so much as just calling on the ghosts of pussy past. [Laughs].
FES: Do you have any favorite songs from 15 and if so why?
Keith: I’m really proud of the record in that we cover a lot of ground. We have songs like ‘Carousel’ which I think are great. Everything doesn’t sound like anything we’ve ever record before. We have some real stomping shit kicking songs like ‘Broken Glass’ and ‘Out of Line.’ I’m really proud of the record in the whole. I don’t think there’s weak song on it.
FES: It’s a very strong record. I don’t understand why it didn’t garner record of the year consideration.
Keith: All that stuff is about way more than just having a good record. There are a lot of other things that come into play.
FES: Buckcherry is from the west coast correct?
Keith: That’s where we all live but we’re actually from all over the place as individuals go, but we are based on the west coast.
FES: How did the band come up with the song ‘ Brooklyn’ that’s basically about someone who is from the east coast?
Keith: That’s really easy. Josh was in a punk band before Buckcherry and they would do tours where they would get into UHaul trucks and tour around at one point in time he was in this band that ended up in Brooklyn. He actually did black out so he was drawing on personal experience for that song.
FES: What are your thoughts on ‘15’ going gold?
Keith: Wow, just seeing it in the shrink wrap when we were done with it and it was mixed and we actually had a bar code on the back that was really exciting. As soon as it went gold I wanted it to be platinum and always looking ahead at the next goal you know? It’s an honor in this day and age having a gold record really means a lot because there’s so many other ways to steal music and not actually pay for it. Having  go gold I’m probably prouder of that going gold than the first record going gold. It’s an achievement for us especially coming back from not even having a band at all. It’s harder the second time around because people already think they know what you’re about and their not really willing to give you a second shot.
FES: How do you feel about Buckcherry fans that download your music from P2P sites such as Limewire instead of buying it at their local record store?
Keith: Look I’ve done that. Everyone has done that. I’m certainly not going to take anything away from people that do that. I don’t think it impacts the business as much as everyone thinks it does. We’re still selling records every week you know? It’s a bummer because it’s how we make a living we’re a working rock band we’re not living in mansions driving Ferraris we have to go out play shows, sell records and T-shirts to make a living. I understand some of it is going to be done it’s the cost of doing business. I think the people that are really successful at it find a way to make it work to their advantage and be at peace with it instead of fighting it the whole way because you’re just not going to stop it.
FES: I agree with you. I think the labels by trying to go after people in court maybe alienating people into downloading instead of getting them to buy the music.
Keith: We need to find a way to encourage people there’s more value than going and actually downloading it and make it special for the fans.
FES: What was it like for the band to perform on The Tonight Show?
Keith: It was really cool. We had done it before a few years back but it was really nice to have this lineup there some of these guys have been at it for quite a while and have never done anything quite like that so it was a nice homecoming for us.
FES: Josh once told me he listens to Rage Against The Machine to get pumped up before a show. Do you have any pre-show rituals to get pumped up for shows?
Keith: He’s listening to it you can’t help but catch some of it [laughs] it’s a little loud. I don’t really have a pre-show ritual. I get really excited about playing. I’m having so much fun on this tour playing the guitar and playing these songs I don’t really have a pre-show ritual.
FES: What was it like for you personally to open for AC/DC?
Keith: That was really a dream come true because they are probably in my top three (3) all-time bands if not the top two. The most exciting thing about that was getting to hang out with the band members after our last show. Sitting on the couch with Angus and Malcolm [Young], Brian Johnson, Cliff Williams and Phil Rudd just hanging out having some tea that was really cool.
FES: We're starting to see more and more bands and musicians performing live well into their 60's. Do you foresee yourself performing on a live stage in your 60s?
Keith: I don’t really know but I know I won’t do it when it stops making a difference and it stops mattering. There are a lot of bands out there that should have quit a while ago and I definitely am not going to go out like that as long as it matters and people want to hear it cool. There are a lot of other things to do with this life of ours than play from your 20’s into your 60’s.
FES: Do you feel bands only have limited lifespan? Some of the greatest bands of all-time like The Beatles for example were only around a few years before they broke up. It seems like at some point they hit a wall and go their separate ways.
Keith: I think it’s hard to catch lighting in a bottle. So many of those bands you’re referring to they have those windows of time where they can just do no wrong. The Beatles career was about eight years. They went from ‘Meet The Beatles’ through ‘Sgt. Peppers’ and into ‘Let It Be’ that’s an insane body of work. This band has been around eight years and I can’t imagine that body of work. AC/DC was making a record every nine - ten months and Aerosmith was putting out a record every year. It’s a different business you know? As for lifespan of bands, the attention span is so short now I don’t really see the majority of the bands sustaining long careers. We went to the Grammy’s this year and they only band that was there when we were there before was Korn. The radio shows we played in 1999 and 2000 had completely different lineups than the shows we’re playing now.
FES: Buckcherry is playing WJRR’s Earthday Birthday 14 in Orlando on April 28, 2007. What are your thoughts on playing this show?
Keith: We really like playing radio shows. It’s a chance for us to get out there with a bunch of different bands and hang out with some old friends. It’s usually a lot of people so the more the merrier.
FES: How important do you think online publications such as Florida Entertainment Scene are in helping to get the word out about bands such as Buckcherry?
Keith: I think they’re really important. It’s the place where everyone is getting their information from its where they’re getting their music videos that’s where their getting their music, that’s where their reading their newspaper. We were having this conversation the other day, “What did we do before the internet?” You have a question or want to know something you just go to the internet. I think it’s vital.
FES: Do you have anything to say to your fans that read this interview?
Keith: We really appreciate the support in coming back and the second chance. It’s not very often in a band’s career they get a second chance. I think our fans are really the most important thing to us and we’re so grateful to be able to have the opportunity to play for them and entertain them. We play every show like it’s our last one.
FES: Keith, thank you for your time I wish you guys much success.
Keith: Thanks for the interview man I really appreciate it.
Buckcherry’s latest album ‘15’ is available at all the usual outlets. Read our Buckcherry ‘15’ CD Review. Buckcherry was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance for 'Crazy Bitch'.
Buckcherry is from Los Angeles, CA and tour on a regular basis.
Josh Todd - Vocals
Keith Nelson - Guitar
Jimmy "Two Fingers" Ashhurst - Bass
Stevie D. - Guitar
Xavier Muriel – Drums
For more artist information log onto the official Buckcherry Website and to sample music visit the Buckcherry page at myspace.com or the Buckcherry page at Tagworld.com.
Musician Interview by Michael Montes - Copyright © 2007 Florida Entertainment Scene - All Rights Reserved.