Episode 07 Transcript: Nick Hexum From 311

Nick Hexum from 311 & Danny Carissimi From The Sugar High Podcast

 

Danny: Did you ever go through a phase where you shunned interviews and media? I wanna say like, after Nevermind, Kurt Cobain was like, “No more interviews.” Did you ever do that?

 

Nick: Yeah I remember they called that “Riot Girl-style,” because they always said no interviews, and that was always their thing. But, no, I never did, because I enjoy hearing what artists I like have to say. There were a couple guys in the band who were like, “You know what, I don’t like doing interviews, I’m not good at it; so let’s just let Nick and Peanut do the talking.”

 

Danny: Is there ever a question you’ve wanted someone to ask, over this whole career since 1988, and no one’s asked it?

 

Nick: Not that I can think of.

 

Danny: Not like, “You’re overlooking this song, guys; you haven’t asked me about this song.”

 

Nick: Not particularly; you know, I’ve had so many, that we’ve covered everything, it seems like.

 

Danny: So when I was in second grade, I bought my second CD of all time, and it was MTV’s Buzzworthy. And “Down” was on it, and I didn’t know who you guys were, but I remember distinctly hearing that song for the first time in my bedroom, and being like, “Whoa.” And I didn’t know the lyrics then, but in preparation for this interview I was re-listening to your songs, and I still don’t know the lyrics. And I was like, I could look them up online, but it’s like, a pride thing. And then I was like, I’m going to be here with the man himself, and I could ask you the lyrics. But you know what, Nick? I’m not going to.

 

Nick: It was funny, because Eric Andre was talking about his love for 311, and that guy is hilarious.

 

Danny: 311 was an inside job.

 

Nick: Right.

 

Danny: That’s my favorite joke on that show; I love that!

 

Nick: Well, we’re on the show, on the season finale of the new season. But, he was talking about like, “I love it when they go [humming].” He just--nobody really knows the lyrics to it. And it’s crazy that it was such a big hit with fairly--I didn’t think they were indecipherable. And you’re not asking, I know, but I say, “We’ve changed a lot and then some, some. Know that we’ve always been down, down. And if I ever didn’t thank you, you, then let me just do it now.” So it’s like, “Wow, we’ve been through a lot, we’ve always been down, if I ever didn’t thank you, let me do it now.”

 

Danny: Who is we?

 

Nick: It’s both to my bandmates, and the fans. It’s just like a, “Wow, this is awesome, thank you.” Yeah, it’s to the guys in my band and the fans.

 

Danny: It’s an interesting lyric, because for you guys, at that point when that record came out, you’d been around for a while, but that was your debut to a lot of people. But you were already thanking them.

 

Nick: It’s true, we were really only four years into the band, but the first few years seemed--it’s just like, I look at my kindergarten yearbook, and I can name everybody in the kindergarten class, because it was new, and time slows down, you know? What’s new? Everything. So, those first few years being in a band, a couple years seems like a decade. I mean, you change so rapidly. So, yeah, we were on our third album by then, but it was--the band was formed in 1990, and we wrote that in 1994. But we had been slugging it out on the road in 93-94, just touring as much as we can. The year of ‘94, we didn’t even have homes; we just put our stuff, our meager possessions in storage.

 

Danny: I did that two years ago; I just put it in storage, and just went on tour.

 

Nick: Yeah, and lived in the van. Then luckily, we upgraded to a really crappy bus, and we were so stoked.

 

Danny: Didn’t one of your busses blow up at some point?

 

Nick: Yeah, right before the bus, we borrowed our drummer’s dad’s RV, and I mean, this thing was made in probably 1970; a huge Winnebago. And it was like, always backfiring, and it’s funny like, before we left, Chad’s dad was like, “Hey, if the thing catches on fire, just don’t worry about it. Just let it all burn, don’t worry about it. Just get out of there.” And it was a crazy thing to say when you’re handing somebody the keys, you know? I’ve never, ever heard someone say that before. “You can borrow my car, and if it catches fire, just let it burn.”

