Chris Barnes from Six Feet Under

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By Barbara Fara

President/CEO

MusicIncider.com

 

http://www.sfu420.com/

http://www.myspace.com/sixfeetunder

Chris Barnes – Vocals

Terry Butler – Bass

Greg Gall – Drums

Steve Swanson – Guitars

 

Chris Barnes and MusicIncider’s last interview was back in ’04 and this is the first time since that we have had the chance to chat. People should really appreciate Barnes for who he is as a musician and as a person. He is the founding father of Cannibal Corpse and Six Feet Under. He is the man that makes the green light switch and makes Metal Blade roll on for who they are – without Six Feet Under there would be no Metal Blade records. People must remember that Chris is very sensitive and very psychic and very down to earth. So let’s see what has progressed with Chris and Six Feet Under in the last 5 years or so…

 

 

MI: Okay, Chris, What’s your birth date?

 

CB: November 29th.

 

MI: The last time we talked was when Bringer of Blood came out and you were about to release the AC/DC tribute album – which I thought was a masterpiece, okay? Tell me about the box set and the other albums that have come out between then and your latest release, Death Rituals.

 

CB: Yeah, that was alright. We did Bringer of Blood and then we did Graveyard Classics 2 and then we did 13, which was a really cool album, I thought. We had some really cool songs on that one, “Shadow of the Reaper,” “Rest In Pieces,” “Wormfood”…so we did that record and then came out with the box set shortly after, Decade in the Grave, which combined a bunch of old things here and there, hidden tracks that we never used, stuff like that. So that was definitely a lot of fun, working that out. We did a lot of touring during those few years, a lot of touring after Bringer of Blood from really 2002 all the way up till 2006. Constantly touring and then in between really working hard in the studio. All the way to 13 and back, we got off the road and went right into the studio, starting writing that album and also with our last album, Commandment, we basically got off the road in October 2006 and a week later went into the studio and wrote and recorded stuff for Commandment. Just kind of picking up tours here and there – we lost our booking agency after the Commandment touring in the US, it was actually before the Commandment tour – it was after the 13 tour and we lost our booking agent. We never really got anyone worthwhile to work with before the Commandment tour so we decided to really concentrate more on the European scene which has been really, really strong for us over the years.

 

MI: It always has been.

 

CB: Yeah, our focus, our concentration has been there because we really do sell more records in Europe than we do in the States at this point.

 

MI: Okay, now, this is for your fans in Atlanta – why haven’t you played Atlanta in the past five years and when do you boys plan to come back?

 

CB: I thought we played there…about…

 

MI: The last time I saw you, you were in Hell [editor’s note: a stage in the Masquerade] and you were really pissed….

 

CB: Yeah, downstairs…maybe that WAS the last time we played there. I want to say there was one other time that we played upstairs but I’m not really sure about it. Um, I don’t know – it just all stems from the booking agency.

 

MI: Would you be playing the Masquerade or some other place, do you think?

 

CB: Oh, I think we would try to go back to the Masquerade, I would hope. I didn’t mind playing downstairs that night – in fact I thought it was pretty cool because it was more close up and personal and we had a really good show that night.

 

MI: Yeah, you did. I got that great headshot of you upside down. Okay, tell me about the new album, Death Rituals.

 

CB: (laughs) Death Rituals…well, we had a good time writing this one, it was a lot of fun, definitely a lot more relaxed situation as far as the writing went and I think the guys really kicked it into overdrive as far as how they wrote this record and it’s challenged me a little bit more. I think there are some interesting songs on this one – I think overall it has a really kind of interesting sound and feel to the songs and the structure as far as song sequence and just overall production has a nice organic sound to it.

 

MI: What was your inspiration behind the album?

 

CB: Oh, I don’t know, just the music – we knew where we wanted to go with it and that’s how we always approach it – just let the music speak to me and just…

 

MI: I know how you work, Chris, you work psychically.

 

CB: A little bit, I think, but I don’t try to analyze it too much. It’s kind of like, if I tell people, well, I do this or I do that, it sounds strange to me when I try to explain it. It is almost like pulling something from somewhere else but some of the songs, they really almost just write themselves and I’m just kind of an in-between guy or something.

 

MI: The last time we did the interview, you said that you felt Chuck with you when you were writing the album – so I was wondering – did you feel Chuck around you this time?

 

CB: Yeah, I did, I did. On one song on this one…

 

MI: I bet it was Bastard.

 

CB: Just something made me kinda feel like he was there again, you know?

 

MI: You two were always close.

 

CB: I think that it was another one of those cool relationships that I kinda lost touch with him at the end and I shoulda got back in touch with him and I just always kill myself for it just like another good friend of mine that I lost and I just kinda never forgave myself for not popping in before…

 

MI: Well, you know what? He’s with you always.

 

CB: Yeah, I know and I just always remember certain things about him that just really freaks me out a little bit because I know we did share a lot of good times on tour together and there are always fond memories. I know he’s always around, somewhere in the metal mist, you know? (laughs)

 

MI: Exactly. (laughs) Who else do you think is around?

