WOT: Why has Wretched records been setup? What purpose is it to serve?
PN: Tooth and Nail Records contacted me in '94 about the rights and availibility of NS's 1st & 2nd cds. They wanted to combine the two on one cd. Frontline Records owns the rights to the 1st cd and neither I, nor Tooth and Nail wanted to pay what they were asking for it. Realizing, perhaps, the potential in this new market of a NS re-release, Frontline re-released the 1st cd themselves under Alarma Records - a division of Frontline, shortly after I contacted them. Tooth and Nail didn't want just the 2nd cd without the 1st, so the deal was off.
In the mean time, I'd been working on an acoustic solo cd by myself. A collection of songs that I've been sharing with people close to me for a long time, but never recorded. Something inside me really wanted to complete this cd (it's still in the works today). I asked Tooth and Nail if they were interested in picking up the project. In their opinion, a slow, acoustic cd from Pat Nobody was risky, and they wanted punk rock. I told 'em, "That's not where I'm at right now, and I'm not gonna do a punk cd just for the sake of a punk cd!" However, if they'd do my solo cd, I'd give 'em a 3rd NS cd. No deal... I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea here. I really appreciate Tooth and Nail and Bill Power is a friend of mine (I haven't had much dialog with Brandon), and we may still work together in the future. I'm just tellin' you how it happened, that's all.
So, there I was. Itchin' to play again for Christ's sake, and art's sake. I mean, not only did I want to play and create music of all kinds, I felt an urgency, sparked by interest and letters from all over, to start NS back up and simply make a quality punk rock noise for Jesus once again. And that's what I'm doing. I figured I'd start my own darn label, and write and record whatever moves me, acoustic, punk, whatever. So, I took my hard-earned construction money and started Wretched Records, and re-released the 2nd NS cd "Call It Whatever You Want. So that's basically the Wretched story.
WOT: Are you looking at signing any bands?
PN: We definately plan to sign other, quality alternative bands, and grow this record company. We already have several bands sending us promo packs, and some are pretty darn good. NS's old lead guitarist, Frank Wesolek, has a band in the works "The Grounded". I've already heard 50% of there stuff, and I like it, alot. He's sending me a tape of what may be their 1st cd on Wretched. If we have a "meeting of the minds", we'll record in Sept. and have it to you by Christmas '97. There are also other bands in mind, and new, quality projects will arrive as quick as our Wretched budget allows.
WOT: What can one expect from your label in the future?
PN: Nothin'. Oh, seriously, okay...a new NS cd, a solo cd I've been working on, and other quality alternatives asap.
WOT: Labels tend to come and go, especially in the Christian scene, is this a long term project of yours?
PN: I'm considering it a long term thing. I'll always write and play music, and until Geffen /CBS/Warner Bros/Epic, or EMI call me, my music will come out on Wretched. So, with that in mind, this Wretched label will probably be around for a long, long time. How big we get, or how fast we grow, will depend on people like YOU!
WOT: Christian punk and alternative music is a big thing at the moment. Do you think these bands have what it takes to break into the secular scene and are there any particular bands that you like?
PN: I have no idea what it takes to break into the secular scene, or the Christian scene for that matter - both "scenes" are fickle. Do the secular bands have what it takes to break into the Christian market? That's the question! There's no justice in music, I mean, bands that suck "make it", and good bands don't alot of the time. And what makes a good Christian band, may not make a good secular band. It all depends on the bands, what their motives and goals are, etc. If you're a Christian alternative band and you're trying to make it secularly, you'd better have alot of time, alot of money, alot of patience, and still be prepared to fail - or accept the answer "NO" to your prayers for stardom. Does Jesus care if the Christian bands "make it" secularly? Obviously not, in my opinion - not as much as "we" do. And yhea, there's lots of great Christian alternative/punk/metal bands out there that I feel are worthy musically to go secular, and there have been for years, but most won't "make it" and alot don't care. This whole question is focusing on the business side of music, bands, etc. which is unpredictable at best, especially when you start talking about "Christian" and "secular" cross overs and stuff. If you're an artist creating music, than create music. If you're a person who wants to spread the Gospel, than speak It man! A Christian band trying to make it secularly has nothing to do with being an artist or evangelist, but more of a business entity trying to promote itself, rather than welcoming persecution for promoting Jesus'. I mean, if you want to be a rock star - okay, that's fine, but the Christian market is a bad place to start to accomplish that goal. "A Christian band that makes it secularly"? What is that? What does that mean? It's contradictory to me. You may ask, "What then are you doing Pat"? Well, right now we're not distributed, or affiliated with anybody, secular or Christian. I'm gonna record my music, and others music that I like, and make it available. If you like it, buy it - if you don't, don't. It's more of a creative outlet for me, than a push to "make it big". To me, success lies in the ability to create the music, not the marketing or the market's response to it. The need, for me, is to create music. Recording and marketing it - is just a hobby.
