SPRINGS, Calif. -- Smash Mouth is best known for the
hits “Walkin’ on the Sun” (1997), “All
Star” (1999) and who can forget “I’m A Believer”
from the original Shrek film.
Steve Harwell and bass guitarist Paul De Lisle have been part
of the group since its start in 1994. The rock group has gone
through several band member changes over the years. Michael Klooster
currently plays keyboards while Jason Sutter is on drums and Sean
Hurwitz plays the guitar.
did an exclusive interview with De Lisle via phone. First, I wanted
to know what’s kept him going this whole time?
true, I don’t know,” he laughed. “Steve and
I are the two sole survivors that’s for sure. I guess what’s
kept us going—Steve and I talk about this. We just feel
like we’re not done yet. We still feel vital in that we
have songs to do and our concerts are better than ever. We simply
don’t see any reason to stop.”
guitar player also wrote the song “Pacific Coast Party”
from their 2001 self-titled album. How did that come about?
wrote that right when we got off the Astro Lounge tour,”
De Lisle answered. “Greg [Camp] and I moved to Santa Cruz
and we had a little bit of a break when we really didn’t
have that much to do. I was just playing around and I wrote this
song, it was like a disco song. I wasn’t going to show it
to anybody. Greg came over to my house about a month later and
worked up songs for our third record. He says to me, ‘You
got anything?’ I said, ‘No, I don’t got anything.’
then, my then wife walked by and goes, ‘Show him the disco
song.’ So I played it for him and he kind of laughed and
then he said, ‘Play that again.’ I played that again
and then he just leaves me house. He turns and goes, ‘Yyou
don’t know what you just did.’ The next day he invited
me to the studio and he actually recorded a track for it. Then,
I was really excited. Greg kind of championed it. He was the one
that said, ‘Paul wrote a really good song.’ That was
kind of a nice thing and it ended up being the first single.”
Star” was among your biggest hits. Did you know it was something
special when you were working on it?
I remember this as clear as yesterday, we just finished the album
and I had been doing some session work," De Lisle said. "As
soon as I got back to Santa Cruz, I was at this bar and Greg came
running in at around one in the morning and he goes, ‘come
out to my truck.’ He had done demos of ‘All Star’
and ‘Then the Morning Comes.’ After I heard the first
two together, I thought that ‘Then the Morning Comes’
was going to be the bigger hit. What do I know? It was a hit,
but not as big as ‘All Star.’ Greg has presented them
to me at the same time. I knew they were both great. I guess that’s
why I don’t choose the singles.”
going to be performing along with Smash Mouth on March 14 in downtown
Palm Springs. Can you give me a preview of that show?
can’t wait for our live album to come out, because it’s
going to be a lot like that," the bass guitarist explained.
"We’re a different band live than we are on our records.
It’s much more of a real rock band. We have a great drummer.
Everything is kind of ramped up a few notches. We’re a solid
live band—that’s what people can look forward to.
It’s much more explosive live. The reason we can keep touring
so long is we have five or six albums of original material to
choose from. We know there’s five hits that we have to play.
Beyond that, we can mix up our set list and keep it exciting.
I think that has a lot to do with our longevity as well.”
be your guys first time playing in the southern California desert?
we’ve played Palm Springs a lot.”
we expect that new live album to hit store shelves?
the very latest June, but probably earlier. I think it’s
going to be out around May. It will definitely be released by
June when we start our big summer tour.”
you’re from Exeter, Ontario, Canada. How often do you get
to visit your hometown?
keep talking about a full Canadian tour, which we might do in
the fall," De Lisle said. "I don’t get back there
as often as I’d like. I went and visited by cousin in Kingston
not too long ago. Both of my parents are from Ottawa, my whole
family is up there. They are always up there in the summer and
that’s our busiest time.”
from Detroit. How many times have you played the Motor City?
father was an airline pilot, he was in the Canadian Air Force,"
he added. "I lived in Ann Arbor for a couple of years. I
was too young to know that the MC5 was going on and everything.
Personally, I love touring. Like Greg used to say, ‘I can’t
wait until I go on tour so I can get some rest.’ When you
get home, you don’t know what to do with yourself. For me,
the fun part is playing every night. I enjoy the camaraderie.
It’s a great way to spend the summer.”
have favorite places you like to stop—whether it be restaurants
or bars along the way?
always the truck stops, the good old Flying J at three in the
morning. Waffle House is always good.”
expect some new material from you guys anytime soon?
we’re always recording new music. Then, we just kind of
slip it into our set. Sometimes we’ll throw in a cover song
or something we’ve done throughout the years. We have such
a catalog of music that make our sets kind of new everything we
you’ve been in the business since 1994, what kind of advice
do you have to those trying to break in?
do it. Be persistent. The key is you have to love playing. If
you’re just doing it because you’re trying to make
it, you’re probably not going to stick around too long.
We simply love what we do.”
Smash Mouth to perform a free concert on March 14 in downtown
Palm Springs. If you’re thinking of attending, it will be
located at the corner of Calle Encilla and Andreas roads. For
those of you in Detroit, we’ve got you covered. Smash Mouth
will perform on Sunday, May 31 before the start of the second
Chevrolet Dual in Detroit IndyCar race on Belle Isle.
more information about Smash Mouth, visit their official website
their Facebook page
and their Twitter page.
Riverside County Fair & National Date Fest continues through
Sunday in Indio
BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com
Mouth will entertain audiences in Palm Springs on March 14.
BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com
will release a new live album before kicking off their summer
tour in June.
BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com
Mouth will perform at the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand
Prix on Sunday, May 31.