 

Danny: Solid advice. “If you’re about to die, get out.”

 

Nick: Don’t try and save the Winnebago. The backfiring lit the floorboards on fire, which got to the gas line really fast. So by the time I pulled over, it was completely --

 

Danny: You were driving?

 

Nick: Yeah.

 

Danny: What time was it?

 

Nick: Noon, in the total heat of summer. It’s July, and we were heading from one Missouri city to another. Actually, going the wrong way; we figured out later that we were going to have had to make a U-Turn. But all of a sudden, I see tons of smoking coming out, and I was like, “Guys, fire, fire!” And by the time I pull over, and open the door--there’s one door halfway down the RV on the right side--I open the door and there’s just flames lapping in. So, I’m the last one out, and there’s only one way out.

 

Danny: It’s your duty as the lead singer; you’re captain of the ship.

 

Nick: Yeah, I’m not going down with the ship though, once I see everybody’s out. Um, but, you know, there was significant flames coming up, so I was just like, I just have to jump through these flames. I mean, it was like--isn’t that like, a mythical thing, of like, jumping through flames, and it’s like, cleansing?

 

Danny: Well, this seems like a mythical thing. Like, all bands have like, myths; like, Led Zeppelin has the fish story and all that stuff. This is like, a 311 myth, and--you guys can’t see this--but you’re very animated telling this story. You leap through the flames!

 

Nick: Yeah. Like, my eyelashes and my hair were burned, and I had first-degree burns kind of all over; kind of like a bad sunburn, but in like, like right here, I still have some discoloration, and I had some second-degree burns on my arm.

 

Danny: Battle scars!

 

Nick: And we just like, scampered up the hill. The fire was so intense that it actually disintegrated Interstate 80, or whatever we were on. It turned to gravel.

 

Danny: 311 blew up the road!

 

Nick. Yeah. We were actually--not very smartly--we were towing Tim’s Volkswagen van that had our equipment in it. So we thought, okay--

 

Danny: You were towing the whole van? Why weren’t you towing a trailer?

 

Nick: You’ve got to get on with what you’ve got, you know? We had a van again; we bought a hitch. It worked; it got us from L.A. through quite a bit of the tour. So, that was like, we were realizing, we’ve got to unhook the van, and roll it away, because it’s got our equipment in there. But the fire was spreading to much, and we knew the gas tanks were going to like, explode. We were like, “It’s gonna blow, it’s gonna blow!” So, we couldn’t save the van either; that burned up as well. But now, whenever we see an RV, we’re like, “It’s gonna blow!” It’s like our tagline.

 

Danny: From just like, an artistic perspective, you’ve had a super long career, right? You guys have sold like, a gajillion albums, and I’ve always wondered if, once you get a double platinum record, or something, I mean, after that, is there a sense of accomplishment?

 

Nick: I do remember having that feeling, after around the time we went to New York to perform down on David Letterman. Because as a kid, I would sneak and stay up late, and just loved his sarcastic humor. So, to be on David Letterman was a feeling like, “Wow, this is it, we’ve arrived.” And I remember having dinner and drinking with the guys after that performance, and the other guys saying, “Man, NIck, you said we were going to do it, and here we are.”

 

Danny: “We believed you Nick, down this crazy rabbit hole.” I’ve been to Omaha three times--

 

Nick: That’s not enough.

 

Danny: I know, I need to go more. I actually, I will defend Omaha--and I’m not just saying this because I’m sitting in the presence of a guy from Omaha--they have like a cool like, hipster street, and there were some venues that we went to last time; but one thing I notice about Omaha, is that it’s like an island. It seems like--it’s almost like Boise, in that it’s extremely isolated. Where were you getting music?

