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A Conversation With
Ian Grushka
by
Meredith Goldberg
November 4, 2001

Ian Grushka

Meredith: OK, first off, introduce yourself and say what you do in the band.

Ian: Hi, I'm Ian Grushka, the bass player from New Found Glory. I'm fat; I've got the goatee, and the green hair. Three G's: the goatee, the green hair & the gut.

Meredith: Here's a question that many people have been wanting to ask.. What happened to the A in New Found Glory?

Ian: When we started we were A New Found Glory. People would be like, "What's the name of your band?" & we'd be like "A New Found Glory. And they'd go, "huh?" & then we'd go, "New Found Glory" and they'd be like, "Oh OK". The A made it hard for people to ask what the name of our band was. And another thing was some stored has it under "A" and some had it under "N". So people would be like, "I looked for your CD and I can't find it anywhere" and they would look under "A" and it was under "N" or they would look under "N" & it would be under "A". And then we always called ourselves "NFG" and "ANFG" sounded weird. And so we just dropped the "A" to get rid of all the hassle. We're still A New Found Glory, but we just took the "A" off of the CD so tat we know it will be under "N" to make it easier.

Meredith: What can your fans expect from your new album?

Ian: It's a little bit heavier. Chad writes a lot of the music, so depending on what kind of mood he's in, on how the songs come out. He doesn't sit down and say "OK, I'm gonna write a poppy song right now." He just constantly writes. There are slow, poppy songs, there are a couple of acoustic songs and there's like heavier songs. It's kind of like the last one, only heavier.

Meredith: Did you ever expect to be as much of an accomplished band as you became to be?

Ian: We never thought that in a billion years we would get this far. When we first started we never thought we would play a show outside of South Florida. So for us, we're on top of the world, we're living our dream right now. We don't know how long it's going to last for, so we're just gonna take it one day at a time and we're just going to have fun. And when its over.. it's over.

Meredith: Do you ever miss playing smaller venues to smaller crowds, or do you prefer bigger ones that you have been playing recently?

Ian: I like everything to be honest. We did the Blink[182] tour and for two and a half months we played arenas and amphitheaters. Compared to an amphitheater, this place is small. But then a place like Bowery Ballroom is small compared to this. But each are like a different feeling. If you're playing a Blink show, it's not really a show; it's more of a concert. That's why headlining is good because we know that we have our fans with is, it's a lot more fun. It's harder on the Blink shows because a lot of people don't know who you are. Then you see people sitting there on their cell phones while you're playing, so that's a little weird. We played our hometown on the Blink tour and the whole front row was just sitting in their seats the whole show.

Ian & Chad

Meredith: Did you ever see your video on MTV?

Ian: I saw it twice, I think. One time we were in California and I called home and my parents were like "Your video is on!". So we knew that in three hours we could turn on the TV and it would be on (three-hour time difference between California and Florida). And the time that we were a "Close Call Wannabe" on TRL, we saw that.

Meredith: What do think about your video being on MTV?

Ian: When we first started, I wanted to be on TRL. The reason for that was so the pop people like N Sync, Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears would know who we are. But I don't think TRL helps bands very much. Because a lot of people that watch TRL are younger and they can't go to shows, so they'll buy your record, but record sales don't really matter. I'd rather have more people at our show than buy our record.

Meredith: If you weren't in a band and touring, what do you think you would be doing with your life?

Ian: I would probably be working at Einstein's Bagels being a sandwich maker.

Meredith: Do you have any advice for bands just starting out?

Ian: Well, we would play shows constantly until people started saying "Oh, I'm not going to go see them today, I'll just go next weekend." Then we cut it down. The thing with us was we would play with Ska bands, Emo bands, Hardcore bands, punk bands, any band. We didn't care; just to play is good because we got out to different crowds. Chad used to sing in Shai Hulud which is a hardcore band, so it was a lot easier to transition for the hardcore kids. Normally a pop-punk band plays and the hardcore kids are like, "this sucks". But I guess we got a little more accepted because Chad was in the band. But if you want to get... I guess, to the level that we're at, I guess its all luck. I never though we would get this far. Just keep touring. Also, give away lots of free stuff, lots of free stickers and free demos. Talk to every band that comes through. Bands like MXPX, Less Than Jake, and Reel Big Fish really helped us out.

Meredith: Well, I guess that's about it, thanks a bunch!

Ian: Thank you!!

Meredith Goldberg is a staff writer. Contact her at meredith@rockzone.com.

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