Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker stopped by The Kevin & Bean Show to promote the upcoming Musink Music & Tattoo Festival, plus he talks about the deluxe version of Blink’s Grammy-nominated album California, an update on The Transplants, and more.
The 10th annual Musink Fest is taking place St. Patrick’s Day weekend (March 17-19) at the OC Fair & Event Center. Barker is in his third year of curating the festival, which combines music, tattoos, and cars. This year’s lineup includes NOFX, The Vandals, The Used, Goldfinger, Pennywise, Bad Religion, and more, plus over 800 of the world’s best tattoo artists and tons of incredible vehicles on display.
“It’s everything I love. I grew up getting beat up and spit on at NOFX concerts, Lagwagon concerts, Vandals, Pennywise. It’s really made up of a bunch of friends of ours and people I’ve just been fans of,” said Barker. He also stated that he’s “definitely” going to play one day, likely with Goldfinger. “I recorded the new Goldfinger album with him [John Feldman], well began recording it with him. He’s a monster, writes a song every hour. But we’re talking about me possibly playing that set.”
“That’s my childhood. I was in The Aquabats opening up for Goldfinger and John would be like ‘Get on the drums!’ He kind of sonned me back then, he was really cool,” he said. “I was in a van and he would take me on the bus and just chop it up with me. I learned a lot from him.”
Although he’s had incredible success as a musician, Barker has just recently earned his first Grammy nomination for Blink-182’s latest release California. “It’s pretty cool. I’ve been a part of the Grammys many times. Once with Eminem, Drake, and Lil Wayne, once with Chuck D and Tom Morello, and once with Pit Bull and Joe Perry,” says Barker. “This felt even more crazy, more insane, it’s actually for the band I play with. It’s taken us forever to get recognized.”
After touring California last year, the band hopped back in the studio for a few weeks with producer John Feldman. “There is the most insane deluxe album coming. I feel like it’s better than California, if you can imagine that. We got in the studio for 2 weeks a couple of weeks ago and we wrote 13 or 14 songs.”
“We decided if we don’t put them out on this deluxe album, I don’t think they’d see the light of day in 2018 because we’ll be working California still for another year. So all these songs will come out on the deluxe album, and it’s just incredible. I mean it when I say I like it better than California. There’s a song called ‘Parking Lot’ that’s a really, really amazing track. There’s a song called ‘Misery.'”
Kevin chimed in and asked if there were any tracks as good as “Built This Pool,” the goofy 15-second track on California. “There is,” he confirms. “There’s one about pregnancy that’s on there that’s a short song and very charming.”
Barker continued on about the deluxe album. “It’s exciting. It’s coming together. I’m actually going to see D*Face [the artist who did California‘s cover] while he’s out here and we’re gonna flip the cover so it’s not the exact same cover. It’s very much like the cover, but we’re going to experiment with some color ways.”
So, when can fans expect the deluxe version of California? “It’s coming pretty darn quick,” he says.
Barker confirmed that The Transplants, his side project with Tim Armstrong and Skinhead Rob, will be releasing a covers album.
“Between myself, Tim, and Rob, there is a lot of musical influences, and when we went in to record this covers album it was ‘anything goes.’ You can bring an idea for a cover and we’re gonna record it, no matter what it was.”
“The way it would go down is we had what’s called ‘Transplants Tuesdays’ and we’d show up around 10 or 11am. Someone would present the song and 45 minutes later we’re in the studio recording it. It was very spontaneous.”