I had the chance to Skype Cone from Sum 41 about their new record and heaps more! SUM has been one of my favorite bands for years and as I play the bass I was more than happy to have a chat with Cone for nearly an hour about heaps of different topics.
Hi Cone, it is a pleasure to talk to you.
Hi, thanks, for doing this.
How is the Pledge Campaign coming along? Are you enjoying the process?
I think it is going alright, I mean my manager just looks after it all and gives us updates here and there. A lot of people are buying the albums which is good. I had never really heard of pledge music before and I never thought that we would actually do anything like it. We thought for our comeback album we are going to do it. It seems like a good idea for fans to engage in the album. We just played in Cleveland and Mike was doing a thing with Simple Plan, they sang the song ‘Responsibility’ It was cool. ( my profile pic on Skype is Mike from MXPX and me)
You are in Melbourne?
Yep, last night I was at Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake. It was awesome, we have a lot of bands touring at the moment and it is really busy.
You are going into summer right now? Well Spring?
Yes it is going to be about 24 today.
So you guys are done with the cold already then.
Yep, well I hope so in Melbourne it is hard to tell, it changes so often. Crazy weather!
When ever I go to Australia I forget it is the opposite going and when we going to Japan as even though it is near you it is still the same weather as us.
That is nice that you guys are going into summer we are going into our crazy winter, have you been to Canada?
Well I don’t know how crazy your winter get but Canadian winters get pretty unbearable, like your skin hurts.
So were Reel Big Fish good last night? We toured with them a long time ago.
Yeah they were great, I met them after and they were super friendly.
Was it the original band?
Yes everyone except for the drummer. He was about 20, he was great.
Do you get called Jason anymore?
Just by my mum! (both laughing)
I do, my wife calls me Jay, a lot of my old friends when I was preband when I was a kid, they call me Jay but anything like high school on I get called Cone as it was a nick name that I got in high school.
From an icecream cone.
I think, I am 35 and I still have this stupid nick name! (both laughing)
Yeah like the name McCaslin is Irish.
Ah My an maiden name is McCredden.
The name is Irish and my other half is Swedish so I am super pale and have to wear factor 80 Sunscreen in the summer. I just burn so I think that that is from being Irish and Swedish.
Do you think you band is more cohesive with all that has happened in the last few years, nearly losing Derryck for example?
Yes I do. Derryck and I are better friends than we have been in a long time. It was kind of strange on the last tour with him drinking way to much all the time and we started not hanging out, he did not want to hang out with me and I did not want to hang out with him. I did not drink enough for him and for me he was just a wreck all the time and so it was sad as I’ve been friends with him since he was 14. We were all trying to get him better but I don’t know if you have ever dealt with Alcoholics before in your life but he needed to do it for himself after a while, like you can help and help but there comes a time where you say alright you need to do it on your own. Then he did.
He seems to be doing great now.
Yeah he is.
Are you still using a Fender American Vintage ’62 Re-Issue Precision Bass to record with?
Yeah I do! I will show you a couple right now! (this was the bonus of Skype video!!!) Cone showed me many guitars including a 59, that he uses live. He showed me the bass that had been used on every one of our records. He took it on the first tour and then he realized that it sounded to good so he took it off tour to use on the records. He played some for me.
Do you play?
Yes I do, not in a band I play to music mainly Blink to relax me.
You play to Blink to relax???????
Yeah I know it is really weird but it does. I also love to play the drums, but I like releasing stress on them. (both Laughing)
My fav Sum song is Pieces , or With me or Makes or No Difference, I love the bass in that song.
Is there a song that to you is that you enjoy the most to play live?
Yeah different songs for different reasons, like for the bass parts I really like Over My Head, it has a lot of stuff going on. That and scumfuk ’s which is pretty heavy on bass too. It has some crazy bass stuff that I did. But just like playing a song Still Waiting is my favorite. Just because it is high-energy and people seem to sing along to it all the time.
Is there any chance that you are coming to Soundwave?
When is Soundwave?
Probably not next year then.
Damn all the bands I wanted to see have been ruled out except for you!
The headliner has not been announced yet and everyone is assuming that you guys will be coming.
I wont say No but as we had not heard yet then we won’t as it is probably already, we did not get any offers for it at all.
Really? you are on the list of possible bands to play.