 

CB: One of my grandfathers is around me, one of my grandmothers. I always thought there was some kind of Native American around me and I thought that maybe one of my good friends that past away a few years ago is around me – I know he’s around me. And I think my aunt, maybe, just a bunch of people that I always feel like are close by…

 

MI: You see, you are more open to it than you’re admitting…because you feel them.

 

CB: I know it, I know there’re there. I know I’ve asked for their help and stuff and I’ve gotten it but sometimes it’s too hard to accept it and I’ve gone the hard way on it.

 

MI: So when it comes to lyric writing, I know you do a lot of writing, but is it a combination of you, Terry, Greg and Steve…

 

CB: Yeah, I do all the lyric writing, really, so I’ve always done that since pretty much day one.

 

MI: And the music came from the boys…

 

CB: Yeah, sometimes I’ll venture off and give them a riff here and there…

 

MI:  You always have the greatest artwork on your covers, tell me about this cover.

 

CB: Well, I had this idea for this skull of Medusa and that’s kinda where it all started. The artist asked me what I wanted for this one and we kinda bounced ideas off and when I told him that he was like, yeah, that’s it. So I was like, hell yeah, sounds good to me! He pulled it together really cool; I work really good with that guy and he knows how to handle me, too. (laughs)

 

MI: It’s funny because I know when you’re making the album, Steve gives his opinions, Terry gives his opinion, Greg gives his opinion…but when you look at that cover – you know the big man is behind it! (laughs)

 

CB: Yeah, I guess I kinda hog the spotlight when it comes to the visuals and the icing on the cake as far as the record goes but I have a good eye with that, I think. When I see something, it just looks like there’s a little bit brighter light around that thing and I just gravitate to it a little bit more. When I feel strongly about something, I usually hold on tight and tend to not let go and people have to relinquish me to relentlessness of my nature. (laughs)

 

MI: When the album is released on the 11th of this month, are you guys expecting a lot of airplay stateside?

 

CB: Oh, I hope so; I hope that it’s going to do well. They play a lot of our stuff on Sirius and XM – anytime I’m in my car, I’ll turn on Liquid Metal and 9 out of ten songs they’ll play a Six Feet Under song, a Cannibal song or Torture Killer song, which is so cool. That’s really exciting to me. I love being able to just turn on the radio and wow, there’s a station that plays our kind of music! That’s really nice. I mean, there are college stations and listener sponsored radio stations that are doing that but it’s nice to see it done on a mass level after all these years.

 

MI: Well, I don’t have Sirius – I’m not as rich as you, my darling.

 

CB: It came with the car!!

 

MI: It came with the car. (laughs) Okay, baby, we’ll blame the car. But I’m waiting for Project 9-6-1 to see if they release anything from the new album and I will be calling in and requesting it so…

 

CB: Cool, cool!

 

MI: Do you plan to do a video for the new album, or have you already done one?

 

CB: Yeah, we just did it last Friday – um, we played a local show here in Tampa on Halloween night and filmed some live footage and played the song, “Seed of Filth” live and we’re just gonna do a studio track with some concert footage intermingled, so…it will be interesting. The director that we worked with did our last two videos so he’s really got an interesting sense of filming and his direction is really good. I really like working with him – bare boned, simple, stripped down and he just gets it done and that’s kinda how I like to do things.

 

MI: Who was it that helped you out with the video?

 

CB: Mario Fermengato. Good guy. He did the last two and with no extra nonsense, he just goes for it – really good vision. Stripped down, bared boned – he does it and it all comes together in the editing room and he definitely has a good sense of direction. Quick and easy – that’s the best way it can be done.

 

MI: What is your favorite track off the new album and what do you think the first track should be?

 

CB: Well the first release was “Shot in the Head” which I was really proud of because I got to work with one of my biggest idols, Iggy Pop.

 

MI: No way!! Iggy’s on there?

 

CB: Iggy did the voice intro sequence.

 

MI: I thought it was you!!

 

CB: No, that’s Iggy. I met him years ago in The Hit Factory a few different times and I always just wanted to do something with him and Chris Carroll, my engineer, he works out of Hit Factory a lot and does a bunch of Iggy stuff and he’s really good friends with him and I always said, I need to do something with Iggy. And so I said, man, on this album I’m going to do something with Iggy and I kinda thought about it and I asked Chris and he pushed the request over to Iggy’s manager and Iggy wanted to do it so I just told Chris here’s what my idea is – this guy calling and leaving a message and I wrote this part for him and he recorded it and it was exactly like… perfect. Just exactly what I had in mind and had kinda thought out and it was a really big deal for me. I think that thing that I wrote for him was very specific to that song and as far as the underlying theme of the whole album and that song, specifically, sets it off. That part that I wrote, those couple sentences that he reads off and portrays is like the tying link for everything I’ve done in my career.

