Breaking guitars over his brother’s head (far right) since ’92. Dave Naz

"All I Want"


"I'm Scum"

Bad Accounting, Seattle, 1992

Not too long after we started the Spits, we moved to Seattle. One of our first shows was a house party in the U-District with a cover at the door. We were supposed to pay the other bands for playing. The party got busted, so we picked up a couple girls and went to Tubs. As we were walkin' home, hair still all wet and hot-tubby, we ran into the dudes in one of the bands. We suddenly remembered why we'd had so much money. We told them, "Sorry, we don't have your money. Tubs has all your money." There were seven of them and four of us, and they said they wanted my guitar. I was like, "Fuck that!" and so we got in a fight. I'm not gonna say who won, but we got away with what was left of the money, bought a 12-pack from the corner store a couple blocks away, and went home and put on records.

James Hetfield and the Drummer, San Francisco, 1996

On our first West Coast tour, in 1996, we played a bar called the Covered Wagon. We got there early—around noon—and our drummer started boozin'. We weren't even playing until 11:30 that night. So we were hangin' around, waiting to play, and James Hetfield comes in—and his buddy says he came to see us and brought Hetfield along. Fuckin' killer! Growing up, they [Metallica] were like our favorite band. When we finally got to play around midnight, we blew it, totally. We were wasted, especially our drummer, who after the show decided it'd be cool to go introduce himself to Hetfield and ask him what he thought of the set. Hetfield just sort of grunted a "Yeah, right." So our drummer tells him, "[Metallica] were great in the beginning, but you fucking suck now." I think he said this a couple times, then he got kicked out and had to wait in the van the whole night while we partied more and took shots and yammered with James Hetfield.

Reno 911, Reno, 1997

On tour in 1997, we were in Reno with the Briefs and the Real McKenzies. After the show, we all stayed at the Hilton, and after some drinkin', it was "prank time." The Briefs called the front desk and told them someone from our room pulled a knife on them in the elevator. When security came up—you can picture Reno cops, they're all a bunch of old guys like [motions like he's got his hand on a holster], "Whoa there, just step back now!" when I opened the door. We told them we'd seen [the Briefs] steal a woman's purse off a luggage rack, and how they were later bragging that it was full of jewels, and that my girlfriend wasn't here, but she'd had stuff stolen too. They all ran upstairs like the cavalry. The Briefs got kicked out, and while they argued for their room with the police, one of the Real McKenzies went down and took the wheels off their van and put rocks in the hubs, then put the wheels back on. As they drove off to find a new hotel, their van sounded like a rattle can—60 miles per hour down the freeway. [Laughs]

Blackface, Seattle, 1999

Once at the Breakroom [now Chop Suey], we did a show as the "24/7 Spits"—sort of a tribute to 24-7 Spyz, a band from New York, mostly black dudes. We did blackface, surfer-dude shorts, and we spray-painted mop heads black and put those on our heads. That wasn't maybe the best idea—when we hit the stage, half the bar just left. Walked out. We kept playing, and after the set, Steve Turner came up to me and said, "That was the best set I've ever seen, and those were the best costumes I've ever seen."

Canada High, Vancouver, 2000

In 2000, we went to Vancouver, BC, to play a party called Naughty Camp on an Indian reservation, on a huge outdoor stage not too far from Whistler. We were sitting around, as always, drinking beer and waiting to play, when these Native American dudes show up and give us mushrooms. We ate 'em, and all I could think was "Man, we better go on soon, or we're all gonna start flippin'." When we finally went on—and for that show we were dressed as "Bob Marley and the Reagans," with Ronald Reagan masks and American flag capes—everyone start booing. I played almost one whole song before I realized that I wasn't holding my guitar. I swore I could hear it, but when I looked down I was just fingering air. I found my guitar and we tried to play about 10 different songs, but couldn't even finish one. We woke up way off out in some field, still in Reagan masks, huddled together under our flags, freezing our asses off.

GreenRoom, Chicago, 2002

We played the Hozac Records Blackout Festival. We were upstairs in the greenroom eating all this pizza and drinking all this booze, and my friend comes up: [in a hushed voice] "Hey—that's all on the New Bomb Turks' rider!" We'd thought it was for everybody, but we were all, "We don't give a fuck!" Trying to play it cool—playing the rock star. But it turns out they're sitting right behind us, and they say, "Hey, you wanna get the fuck off our stuff?" This turned into a yelling match, but luckily nothing more. Then later, during our set, I got in a fight with my brother because he started talking shit into the mic to me. I broke my guitar neck over his head and the set was done. Eleven years later, my photo turns up on the cover of [We Never Learn: The Gunk Punk Undergut, 1988–2001] a book written by Eric Davidson, New Bomb Turks' frontman. I guess they're not mad about the pizza anymore.

Big Hand, Europe, 2002

When you play [Europe], you pretty much play every single night, and we were over there for almost two months. One night, my brother thought I "threw a show." I just ended a song, but he thought I fucked up and then just gave up mid-song. He tried to throw a punch at me, but missed and busted up his hand on a brick wall. He couldn't play bass then, just sing, so every night we'd tape a bag of frozen peas to his fist before we went onstage. Eventually crowds started chanting, "Big hand! Big hand!" throughout our sets. Then he blew out his voice playing so many shows. He'd open his mouth and nothing but a little wheeze would come out. But we couldn't cancel, so for six shows we pulled fans out of the audience to sing for us. It sounded pretty amazing, because most of them didn't speak any English, but they knew the lyrics, sort of. It actually sounded better than what we do.

Slow Cook, Denver, 2002

One tour, we thought we could save money by buying a power converter to run a Crock-Pot in the van. We plugged it in when we left Seattle—made some sorta chicken stew—but it wasn't ready until we got to Denver. It took three days and four states to cook because every time we shut the van off, the Crock-Pot shut off, too. When we drove it'd spill all over the carpet and stink up everything, and that tour we had no trailer, so eventually all our gear smelled like half-cooked chicken. When it was finally done, we dished it all out and all we got was about a half-bowl each. We left the Crock-Pot on the side of the road.

Support The Stranger

Don't Bring a Knife to a Spits Fight, Austin, 2002

Our first time playing SXSW in Austin instead of just partying. We were about to play a big house party, when the promoter decided he wasn't gonna pay the Black Lips. These guys are our friends, so we stepped in to help. A fight started, and the promoter pulled a knife. A BIG fucking knife. We beat him up anyway. Then we grabbed our gear and took most of the party and the other bands with us. We set up in an empty lot—almost a grassy field—and played there all night. It was us, the Black Lips, King Khan & BBQ, and Jay Reatard. We vowed that night that we four bands, forever and ever, after the knife fight, would be part of what we call the Death Cult. It came a little too true for Jay. RIP, buddy.

Stitches, Jackson, 2004

I got in a huge, knockdown fight with my brother onstage about three songs in, and I busted another guitar over his head. He had to go get about 20 stitches on his crown, and I had to borrow other peoples' guitars for the rest of the tour—something like 15 more shows. That was one angry, ugly tour van. [Laughs] At this point I've got three SGs broken over my brother's head. It's funny though, just a coupla months ago I ran into this kid from Jackson and he told me he still has the neck from that guitar, framed and on the wall. My brother still has a scar on his head. recommended

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