Oh really? Maybe there is management and promoter talk. If it is not next year it will be the year after as we will have the new album out. It will probably make more sense to do it in 2017 but we would do next year, maybe we are waiting for the new album I don’t know.
Who is your ultimate band to have a show with?
Oh a tough question. Probably bands like we would never be able to like The Clash or something because Joe is no longer here, I mean we have played with all the bands that I love too like Metallica or someone like that. All these old bands that will probably never ever happen. Actually we never really played with Green Day and I grew up with them, a you are Green Day fan?
When Dookie came out I was 14, we have played once or twice with Green Day at a festival but never played with them so that would be a great band to play with.
Green Day were awesome at sound wave they had something like a three-hour set it was awesome to be at.
They are not young guys anymore either.
No they are not at all!
What is the worst gig you have ever done and why?
The show was fine but we were playing in Kiev in the Ukraine and this was a few years ago, everything was fine but there was something about the security. I don’t know if they have many shows, the show was great, the kids were great but the security were not. They had this weird fence like barrier and the kids were hanging on to the fence and the kids were crowd surfing and the security were tasering the fence. The kids were getting shocked. We stopped the show a few times but there was no stopping it so I mean it was a good show but it was one of the worst experiences seeing kids get shocked all the time and the security being idiots it would probably the worst show for me.
What venue was Reel Big Fish at last night?
The Prince Bandroom.
I don’t know that one. Is the Corner Hotel still there?
Yes it sure is, I go there a lot!
Still get all hot and sweaty?
That was what last night was like. It was one of those venues that is really dark and has long corridors and I kept getting lost. I was there interviewing Vinnie for Less than Jake before the show that was great, but I kept getting lost!
( both laughing)
What is the best thing anyone has thrown at the stage at you?
I think someone gave me a silent gift once, I looked down and the end of the set and someone had put a bottle of vodka next to me. I am not sure who did it, it was nice though, I was pretty happy about it.
Do you have a teacher or family member that encouraged your music aspirations to pursue your dream?
Not really, my parents were not musical, I come from a very unmusical family, I mean they were into music, I grew up with certain bands like Dad was a massive Rolling Stones fan so we listened to the Rolling Stones all the time. My mum was a massive Elton John fan so I listened to him and the Rolling Stones throughout my youth. It was more than when I was 13 or 14 my friends bought some guitars and we started playing and then my other friend was a drummer in the school band and I was like a jealous kid ‘saying I Wanna be in the band!’ and they said Well if you wanna be in the band you have to play bass. I said I guess….. I did not even know what the bass was! (both laughing) but I did some research on it and I thought oh it’s only got four strings how hard could it be? So when I was 14 I ended up buying a bass really cheap and I was in that band for awhile that was in 1994. I mean my parents were supportive enough, saying you go play with your friends and play in the garage and obviously when I joined SUM 41 we got signed and they were pretty into it at that point!
What album would consider to be your favorite ?
I would say it would have to be ‘Does this Look Infected?’ I like the energy and the songs, it is pretty cohesive, the songs all go together really well, some of the best songs we have ever really done are on that album.
What was your favorite Music video to make? In Too Deep seems the funniest to me.
In Too Deep was fun, it was the biggest and most expensive video that we did, it was a two day shoot, it was kind of like shooting a movie. But I think that one or Still Waiting, I like how we did that, with The Strokes kind of rip off thing which at the time we told them that we were doing it and they were totally fine with it. I also like Pieces. That video is cool I think. What is your favorite video?
In too Deep for sure. It is funny. Although Pieces one is more moving I guess. I don’t watch as many music videos these days, I more just listen but when I was doing some research on you I got carried away watching all the videos.
I think we were only 21 when we shot that video. It was fun.
How does it feel to have so many of your songs scored in movies?
I guess back in those days we were more in those teen movies like American Pie and Bring it On. A few weeks ago I was flicking through some tv channels and saw American Pie was on and heard us playing and thought oh yeah that’s right that is our song. I don’t really watch those kind of movies anymore, it is more like true detective that I am most likely to watch. Breaking Bad.
Where are you at the moment?
Is it cold there?
Not to bad it is about 20 today. We are lucky. Normally in October we are wearing hoodies and jackets.
We then had a great chat about my daughter going to Canada for two months. Then about my son in Europe.Then his son whose name is the same as my dogs name so it was fun to learn more about his life. We shared some personal stuff for the rest of the time.