The interview with
Lead Singer/Guitarist of ACIDIC
By Lis Booth
Punk Globe: Introduce yourself to the readers that don't know you - who are ya - Hometown, part in the band/what instruments do you play.
Michael Gossard: We are ACIDIC, we're a crazy group of 4 guys from Los Angeles who tour everywhere and we are the most energetic bunch of people you might ever meet! If you like a high-energy performance, polite people and free wristbands, look no further! My name is Mike Gossard, I come from the west side of Los Angeles, I am the lead singer and guitarist. I am the crazy-ass front man as I have been described by our management and I love my job and my life, and anyone who is supportive of my band is my family! Our bass player is Ted Dubrawski, our second guitarist/backup vocalist is Mike Thompson, and our drummer is Matt Whitaker. They're all 20, and I'm 18. We're all from around L.A.
Punk Globe: How did you all meet and get together as a band?
M.G.: I put the band together over the course of 2 years. I found our drummer Matt Whitaker by putting up flyers with broken drum sticks on them everywhere around LA, and he was one of the few who actually called me, so we started jamming and it clicked. I've known our bass player Ted Dubrawski since childhood, yet he had always been in my periphery, so I called him in the summer of 2008 and asked if he was interested in playing and he actually said yes. By now, we have become as close as family! I found our guitar player Thompy (Mike Thompson) online at after he replied to one of our ads looking for a guitar player. We have never looked back and we are a tight force on guitar and we are cohesive on and off stage. We began to tour and play a ton more shows over the past 6 months and now we are continuing to tour and we are loving every minute of it.
Punk Globe: Who are you signed to?
M.G.: We are signed to Variety Artists International, they are an amazing agency and we love the fact that they put us on tour with some truly GREAT bands like Filter to Hawthorne Heights. Our representative Zack Mullinax is the man and we love his advice and his friendship. We're not with a label yet, but we expect that to change soon. We have also been represented at NACA - National Association of Campus Activities, and we have also been represented at NAMM - National Association of Music Manufacturers. These are the most prevalent ones we pay respect to and we enjoy every second of it!
Punk Globe: So you guys have been on tour.. Whats your favorite thing about touring..
M.G.: My favorite thing about touring is meeting all these cool new people and seeing all the different places across the United States. We spend 6-8 hours every day driving and that gives us a lot of opportunity to see the radically different landscape everywhere and we have never looked back. Our lives and our hearts belong to the open road.
Punk Globe: Do you wear themed clothing like other bands do?
M.G.: Well our bass player enjoys his theme of lack-of-clothing on stage. He always goes shirtless and that makes him very popular with women. Sometimes Matt tries that, too, but Ted definitely has the best abs. The rest of us try our best to wear anything eye catching, with crazy patterns, or anything that says, "I'm in a band from Los Angeles and I am mentally insane!" People really seem to respond to it. One thing we've had a lot of fun with lately is our Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles hat, which we got from a fan on our tour with Hawthorne Heights this summer. He didn't have any money to buy a CD at our merch table so he offered to trade his hat for it. It was the coolest hat we'd ever seen and you better believe we wanted it!!! We traded off wearing it onstage, sometimes that hat moves around and all of us have taken turns wearing it during by the time we get to the last song in our set.
Punk Globe: Best gig you have ever played and why?
M.G.: Probably our best gig so far has been playing in Salt Lake City, Utah with Filter because they changed everything on us and we had to roll with the punches, everything was a challenge and it was a testament to the resilience of the band getting up there and still playing even though they kept changing our set times. We played in front of a packed house and the crowd was really digging it and it turned out to be the tightest show, musically-speaking, that we have ever played! Plus there is the fact that we got the opportunity to stay with a fan and his family for 2 days afterwards. It was really an honor staying with them and learning all about who they are as people; they even cooked us dinner!
Punk Globe: Which songs do you perform most frequently do you have any specific favorites?
M.G.: We always play Strata Red. We have, ever since the song was written and it is a band favorite because it was a team effort to write and it is about a very controversial subject. We also play our signature cover, by the Beatles "Come Together" as well and that seems to go over well.
Punk Globe: Do you ever play any covers?
M.G.: Yes, a select few. Plug In Baby by Muse, an oldie called Blue Velvet, and a few more. We throw a little bit of Roadhouse Blues by The Doors in where no one expects it: in the middle of our big closer, Strata Red. As I said, we play "Come Together" by the Beatles and we love turning it into a grity, rock'n'roll song! recently covered our version of it, and you can get to it from here:
Punk Globe: Do you have a set play list or does it change frequently?
M.G.: We have a general idea of the layout of the set, but we rarely write a set list because we prefer the "on-the-spot" pressure of having to regurgitate a song "on-the-spot." We believe it makes you stronger as a musician! Practicing every day makes you more flexible and able to do that. We're always pretty sure, from the outset, what we're going to play, though.
Punk Globe: The furthest you have traveled for a gig?
M.G.: So far, on this tour we will achieve the farthest distance to a gig we have ever traveled - all the way to Dayton Ohio. But we're about to go even farther east than that! In December, we will be flying from Los Angeles to Europe to play a string of shows for the U.S. troops stationed in Germany and Kosovo for their New Year's enjoyment!
Punk Globe: How many albums have you released?
