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THE STARTING LINE

There's A First Time For Everything

(Interview With Matt Watts Taken From Black Velvet 37 - Aug 2003)

By Shari Black Velvet

In June, The Starting Line came over to the UK for their first ever headline tour. They'd previously visited as support to artists such as New Found Glory and Reel Big Fish (and won fans over with their meticulous performances), but this time they were back for a trek around the country all on their own. Well, with their own supports - who happened to be From Autumn To Ashes and The Reunion Show. Since the experience was a first for them - and this, the first time they're gracing the pages of Black Velvet - we decided to find out some more of their 'firsts' and 'first times'. Guitarist Matt Watts did the honours and revealed his very first time…

 

 

Photo By Shari Black Velvet

 
 

Black Velvet: First record you bought…
Matt Watts: The first record I ever bought was Skid Row's self titled. I think I was in 5th grade at the time and CD players had just become the new big thing. I should be embarrassed owning that record, but it rules.

BV: First concert you went to…
MW: The first concert I attended was to see Beck at the Trocadero in Philadelphia. I was 16 at the time and remember being blown away by his show. Beck has some killer moves.

BV: First band you followed as a fan…
MW: It would definitely have to be Jimmy Eat World. After 'Clarity' came out I had the chance to see them live, and ever since then I was hooked. They've been my all time favourite band ever since.

BV: First song you wrote…
MW: The first song we wrote as a band was entitled 'Nothing Short Of A Miracle'. We wrote three songs at our first practice and thought they were amazing. We later learned that they weren't so amazing. You can actually find those original demos all over the internet. It's pretty funny hearing what we used to sound like before we knew how to play our instruments!

BV: First CD you released…
MW: We released an EP called 'With Hopes Of Starting Over' about 3 years ago. We recorded it in 5 days, and were thrilled that we had more than a day to record.

BV: First time you heard yourself on the radio/saw yourself on TV or in a magazine…
MW: The first time I heard us on the radio was the coolest thing ever! This station called Y100 (which is our hometown station) started playing us, so that was a huge thing for us. As far as TV goes, the first time I saw us was about a month ago... I was freaking out. So excited!

BV: First time you went into a recording studio…
MW: We recorded some demos in New Jersey after we first started. We did 3 or 4 songs in a day, it was awful. The songs came out good though, and we had fun.

BV: First show you ever did…
MW: Hatboro, PA Youth Center. 15 people were there. We knew 12 of them. We were horrible! But we had a great time, and got to play with Saves The Day the very next day, which turned out a little better.

BV: First show you sold out…
MW: It was our first headlining show in New Jersey at a place called Birch Hill. We always considered New Jersey our home because we played there so much starting out, and it was one of the best feelings in the world to have that many people singing along and coming out to watch us. New Jersey rules.

BV: First festival you appeared at…
MW: Skate Fest in Worcester, Ma. Every band in the world played, and it ruled.

BV: First thing you did after signing your record deal…
MW: Jumped up and down on my bed, then I told my mom we signed to Drive Thru. She later killed the moment by saying "who's Drive Thru?"

BV: First time you went on a tour outside of the US…
MW: New Found Glory took us and Finch over to the UK. It was unreal. Kids are so rocking at the shows! Plus they were the biggest shows we had ever played at that point. Thanks New Found Glory.

BV: First time you had an argument about the band with a fellow bandmember or anyone else…
MW: I used to get defensive when kids on message boards would say bad things about us and say things back, and start trouble. I realised that on the internet kids have this imaginary buffer where it lets them say whatever they want. Now it really doesn't bother me. I try not to pay attention. I'd rather look at internet porn.

BV: First time you embarrassed yourself on stage…
MW: I fall down all the time! And it's just as embarrassing as the time before... so I don't recall when the first time was. Also, I attempted to speak into the mic once, and made a complete idiot of myself, so much that the band wouldn't let me speak into the mic again.

BV: First thing you'll do after this interview…
MW: I'm going to go to Taco Bell... get a chicken caesar burrito with nachos. Then I'm going to eat it and pack for tour.

Well, this may be the first time The Starting Line have featured in Black Velvet, but it definitely won't be the last. Visit www.thestartinglinerock.com for more info.

 

 

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