 

MI: Oh yeah, because I was listening to it this morning again and my assistant was asking me if that was Chris, and I said oh, yeah, it has to be Chris and then I heard you sing and I said to myself, no that’s not Chris, it’s somebody else and I’ll ask him when I talk to him, I know how to talk to my baby boy. Okay, are you planning to tour for this album, not just overseas, but in the States as well?

 

CB: Yeah, yeah, we’ve got, we’ve actually been talking back and forth with the record company this past week between interviews and they’re looking at something in the spring and early summer for us to go out – so hopefully that will happen. I know there will be at least two legs to the tour, you know, we’ll probably do two and a half weeks in the spring and then two and a half, three weeks in the fall and try to hit all the good places.

 

MI: And you better hit Atlanta or I’m going to kick Brian Schleger’s ass.

 

CB: Either on the way out or the way back in.

 

MI: Your voice has not changed over the years. How do you keep your chords in such amazing shape?

 

CB: Oh, you know, I just really think it really is the more you practice and the more care you take of your health, that’s really the best way to approach it that I’ve found, you know? Just stay in shape and try to eat well (laughs) you know it’s hard to do, man, it’s really hard to do but you gotta do it. That’s what I’ve been trying to do lately to keep in shape even though I’m off the road to stay well rehearsed.

 

MI: How have you and Terry, Steve and Greg been personally – how’s everything been going – going good?

 

CB: Yeah, well, you know us – we’re all just pretty much the same mellow type of guys that we always were and we just always fit really well in that whole respect. We’ve never really argued – I think me and Greg have probably gotten into more little discussions than anyone else but it’s never been over the top because we both have the same birthday, so it may have something to do with that. It’s almost like I’m talking to myself almost with him sometimes, but he always a slightly different angle to it, you know? He holds his ground just as much as I do and he’s two years older than me so (laughs) he has a little more to say.

 

MI: “Listen to Daddy. I have the same birthday, so listen to me” (laughing)

 

CB: We all really respect each other, obviously, and we’re just super mellow and nothing really shakes us too much, you know.

 

MI: I know when we talked last time you were saying how you felt pushed out of Cannibal Corpse and that this time you felt you finally found home with the boys.

 

CB: Yeah. I don’t fix it if it ain’t broke.

 

MI: Since Bush was reelected, how do you think he’s handled his second term in office – let’s hear your comments.

 

CB: Oh, I mean, that’s so obvious. He’s ruined the world and that was obvious when he was elected and people were so caught up in the bullshit but I think it’s obvious that he’s turned the world into a different place and not in a good way, you know? Look at where we were when Clinton left office – we were left with a surplus and everything was really nice and people were prospering and continued to be for a certain amount of time until Bush’s policies really kicked in. Look at where we’re at now after his terms end and compare it to where we were 8 years ago when Clinton‘s terms ended. I think that anyone can see that there is only one person to blame for that.

 

MI: Okay, here’s my question – this election, who did you vote for?

 

CB: (laughs)

 

MI: You don’t have to tell me. I’ll tell you who I voted for…

 

CB: Who did you vote for?

 

MI: I sent in my absentee ballot to New York and I scribbled out everybody’s name and I put your name down. Chris Barnes, Six Feet Under for President.

 

CB: (laughs) Awww, thank you. I at least got one vote.

 

MI: You got my vote, baby. From a strange, weirdo New Yorker that now lives in Georgia and they probably don’t know who the hell you are either, but you’re down there.

 

CB: Awww, thank you. I was pretty disgusted with the whole thing so I voted for a different party, so…

 

MI: This is the first time in US history that we’ve had a black president. Do you think our economy will go back to the Clinton years?

 

CB: Oh, well, maybe if he has Bill Clinton around as his advisor as he’s claiming he is going to. I don’t know, but people aren’t too happy with Greenspan right now so I don’t know. That was news to me, now that they’ve got things moving in the right direction, I don’t think people like him too much right now. They kind of blame him for where it’s at.

 

MI: How do you think the new president is going to handle the financial bailout?

 

CB: I don’t know. I don’t know – I think whatever he does isn’t going to be enough to get things done in four years, I know that.

 

MI: From an intuitive point of view, do you think he’s going to be good for the country or…

 

CB: Yeah. He’ll be good for the country, especially overseas. I think he might be bad for the country here, but I don’t know. I don’t know if he’ll be able…

 

MI: Think he’ll bring home the troops?

 

CB: I don’t know he’ll be able to do THAT. It’s gonna be hard for that guy, man. He’s the first black president – do you know how much pressure is going to be on him from people in the African American communities to do things for them and just general things, you know, to try to change this country in a different way and it’s a lot of pressure on someone. I would hope that he’s going to be able to do good things and the things he says he’s going to do. I don’t like the idea of just redistributing the wealth – to me that’s socialism – that’s not a capitalist, democratic society, you know, so there are things that I don’t like about him, but you know, he’s president, so I guess you’ve got to stand by him. I don’t think he’s going to make things any worse than George W. Bush did but I’m still not sure he’s a person who can really make the changes he’s talking about because the way I see it, he’s just a different face behind the same machine.

