Buckcherry’s Josh Todd Talks ‘F#ck’ EP, Uproar Festival + More
Buckcherry are having a blast at the moment, as their new EP, aptly titled ‘F#ck,’ was recently released. The disc features songs all with the F-word in the title and in the lyrical content. Loudwire had a chance to speak with frontman Josh Todd about the ‘F#ck’ EP and you can check out our chat below:
Did you have an idea that this was going to be a full album of F#ck songs? Was there a song that started it out? When did the idea come to fruition?
We had talked about doing an EP for a long time. We did an EP for ‘All Night Long’ that was called ‘Reckless Sons’ and we did that and attached it to ‘All Night Long.’ It was a bonus EP and we were always told by our record company at the time that it was going to be separated and made into an EP after the first 20,000 units were sold of ‘All Night Long,’ and it never happened. We were really bummed about that so we always wanted to get an EP out there. We’re huge fans of EPs, I had a lot of them growing up. Growing up in Orange County, California, where there was a huge punk rock scene and I had tons of them.
We did ‘Confessions’ and it was a very emotional record. At first, ‘Confessions’ was going to be an EP, too. We were going to do a seven song EP. Then we thought, nah, this needs to be an LP. There’s much more that we have to do with this. So we made it into a LP and it took a lot of time and effort.
When we got to the ‘F#ck’ EP, I just wanted to have fun and we all wanted to have fun and not really get so into a whole record process. We were always fans of the ‘Scarface’ movie. We wanted to make the ‘Scarface’ rock ‘n’ roll record. At one time I think ‘Scarface’ had the most “f#cks” in a movie and there’s just so many ways you can use the word “f#ck.” There’s so many meanings to the word. I thought it’d be fun to put it into a song. So the only requirement on this record was to have f#ck in every song title and every chorus. That was the fun of it. When you’re listening to it, it’s six songs and it really has a lot of dynamics for a Buckcherry record. It’s such a cool piece to the puzzle. I think people are going to dig it.
You mentioned trying to get f#ck into every song. Did it seem more like a songwriting exercise for you or was it a normal session?
It was easy for me and a lot of fun because I have this word I love to use when it’s appropriate and you can use it in so many ways. It wasn’t painstaking. Some of the “sins” process [on ‘Confessions’ was difficult]. When I’d do a song on the “sins,” sometimes I’d get caught up in, OK I did this chorus for ‘Envy,’ it’s not working. I need to come up with a new chorus and I’d always have to cover the subject matter of that sing and try and tie it into my own personal experience. Not only that, but make it in such a way that a lot of people can relate to it. It was really challenging. This was, like OK, hey if this f#ck chorus doesn’t work we’ll just do another one. It was a lot of fun. It didn’t really take a lot of time.
The Icona Pop song ‘I Love It’ came out a little over a year ago. Easily one of the most fun songs I’ve heard in quite a while. Can you tell me a little bit about what attracted you to that song and gave you the idea to put your own stamp on it?
Yeah, I have kids and I listen to a lot of pop radio when I drive them to school. That song would always come on and I’m like, this verse sounds like a punk rock verse. These girls sound like they really get it. I like the lyrics and I thought it was a great song, great chorus. It always made me feel good every time I hear it. I’m like, I’d love to approach a song you wouldn’t think would be a rock song and turn it into a rock song. I think that’s more fun than regurgitating an old rock song and making it your own. It’s not as challenging.
I brought it to Keith’s attention and I think he really doubted it first. I was like listen, I know this will sound weird but we have to do this song. I’m going to tweak a couple of the words in the chorus and make this and this, ‘Say F#ck It’ here, add a little ‘Crazy Bitch’ stab there and it’ll be really cool. He’s like OK. He didn’t really get it but he saw it all the way through. I’m glad he did, it sounds cool. He put this real cool AC/DC guitar bit over the chorus, this Angus thing and it just all of a sudden it sounds like a Buckcherry song. Then we had to take it to the songwriters of the song because we changed a few words and we couldn’t put it out without getting their approval, so that took some time but man, it came out great.
The F-word in general, such a rebellious term. I remember going to concerts, any time anyone said f#ck in concert, everyone just goes nuts. Were there certain button-pushing songs for you that stood out?
Like I said, my whole punk rock foundations. None of the bands were on major labels, there were no rules. That’s what I loved about all those records. I listened to bands like 7Seconds and GBH and The Replacements. The Subhumans, The Toy Dolls. Blast. Minor Threat. Whenever they felt an emotion they wanted to express, it had profanity in it. It never was this taboo thing for me, I was always like, if i feel it I’m going to say it. That’s the thing with Buckcherry, I think.
