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Dave Mustaine Speaks to KNAC.COM From Gigantour

By Philthy Phil, 8-Foot Viking
Sunday, July 24, 2005 @ 4:48 PM

An On-Air Conversation

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Megadeth founder, Dave Mustaine took some time out to call in to KNAC.COM live, Thursday, July 21, from the back stage area of his first American date of Gigantour. The following is the transcript of the conversation between KNAC.COM DJ Philthy Phil and Dave Mustaine:

P: Hey Dave! Where ya calling in from?

D: I'm actually in Fresno. Starting the tour off here, then were going working our way down south. Then we'll circle our way around the North American continent, then September 11th we'll be in, of all places, Portland, Oregon. The last time I was in that neck of the woods around September 11th, it was in Seattle and it WAS Sept., 11 and we cancelled that show out of respect to our nation, as we went to war that day basically.

P: Certainly everyone can understand and appreciate that, and I am sure those folks will be happy to have you back. You've been touring for a while now...including a pretty nice stint in Europe...how's it feeling,?

D: We did pretty good, we had a good run, and the exciting thing about it was that you know, we didn't have anything to prove anymore, we were just going out there to play music and have fun. You know, in the beginning, the first couple of shows I thought I got something to prove because my arm was hurtin'. And I thought, you know, I ain't got nothing to prove. There's so many guys out that that are better than I am nowadays so, if I'm caught up in trying to prove myself, then I'm missing the beauty of this whole thing.

P: How are you feeling by the way?

D: I'm feeling great. I'm happy. This is the maiden voyage of Gigantour I'm absolutely ecstatic about the talent that's on here. I kinda wish that when Dream Theater and Anthrax switch places that they'd both be there together cause I think that'd be really cool.

P: That would be awesome. Gigantour- This is a huge undertaking for you and your organization. Tell me about the conception of Gigantour and how you think it's going, and to the future, perhaps you might even carry it on, I don't know.

D: Yeah, yeah. Basically I started it off try to do this as a fan. How would I want a fan, as a fan, go to a festival? I'd like to see a bunch of bands that are all cool. I don't want to see five of the same (kind of) bands, 'cause after a while you just, ok let's go get something to eat. Ya know? And some festivals nowadays you, and I'm not implicating any one festival in general, but some festivals, you know, they tend to have a lot of the same bands on, so that sameness makes it redundant and there's also a lot of festivals I was a part of overseas that were very exciting because there were so many different types of bands on there. We played Castle Donnington for the download festival and most people would think Megadeth would be on the metal night, well we weren't. We were on the night with Garbage and (Biffy) Clyro and Dinosaur Jr. and who the hell do I care who we play with because we go on first or last as soon as the lights go off and I play that first note, in my mind, I become the headliner.

P: That's the right attitude., and when you've been playing around in Europe especially, Europe had to be a slam dunk because it doesn't matter if you are playing on pop night or rap night, you're going to find metal fans in the audience aren't you?

D: Yeah. You will. But that place is also notorious for, if you having a bad show...because they are so far from any outhouses, they like to whiz from where they're at. You know and there's nothing worse than standing there going, "right on there's my favorite song...hey, what the hell, someone's pissing on the back of my legs!"

P: At least now I'm warm.

D: Yeah, well there was one other time when something like that happened and it was really unbelievable. We were down at Rock in Rio back in the 90's and, it was actually Rock in Rio 2, Queensryche, Judas Priest, Sepultura, Megadeth, Guns n Roses....

P: and about 120,000 of you closest friends.

D: Yeah, Yeah. and it was already weird enough because, you know, some people had died because the fireman were being security guards and this police force and security guys, they were basically scalpers, and sneaking people in, and a fireman stopped them and the dude shot him in the face. It's like, "whoa!" Hopefully there's no fires in his neighborhood tonight. The guy that was on before us, his name was Lob„o and they were chanting in Portuguese, "Pussy. Pussy. Pussy. Pussy" Excuse my language, I don't know if you can say that on the radio.

P: Yeah, it's fine, we're not regulated by the FCC here, you can say what you like.

D: Yeah, well, I'm not a vulgar guy anyway, but, they hated this guy so much. He's a huge pop icon, so it wasn't so much that the Brazilian people didn't like him, but the Brazilians that were there didn't like him. So they were throwing bottles of pee onto the stage. And the whole stage is covered in steaming pee. And I'm looking at this and saying, "oh my god. I've got to walk out there." So, we went out there after this guy and it was just asphyxiating, the smell because they hated him so much. I guess that's why like in Thailand if you show someone the bottom of your feet it's really offensive.

