JEORDIE WHITE | BASE TENDENCIES
Chris Goss and Jeordie White are two weirdos we happen to know pretty well. Maybe you’ve heard of em too? Chris has been making music for years with a bunch of people, including his band Masters Of Reality. He’s also produced a ton of great records by the likes of Queens of the Stone Age and The Duke Spirit. Jeordie has played with a buncha bands as well. He wore a dress in one of them, and still does when he’s home alone while his girlfriend is at work, and he can freeze-frame shots of Han Solo circa ’77. These two dudes have a band together they call Goon Moon, and their new album “Licker’s Last Leg” was just recently released by Ipecac Records. There’s a fuckin’ Bee Gees cover on it dude! We decided we should shoot the shit for an “interview” type thingy with the boys we could put here on this “Buddyhead” thingy. We talked about pastries, shitty bands, and black dudes. Whatever we could actually print without offending people, you can read below…
First things first… who and what is Goon Moon?
Chris - Goon Moon is the moniker of the musical collaboration of Jeordie White and Chris Goss. It also includes friends who happened to be around on any particular day in the studio.
Jeordie – Yeah, it’s like those old 70's commercials when the two people run into each other with the peanut butter and chocolate. When I shook Chris' hand for the first time we exploded and became Goon Moon.
What the fuck does “Goon Moon” mean anyway?
Chris - We liked it graphically because of the four O’s. So it could have also been “Loon Coon”, or “Moo Room”.
Jeordie – Plus, it sounds fuckin’ COOL.
How did you two freakshows first meet each other?
Jeordie - We met at a 7-11.We were both going for the last packet of Ding Dongs. At first we fought over the cupcakes. Then we split them and sat on the curb and began to talk about music. A bird flew over and shat on Chris' head. From that point on I knew it was fate for us to work together.
Chris - Jeordie doesn’t remember, but I actually first met him at a party after one of the early Manson shows at The Whisky in LA. It was at the back patio at The Dragonfly. He was too busy fondling a famous girl musician… or should I say, famous at the time.
Wait, Jeordie, who was that?
Jeordie - Probably either Sean Yseult or Donita Sparks? If you wanna call them “famous”. This was the 90's, and I had a thing for girls in bands. Actually, more of a contest.
Ahhh the 90’s… when everything was cool. Were you guys “cool” in high school? Did anybody ever pick on you?
Chris - I hardly attended, but when I did, I blended in with a small group of potheads. I really tried not to be noticed. Just one black kid named Norbert Baker would fuck with me cos he knew he could kick my ass. I’d humor him with candy or gum or something.
Did you have a nickname people called you?
Chris - My mom called me “asshole”. That was my only nickname ever.
Jeordie – They called me "Jordash" after the jeans. For some reason that would bring me to tears. So yes, I was pretty fucking cool.
Have either of you ever been in a physical fight with anybody in your lifetime, and did you win or lose?
Jeordie - When I was in the third grade my best friend was the strongest kid in school. A black kid named Anton. One day he shoved my face in a bowl of Lucky Charms. I beat the living shit out of him. The next day he told everybody he kicked my ass. Of course being a skinny nerdy white kid, everybody believed him.
How about you Chris?
Chris - I was a very rambunctious little boy. Lots of fights with the neighborhood kids. I’d most likely punch some idiot who’d push my temper over the edge. But when I started smoking pot around the age of 14, I put my aggression into learning how to play guitar.
Who were your main influences to pick up the guitar at that age?
Chris - Jimmy Page, Steve Howe, Steve Marriot, Ronnie Montrose, John McLaughlin, Billy Gibbons, Cat Stevens, Beatles, Brian Jones to name a few.
What was the worst band you were ever in growing up?
Chris - My first band, a 70’s cover band called Divine, named after the actor. It got better when we changed the name to Riff Raff.
Jeordie – Mine was called The Ethiopians. We were a speed-metal cover band. We covered "Trapped Under Ice". It was amazing.
What made you want to name the band The Ethiopians?
Jeordie - I was super skinny at the time… I was 16, and I had a HUGE afro. Y’know, “Florida hair”. This guy named Larry Pierce who was the local “cool guy”… think Kelly Leek from “Bad News Bears”… He would call me a "skinny Ethiopian with hair". So there ya go.