 

Nick: Kids growing up today have no idea how hard we had to work to hear the new, cool music. I mean, there was one really cool record store downtown called Drastic Plastic. I remember in junior high, getting my mom to bring me down there to buy like, ska records, and Bob Marley, and Dove, and Yellowman. Usually, it’s somebody’s older brother who you’d hear tapes from, and I remember my friend playing The Clash for me when I got to seventh grade, and that just really changed my life.

 

Danny: What were you listening to before that?

 

Nick: Well, my mom loved like, Ray Charles, and 60s, and my dad, he was a couple years older, liked 50s stuff, so, my first love of music was like, Jerry Lee Lewis and Chuck Berry and Bill Haley and these like, early rock n’ roll songs. We had this huge stack of 45s, and I would just crank those and dance around. And then, I remember that I liked a lot of girl groups. I liked Joan Jett, I liked Bow Wow Wow, The Go-Go’s, stuff like that. I loved this like, punky girl--

 

Danny: Why do you think that is? Why do you think you were attracted to that?

 

Nick: They were all hot, so I’d sit there and stare at the vinyl; but the radio was super limited. There was like, one kind of classic rock station, and then a pop station. USA had this show at night, called Night Flight, where they’d play these movies, like, The Clash had a movie called Rude Boy, and I was just like, transfixed with seeing how like, punkers and reggae people lived in London. But now, you know, it’s all so easy. You can just YouTube everything.

 

Danny: But I’m curious--so you’re saying like, punk was like, really interesting to you, and reggae. This might be like, a lapse in my knowledge of music, but were they associated with one another?

 

Nick: Well, The Clash was both, and Bad Brains was both, and to me, 311 is both. So, we don’t do like, punk beats, we do usually more like, funk and hip hop tempos, but with like, punk rock intensity. And reggae, to us, it seemed like a natural--I mean, I like both separately, but then when you heard like, Bad Brains go from the most raging punk ever, to like, the most chill dub ever, and sometimes in the same song, that just blew our minds. So that’s, when we came on the scene, it was a new mixture. Nobody was doing hip hop feel, like, the tempos and the rapping is hip hop, but then with heavy guitars and the Octaver guitar that people associate with us. So, it was a new mixture, and that’s kind of what, mostly, an artist is doing, is giving you the sum total of his listening experience as he sees it. So, whatever you listen to, that’s going to come out. And so, when people find a fresh mixture--you know, that’s what The Beatles were. That was a fresh mixture of like, blues, black music from America, mixed with the folk and stuff that they had grown up on, and making that sort of connection between the two sides of the pond. And that’s kind of what we’re doing, and it’s just a totally different set of influences.

 

Danny: Did you come from any sort of hardcore background in high school? Because I know like, quite famously, your first show was with Fugazi; would that have been a show that you guys sought out, that you were super stoked about? Where you were like, “Holy shit, Fugazi’s coming to town!”

 

Nick: I loved the song “Waiting Room,” and the 13 Songs album; that really struck me as a super fresh mixture. At the time, we were very--you know, the way we dressed and stuff, was more punk-slash-grunge, with a little bit of hip hop mixed in. And that was kind of what our appearance was.

 

Danny: This is like, in high school?

 

Nick: Yeah. I remember meeting the guys from Fugazi, and they were like, “Where are you guys from?” And we were just like, “Just right up the street; we’re an Omaha band.”

 

Danny: How did you get that gig?

 

Nick: Peanut, our bass player, who at that time was like, 15, had heard through the punk rock fanzine network, like, “Hey, Fugazi’s coming, and they’re going to let some bands open up, and we can be one of them.” And when I first heard about that, I was--I took a month to go bum around Germany, and I called Chad, our drummer, and we had had the band Unity, where the 311 sound was kind of born, and I called Chad just to kind of check in with him, and he said, “Well, I’ve got a chance to open up for Fugazi, if you want to come back and kind of put the band back together.” And I was like, “That’s cool, but I don’t want to play bass, I just want to be the singer.” Because I was the bass player before that. And he was like, “Well, I know this young kid, who’s just a whiz kid at the bass,” and he said that they’d been jamming, and he’s the one who got the invitation, so I was like, that’s a great launch, because there was a thousand people ready to mosh, and go totally crazy.