 

MI: Now, if you were president, what would you change?

 

CB: Well, first I’d legalize marijuana (laughs) and release anyone from jail that has been arrested for that and reinstate their criminal record – if they’ve ever had a drug possession felony record for that then they should be able to vote and stuff. But I don’t know what else I would do other than that! (laughs) My main thing to do would be to legalize weed.

 

MI: And call Barb up for her psychic opinions – I’ll be your vice president.

 

CB: You’ll be my psychic advisor.

 

MI: Last time we talked, I asked you about the most fucked up things you’d seen on tour and you told me about a guy dying in front of your eyes in Amsterdam

 

CB: I don’t think he died, he lived through that.

 

MI: He lived through that? Alright! Then you watched the SUV flip – but – how did the death of Dimebag affect you?

 

CB: Oh, big time. Big time.

 

MI: Because I know you two were close friends.

 

CB: Well, I met him only one time but he was an interesting character and I can definitely relate to being on that stage many times and I’ve had people jump up on stage and they put their arms around you and you know, they’re just giving you a hug so I feel like when that happened that’s probably what he thought and that kinda really creeps me out when I think of that and it kind of affects me to where I’m really careful about the people around me when I’m at a show and when I’m onstage with people jumping onstage and getting close to me. I have no problem giving a little elbow when it’s necessary.

 

MI: Well, when you come to Atlanta, if anyone bother’s you, I’ll bring my Louisville Slugger…

 

CB: (laughs) I’ve GOT a Louisville Slugger – his name is Rick, so…he’s the guy that stands onstage next to me. You know, but, if something is going to happen, it’s going to happen.

 

MI: Since his death have you taken more security on the road for you and the boys?

 

CB: I just keep my eyes open more, because I’ve always had that idea that that was something that could happen because there are a lot of sick people out there and I thought that that was something that could happen – even before Dime. So I was always really cautious. I’m not one to mingle a lot – it really mentally and physically tires me out to be out there around 800 people talking all at once but I just keep myself close to where I need to be to get my job done and I try not to upset people – I try to make myself as scarce as possible.

 

MI: But yet, you’re still one to go to the meet and greets.

 

CB: Oh, yeah. I may focus on tour, Barbara, and I think everyone that knows me – those people come out to see a great show and that’s my focus – to be able to give them a great show every night of the week and if that means missing a few autographs here and there…it’s just give and take, you know. I’m not there to sign autographs or be your best friend – I’m there to be onstage and give you what you paid for.

 

MI: Now you’ve been touring over past years since we talked – what has been your favorite tour and why?

 

CB: Umm, probably either the last US tour we did in Fall of ’06 or the tour I did at the end of ’07 last year. Both really, really good tours, both very poignant for me personally. Just a little more memorable than the others.

 

MI: Over the last few releases prior to Death Rituals, which would you say were the most fun to create and record?

 

CB:  Well, the last one WASN’T my favorite (laughs). I’d have to say that Commandment definitely wasn’t my favorite because of where I was working and who I was working with on that, so, uh….yeah…I can say THAT…(laughs) But this one, this one was a lot of fun working on this album, right straight through it.

 

MI: So since we last talked, baby boy, have you had anymore paranormal experiences?

 

CB: Just dreams and stuff. Little messages here and there, you know. Just appearances of certain people, or me traveling to certain places, maybe in other people’s dreams.

 

MI: And do you find yourself ending up in those places later on when you wake up, maybe a month or two later?

 

CB: I do get into what some people might think is déjà vu, but I know it’s something that I dreamed before.

 

MI: Chris, you told me once that you were really into your spiritualism. How have you grown and have your experiences grown or not?

 

CB: I feel as though I see more on the path that I am on – I see things come up a little sooner than I used to. I understand now that I’m really not at the helm.

 

MI: So you feel like your guides are around you and that your third eye is opening?

 

CB: Totally. And just the acceptance of that. I do feel still – I’ve gone back to thinking that…death is almost a scary thing to me at this point.

 

MI: I don’t think so. I think death is like going back into the birth canal and into your next life.

 

CB: I hope so. I’m a person that questions even my own beliefs by talking to different people and I feel as though that’s what it is – especially knowing that somehow I’ve been in contact with certain people and stuff like that. I just hope that it is true and that’s not just an extension of you.

 

MI: How are you feeling on the legalization of marijuana now that it has been legalized in California to a degree – I know you had said that the movement should start there – and how do you see the movement progressing from there?

