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HARLEY´S WAR (HARLEY FLANAGAN)

WHAT IS THE CONCEPT BEHIND YOUR NEW RELEASE? WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT THE OTHER PARTICIPATING MUSICIANS? WHERE DO YOU KNOW ROCKY GEORGE (SUICIDAL TENDENCIES) FROM? AND WHY DID YOU PUT SOME VERY OLD SONGS (THE STIMULATORS, CRO-MAGS) ON THE CD? Well it’s not really a concept, I mean, it is just evolution. It is kind of a solo project you know, it’s just some of my new material, it’s Also an All star project as far as the People I get to appear on it and who I play with live. I am fortunate to be able to call on so many good players and friends of mine from different band’s from the past and present to fill in when I need them and of course when they are able to, it’s not a steady line up it’s less pressure. I just get my friend’s to come out and play with me and it’s a real good time. How long have I known Rocky? I mean I have known everyone on this disc for years, I have known Rocky for a long time of course I knew him indirectly when he was with SUICIDAL, I became friends with him later and well obviously I’ve known Vinnie Stigma and Jay for ever and Mickey Fitz aswell I just gave him a call and we set it up. Live I’ve had members from all those bands with me in HARLEY’S WAR, members of CRO-MAGS, SUICIDAL, WARZONE, AGONSTIC FRONT as well as members of MURPHY’S LAW, SKARHEAD, CROWN OF THORNS, MERAUDER, DOG EAT DOG, A.B.K, LEEWAY, CATTLEPRESS and more. And well the old material, I threw it on there for 2 reasons, one because I wanted people to finally hear the demos that where some of the origins of the CRO-MAGS from way before I ever met john or parris and I also wanted to give people some history like what led up to the CRO-MAGS, so it’s kind of a biographical journey through my life and my music leading up to what people already know (the mags) to now, now they know the whole story, they can see where it began and how it is continuing and how it changes and how much it stay’s the same you know, it’s a piece of NY history and basically that was my band as this is my new project. When I first put the CRO-MAGS together I had members of even worse Dave Stein, original BEASTY BOY’s singer John Berry, Dave Hahn from THE MAD on drums who was replaced by Leo of CRUCIAL TRUTH. I went through several lineups before I finally went into the studio and recorded those 82-83 solo tracks. It wasn’t till way after then that I met up with Parris and then had a side project with John called M.O.I. My friend Eric was the singer for the CRO-MAGS at that point and john didn’t get the gig until after he had left the band and we had already pretty much established the band at that point written most of the songs and been gigging and making fans. but yo you should check out www.cromags.com theres a lot of really cool photos from back in the old day’s as well as some recent ones but there’s tons of old shit and mp3′s and other cool stuff. YOU SEEM TO BE VERY PATRIOTIC CONSIDERING YOUR LYRICS, THE SAME CAN BE SAID ABOUT AGONOSTIC FRONT. IS THIS THE RIGHT ATTITUDE ESPECIALLY AFTER THE IRAQI WAR? First of all which lyrics do you refer to??? I dont recall any “patriotic ones” and as far as the war… Well first of all, I fucking hate George Bush, most Americans don‘t support Bush and you guys in the rest of the world gotta realize that. It is propaganda, he didn’t even really win that election. But as far as the war I`m not pro-war, I don‘t want our sons and daughters over there getting killed for oil. But after Sept 11 something had to get done, I don’t know how that led to where we are now?? Cause they didn’t even get the first motherfucker yet! But for starters most of the terrorist where Saudis, so I think they are the fuckin ones we should be bombing!!! OK, I don’t dig U.S policies on the mid east or on Isreal or any of that shit, it’s like yo the whole shit is fucked, that’s why I say “Fuck the middle east”, it shouldn’t be our problem or our business, we got enough problems at home to worry about them and their business. They wanna stop terrorist attacks in the states?? Deport ALL Muslims!! I don’t give a fuck! We‘ll deal with the Timothy McVei’s and other homegrown threats ourselves, we got enough fuck up’s and potential terrorists like him here without letting in people who believe we are the devil and who hate us and our culture! Fuckem, they wanna live like it’s the dark age’s like it’s a 1000 years ago, women can‘t show their faces in public or they get beaten or stoned! Public executions for the stupidest shit and they hate us and our culture, not just America’s, yours too! Then they can stay in the fucking desert. And you know, some people don’t like my attitude about this, but all I can say is, they weren’t here when the towers were hit! I saw it!!! I had to smell the smell of burnt flesh for months! All of New York did, I had to see my city go silent, the missing people, posters everywhere and those fuckers where celebrating this shit in their neighborhood’s right here in Queens & Brooklyn and dancing in the fucking streets and those fucks over there celebrated it over there in their fucking