M.G.: We have formally released two albums: "Ironic Dreams," and "Getting Lucky;" the latter album was produced by Jason Mraz' producers, The Wizardz of Oz, an award-winning Australian husband-and-wife team: Andrew Bojanic and Liz Hooper who have been critical in turning our album into a rock monster!
Punk Globe: What influences you when you write & make new songs
M.G.: Everything influences me to write ACIDIC's songs, from circumstances that transpire, to a great song I hear on the radio, to my favorite bands and performers, to what our fans ask for personally. If you can name a particular instance, we could probably write a song about it and play it live - and pretty much on-the-spot! What can I say? We love what we do.
Punk Globe: Are you a member of any music organizations?
M.G.: I am a member of ASCAP now, and I'm in the process of joining Taxi, another organization for composers and songwriters, with a musical library for featured spots in television and movies.
Punk Globe: What can you tell me about your instruments? i.e. Are you keen to use certain brands or will you play with whatever's available? Favorite brands?
M.G.: We put special meaning into our instruments, for the most part we play Fender, Gibson, Ibanez. Ted named his favorite black-and-white Fender bass Janis. Thompy calls his white Ibanez the Ice Man. Amps are Marshall, Orange, Mesa. For drums Matt just got endorsed by SJC Custom Drums so you'll be seeing him sitting amidst those soon, too. The most notable instrument in the band is my clear, Lucite guitar named "Danny boy." It is my Pride-and-Joy - 1969 Ampeg Dan Armstrong Lucite. It's my see-through guitar and it's my baby and people always come up to us and comment about it. It is a trade mark of ACIDIC and I love it with all my being!
Punk Globe: What made you choose the instruments you have now?
M.G.: Special character and the charisma of the instrument made us all choose our instruments. We all found our instruments in small, local shops around L.A. and we have given them stories through all the touring they have endured. Our instruments are closer to us than anything other than our families.
Punk Globe: What bands are you guys currently listening to and what bands do you dig right now?
M.G.: We listen to an odd assortment of bands that we have toured with but we also love: Mumford and Sons, Green Day, Filter, Hawthorne Heights, Janice Joplin, John Coltrane, Nine Inch Nails, Led Zeppelin and countless other bands.
Punk Globe: Who is your best band ever?
M.G.: Our best band ever has got to be either Green Day or the Beatles. Both have left irrevocable marks on the music industry and will forever be remembered. Unfortunately, we're way too young to have seen the Beatles live, but we deeply enjoy seeing Green Day play, watching them on their tours and going bonkers as fans!
Punk Globe: Fans often wanna know funny lil things about a band, like whats your favorite food, what after shave do you wear, favorite clothing, what TV shows do you like? Do you read? Is there anything personal you wanna share for the fans?
M.G.: On the road, we eat only off the dollar menu or off a little barbecue grill we've named "Smokey Joe" and our favorite item off a value menu is the chicken burrito from Taco Bell (if you ask them to grill anything off their menu, they'll do it - band secret). We don't watch much TV, but when we do, it's tasteless programing of MTV because it sucks us in and puts us to sleep when we need rest! None of us us wear underpants on Fridays as a tradition, and we all shave minimally on the road! A favorite book is Less Than Zero - Brett Easton Ellis and our guitar player Thompy is addicted to the online video game "Heroes of Newerth." We are all very superstitious and knock on wood every time we say something that could be construed as presumptuous. Ted loves not wearing clothing; I love my white striped shirt; Thompy grows his hair out as far as it'll go; and Matt loves unreasonably spicy food!
Punk Globe: Do you drive? Whats your favorite car/motorbike?
M.G.: We do drive and our favorite vehicles are our touring van "BARUUCE" and our touring truck, a blue Toyota Tacoma named "Tommy Truck."
Punk Globe: Tattoos? Piercings? Do you have any do you have a fav tattoo artist?
M.G.: Ted and Matt have tattoos. Matt's is on his right upper arm, and it reads 10 97 in Roman numerals. It is the date and year he was diagnosed as being in remission from cancer. Ted has the Fender symbol on his upper right arm, the bass clef on upper his left arm, and the quote "To thine own self be true" on his chest. Our road manager Andrew Untersee has a giant scrolled Celtic-looking symbol on his back and the rest of us are just waiting to find something of enough consequence to get it tattooed on us. We have several favorite artists in Hollywood. We haven't even thought about piercings though!
Thanks so much, Lis, we really appreciate the support and if there is anything we can ever do for you, just let us know. It is an honor to be interviewed by you and we can't say enough thank-yous!

Catch them on tour at the following Venues
Fri Dec 10 - Monterey CA - Crank Up the Holidays @ Planet Gemini
Sat Dec 11 - San Jose CA - Crank Up the Holidays @ Nickel City
Fri Dec 17 - Anaheim, CA - Christmas extravaganza @ The Chain Reaction
Tue Dec 28 - Depart U.S. for Europe, ACIDIC Overseas! Tour for the Troops!
Wed Dec 29 - Arrive/Off Kosovo
Thu Dec 30 - Show #1 Kosovo
Fri Dec 31 - Show #2 New Year's Eve show in Kosovo
Sat Jan 1 - Arrive/Off Germany
Sun Jan 2 - Show #3 Germany
Mon Jan 3 - Show #4 Germany
Tue Jan 4 - Return to U.S.