 

CB: Great! In fact I was more excited the other night during the election – they passed medical marijuana in Michigan and that was a lot more exciting to me than the presidential election. I think that you’ve got legalized medical marijuana in California and some other states – Colorado, Massachusetts, and now Michigan, so…

 

MI: And recently I heard that they are allowing farmers to grow hemp in Kentucky and North Dakota

 

CB: Which is a great thing. It’s a great thing because the cannabis plant gives off more oxygen into the atmosphere per acre than any other plant that is grown on the planet. And it eats more CO2 than any other plant per acre, so it can do all sorts of things by shutting down chemical plants that make the chemicals for polyester and synthetics type of materials that could be replaced back to how they did it the old way – hemp. It’s a strong fabric that can be used many ways and broken down and used in different ways and won’t give off harmful by products into the atmosphere because it’s not a synthetic and you’re basically kind of replenishing the environment by using it for textiles and industry. And by growing it, which will eat all the harmful chemicals that are given off by creating things like they have in the past. It’s kind of a natural process. And you can get stoned off of it. (laughs)

 

MI: I noticed that you did some liner notes for NORML – do you ever see yourself working with the organization to help the movement?

 

CB: We did a benefit concert a couple years ago in Richmond, I think. We did some things like that and I have definitely been in touch with them here and there on the road. Letting them set up tables next to our merchandise stand in certain cities to get people to sign petitions and stuff. I would continue to do whatever I could for those guys – if they asked me to do a benefit concert, I would do it, you know?

 

MI: So do you see the rest of the country following these laws that have passed?

 

CB: I would hope so. I think that eventually there will be people that get into positions of government that are a little bit more NOW thinking – that have gown up in a certain way and kind of accept that a little more. I think that certain places will start to see the hypocrisy behind the criminalization of marijuana at all levels hopefully.

 

MI: Is there anybody special in your life? Next to me, of course.

 

CB: (laughs) There’s probably too many special people in life (laughing).

 

MI: Chris, who the hell would name their band Anal Cunt and what happen between you and their lead singer Seth Putman? How could he write a song called “Chris Barnes is a Pussy”?! Tell me you wrote a fucking revenge song.

 

CB: Oh wow, that was many moons ago, Barbara. Well, see, the problem is most people do stuff like that because they lose – and they cant take it so, you know, that’s all that happened there. He got upset because he lost a fight and you know, he wrote a song about it. He also wrote a song called “People in Comas are Gay” and then a couple of years ago, he went into a coma after smoking crack or doing heroin, so… it goes to show you what kind of person he is.

 

MI: What you spit up does come down.

 

CB: Yeah. You know, I mean, that’s just some kid that really wasn’t well liked by anybody, so…

 

MI: So what did you and the boys do for Halloween besides recording?

 

CB: Oh yeah, we played that show on Halloween and that was really a full day.

 

MI: Did you give out trick or treats?

 

CB: You know I was home for a little bit and we did not get one trick or treater, so I had a bag full of candy there waiting and nothing, so…

 

MI: You’re originally from Florida but there is a rumor that you are moving to Beverly Hills

 

CB: Well, I’m originally from Buffalo, NY and then back and forth from Florida and New York through my teen years and then I moved down here in ’94, and I am not moving to Beverly Hills.

 

MI: Okay, when I heard that I thought maybe it had something to do with the legalization of weed and I was going to ask you, since you and me both love Jim Morrison, if you were going to move into Morrison’s old house.

 

CB: I wish (laughs). That’s a little bit past my price range.

 

MI: Because I was thinking that would be so cool for you, as a poet, and being so intuitively open…I could see you picking up Morrison.

 

CB: Well, I would hope I already have a little bit of it…

 

MI: I think he is with you. Besides, if you were moving to Beverly Hills, I was moving with you anyways. So everybody is starting their own label these days; Motley Crue, Steven Pearcy, Jamey Jasta has one – do you see yourself being on Metal Blade and starting your own label on the side?

 

CB: (laughs) That’s too much work for me. It might not be as much work in this day and age, but that’s a lot. I’d just as soon leave that to someone that’s has kinda got their channels figured out already, you know?

 

MI: Are you planning on releasing Death Rituals on vinyl?

 

CB: Yeah, I think we’ll probably do a couple of limited editions over in Europe – they did that for the last two albums, so probably.

 

MI: Since the last time we talked, how do you think the music industry has changed, not just for bigger acts like you guys, but also for indie bands and other major acts?

 

CB: It has gotten tougher, I think. The economy has really driven the whole industry into the ground. On all levels, it’s harder for club owners to make the decisions to take a chance on certain tours coming through and they really pick and choose what they’re going to spend their money on and I think that goes all the way down to the fans – they’ve been getting bombarded by so many tours for so long that cost so much money, that they’re really picking and choosing and that’s being felt at the box office. Bands are having a really hard time touring because they’re not being offered as much money as far as the economy goes and they’re not being able to tour because they can’t get more money to cover the cost of fuel so it costs a lot of money and a lot of people are feeling it on all levels from touring on all levels all the way up to the record companies as far as how the sales of CDs are going.

 

MI: What would you warn a young band just starting out and what advice would you give them?

 

CB: Yeah, the changing industry – you might not necessarily need to be signed to a record company anymore in the future, so it may be important to keep a hold of your music if you’re feeling like they want to give it away.  

