1. Tell us about Punk Rock Social Live.
Punk Rock Social – LIVE is a night of great punk bands, cheap
drinks, door prizes, and socializing at one of our favorite punk
bars, The Anarchy Library in Downey, CA. The show was formed as a
way to put an end to the usual grab-bag nights of music that plague
LA and Orange County. We book really solid lineups of bands we think
compliment each other, so even if you’ve never heard of the bands on
the bill, you’re guaranteed a night of great music.
2. How long have you been promoting shows at The
Anarchy Library, and how often do you have shows?
Julia: We do the show at least on a monthly
basis, sometime on a weekly basis. This July we’ve got a show
every Thursday night.
Sean: The Anarchy is a great place to hold our
shows. It’s a very intimate setting where you can see bands, play
pool, foosball and drop dollars into the jukebox. Agustine, the
owner has made a lot of improvements to the club over the last year
including a new stage and sound system.
3. Who is involved with the artwork for the show
posters? The illustrations are great and the colors really make the
posters stand out.
Julia: It’s a group effort: We are both
involved in the art direction, Sean designs the layout and our
friend Ed Reynolds is the illustration king. Sean and I are huge
fans of limited edition rock posters; you know, the ones that are
just for specifics shows and are produced by artists, not the record
companies? Ed’s a comic book artist (Zowie Comics) and we
knew his style would be the perfect fit and also not
something you see every day. Luckily for us, it was something that
he’d always wanted to do too and he jumped at the chance.
4. Sean, you used to play with The Queers. How long
were you with them, and how long have you been in California?
Sean: I was in the Queers for about 2 years,
back in the early Joe/Hugh/B-Face lineup days. It was a great to be
able to join a band that I listened to in High School. I moved from
New Hampshire to L.A. in 1998, so that’s uh…
5. How long has Blockage been around?
Sean: At the end of this year, we will have been
together for 7 years, with the current lineup for the last 6 years.
6. Julia, Please tell the readers about yourself.
Julia: I grew up in New York City, I lived in
Seattle for a little while and then moved to L.A. almost 6 years
ago. I used to produce a popular comedy show at The ACME called The
J. Keith van Straaten Show which was a live late-night talk show. We
had celebrity guests, comedians and music acts on every show. We did
100 episodes and I guess now it’s officially retired. Keith
currently stars in What’s My Line –Live also at The ACME and I’m
creative consultant on that too. Having so much experience producing
live shows paid off when Sean and I started PRS-LIVE because I was
able to trouble-shoot problems immediately. For a relatively new
show, it runs really smoothly. It also helps that Sean and I are on
the same page with our creative vision so there is no third party to
have to run everything through. If we like it, we do it!
7. I noticed you recently did a show at The Knitting
Factory. Was it hard to get in the door, and do you plan on more
Sean: The Knitting Factory show was fun. The
promoter actually asked us to hold a show there because he liked
what we were doing at the Anarchy.
Julia: It was great because a lot of people made
it out for our first Hollywood show. We keep telling everyone that
Downey isn’t that far from LA but Hollywood is a little
easier for some. All the rest of our shows this year will be at The
Anarchy Library, but we are in the early stages of planning a
Hollywood spin-off show.
8. Do you have plans to expand the show into any new
Julia: We have a wish list of venues where we
would like to bring the show in the future but nothing currently
planned at this time.
9. Tell us about some of your favorite shows.
Julia: I’m really affected by venue, so
whenever I can see one of my favorite bands at The Troubadour or The
Henry Fonda I’m always really happy. I’ve seen The Bouncing
Souls in both, they’re always great, I’d see them anywhere. When
I saw The Muffs at The Troub last year I was introduced to Seattle’s
Visqueen for the first time, so I’ll always remember that show! I
just got to see X perform at the LA Weekly Music Awards which
totally rocked. Last year Sean took me to see The Distillers at The
Henry Fonda for my birthday, so that’s got to be an all time
favorite! I also love seeing shows at The Doll Hut and of course The
not a fan of the big stadium
concerts, but Green Day at the Long Beach Arena was a hell of a
show. I’ll always see Stiff Little Fingers and The Distillers when
they play. My first punk show ever was Suicidal Tendencies at the
Channel in Boston in 1985, and that started it all. After that, my
friends and I were driving down to Boston as often as we could to
see punk shows. The 80s were a great time to get into punk. Some of
my favorite shows from that time period were Circle Jerks, Bad
Brains, Murphy’s Law, Black Flag, Angry Samoans, Gang Green, X,
and the Ramones. I got to see the Ramones with most of their
lineups, and those shows are special to me.
10. Is it hard promoting the shows and finding time
to work with your band Blockage?
Sean: It keeps me extra-busy, but Julia is a
great creative partner and really helps me balance my energy between
Punk Rock Social – LIVE and Blockage. The show formed out of our
January ’05 residency at the Anarchy Library. Landon, the booker
there, told me I could pick the other bands for our residency. The
show kind of grew organically from there. It’s great having a
regular hangout to play shows in. Having Blockage as the house band
was a natural fit. We’d played the Anarchy many times before we
started holding PRS-LIVE there, and always loved the club.
11. What's in the future for Blockage?
Sean: We’re gearing up to record our first
full-length CD, adding tons of new songs, and booking a southwest
tour this August. We’ll be touring a lot more and playing more
12. Are there any special PRS-LIVE shows planned?
Sean: We’ve got some great local bands that we’re
showcasing every Thursday in July.
Julia: …and starting in August through October
we’ll be hosting a BBQ series with great headliners like The
Vibrators, The Generators and The Queers. Free food, drink specials,
and great bands all day.
13. I would like to thank you for doing the
interview and do you have any last thoughts?
Julia: Well we definitely want to thank you
again Ginger, for playing our Valentine’s Day show – that was
our first Saturday night show and White Trash Debutantes was a big
part of our success that night!
Sean: I’d like to let people know that the
vibe of our event is different from most punk shows. There’s a
great feeling of community when you walk through the doors of the
Anarchy Library and the locals and staff there are very welcoming.
Another factor that makes shows at the Anarchy unique, is that the
bands often hang out with the fans all night. There’s no backstage
area for the bands to hide-out, so you might have the opportunity to
meet some punk rock greats at our shows! And Punk Rock Social
- LIVE is a cool place to meet new punk fans too. We really
encourage people to socialize, and not just stand around acting like
they’re too cool for school.
We provide the punk, so for punk’s sake, be