WOT: The re-release of your only album "call it whatever you want" would fit nicely into today's hard music scene. What was the reaction like to the album when it initially came out?
PN: "Call It Whatever You Want" is Nobody Special's 2nd release, the 1st album entitled "Nobody Special" was released in '86 by Frontline Records, and re-released by Alarma Records (a division of Frontline) in December '95.
Although the 2nd cd was way overdue by the time it came out late in '89, the reaction was positive from the people who could get it. We didn't get Nat'l distribution on the 2nd cd because Word Inc. (the "Christian" distributor) thought it was too contraversial at the time, so even though many liked it better than the 1st cd, it only sold half as many. It never really got the exposure it should've, which is why it's re-release was the first thing I did on Wretched in '96. When I noticed certain on-line music stores, and mail order stores selling the 2nd cd for $35 & $45.00/ea, I couldn't believe it. There had to still be demand for it at those prices, so after my ordeal with Tooth and Nail, I didn't think it was such a risk to print some copies and make it available once again at a reasonable price to those who couldn't get ahold of it and cared to buy it previously.
WOT: What is behind the song "finger pointer"? Is it about these self righteous people that know better than you?
PN: Yhea, I think it's pretty self-explainatory. Ironically, in my experience, Christians (in the USA anyway) are more judgemental and prejudice than many, and finger pointers can cause alot of damage and unnecessary pain and anguish. It's an ungodly and unattractive personality flaw, and no good ever comes from it. "We all fall short", remember? "No one is good, no, not one"..."who then can boast?!" (paraphrased). Eph.2:8-9. Besides, I don't feel that I have to put up with it, and I mean what I say.
WOT: I see you might be releasing a new album under "Nobody Special" in the near future. What is the story with the band line up and will your music generally be the same as your previous release?
PN: Right now it's Joel McCombs on lead guitar, Eric Kegel on bass, and Jason McCombs on drums. You can learn more about NS's past, present, and future at: including info on the new members, like who they've previously played with and all that stuff. They're no amateurs and they're a great bunch of guys. I couldn't have asked for more talent - these guys can boogie. And as soon as we learn how to play our instruments, we'll be really good.
As far as the 3rd NS cd, I just never know how it'll sound until we record the songs. They seem to become "Nobody Specialized". I mean, yhea it'll be NS and you'll be able to tell, however, we reserve the right to do whatever we want to, and nothing less. Some of the songs are a bit longer, and perhaps more progressive, but we couldn't sound like Pat Benetar if we wanted to....know what I mean? Will it be fast? Will it be punk? Well, it'll be Nobody Special. Beyond that, we please ourselves musically, and let you guys decide whether you like it or not. We don't have any desire to be "punker" or "faster" than the next band, just to enjoy what we're doing while we're doin' it. My only goal is to produce something equally as powerful muscially and lyrically as people say the 1st & 2nd are.
WOT: Is "Nobody" really your last name? How have you handled the hassles man!?
PN: No, my real name is a sign, and it's unpronouncable. It looks like this: *#!@?)X!! And, what hassles?
WOT: What else is happening in the life of Pat Nobody? Are you a sportsman at all? Do you know anything about Rugby or cricket?
PN: Killin' Time... Yhea, I love all kinds of sports, and try to stay active so I don't begin to resemble "Meatloaf". Rugby is still a growing sport in the States (we have some die-hard fans), and although I've had friends who played on college teams, I've never played. I grew up playing "Kill the guy with the ball", does that count? I've never played cricket, but I've watched it a few times and I'm not sure how it works yet. Unfortunately, alot of Americans aren't getting adequate exposure to Rugby and Cricket - I don't know why 'cause we love sports. It must be a money/power thing to somebody somewhere. I grew up in the smog and sunshine of Southern California, so Water skiing, surfing, skateboarding etc. are the "norm", along with the usual basketball, baseball, American football, motocross and stuff. Not to mention fishing, hunting, drive-by shootings, tagging, drugs, and drinking... which have become quite popular sports in America. Oh, wait a minute, I guess they're not all considered sports, are they? I mean, we're still not sure about motocross and skateboarding.
WOT: It is cool to see someone motivated to promote Christian music. Are there any prayer requests at all?
PN: Pray that the Body of Christ, the Church, will pull it's stuff together in these hectic last days, endure 'til the end, and put energies towards gathering the hungry for the coming Wedding Feast, instead of getting caught up in worldly concerns. And when I say the "Church", I mean me and hopefully you, not the buildings, or "institutions".
And, if you could ask God to let me win the lottery, that'd be cool too! Oops... see what I mean?
WOT: Any final words for our readers?
PN: Thanks for supporting "Wreathe of Thorns"!