|Rachel Been, AOL|
It's been more than a minute since we heard from West Palm's Surfer Blood. And we have to admit, we missed them. It's true. Once their prank calls
to the New Times
stopped, it's like the phones haven't rung since.
Surfer Blood and Weird Wives guitarist Thomas Fekete got in touch with us and opened up about nearly everything going on with the band and in his own life. This includes getting screwed over on their way up, and enjoying the perks of success, including working with Pixies' producer Gil Norton. Fekete moved to New York, but says he always finds time to practice with his Florida bandmates. If nothing else proves SB isn't a bunch of dicks, it'll be this interview.
Let's start with the basics. What's it like being in a Florida band while living in New York?
I moved up to New York because I needed a change, and I knew I would lose my mind between tour cycles. We finished our record in July and had played a few more shows the following month, but the rest of the year was looking dismal. We were all broke after living in L.A. for a few months and decided we would just hang out in Florida until the record came out in November. I was crashing at my mom's apartment during this time.
Once we heard the news, that it won't be coming out until March of 2013, I packed my things to move to Portland. We had a show in Asbury Park and I decided I was going to stay in New York and make it work. I had to have all my stuff re-routed from Portland but it was worth it. I'm also working for the first time in three years.
It's really funny, we couldn't be happier where we are at as a band, we finally have solid management, and a new record that we love, but I am serving hot dogs at catering events. I recently served a chorizo to a guy in a Pixies shirt and I just smiled to myself. It's fine, if anything it builds character. JP is back and forth between L.A. and Florida and the other dudes are still in Florida. We always manage to find rehearsal time though.
What do you miss the most about home?
I miss my Mom, the weather, the beach. It's very easy for us to live in Florida. Sometimes, I have moments where I think I miss that aspect of it, but I know deep down, I don't. I enjoy how challenging New York is. I am living up here with my wonderful girlfriend as well, so that is a huge plus. Touring can be difficult, being so far away from loved ones can be nerve wracking. Luckily, being in a band with your best friends definitely helps. The guys never fail to put a huge smile on my face whenever I'm feeling low on tour.
What's the best thing about being from Florida? And what's the worst, most shameful, thing?
I spent so much of my teenage years hating the place. It's funny though, leaving for tour really gave me time to reflect on my life in Florida, and I just don't think any of this could have been possible had I gotten out when I wanted to. Floridians are very strange people, I'm from Cincinnati myself, and I remember being completely freaked out when I first moved there. It's funny though, I cannot escape Florida, even my girlfriend who I met up in New York is originally from South Florida. Most of my friends I hang with up here are all Floridians. It's hilarious. I have no plan on returning, but I do have a new appreciation for the place.
How did fans react to your new songs at Fun Fun Fun Fest?
We played a late night show at the Mohawk, and it was nuts. We got a very positive response to the new jams and it was the first time we played a bunch of of them to a proper crowd. We were doing a few of these private events before that, and we were so ready to get back into a venue full of people who were there to see a real show. I cannot begin to explain how good we feel after a show like that, it's the greatest thing in the world and it makes everything we have gone through worth it.