Fastball (Miles) says, "Hello all you fans people!"
Host says, "You just got done with a show... what was the South by Southwest showcase like last week?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "There was a lot of drinking going on, and I stayed up quite late and had to go do a full day of promo, then play a show. I felt like Keith Richards by the end of the evening -- that slouchy telecaster on the couch feeling. I didn't have any time to get wild like I wanted to."
Host says, "As long as you don't look like Keith!"
Fastball (Miles) says, "No. There was a period when he looked great"
Host says, "I've been listening to the radio and it seems you can't go anywhere without hearing The Way."
Host says, "Did you expect it to be a single or know it might be a hit?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "I didn't even think that song would be a single because it's pretty long before it gets to the chorus. It's a long song anyway. Four minutes. It's a pretty involved story."
Host says, "You said there's an involved story behind the song, "The Way." What exactly is it about?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Well, Tony our bass player wrote the song. He had writer's block, and he wrote it because he couldn't think of anything to write. Someone said, 'Why don't you pick up the newspaper like John Lennon did and see if there's anything that inspires you?' So he did. He picked up a paper and found this story about an elderly couple who one day disappeared and they got into an RV and drove off. Nobody knows where they went. And thats the story basically. I choose to view the song more about the band or about being in a band. Do you know what it's like without ever knowing if you have a job? There are established ways to get ahead in your job. If you're an airplane pilot, you study for a while, then eventually you fly the airplane. But playing music isn't like that. You can toil away for years playing music and be pretty good at it, and still never get anywhere. That's why I choose to think of the song that way."
Host says, Steve from Connecticut writes: A lot of your press compares you guys to Elvis Costello -- but I'm a big fan of Costello (and you guys, too) and I don't hear it at all!!! What do you guys think -- legit comparison, or chickenshit music journalism?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "First, Tony would be delighted to hear that, because he gets the most comparison to Elvis Costello. "Are You Ready for the Fallout?" sounds a bit like "Oliver's Army." We draw from a big pool of influences and Elvis is just one. I feel like Tony gets more of the comparison than I do."
Host says, "What are the other influences?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "It's a weird mix of the first British invasion (Beatles, the Who, Kinks, Rolling Stones) and then heavy metal."
Host says, "Whoa!"
Fastball (Miles) says, "And also really disposable bullshit too filters in. There's music that I thought was disposable bullshit but now I love, like the Bee Gees, Saturday Night Fever, Abba, any one-hit wonders. We love music, and we're not snobs about it. There are people that throw away a record because it's not cool anymore to admit they liked it. Whatever. Billy Joel or Billy Idol. To me music is music and if it moves you, that's all that matters."
Host says, "Do you guys worry that you'll be like one of them one-hit wonder bands?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "It could happen but that's not the reason we play music. We don't play music to have hit songs. That is wonderful, but ultimately it's gravy."
Theresa from Portland asks: "What's with all the Pills on the cover of the record -- are you all pillheads, or what?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Ha ha. Hahahahaha. No, but we're flexible when it comes to drug use."
Host says, "Mmmmmm."
Fastball (Miles) says, "The reason we put the pill on there is to say that drugs aren't going to solve your problems. They might be fun. They're not the solution, but neither is money or alcohol. I like all three."
Host says, "Any inspiration in there for the song, "Charlie the Methadone Man"?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Absolutely! It's a lot about myself and the need to feel loved. Everybody wants to feel loved, and they go looking for it and if they can't find it, then they numb themselves with whatever they can find, and I do it too."
Duke from Santa Fe asks: "The Way" sounds a little bit like Wall of Voodoo (Ridgeway era, not Prieboy) -- are you guys fans?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Yeah, well, we weren't thinking about them when we recorded it but I am a fan."
Host says, "You guys used to be called Magneto USA. Why did you change it?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Well, we were originally called Magneto and then we found out there was this band called Magneto. And they were from Mexico, and they had five sexy young guys, they were like Menudo. We thought if we added the USA, we would be in the clear. But we were wrong."
Host says, "Ahh. So Fastball was the next choice?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Well, we had to make the decision pretty damn quick because the artwork was awaiting and delayed until we came up with a name. So we sat in a room and that was the name we walked out of the room with."
An unnamed fan from Pittsburgh asks: "Did your first record really "Make Your Mama Proud"?
Fastball (Miles) says, "Actually, there was no pressure whatsoever, because there was no president at the label, and nobody was watching the henhouse. The ox got to sneak in the henhouse one more time and do whatever they wanted basically. That's what we did. We were amazed at their reaction. We all thought it was really good, but we were amazed so many people would be into it. We thought the first record was good, too."
Host says, "How did you guys hook up with Poe?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "It was just sheer chance. It really was. It was fate. She was in the same studio in LA and I got up the nerve after a couple of Guinness stouts to ask if she'd sing on a song. To my surprise, she said yes. To my further amazement, she sang it like she'd known it for years."
Host says, "Did she know who you were?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "No."
Terry asks: "What keyboard do you recommend for a beginner who wants to get maximum bang for their buck?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "First of all, I'm sorry Terry, but I don't know keyboards. My attitude towards equipment is when you're a beginner, buy the cheapest instrument possible. If you stick with it, through that, then you know you're ready to get a nice keyboard."
Host says, "What was it like recording with Lemmy from Motorhead?"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Yeahhhhhhhh. This is good story. The same night Poe sang, I went in to her room at about 2 in the morning to thank her. She wasn't there, but Lemmy Kilmeister was. He's one of my heroes. I invited him to have some Newcastle and he was into it. A few Newscastles later, he wanted to hear some of our songs. And a few Newcastles later, he was singing one of our songs. We recorded backing vocals by Lemmy for "Charlie the Methadone Man. Someday hopefully, we'll put it out the Lemmy mix of that song. My lead vocal may not even be there."
Host says, "Seems to be a pattern with drinking and singing on your records."
Fastball (Miles) says, "The easiest way to get people to sing on your record is to have a case of Newcastle on hand."
McBride asked: "Are you going to re-release 'Are you Ready for the Fallout?'"
Fastball (Miles) says, "Hmmmmmm. I don't know."