desert… Well, I have no love for fanatics of anykind, but right now I don’t want them in my country, I don’t like seeing them on planes and I don’t give a fuck! Like I said, they wanna think like it’s 1000 years ago, live like it’s the fuckin‘ dark ages a 1000 years ago, act like it, let them live in the fuckin desert like it is 1000 years ago and fuckem they can stay there. Oh I‘m sorry ha ha is that not politically correct enough of an answer? Ha ha, but no, I don’t recall having any patriotic lyrics. In fact check out “Criminal 4 life“ on the new CD. It clearly say’s “Fuck the goverment” several times, I do like America and I am patriotic in some ways, but it aint no land of the free, if anything it’s the land of hypocrisy but none the less, it’s still where I‘m from and I do love this country, I don’t dig all our laws and I don’t agree with everything our government does, in fact I‘m against most of it, but that’s the state of the world, your always gonna have to struggle against the powers that be. But yeah that song “Fuck the middle east” on my CD some people got a little offended, but yo, I wrote it the day after the attack on NYC sept 12 so yeah I was feeling it, but those are still not “pro-america type patriotic” lyrics they are just about what’s going on and what had happened the day before. YOU HAVE NEVER CHANGED YOUR STYLE TOO MUCH. HAVE YOU EVER THOUGHT OF DOING THIS LIKE EARTH CRISIS DID WITH THEIR NEW BAND FREYA? I don’t know what FREYA sounds like and I thought EARTH CRISIS where just a fake HC band. I‘m surprised some people like them and I always thought they were just little middle class mommas boy’s from the suburbs ha ha… I gotta laugh, but I got no beef with them really ha ha..it’s all good. WHICH BAND INFLUENCED YOU MOST? Well there are a lot, the first was the SEX PISTOLS of course in 77 when I was a kid they where the ones that changed everything !! THE CLASH, THE DAMNED, RAMONES and so on there were so many and in the early days of HC you know BLACK FLAG, CIRCLE JERKS, GERMS etc. all the DC bands MINOR THREAT, SOA, VOID, SCREAM etc you know and MISFITS etc etc and of course all the early 80′s punk like DISCHARGE, EXPLOITED etc GBH you know and of course all the OI bands that came up round that same time in the early days you know COCKNEY REJECTS, LAST RESORT, fuck there were tons of `em, I mean christ it goes on and on I even liked some of the early metal shit like VENOM ha ha and old SABBATH but if I was to say which band influenced me the most I would have to say my close friends and family: the BAD BRAINS. In their days they where the best thing I have ever seen! They where the best !!! Period !!! and they influenced me the most as far as my style and the way I play. The 3 bassists that influenced my style the most are Darryl Jenifer of the BAD BRAINS, Geezer Butler and Lemmy of course. There were a few others, but those 3 where the Ones. But I like lots of different kinds of music: Reggae, jazz, hip hop, classical, tons of shit. I HAVE SEEN CRO-MAGS LIVE MANY TIMES AND YOU HAVE A VERY DEVOTED FANBASE BUT AS A WHOLE THE NUMBER OF VISITORS HAS BEEN DECREASING OVER THE LAST YEARS. DO YOU FEEL ANGRY CONSIDERING THE SUCCESS OF SOME NEWCOMERS IN THE SCENE? Why should I feel angry, I was a poor whiteboy from the ghetto. Single parent mother, no life, no education, no hope, no future, as a kid always in trouble, music kept me out of jail it took me all over the world, it inriched my life, and with or without financial success I have still influence on a lot of people. I have turned a lot of people onto little things like vegetarianism and more I turned them on to my music and my story and a lot of people have felt a common bond to it. I mean I have left my mark, hell I have influenced enough big bands like METALLICA and PANTERA and more to be able to say I helped change the sound of main stream music without ever being a part of it… I mean it is difficult sometimes when I see the success of others when I am broke but success is not only measured in money. I have beaten the odds just by surviving in the life I led and that in itself is success, I have had a good run and it aint over yet, sometimes it’s big sometimes it is small, I have a good time when I play, regardless of whether there is 8 people, 80 people or 80.000, I enjoy playing music when this is all done I will play in my home on my bass or on drums and just feel good and teach my son to play. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF REUNIONS OF BANDS SUCH AS YOUTH OF TODAY OR DEAD KENNEDYS (WITH A NEW LINE UP)? MONEY SEEMS TO BE THE CAUSE… Well people do different things for different reasons, so hey, if they had fun and if the audience did, I guess that’s cool, as long as they gave the original members the option, but I know I got scumbagged like that several times and I didn’t dig it… so hey, but my question is this, what’s so wrong with making money if you can ?? I don’t get it?? I mean if your having a good time and making a buck cool deal, but what the fuck do I care, ha ha I didnt go..how was it. HARDCORE SCENE GETS SMALLER YEAR BY YEAR AND LESS INTERESTING. WHICH FAULT IS IT? MTV? Time will be the end of all things, it is no ones fault, if you would have told me when there was just a hand full of us on a street corner in 1980 that in 2003 people would still be wanting to talk to me and interview me about Hardcore or that I even would be alive ha ha I would have laughed at you, but naah I don’t know why it got smaller, but hell in the beginning it was really small. So I guess it hasn’t changed that much, it just went through a cycle (a few cycles). But yeah, MTV… hmm well it‘s true now there’s all this Fake Ass happy punk BLINK 182 bullshit I hate all these fake punk bands and all these fake hard bands like fuckin… I don’t even know who, christ, most of it is crap I think, it’s funny, shit back in the day you took your life into your own hands if you where a punk or a skin and you walked the streets alone, now it’s no big thing everyone is a fuckin freak ha ha, so yeah I just think in general, the masses are stupid and like shitty fake music… But that’s just my opinion. WHAT WOULD BE YOUR FAVOURITE PERSONAL BILLING FOR A FESTIVAL (5 BANDS)? I have no idea..ha ha BLACK SABBATH, BAD BRAINS, SEX PISTOLS, MOTORHEAD and HARLEY’S WAR WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CONCERTS IN EUROPE AND THE STATES? In Europe the Beer is better… IS THERE A GIG YOU WILL NEVER FORGET AND WHY? There is tons… probably one of the ones with the big riots! WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR WORST LIVE-EXPERIENCE? I can‘t be sure there is a few… what ever it was it was definitely John’s fault ha ha ha… IS THERE SOMETHING ABOUT THE CROWD WHICH MAKES YOU REALLY ANGRY? When they run into my gear cause they are so busy trying to run all over the stage so they can show off, I mean get up there do your thing and jump off! Don’t wreck my stuff cause your a clumsy fuckin goof, I‘m not rich, I can‘t afford to buy new gear every time somebody breaks it, and knocking me out of tune makes me have to stop and tune up again so, yeah they should just be more coordinated ha ha and less stupid. I mean I do really enjoy it when the crowd goes nuts but sometimes you get some real fucking goofs also you know getting the same stupid questions from idiots who don’t really want your answer anyway. They just have there opinion they wanna tell you and yeah that’s nice but yo, I‘m just here to play I could really give a fuck about everybody in the world. Individual opinions about everything and everything I’ve done and all kinds of shit they really know nothing about ha ha so yeah that get’s redundant, but fuck it I just chill with my friends and fuck it..it’s all good, I just go and have a good time. WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE DEATH OF MUSIC LEGENDS LIKE DEEDEE RAMONE OR JOE STRUMMER WHO HAVE BEEN IDOLS OF YOUR TIME? It is sad, they where both friends of mine. YOU HAVE BEEN IN THE MUSIC BUSINESS FOR MORE THAN 20 YEARS. DO YOU FEEL SOMEWHAT TIRED? What do you think…ha ha ha but what the hell else am I supposed to do? This is what I do, I‘d be tired of anything else to, if it ever totally starts to suck I won‘t do it, but I love playing music and that‘s what I enjoy so I have no complaint’s if someone doesn’t wanna do it they don’t have to. I BELIEVE MUSICIANS GREATEST FEAR IS BEING FORGOTTEN. WHAT IS YOUR OPINION ON THAT TOPIC? I don’t think anybody wants to be, but eventually none of it matters anyway, in the face of eternity we will all be forgotten, so I just live my life. IT IS SAID THAT ONE IS GETTING CALMER WITH AGE. DO YOU AGREE? Some people also say life doesn’t start till you have reached maturity ha ha, (I dont know, I had a lot of fun as a kid..) Yeah I don’t know… calmer yeah maybe, maybe just out of energy to be as crazy ha ha I don’t know, I don’t think I‘m so much calmer, I just cant react the same way anymore cause I have other things to worry about now, like my family etc. I have to think about the results of my actions more… Martial arts helps… WHAT ARE YOUR WISHES FOR THE NEXT THREE YEARS? A bigger place for my family to live, get rich ha ha or at least to get my business together, be a good provider for my kid and his mother and to get my blackbelt from my teacher and friend Renzo Gracie or at least be a lot closer to it ha ha… WHAT ARE YOUR FAVOURITE THREE PIECES OF MUSIC? That is a really tough one… How about my 3 favorite artists instead… BAD BRAINS, BOB MARLEY and BLACK SABBATH (can I throw BILLY HOLYDAY in there to?? and JOHN COLTRANE…, fuck……HENDRIX as well, damn thats a hard one ha ha there are so many.) IF IT IS NOT TOO PERSONAL, TELL US WHICH THREE PERSONS YOU ARE GRATEFUL OF AND WHY? My step father for raising me with all the love and respect as if I was his own, prahbupada for giving me spritual guidance, and my woman for tolerating me and blessing me with my son… THREE THINGS YOU WOULD NEVER DO? Sell out, abandon my family, stop having music in my blood and veins and brains! THANX FOR SHARING YOUR TIME AND I HOPE YOU WILL BE TOURING EUROPE SOON My pleasure.. and Yo check out www.cromags.com for Tons of cool photos and audio files cro-mags and Harley’s war news and updates !!! Peace – HF

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