Did The Ethiopians put anything out? What was the first band you were in that actually had an “official” release?
Jeordie - My second band, Amboog-a-Lard. We recorded an album at Morrissound Studio in Tampa, and it was released independently.
What about you Chris? Did any of your early bands have any releases?
Chris - In 1976, only the rare local dork put their own record out… Someone who thought pressing up 200 copies of a 7" would make them a big fish in the small pond of Syracuse, New York. It probably would have brass in the band, with a phony psychedelic A-side a la “25 0r 624” backed by a terrible schlocky ballad on the B-side. Future Billy Joels... Now in our case, a record deal wasn't even a thought that could be logically traced from anywhere to anything. Our major concerns were: A) The flash powder didn't burn the singer's hand off again. B) Our families thought we were gay because we stole our mom's make-up and scarves. Or, C) Whose turn it was to sleep with one of the five local groupies. So I had to wait ten years for Rick Rubin to call in 1987 to give me a chance to put out a record. By this time Riff Raff was long gone and we were now one of the many incarnations of Masters of Reality, which was formed in 1981… Originally monikered either "The Manson Family" or "Cousin It". Speaking of, what is the current status of Masters of Reality? The current status… On ice until drummer John Leamy can commit to an album and a tour. He's a digital filmmaker in New York. He just finished the new U2 IMAX feature.
Ginger Baker was in Masters of Reality for awhile. That’s apeshit. How the fuck did you end up playing with Ginger Baker?
I met him at a barbecue at a mutual friend's house in 1990. The guy also happened to be Tone-Loc's manager, who played polo with Ginger. A few days later a jam was arranged. He stayed on board for over 2 years. I miss jamming with him very much. Actually, I just miss jamming. It's becoming a lost art.
Where did you record the new Goon Moon album?
Chris - We recorded it at Rancho De La Luna in Joshua Tree, The Hacienda… which is my engineer Ed Monsef’s home studio, and a little hole in the wall in Glendale that’s no longer there.
Jeordie – Yeah, Ed saved the day for us. Fricken shockma man.
I don’t know where we’re gonna go after that. Hmmmm… Oh yeah, Jeordash, you didn’t answer the earlier question.
Jeordie – Ah right… Yeah, we didn’t even think we would get to release this record. “Licker’s Last Leg” was a result of us fucking around trying to find our sound and just having fun making music. Every time we tried to be serious the clowns would come prancing through the door and things would get ridiculous. When we thought we were taking something too seriously we would fuck it up with humor. We wanted all of the sounds to be organic or cheap. We used a shitty casio keyboard through an amp for all of the keyboard sounds. Old shitty amps for the guitars… no “computer” guitars, and all the vocals were first takes. I’m sure you can tell too. When we mixed the record, we wanted to make sure any weird sounds were louder than they should be. Going for a 60's style instead of that shitty KROQ / Linkin Park compressed turd music.
What are the lyrics about?
Chris - Norbert Baker.
Jeordie - Doing blow and blowing dudes.
That should have been obvious to me I suppose.
Jeordie – Naw… actually, the songs only make sense now in retrospect. Most of the lyrics seemed like bullshit at the time. Just trying to find interesting words that evoke images in the head and rhyme. I suppose I could go through each song and tell you what they’re about, but that would be boring. I’ve come to only listen to instrumental music, because I’m sick of hearing about people’s problems and issues.
Can we expect Goon Moon to ever perform live?
Chris - Yeah, if you and Jeordie bail on this “nin” nonsense, and I stop producing every shithead that asks.
Jeordie – We might play someday, but it will probably all be on tape.
Neil Young or Neil Diamond?
Chris - Neil Diamond only for his 60’s material… Namely “Holly Holy”, “Solitary Man” etc… Neil Young intermittently throughout his career, especially his little known 80’s “Landing On Water” album.
Jeordie – Fuck that. Vince Neil.
And finally, who is the ugliest Bee Gee?
Jeordie - Probably the dead one. RIP Maurice, we love you. The Bee Gees rule. Fuck you if you don’t think so.
Chris – Bob Geldof.