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Rush Hour

Hourcast lead singer Patrick McBride has been a busy, busy man. Since spring 2006, his band has toured with Sevendust and then Godsmack and released its debut album, State of Disgrace — an industrial-lined fusion of grunge and alt-metal. And just two days after McBride returned home to Kansas City, he got married. Then it was off to sunny Tahiti for a week plus of, you know, honeymoon stuff. But two days after he got back from that trip, McBride spoke with New Times in advance of his band's second set of travels with Sevendust.

New Times: The way I was raised, the number-one reason for being a lead singer in a metal band was women. And yet you just got back from your honeymoon. Were you raised differently?

Patrick McBride: [laughs] Well, I found myself a beautiful, amazing little Italian stallion that's keeping me happy, you know what I mean? So things are good, man. I think everybody in the business is in this for different reasons, and there's no question that out there on the road, I think my priorities just happen to be a little bit different.

So why are you in the business?

Well, I'll tell you, I've been singing since childhood, and it's always been kind of a labor of love. It's one of those things where you sing for fun and you sing for, you know, getting out there and having a good time on certain levels, and you work your day job to support living the dream. And just recently, I got the opportunity to actually do this thing full time, and it's been quite a journey, man. It's been quite a ride over the past six months.

What was your last day job?

I actually worked at a company that sold musical products — mixers, wireless mics, that sort of thing — because I'm a bit of a gearhead myself. I've always been into that kind of thing, and it just seemed to make sense. It was a way to kind of stay in the business without being in the spotlight, if you will.

Did you have a specialty? In most music stores, there are longhairs in the drum section and by the electric guitars and maybe somebody with shorter hair over by the woodwinds.

Yeah, exactly. I was actually a manager at one of those stores, and I ran all the recording, the Pro Audio, and the DJ stuff at one point. I'm a studio guy as well. I mean, I have my own ProTools system, and I also engineered and produced the record. You know, learning those things coming up in the business really kind of helped me secure this gig that I have here because I'm the main engineer as well.

I think this business has changed — you know, being the fucked-up rock-star guy. I mean, yeah, there's a place for that in the world. But I have to tell you, I think in this day and age, if you're not able to perform — if you're not able to get out there and keep your head screwed on straight — there's fucking a thousand other guys willing to take your place and do that. So I think the face of the musician has changed. And since we're doing this ourselves, more and more I think being versed as much as you can in this business is important, from knowing your studio shit to knowing your contracts. It's really become more of a do-it-yourself kind of thing. I mean, that's how this band started.

What's the major obstacle for a metal band trying to arrange their own recording and run their own label?

Well, I'm going to straight up tell you — it's radio. Radio's still very much old guard. It's still very much dictated by money. You know, these guys think that they fucking own the industry. I've got to tell you, man, there are a few independent stations around this country as we've been touring that have the balls to actually play what they want to play, not what the labels are paying them off to play. As an independent band, we have nothing to offer them coming to the table. We don't have a huge roster of bands. It's just us, you know, out there doing our thing. So a lot of these stations that are corporate-controlled, that are sucking the corporate teat, you know, they don't care about us. And that's fine with me, because guess what, man? In five years, when everybody has Internet in their cars, people are going to be tuning in to what they want to hear. These breakout stations that are playing new music, and even satellite radio, people are going to be tuning into them more because they're tired of the same songs in a fucking loop every ten minutes.

You've toured with both Godsmack and Sevendust this year. Which band has the best catering?

Well, with Sevendust I think we got local grub from the venue but, I mean, put it this way: When Godsmack went out, at one point, they had a catering bus.

So Godsmack would be the hands-down winner.

Hands-down winner. And then you added a gym and masseuse on top of that, yeah.

But you're the opening band. Surely you don't get to play in the gym or have the masseuse play with you.

Oh no, we absolutely do. I mean, those guys treated us like family. They gave us free reign to do whatever it was we wanted to do. You know, go to the masseuse, work out with them, do whatever.

I apologize if I'm getting too personal here, but you're newly married, so in a sense you've started a family.

That's right.

And you will, of course, be naming your first child Godsmack McBride.

[laughs] Maybe Sully [Erna, Godsmack]. Or Morgan [Rose, Sevendust]. Yeah, those guys, Morgan and Lajon [Witherspoon, Sevendust] handpicked our band to go out with them on that last run that they did, and it was so cool to meet them. It was so funny because I was real nervous about meeting Lajon because, you know, I've always thought the guy was a great singer, and we happened to bump into each other a couple of shows into the tour in between the buses. And I stopped him, and I shook his hand, and I said, "Hey man, I just wanted to thank you so much for giving us an opportunity to come out and play and make music with you guys." And he was like, "Aw, it's all good, man. You should come on the bus. We'll have some milkshakes or something" because they had this '50s, Happy Days-looking tour bus. He was such a nice guy. All those guys were great, you know.

That doesn't really sound like the stereotypical rock 'n' roll bus story.

Well, I'm leaving other parts out.

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Rob Trucks