 

Danny: What kind of guys were you in high school?

 

Nick: I got into school, I was in Debate and stuff--

 

Danny: Dude, I was in Debate too.

 

Nick: I got a D in music composition; the one D that I ever got.

 

Danny: But you showed that teacher!

 

Nick: I showed them!

 

Danny: Was your ambition in high school to be a musician?

 

Nick: Yeah. My folks say back to when I was 5 or 6, I was deadset on that. I never considered any other options, backup plans. And I always just said, if you have a backup plan, you’ll probably end up using it, so, I’m just going to do that. I was going to go to college, just to give me something to do while I was working on the band, but I dropped out. It didn’t pan out. I couldn’t focus. I had a high school band called The Eds--because our drummer’s name was Ed--and we played like, alternative of the time, which was like, R.E.M, and The Smiths, and The Cure.

 

Danny: Do you have recordings of this band?

 

Nick: Maybe a tape, somewhere. Right at the end of high school, we started the band Unity, me and Tim and Chad, and that’s where the funk and the “311” sound was kind of born. But then I moved out to L.A., and the other guys weren’t ready to do that; they needed to go to college and whatnot. In high school, you think, you’re going to get out to L.A., and it’s going to be these super cool people who are just like, way beyond; but I really ended up jamming with a lot of bozos, a lot of, you know, Sunset Strip metal guys.

 

Danny: You’re down like, Skid Row, with like, hair metal dudes.

 

Nick: Yeah, that weren’t really into this kind of futuristic hybrid kind of music that I was into.

 

Danny: Did you have fear, when you decided to go out to L.A. solo?

 

Nick: I mean, I was 17, I packed up my car, guitar, and a bass, and my clothes, and just drove out by myself.

 

Danny: It’s a pretty rockstar story. It’s like, the boy from Omaha.

 

Nick: I just remember my dad saying, “I don’t think this is a good idea,” and I was like, “That ship has sailed, I’m going no matter what.” So, then the first thing I did was hound Guitar Center on Sunset Boulevard to give me a job; just go every single day, like, “Hey, what’s the deal with that job?” And finally they gave me a job, and I worked there for a few months, and then I realized you don’t make any money at Guitar Center selling guitars, so then I was a waiter.

 

Danny: Do you look back on this time in your life fondly? Or was it just pure struggle?

 

Nick: Pretty fondly; sometimes it got a little dicey, with dicey people.

 

Danny: So you’re out there, you’re playing music, and your friends from home are like, “It’s time to come home; it’s time to come back to Omaha.” Were you like, “Hey, time for you to come out to L.A.!”

 

Nick: Well, Chad did come out and join me for a little while. And then, you know, Tim was off pursuing college, and I just hadn’t met Peanut yet. So, I think that the Fugazi opening was kind of an experiment, like, let’s go for it and rock that place and see how it goes. Then, once we had such a great first show, it was like, okay, this is it. All in, this is what we’re going to do. Then we made three independent albums, which came out on tape. One of them actually made it to C.D., which was like this huge, huge deal in 1991, that we had our own C.D.

 

Danny: Did you press it yourself?

 

Nick: I mean, yeah, I made deals with the pressing place. I mean, there was no C.D. burners or anything back then. It was either professionally done, or nothing.

 

Danny: So, you basically woke up the day after that Fugazi show, and you were like, “This is the lineup; this is the band; this is how we move forward.”

 

Nick: Ese, at that time, was just doing guest vocals, like, we’d have him come up and rap on a couple songs. And after we put out those independent tapes, we were like, “We’re ready; let’s go to L.A.” And Ese came with us, and that’s when --

 

Danny: So this is like, L.A. part two. And this is--you’re coming full-force with the boys, back to L.A.

 

Nick: Armed with our demo album.

 

Danny: You guys get to L.A.-- I want to know like, the day-to-day of you guys trying to get this record out. Would you just like, wake up in the morning, and walk into a label?

