Things could have been very different for Whole Wheat Bread, a punk trio based in Jacksonville. For one, Nick Largen, the original bassist and backup vocalist, could have steered clear of first-degree robbery charges and, thus, still be with the band. Then there´s Aaron Abraham, the lead vocalist and guitarist, who might have never known this punk life had his mother not sent him to school in Aventura instead of his Carol City neighborhood. But things aren´t different, and the buzz around the boys can be summed up in two syllables: Lil Jon. LJ proposed a collaboration after he heard their cover of ¨I Don´t Give a Fuck¨ on MySpace. They also did covers of ¨No Problem¨ and ¨Never Scared¨ for their second album, Punk Life. The result is a seamless patchwork of lyrics as brash and inimical as the guitar riffs and blast beats that accompany them. Crunk punk... Who would have thunk?
Outtakes: What made you do covers of Southern rap?
Aaron Abraham: That´s just music that I listen to. I like a lot of Southern rap. And we started just messing around in band practice, like, ¨Oh, I could play this. It´s easy.¨ We had one of the songs, the ¨Never Scared¨ song, for our first tour, and our manager came by and heard us messing around, and he just fell in love with it.
Whole Wheat Bread
Lil Jon, what´s he like?
Lil Jon is a pimp. That´s all I gotta say. Lil Jon is a pimp. You´re partying while you´re recording. Everybody´s drinking, smoking. We´ll do that for a couple of hours, then ten minutes we´ll go into the studio crunk as hell, just playing. Just pretty much going with whatever we feel like doing, and he´ll be like, ¨Save a piece of it. Save a piece of it.¨ It´s pretty much a party, man.
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With a third album due out in the fall, how´s the new guy holding up?
CJ? Man, I really like him a lot better than working with the old guy.
Is it his work ethic or his sound?
Both. But especially the work ethic side. When Nick was in the band, I was the youngest one in the band, and I was the frontman. The other guys [Joe Largen] and Nick are brothers. They´re both older than me, and they always saw things the same way, so a lot of times, I´d get outvoted. But now we got CJ. None of us are related, so it makes everything work like a democracy.