 

MI: All these websites – Myspace, Facebook, Imeem – have started up and do you feel that they are helping bands or hurting them?

 

CB: Well, I think that it’s pretty difficult for a new band to really get to a certain level, but I think it’s a good tool for bands that are already established, like us, because 90% of the time record companies are really concentrating on Myspace as a promotional tool and they don’t really get results any other way.

 

MI: When did you take your last vacation, Chris? Where did you go and what did you do – I want all the dirt.

 

CB: Oh, my last vacation will actually be in a couple weeks. I’m going to take my first vacation that I’ve ever taken by myself. I’ll be headed over to Amsterdam for the Cannabis Cup.  

 

MI: Can I come? Can I come? You can pick me up on the way.

 

CB: (laughing) My dad asked me the same thing. Yeah, well, he’s not going.

 

MI: You can take me instead.

 

CB: I’m going to finally go on my own and just have a walkabout, so uh, sorry, Barbara, maybe next time. (laughing)

 

MI: You better send me a postcard or I’ll kick your butt, okay?

 

CB: This is just something that I’ve never done before and I just decided to go for it. I had nothing going on, for a couple of weeks anyway.

 

MI: So since I last interviewed you, I interviewed Hank 3, the grandson of Hank Williams Sr. – he’s trying to get his grandfather reinstated back into the Opry. What advice would you give him to help get his grandfather back into the Opry?

 

CB: Oh, that’s a tough thing. I’m not really an authority on that, Barbara. I would say that anyone with any brains would know that he should be reinstated. That’s just ridiculous. He’s probably the most important, Hank Sr., of all time. That’s a strict part of the music industry, so I’m not too familiar with that. You know what I mean – it’s a given to set aside anything from the past and realize the contribution that he’s made, you know. Just a legend.

 

MI: Now I know you’re a fan of Carlos Castaneda and the last time we spoke you were reading the Book of Dreams. Have you been reading and studying more of his books about dreaming and shamanism?

 

CB: I should be actually. I should be picking up and rereading The Ego’s Gift – I’ve been wanted to read that one again.

 

MI: Take it with you to Amsterdam.

 

CB: I should. I have a feeling I’ll be a little preoccupied, you know? I do still practice his techniques. Last night, actually, I had a…right before this interview actually, I had a flashback of my dreams last night – really vivid dreams of snakes yesterday night and it was kind of creepy actually.

 

MI: Did you look it up?

 

CB: I didn’t look it up. It was something just happened – I just remembered it right before I called you or called the last interview so I just forgot that I remembered it until just now. You sparked that memory. It was definitely real, you know.

 

MI: I always go by Zolo’s books of dreams because he is very straightforward with his dreams, believe it or not. You can find his book on the web. How would you explain Casaneda’s books to your fans and why should they study his work?

 

CB: Well, I think it’s something that we can all relate to – we all have dreams and we’re all interested in the dreams that we have and the idea of being able to step into the dream world in a conscious state and to be aware of your dreams and what’s going on and to travel within those realms would seem interesting to anyone, I would think. It’s pretty intense and exciting – to all of a sudden realize that you’re dreaming and then be able to use a technique – like one of his early techniques is to stand up in your dream and realize that you are dreaming – well as you think that in your dream, hold up your hands and look at them and around you as a way of teaching yourself to focus in your dream state. That’s still a fairly difficult technique to get used to and to bring yourself into actually feeling conscious in your dreams.

 

MI: When we last talked we discussed 9/11 and some shady things going on with that day. Have you seen Fahrenheit 9/11?

 

CB: Yeah, I did go and see that. He made some definite good points in it.

 

MI: Do you still think Bush was behind it?

 

CB: Well, I hate to say it but I’m more likely to believe that there was something going on that was more a conspiracy than we are being told than thinking that it was a random act of terrorism. If it was then we would have already found that guy and he’d be hanged and killed in front of a firing squad. Instead there was some dirty stuff going on and maybe that certain people…

 

MI: I know what you’re saying. I don’t know if you’ve been watching HBO lately but there’s a great documentary called Plot 60 – it’s about the soldiers that are coming home that have passed in the last war. It’s based in Arlington [Cemetery] and it’s really pissing me off because you’re seeing all these young mothers and grandmothers burying their kids between 18-25 years old and it’s like…they just got suckered into this! What would you warn the American youth about enlisting in the service?

 

CB: Oh, well, I mean, people have their own reasons for doing it, Barbara, some people are just really destitute and that’s the only way they can try to get out of their situation so I mean it’s probably different for everyone, why they do it. Some of them want to go to school and feel that it’s worth the risk for an education. Where it wasn’t too risky a few years ago, it is now; you have to get through the war to go to school. I would think that it’s a hard decision and not to take it lightly, you know?

 

MI: If you could have lunch with three people, living or dead, who would it be?

 

CB: Oh wow. I’d like to have lunch with you. (laughs)

 

MI: Awww, sweetheart! You can come pick me up and take me to Amsterdam and we can have lunch on the plane!!