 

Nick: I would mail tapes around, and then I would call them and bug them and see if they’d listened to it yet. And there was this one guy in Texas who was a manager, and I said--we made a deal, that if he helped us get a record deal, that he could be our manager. And it was like, alright, cool, what have we go to lose? I was our de facto manager and everything before that, and so he sent the tape along to somebody at Capricorn Records in Nashville, who was part of Warner Brothers at the time. But then Capricorn said, “Well, we want to sign you, but we don’t want this guy to manage you; this guy who had sent us the tape.”

 

Danny: This oil baron down in Texas, they said, “Fuck this guy, get him out, we don’t want him.”

 

Nick: No offense against Texans.

 

Danny: No, I know, I know. This is when Nick and I get in a fight.

 

Nick: So, we made a kind of a settlement, where this guy got paid a buyout to go away, and we got our first record deal. And I was like, “Nashville? We’re going to sign with a Nashville label?”

 

Danny: How old were you at this time?

 

Nick: 22.

 

Danny: It happened pretty fast.

 

Nick: I mean, it seemed like forever, but it was really fast. Like, we moved to L.A., and then signed papers like 6 months later.

 

Danny: It seems like you never went through a period of doubt with this. You were like, “I’m going to L.A.,” and your dad’s like, “Don’t,” and you’re like, “Nope, I’m going to L.A.” And then you just kind of kept this manic journey going on.

 

Nick: Yeah, that’s, to me, the biggest part of it: believing in yourself; you’re not going to take no for an answer; you’re ready to go to any length. Because you’re going to be told “no” again and again and again. I know so many people around L.A., you know, actors and stuff like that, and I tell them, just dealing with the rejection is the hardest thing; to not get discouraged. Today’s a new day, and I’m going to go up to bat, and I’m going to go up to bat again and again. But, yeah, that was just something that I was fortunate, to have such a set vision on what I want to do.

 

Danny: The concept of “making it” is always interesting to me. Did you have an idea of what success was to you, when you guys were starting out? Or was it like, I just want to get a record deal, and get this out?

 

Nick: Since we were a pretty grassroots thing, like, we didn’t have some big manager helping us out, it was-- I think we definitely would be participating in the whole YouTube, social media type of approach, but it wasn’t available at all. So we did it truly word of mouth, where, even then, once we got on tour, we didn’t have any hits for a long time, so we’d go to a little town in Ohio, or we’d go to a city and we’d play at a little bar the first time we went there, in front of like ten people. And then the next time we’d come through there, it would be packed, and they’d move us up to a bigger venue. So, it was just very incremental, and it was just slugging it out. We would sometimes play fifteen shows in a row without a day off. But, at that age, you just have so much energy and excitement that you just--we’d take any gig we could get.

 

Danny: If you had never started 311, do you think you would start it today?

 

Nick: I think it requires the youthfulness. You know, I still love touring and making music and just being creative; just seeing an idea, just from an idea, to a demo, to a full band recording, to putting out an album, to seeing the fans enjoying it and just become part of their lives. That process, that continuum, is amazing, but, you know, there’s a certain youthful exuberance that only comes at a certain age.

 

Danny: Is it almost like, youthful stupidity?

 

Nick: Yeah, a lot of stupidity.

 

Danny: What song hit first?

 

Nick: So, first we put out “Don’t Stay Home,” which got a little bit of play; then “All Mixed Up,” which got a little bit more. And then we put out “Down,” which completely blew up, and then we re-released “All Mixed Up,” and that song, for a long time, got more spins over the years than “Down.” But now I think “Amber” has gotten more than any of them. Then “Beautiful Disaster,” I think it was probably the third single off the next album, off Transistor, but that one really had legs. That one is still in rotation too.

 

Danny: Because you guys were like, you know, you were like a cool, underground band doing things that not a lot of people were doing at the time. But did you start to approach the songwriting process with the intent to write a hit?