Oh, and people who I thought did it really well. I always thought — in the mainstream when I was coming up, I loved Axl Rose. I thought he was such a great frontman. Anytime he’d use f–k in anyway he would express himself on a record, I’d be like — sometimes I’d listen to this s–t. Some of the lyrics on the live record and on ‘Use Your Illusion I and II’ and on ‘Appetite,’ are just — sometimes I think how did this guy get away with this and not be completely ridiculed by every form of media there is? I can’t believe it. I admired him for that. I admired him because he was so honest with his art, he just didn’t give a f–k. He meant it. You could feel it and that’s why I think they were so huge. I thought he was so pure in every aspect of what he did. He’s really a great example.
Do you foresee Buckcherry veering away from the album format and doing more EPs?
I’d like to. We have our own record label now. It’s called F Bomb Records. Now we get to do whatever we want to do, whatever we think up we put on the record and go. We fought for that our whole career, even when we were on major. I can’t even tell you how many songs and scenarios there were when they just wanted to change us and wanted us to do other things, alter lyrics. If we would have done it, there wouldn’t have been songs like ‘Crazy Bitch’ and ‘Lit Up.’ It’s nice to be in this position. We have a great foundation so we can do this type of stuff.
The whole concept behind the EP is, we toured a long time on ‘Confessions,’ so we wanted the EP to get out there and be this great thing where we could go out and represent and have fun with. In the meantime, every time we’re home we’re writing new songs for the LP that we’ll put out in the new year. So it’s the transitional piece to the LP next year. Whatever we feel like doing, we’ll do. Maybe we’ll do another EP in a couple of years. It’s a lot of fun to do.
You also started the ‘Singles Club’ with all the different covers. I know a few of them already, but are there any songs that you felt were at the top of the list to cover?
We have a lot of different musical foundations in this band. When we got the Singles Club, we’re like OK let’s get a list of all the songs we want to do. Sometimes you think a song will be good and then you try it, and you’re like, ‘Eh, that doesn’t fit’ and you move on. We all compiled lists, and of course Minor Threat was on my list. That’s the latest song out.
I think ‘Beast of Burden’ might have been on my list, or Keith’s list but you know, he was big into the Rolling Stones and it turned out great. I don’t want to give away all the others we’re going to release but we have some good ones in there that you wouldn’t think we would do. That was the whole fun of doing it, just taking songs that I necessarily wouldn’t even think of that got suggested by another band member. Then trying it out, and doing it, making it cool.
Minor Threat was one of your choices. Great band, but how difficult to decide what song you wanted to do?
It wasn’t difficult at that time because we’ve encountered a lot of people in this business that are small in stature that have these giant egos that you have to deal with so ‘Small Man Big Mouth’ was the perfect thing for us at the time. We just wanted to scream it. I love that song. Their record ‘Out of Step,’ it was a huge record for me. I think it’s the best punk rock record ever written. It hit me on so many fronts.
I’d just sit there. I remember getting that record, going into my room and sitting there and reading the lyrics from top to bottom, from the beginning to the end and I just felt like, ‘Wow these guys know what I’m feeling and going through.’ It was pretty special to me.
This year’s Uproar Festival has a very solid lineup. Can you give me your thoughts on the bands you’re playing with?
Godsmack, Seether, Skillet, us, Escape the Fate — I co-wrote a few songs with them. I know those guys, they’re cool. Great live bands what can I say, it’ll be a great package. A lot of fun. We’re happy to be a part of it, it’ll be the perfect format for the ‘F#ck’ EP and back on the Minor Threat front, our first guest appearance a record is Brian Baker from Minor Threat. He played guitar on ‘Fist F#ck,’ so that was quite a moment for me. I can’t wait for people to hear it.
I didn’t realize he was on that. Can you tell me what it was like to meet up with a guy whose music you’ve loved all these years?
It was weird because I was a little star struck. He came into the studio, I have so much admiration for Minor Threat and everything they did. This guy is also in Bad Religion. He was coming in there telling me how much they liked Buckcherry. Bad Religion would listen to us on the bus and I’m like, ‘Are you kidding me?’ It was cool. We were all stroking each other’s egos because we liked what we all do in the business. Then we got down to it and he was just ripping leads on these sections that were so cool. It was really awesome for me to have him on one of our songs.
What’s the song on the ‘F#ck’ EP that you most want to get out there live?
We just started playing ‘Somebody F#cked With Me’ live and its going off so well. Everybody, by the second chorus, people are singing along and it’s really resonating with people and that’s cool. The other song that we’re going to [work into the set] is ‘I Don’t Give a F#ck,’ so that’ll be a lot of fun. We’ve been doing ‘Say F#ck It’ for a month already.
I saw that there’s a ‘Crazy Bitch’ line of sex toys?
Yeah, we got a line of sex toys coming out. We’ll be breaking that out at Uproar. People can get some ‘Crazy Bitch’ dildos [laughs] and ‘Crazy Bitch’ condoms!
Our thanks to Buckcherry’s Josh Todd for the interview. Check out Loudwire’s premiere of ‘Somebody F#cked With Me’ here, then be sure to pick up the ‘F#ck’ EP here. And don’t forget to catch Buckcherry on the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival at these locations.