Brendan B Brown – Wheatus Interview

"You c*nt! How dare you use my song to try and steal from my friend."

We know we say this about everyone, but we are huge Wheatus fans here at Flecking Records. It seems like forever since Teenage Dirtbag, but Wheatus are still going strong as ever.
We had a chat with Brendan B Brown about Boots, BAs, Biscuits and Bourne…

So what have you guys been up to?
We have been working hard on Wheatus Album number 4 and touring around the USA.

We’ve heard the collaboration with you and MC Lars, we love the song! Who’s idea was it to write such a political track?
Well, I was producing some of the new MC Lars material July – August ’07. Obviously Lars has always been political but Wheatus almost never is. I have a BA in History and have always wanted to write a history type lesson song with political context, very much like You Must Learn by KRS-1 which I knew was also something that Lars wanted to do. The opportunity arose in the Summer of 2007 when Lars was here at camp Wheatus studios recording with me and he suggested writing a campaign song for Obama, who I believe had just announced his candidacy. I thought, perfect, lets do a bridged history of Black America and what has lead us to this point where it is a serious possibility that the USA will have a Black President. So I wrote most of the lyrics based on my study of the founding fathers, post-civil war reconstruction, the civil rights movement and what has lead us to this pivotal moment in American History. None of us could know at the time he would go on to win the nomination, but that has sweetened it all a bit.

How does it feel to have your songs played in High Court? [We tell Brendan the story about the Busted royalties case and former member Ki playing Teenage Dirtbag while giving evidence at the High Court in London!]
Mixed emotions on this. On one hand it’s pure Monty Python genius. You couldn’t pay millions to the best of video directors to paint that picture. Only in this surreal modernity of ours is this even possible. On the other hand, I was a bit angry. I am good friends with James Bourne and knew he was in the right and thought “You c*nt! How dare you use my song to try and steal from my friend. I’ll reach down your throat and pull your fucking skeleton out!” Pwned!

How’s the album coming along?
Very well! I can’t say much except that we will be releasing it as a series of 6, 5-6 song digital EPs with a total of 45 or so songs. We are recording it all to 2 track, no mixing, all performance.

How was it touring the UK with MC Lars and Army of Freshman the last time you were over here?
One of the best tours we’ve ever had! All the bands genuinely cared for each other and tried to make it great. I hope we can do it again.

You’re coming back to the UK soon, are you looking forward to coming over and are you going to add a London date?
We’re hoping so. There is an additional set of Uni dates being booked and since the booking is still going on, we may have to add one for London. We’ll see said the Zen Master.

What do you enjoy most about being in the UK?
Boots, McVities Plain Chocolate and Marks & Sparks!

Do you bring anything with you on tour to remind you of home?
No. I quite enjoy being away from that which is familiar.

Do you have any funny/horror tour stories?
Yes. And I’m not allowed to tell you any out of respect for Levon Helm and Chris Jay of Army of Freshman. Go watch The Last Waltz.

Teenage Dirtbag is and always will be an amazing song. Does it every annoy you when people associate you with that and nothing else?
Absolutely not. I love that song. Unless it’s being played by some farcical thieving twat in the UK High Court and even then it still sort of reminds me on an ex-parrot.