 

Nick: It doesn’t work, to say “I’m going to write a hit right now.” You just have to make a cool idea, you know? That’s really--you have to please yourself first. When it comes to creativity, you can’t think like, “Oh, what would that guy sitting over there enjoy?” You just have to go like, “Well, what’s cool? What do I enjoy?” And then like, the marketing and singles and stuff like that, that comes from just picking through your ideas to find which one happens. It’s really just a lot of luck.

 

Danny: Do you view a lot of 311’s success as luck?

 

Nick: No, I think it more of our tenacity, and I think whether a song is going to be a “hit” or not is something that we kind of think we know, but we don’t know. I actually just malign our ability to pick singles, because nobody can say what makes something catchy, or people don’t want to listen to it again. It’s kind of just, see what happens. And the pop world stuff is so formulaic, that you can be like, “Oh, this is the new Dr. Luke thing, okay, he’s going to use all those elements that currently people are excited about,” and it’s just guaranteed to be somewhat of a hit. But for a song to have legs, or a song with real instruments, like us, it’s more of a kind of a hit-and-miss, to see what people are really going to connect with, and want to share, and want to play with their friends, and turn people on to it.

 

Danny: We toured with this band called Walk The Moon, and they had a hit. And they’re playing like, arenas and stuff, but it still doesn’t seem like anything compared to if you had a hit in like, the 90s. It seemed like a completely different animal, in that like, once a song like “Down” would hit, back then, was it a pretty fast transition, where you’re like, “Oh shit, we’re very famous right now.”?

 

Nick: Well, yeah, because MTV was such a huge part of it, where they would play almost all music videos. When you had a buzz clip that they’re just pounding over and over again, then you do get recognized pretty quickly. Especially when you have bleached-blonde hair and are 6’3, you look different than other people.

 

Danny: Did you like it? Once that transition happened, and you were like, “Okay, this is going on.” Was it overwhelming?

 

Nick: I don’t remember that. You know, we certainly--it’s different when you know, like, the Kurt Cobain experience, of becoming just such a cultural phenomenon; we never had anything like that, where it felt like, you know, we were the Messiah or anything, that we had to worry about any pressure. But you know, it was fun, and we’re pretty extraverted people, so you know, we enjoy the attention.

 

Danny: Do you still smoke weed?

 

Nick: Occasionally.

 

Danny: Occasionally. Because I was reading that you had like, stopped.

 

Nick: For me, weed is more of like a, in the studio-type of situation. It’s not something that’s as conducive to like, performing. Other guys in the band will smoke pot right before they’re on stage, but that would not work for me.

 

Danny: But you were saying earlier, that you have a vape company, a 311 vape company.

 

Nick: That’s correct.

 

Danny: So you’re like, an entrepreneur, as well as musician. I feel like sometimes that doesn’t work.

 

Nick: I was our manager back in the day, so I felt like I kind of always was an entrepreneur. So that was always kind of in me, and then a couple years ago I started to realize that everybody’s getting off of cigarettes, and getting into vaping and e-cigarettes, and if somebody can really do that well, with cannabis, that’s going to be a huge game changer. And so, it was about two years ago, I started investigating, and there were some vape products out there, but they kind of sucked, and they were cheap, and so that’s how we came up with The Uplifter, which is like a, it’s just super easy. You don’t have to like, press any buttons or anything.

 

Danny: That’s it?

 

Nick: That’s it.

 

Danny: I feel like vapes right now are like old cell phones, where they’re like, gigantic.

 

Nick: This one is slim and beautiful. We kind of, with a Steve Jobs sort of --

 

Danny: Minimalism.

 

Nick: Yeah. Just what you need. And it’s super simple to use. With some of those, you’ve got to fill stuff, and charge stuff, and there’s different parts. And this one, you’ve just got to take it out, and puff. There’s not even a button to push. And you can see in the tank when the oil is gone, and you just toss it in the recyclables.

 

Danny: Wait, is that tobacco, or is that weed?

