Broward County is the birthplace of one of the most successful pop-punk bands of all time. Who, you ask? New Found Glory! Duh. Around these parts, we even remember when they used to have an A before the name.
Considered to be the "godfathers of pop punk" New Found Glory has certainly paved the way for many of the acts we'll be seeing on this year's Vans Warped Tour. And with seven albums and 15 years of playing together, we're not sure these guys will ever retire.
In the midst of all the Warped madness, drummer Cyrus Bolooki spoke to New Times about the state of pop punk music today, his favorite New Found Glory album, and why Blood on the Dance Floor is the most punk-rock act on the tour.
New Times: This is the first time you guys are back on Warped Tour in five years. What was the first Warped Tour you attended?
Cyrus Bolooki: Well, there were a couple of guys who went to the first Warped Tour in South Florida at the Edge, which is now at the Revolution. And it wasn't really outdoors, except kind of in the parking lot. I went in 1997; that's when it was at Pompano Beach. Deftones played that year. Also Suicide Machines, Millencolin, Blink-182, you name it. And it was awesome. I thought it was amazing.
There were so many bands out there. Bands that I had just gotten into. Bands that from that day forward became some of my favorite bands. And it was only one year later, or maybe it was '99, that New Found Glory was lucky enough to get offered to play on the local stage at Warped Tour. It was in Pompano Beach, and the local stage was actually inside the amphitheater, so for us, it was amazing. We're playing on this massive stage. If you look inside the Nothing Gold Can Stay CD, the pictures inside are actually from that Warped Tour show.
We played that one show in South Florida, and it was really fun for us cause again we had grown up going to the Warped Tour, and we were now a part of it. The next year, I think we were offered a handful of shows on a smaller stage. Following that, it was two weeks on the main, and then we were offered the entire main stage. So it just kind of kept building from there. And 2007 was the last time doing it. So we're happy to be back five years later doing it.
How do you think Warped Tour has changed over the years?
It's definitely grown. Specifically in South Florida, it's changed venues a lot. It's changed by growing; the music has changed itself. You won't hear exactly the same type of bands that were on the tour ten, 12 years ago. But the ideology of Warped Tour bringing a whole bunch of bands and musical genres together is still the same.
It puts everyone on the same playing field in a sense. As a concertgoer and a fan, you get to go to a show for a pretty reasonable price and have the opportunity to see not only your favorite band but bands you might have never heard of and pick up on new music, vendors, and things. It just allows you to have fun for a day. And you don't even have to really like all of the bands on the Warped Tour lineup that come out. You are guaranteed to find one or two acts that you've never heard and will end up being into.
What are some of the bands [on Warped Tour] that you have gotten into?
One of the big advantages for us is that we've done the Warped Tour for so many years and there are a lot of bands on this year's tour that have been on it with us as well. So we have a lot of our friends out here with us. Bands like Taking Back Sunday, Bayside, Yellow Card, Four Year Strong, Man Overboard. These are all bands that we've gone out on tour with. So obviously we are hanging out with them every single day, watching them a lot, or hanging out backstage.&
Just being on the tour, there are a lot of bands that are really cool. Even a lot of bands that you might not expect us to like. Like I've spent a lot of time going back and forth between the main stages watching a lot of the acts. That band Pierce the Veil is really good. I don't know if this sounds weird. But I didn't really know them going into the tour. They put on a great live show. Even that band Of Mice and Men, which again most people probably think we wouldn't like. It's still not my cup of tea, but their drummer is amazing. I really appreciate and enjoy watching them. That band Make Do and Mend, they're really good. So many names on the tour. It's a really good, eclectic mix of music.
I have to ask, what about that band Blood on the Dance Floor?
[pause] Well, check it out. We've had the privilege of having Blood on the Dance Floor on our main stage. I heard a lot about them going in. So I obviously had my own preconceived notions about them going into this tour. But I also heard, I think it was the second day they were on the tour, someone said they are the most punk-rock band on the tour.
Now, if you take that comment on the surface, it's definitely like, "What are you talking about?" But it's almost true. Again, not necessarily my cup of tea. They're out there. They're different, and they champion that. They dress the part, they fit the part, they play music for the part. They're out there every day, putting on a crazy stage show. I think the craziest thing of it all is that they're some of the nicest guys in the world. So we've hung out with them a whole bunch. Again, it's not my cup of tea. I don't think you'll be seeing a New Found Glory/Blood on the Dance Floor tour, but supernice guys.