 

CB: You don’t want to eat that airline food! There are lots of people that I’d like to sit down by and party with, you know? I’d like to have lunch with a couple of friends that have passed away.

 

MI: How do you think the sound of music has changed over the past five years?

 

CB: I think that it’s become kind of generic over here a little bit. We’ve still got some good bands though within the music scene that we’re in. I think they’ve got some decent stuff going on but a lot of the fashioncore kind of music just didn’t really last too long as far as I’ve seen it – it’s kind of boring to me, but hey, different folks like different stuff and I definitely can’t really criticize people too much for what they enjoy, you know?

 

MI: What do you think of these female death growlers like OTEP, Candace from Walls of Jericho and Angela Gossow from Arch Enemy?

 

CB: Oh, I haven’t heard the others but I’ve heard Angela and she’s really great and Karyn Crisis is someone I’ve worked with on one of our albums and she’s a really great female vocalist. I think it’s really interesting. I was thought it was kind of sexy and interesting to watch a girl sing heavy like that.

 

MI: I tell you one band you have to check out – they’re from Sweden and there name is Sister Sin. They’re on Victory and they are fantastic. If it was my choice, I’d take them out on the road with you. Just think about it…your psychic is telling you this, okay?

 

CB: Oh, okay, I’ll have to check them out. (laughs) I will look them up and check them out. Sister Sin. Hey, you don’t have to tell me twice to check out a bunch of cute girls singing death metal.

 

MI: Well, its one girl and three guys.

 

CB: Hey, then, whatever, you know? (laughing)

 

MI: If you had a choice between being Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, who would it be, baby?

 

CB: Ohhh, probably Mickey Mouse.

 

MI: Okay, what was the latest book that you have read and what would you recommend for other’s to read – it can be anything.

 

CB: The latest book that I’ve read…I’ve been so busy writing that I haven’t had time to read anything.

 

MI: What have you been writing?

 

CB: Well, this album for instance has taken me this whole past year to put together on all levels and stuff so I haven’t been reading that much. But I would recommend “Watership Down” to anyone that would like to read a good book – that’s a GREAT book.

 

MI: Do you see yourself ever releasing any of your own personal writings like your poetry and stuff?

 

CB: Ummm…I don’t. I would love to write a short story or something like that but I’m just so busy doing what I do that it’s hard to dedicate time to try to do that right and try to get good at that, you know. I’m more interested in just continuing on and just being the best at what I’m doing.   

 

MI: I’ll give you a good book to read – “The Marijuanalouges.” Read it on the way to Amsterdam.

 

CB: Alright, I’ll check it out.

 

MI: If you were stuck on a desert island and you could bring three people living or dead, your favorite cd, your favorite bottle of booze and your favorite drug, what would you bring?

 

CB: Oh, man. Well you know I’d bring an everlasting bag of weed with me and pretty much anything after that, Barbara, is secondary. (laughs)  You know I could be stranded on a desert island by myself for the rest of my life and I seriously wouldn’t even care. Fresh fruit, fresh water and a bag of weed – I would be in paradise.

 

MI: I know you would be! You’re the quiet, little shy one, I know that. I could see you on a desert island, like Gilligan but with brains.

 

CB: I’ve been wishing for that my whole life. (laughs)

 

MI: Has Six Feet Under started a fan club yet?

 

CB: No, not really other than our website and just keeping in touch with fans on Myspace and stuff like that.

 

MI: Do you answer your fans personally on Myspace?

 

CB: Um, yeah I do most of the time. I try to, especially the ones that seem like they really are serious and interesting people that have…you know, some people have some problems and I’d like to talk to them and if I can help by talking to someone then I think that’s a good thing. As little as I can do for my fans, if someone writes me and is having problems at home or something like that, I always give a listen and try to give some advice, you know?

 

MI: A lot of musicians are lending their name out to Legends Coffee, artist like Dave Mustaine and Carlos Santana have done it – do you see yourself bringing out your own magic brand of coffee?

 

CB: (laughs) Umm, coffee, huh? No, I don’t. It would be nice though – I think it would sell!

 

MI: Do you have a message for your fans here in Atlanta, and can you give them an explanation for why you have not been back, big boy?

 

CB: I blame booking agents and promoters but I’d love to come to Atlanta and check you guys out. Actually I need to get up there, one of my old best friends lives up there, he’s in a band that’s a really great doom band in Atlanta called Let The Night Roar.

 

MI: I’ve gotta check them out!

 

CB: Yeah, they’re amazing. I was actually in a band with him, my first band, Leviathan, and they’re just a great band. They’re unsigned and I’m trying to help them out a little bit, so if they play a local venue, everyone in Atlanta, go check out Let The Night Roar.

 

MI: What’s the lead singer’s name so I can tell him that I know you?

 

CB: Jeff, actually – he’s the guitarist/vocalist. They’re on our Myspace page, Barbara, they’re in our top friends and there’s a link to their site on there.

 

MI: What was the last movie that you saw that you really loved?