 

Nick: This is weed.

 

Danny: Ohhh.

 

Nick: You can take a puff. On the air, come on man.

 

Danny: Here’s the thing: I talked to Nick before this, and I told him I don’t really like smoking weed, and I have stuff to do today, but I can’t--

 

Nick: Okay, no pressure.

 

Danny: No, no, I’m being pressured by Nick right now, from 311, to smoke weed with him, and I’m going to. I want to. I’m going to rip this 311--is this the Indeca, or the Setiva that we were talking about?

 

Nick: This is the Indeca.

 

Danny: This is the Indeca! So this is the good one.

 

Nick: I mean, it’ll still mess you up, so you’ll probably only want to take one puff.

 

Danny: How strong is this?

 

Nick: Pretty strong, it’s like 60% THC. So, it’s actually about three times stronger than smoking flower. So, one hit of that is going to be like, three hits of that. So, maybe you should wait.

 

Danny: Well, I just feel like this is an opportunity.

 

Nick: If you could see his face right now, agonizing.

 

Danny: This is the opportunity of a lifetime!

 

Nick: There’s always half a hit.

 

Danny: Fuck it, I’m going to do it. Do I press a button?

 

Nick: Nothing, there’s no button. Just puff.

 

Danny: ...Alright, I just smoked weed with 311. I didn’t even know that was a childhood dream, but that’s a childhood dream come true. I feel like, for a lot of people, that’s a dream.

 

Nick: This is--at GrassrootsUplifter.com, there’s basically, in certain states that are marijuana friendly. [...] It’s a medical product, ultimately. I started developing this for people like my mom, who’s fighting cancer right now, and is doing, you know, stem cell and chemo. Having this available for her was a big part of the motivation. But right now, you can buy these empty on our website, and get your own cannabis and put it in.

 

Danny: Do you have like, recommendations of what oils and stuff you should put in there?

 

Nick: Use your discretion. Anything that’s runny enough to fit in there will probably work. So, yeah, that’s part of it; we’re hoping to have a CBD-only one that’s going to go nationwide soon. That’s what I’m talking to people about, because that’s pretty much any state, is cool with that.

 

Danny: I was actually trying to get my mom to try the CBD stuff, because I was like, “It’s way better than some of the other drugs!” And it’s interesting, because a lot of people [...] still have a lot of apprehension about this sort of thing, but I’m glad you’re doing it.

 

Nick: It’s kind of like writing a song; it’s fun to start with an idea, and then see it in your hands, and then see people enjoying it, and hearing the feedback and stuff. So, I just love being creative, and this just seems--like, 311 is turning more into a lifestyle brand. We’ve got our fifth cruise coming up--

 

Danny: The Rock Cruise!

 

Nick: The Rock Cruise. We went to Jamaica last time, now we’re going to Cancun.

 

Danny: Is it crazy being on a rock cruise, and being like, locked in?

 

Nick: No, I mean, we’ve got our own little area, so--

 

Danny: The fans can’t like, bust down the door?

 

Nick: Well, we do end up interacting a lot, and we do actually take a photo with each cabin individually. There’s like this epic photo shoot where they’re like, “Okay, come meet 311, take a picture, next.” And then having our own cruise, having 311 day, which is basically convention, and now we’ve got a beer, an amber ale.

 

Danny: I didn’t realize it was like, this extensive. I didn’t realize this was like, a total industry that you’ve got going.

 

Nick: Yeah, I mean, it’s just something we stumbled into with the branding of it. Like, we want to encourage that, because it’s not just the music. It’s an outlook, it’s an attitude, it’s a lifestyle.

 

Danny: I feel like a theme I’ve gleaned from this, from you, is follow-through. You have a lot of follow through.

 

Nick: Thank you. Yeah, it’s easy to have an idea, and then the hard part comes: to keep working on it until it’s done, and get it out there. So, I mean, I procrastinate too, just like anybody else, but maybe a little less than some. But thanks.