Interview: Matthew Good

Canada's bad boy of pop, Matthew Good burst onto the scene full of angst and hit tunes. I talked with Matthew while he listened to a bunch of demos...

Mb: So, what are you doing today Matthew? 
MG: Listening to demos.
Mb: ...and how are they sounding to you? 
MG: Well, it's just me and my guitar, in my apartment. I basically have 15 or 16 songs, that I've got to run through with Dave Genn, and he's on his way over in a little while, so we'll start going through them.
Mb: This is all new material? 
MG: Yeah, the next record is already written.
Mb: When is it coming? 
MG: I don't know. I think that maybe it's slated for a early summer release next year...maybe...hopefully. I don't know. It's like, you tour long enough and you play songs long enough and there comes definitely a point where you definitely want to get back into the studio and do something new.
Mb: So have you been out doing a lot of live? 
MG: Yeah, I think for the 12 months this record's been out, we've been on the road 7 or 8 months of it.
Mb: Playing a lot of dates back to back? 
MG: No, I kinda have a "3 on" rule. I don't like to do three shows in a row. I was one of those people who was cursed with a voice that's kind of touchy. I don't like to mess around with it too much, though on the tour we've got coming up in September we've got 5 in a row and 7 in a row so....
Mb: The bigger you get the busier you become. 
MG: No man, it's suppose to be "The bigger you get the more control you have over the situation." Isn't that suppose to be it?
Mb: That's just what they tell you to get you tied in. 
MG: I've done my 13 show in a row vibe already man.
Mb: So where have most of the dates been, Canada? 
MG: Yeah.
Mb: Any plans to travel? 
MG: I think we'll be going to Australia in the winter. That's the plan anyway.
Mb: Have you ever played there? It's suppose to be very cool. 
MG: Yeah, I have friends that live there and it's very comparable, as far as a market is concerned. They're pretty big metal heads down there too. They love their metal. Our sound man does sound for a band called Strapping Young Lads and their huge down there.
Mb: ...and it's heavy heavy? 
MG: Oh yeah. There second last record was called Heavy is a Really Heavy Thing. Oh yes, it's metal. Make no mistake about it, with a capital M.
Mb: So you are in Peterborough on the that part of a cross country thing? 
MG: Well, we're coming out to do a a seems we're always out there now, doesn't it? Getting kind of sickening isn't it?
Mb: Lots of people here in Ontario buying your records so it's a good place to be. Where do you like playing? 
MG: My favorite city? So far, I love playing in Ottawa. The band caught on really early, like years ago there. We have a hard core following there. And, I love playing at home. I'd be lying to you if I didn't say I love doing that. Anywhere in B.C. I just like playing anywhere.
Mb: Anywhere they like you... 
MG: Well, even places they don't.
Mb: Do tell... 
MG: I don't know, I've been in situations where you're opening for a band where you're nothing like what they do. Especially in this country, it means you're hooked up with some band that is a real beer drinking lugan...and you go and you open it and people are just looking at you going "Get off...shut up!" It would be like Radiohead opening up for ACDC. Everyone would be like "Get out of here you pussy." So, those are always interesting.
Mb: I suppose with your folk background, you know how to play it down if need be? 
MG: We're a loud band, that's for damn sure. We don't necessarily just lay out those four four classics. We have specials suprises for people in those situations...It doesn't happen so much anymore, but back in the old days, when we were playing 4 or 5 years ago, we're playing on stages where there's a stripper pool in the middle of the stage and you're in some bar and it's like all Hell's Angels, which actually in B.C. has never been a problem, a lot of them come to our shows, but you're just like sitting there...I'm from the suburbs of a're up in some place and it's some freakish scene out of some strange 70s biker movie.
Mb: All in all, I bet you couldn't be happier about your career. 
MG: I can't complain. I don't get up and go to work at 9:00. Everything in life comes with its own stresses. The interesting thing about humans is that they have self induced stress. I don't think anyone really gets stressed because they were a really relaxed person and circumstances dictate that "Hey, be stressed" unless you're pushing the button or turning the key in a nuclear silo, then you've got some pressure on you. Or, you're the goaltender for the Montreal Canadians, or currently right now, if you're any team member of the Vancouver Canuks. (laughs) Everyone has pressure. It can get pretty stressful some times. Yesterday was just a stressful day...we played... got on a was delayed for a hour and a half...we flew to Calgary, it was delayed again...we got home at one in the gets long. I wouldn't say stressful...I'd say long, long is the word. But other than that, yeah man, I'm having a good time.
Mb: Beyond making records, any other dreams come true? 
MG: You mean like ménage et trois, and shit?
Mb: Or, meet anyone you idolized since birth, that sort of thing? 
MG: Yeah, Pete Townsend and the Who. We played with the Who a couple of years ago. That's a fucking wicked band. That was excellent. There's a lot of cool people. Yesterday I was talking with Tony the lead singer from Fastball and he's a really cool dude too. It's usually a rarity you run into somebody who's so much of a prick that you're like walking away. The problem with being a prick in rock is that you've got to remember who you were a prick've got to keep a list, `cause if you were a prick to somebody then you've got to go back and be a prick to them again, you can't be nice to them again. Being a prick...that's just a big waste of time...
Mb: So, what else.... 
MG: We played in Regina yesterday. Big festival with Fastball, Headstones, Moist, New Meanies...
Mb: How did that go? 
MG: They made the big mistake of ...all the bands were staying in the same hotel and in the hotel there's this club... and they made this big mistake of giving all the bands free drink wristbands for the club the night before. Everyone ties on this wicked pisser. No one can move the next morning at all... You got to love this town though. They seem to think it's a really big deal to have waterslides in all their hotels. We were staying at this hotel and it had a waterslide in it, and across the street there's like this Travel Lodge and bigger than the Travel Lodge sign is "Waterslide". You've got to love that man. I think I'm just going to quit music and open a chain of hotels that have rollercoasters. Theme park hotels all over the nation.
Mb: People love that stuff. 
MG: I love that. I could live in Disneyworld myself. Adventureland, New Orleans Square...I could just set up there. You ever been there?
Mb: Yeah, but I'm not sure I remember... 
MG: Well, you know where the Swiss Family Robinson tree is? It's right around there. I love the place man. It's the happiest place on earth. They're redoing Tommorrowland because last time I was there tomorrow land was Yesterdayland.
Mb: You should play there. 
MG: You know what, that's funny that you say that. I know somebody that went there with their school band and played. Now that's a gig. Wouldn't that be sweet?
Mb: They must have a place you could play. 
MG: I don't think they do rock. I mean, Tiffany could go in there and rock...
Mb: They could dress you up as the Canadian... 
MG: If I could wear the Goofy costume and lay down some metal that would be so right. We could do like Motorhead covers and then leave. But it's like all C.I.A. and shit like that there too. If you walk in the front gates there's like dudes checking everyone out and they're looking in your bags and they're all dressed in overcoats...
Mb: Well Peterborough's no Disneyland, but no one will check your bags and you can read this interview while you're here. 
MG: Cool, just make up a whole bunch of shit about me man, that's cool. Someone asked me the other day how did the band meet? I told them we were all on a flight leaving Tel Aviv in 1984, and we were hijacked to Cyprus and we all just happened to have small arms in our carry on baggage and we took the plane back. So besides being superstars and heroes in Cyprus we formed the band. We also found out we were all musicians. That was a spur of the moment thing that didn't work out too well!! Search for matthew good

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