 

CB: I really loved Rob Zombie’s Halloween, actually. I thought he did a great job on that. I hated his other movies but I really thought he did a great job with that. A French movie, a horror film, called Inside, I really liked that a lot and a Copolla film that’s pretty unknown with Tim Roth called Youth Without Youth. It’s an interesting movie about this guy from the 1940’s who’s hit by lightening when he’s 80 years old and he starts to get younger. But it’s not only about that, it’s really deep and takes you on this wild journey.

 

MI: I know I saw the Rob Zombie remake of Halloween when I was stoned and it scared the shit out of me and I swore I would never watch it again, stoned or straight.

 

CB: Well, then he did a good job (laughs).

 

MI: Yes, yes, he did. Okay, so last time we spoke, I asked you if a movie was made of your life, who would play you and what would the theme song be – and you chose Brad Pitt and “Zero To Hero” as the song – who would it be now, my darling?

 

CB: Who would it be now…

 

MI: Because I don’t think you could handle Angelina Jolie and six kids.

 

CB: I couldn’t handle the kids – I’d TRY to handle her (laughs). I’d give it the college try! Probably to my demise. I don’t know. Definitely not Mark Wahlberg.

 

MI: Okay, what would the theme song be?

 

CB: The theme song…probably something from “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” (laughing)

 

MI: What about Val Kilmer?

 

CB: Val Kilmer, I don’t know if he could pull off my youthful good looks.

 

MI: Oh, I think he could. I missed your birthday – what did you do for you birthday last year? I hope you had a good one.

 

CB: Actually last year was a pretty exciting birthday – I was in my friend’s garage and we were putting a new engine in my car that was just being sent out the next day – we were trying to get this thing done so I can get my new car that was being delivered that next morning.

 

MI: What kind of car was it, Christopher?

 

CB: The car that we were putting a new engine in or the new one?

 

MI: Both.

 

CB: The old car was a Mitsubishi Evolution and the new one is a Corvette C06.

 

MI: I’m taking the Corvette. When it comes to websites – we know we can find you at www.sfu420.com – what other sites can your fans find you at?

 

CB: Oh, Myspace/sixfeetunder, and the Metal Blade website has news about us on there.

 

MI: And you can download podcasts on there. Do you still believe that overseas news is more honest than US news?

 

CB: Umm, I don’t know. I don’t know if any of them are really honest. Do you? I think they’re all pretty much controlled by whatever. I didn’t know until I got in line to vote and saw the voting sheets that there was like seven other people running for President. Did you know that?

 

MI: No! Who else was it?

 

CB: I knew there was the Libertarian party, Ralph Nader was running, but there were 5 or 6 other people running for President. That tells me that the media is completely controlled.

 

MI: Oh my god, that’s so scary! That’s very scary when they don’t cover all of the candidates and they keep that from the country. Do you have a message for your fans – nationwide and overseas?

 

CB: Oh, just I hope that everyone enjoys our latest CD, Barbara and I hope that people who haven’t gotten a chance to see us perform in the past, get to see us while we are on tour this time.

 

MI: Do you have any dirty little secrets that you want to tell us about Terry, Steve and Greg?

 

CB: (laughing) Aww, those guys are great.

 

MI: No dirty secrets?

 

CB: No, no, Terry is actually going to be a grandfather this year so…

 

MI: Oh My God!

 

CB: A grandfather twice! So I don’t know if he’s looking forward to it or NOT looking forward to it. (laughing)

 

MI: Oh, God. Congratulations – tell him for me. The rockstar grandpa. What is your favorite quote of all time?

 

CB: A Jerry Garcia quote, “The music just wants to be free.”

 

MI: Oh, that’s beautiful. Chris it was great talking to you again. You better send me that fucking postcard from Amsterdam.

 

 

 

 

EDITOR’S Note: you can download podcasts of Six Feet Under and other various artists on the Metal Blade website. As I was going through Metalblade.com – their site has been totally revamped. When you go to the site, skip the intros and when you get to the main page, across the top bar you will see “podcast” where you can download interviews, news and also music I believe to your ipod. Take a chance, look at the site and instead of downloading Death Rituals, I would tell you to go out and buy this CD – everything they record is a hit. When we look at Chris Barnes, Terry Butler, Greg Gall, and Steve Swanson – you take four friends that all came together and found their own home and now their name is Six Feet Under. This is the way musicians should be – friends, family that care for each other. When it comes to SFU, there is not one fan or family member that does not adore and love them. And boys, you better come to Atlanta or I will be emailing your ass on Myspace. Musicincider promises within the next issue that we will post the concert tour dates for both the first leg and their second leg of the tour dates as they come in. We wish all the boys in SFU a happy thanksgiving and Merry Christmas and we wish you a safe tour – even though Chris is not taking me to Amsterdam.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My name is Barbara Fara. Musicincider.com is my baby. I am a psychic and a photographer-and a writer! I am more than a little crazy, because I love taking pictures with people body surfing over my head

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