P: It's a little like a soccer game.

D: Well, what I know about the Internet, having someone pee on you, you're pretty cool.

P: You mentioned Anthrax coming on to the bill when Dream Theater cuts out to tend to some of their other commitments. Man, Megadeth and Anthrax on the same bill...it's making me nostalgic for the 1980's Thrash days.

D: You know what, me too, bud. When I wanted to set this whole thing up I wanted it to be about positive and encouraging bands, guys that'll get up there and do their job and also encourage people to pick up their instruments and play, you know, and do it well, not d-tune it and do mindless jumping around on stage, but really be musicians, and I know that Anthrax is part of the old guard, you know, and can still do it, and really glad that they got to be a part of this.

P: You had a very public transformation, as a human being. First the dissolution of the band due to your injury...you worked through it and returned, and of course your religious conversion. You seen a lot of life, more than most people...who is the new Dave Mustaine?

D: Well, you know the whole religion thing, that's very private and I really don't want to get into that too much.

P: That's fine, but in terms of who you are, you've got to be a different person today than you were ten years ago.

D: Yeah I am. You know if you make me mad and you deserve a fat lip, I'll oblige you. But for the most part it takes a lot to make me angry nowadays. And I think it's kind of funny watching people shake their heads when I walk away and say, "God, I heard that guy was so this, and he's so not."

P: Are people still out there trying to get your goat a little bit?

D: Some of them are. Some guy called a radio station the other day and said, "Hey man, I heard five years ago that there was a rumor you were gay." And I said, "Did your dad start that while I was fuckin' him in the ass?"

P:(Laughter) That's the right answer. Right on the nut, BUTTON.

D: Ha! Right on the nut! Ah, no pun intended.

P: Yeah, I know it. Hey, Your convictions are obviously strong, and that's admirable...you cancelled a couple tour dates overseas because you had a problem with a couple of bands...on that theme, are there any Megadeth songs you wont do now?

D: Well, no. I mean, the ones that I did that I'm not doing any more that too me is just wrong is Sex Pistols "Anarchy" 'cause it says I'm an anti-Christ. I'm not really anti anybody so I had to kind of take a look at that. You know, I mean, I am sure if I wanted to I could do "Black Friday" of "The Conjuring" because they don't really mean anything anymore, because the lyrics from "Bad Omen" I had to jumble up because it was a bona fide hex, so it was kind of like gobbledygook, unless you get lucky and you know something about witchcraft you're not going to be able to deduce what that spell is. And "Black Friday" you know, it's just gratuitous violence which, that's cool to a point, but there's so many death metal fans that do it better than I did.

P: Megadeth has taken many shapes over the years...your new band Glen Drover (King Diamond) on guitars, James Mac Donough (Iced Earth + others) on Bass, and Shawn Drover (Eidolon) on Drums...these guys definitely have a metal pedigree, do you think people get the impression Dave Mustaine is Megadeth and the other parts are interchangeable...or is that perception unavoidable?

D: I don't know what the public at large thinks. I wish I could read minds or something. But I think the people are aware, when I left Metallica and came home on a bus, I did not stop off and pick up a bass player. I went home and started it on my own and had a first bass player name Matt Keislestein (note from Philthy Phil: If anyone knows how to spell this guyís name, let me know). Then came "Jr." and the other different line-ups which went through a lot of (metamorphosing) over the years, but you know, it's just for me, part of trying to achieve greatness. You know, loyalty is one thing, but there comes a time when you have to pitch something over board when it's not worth anything.

P: Yeah, there's a big difference between doing business and having friendships and having a good time. Do you miss guys like Dave Ellefson?

D: Uh, no I don't. There's some guys we're still friends with and there's some that we're not. I'd rather not get into who I'm friends with and not because I think it's disrespectful, but as you probably can imagine because the lawsuit the relationship between me and (Ellefson) was pretty much strained and over. I do respect them all, even (Ellefson) and I thank them for what they did, I wish them well in their careers.

P: Youíve had nothing but top-notch musicians in your band all along.

D: Yeah, they were pretty good, they were pretty darn good and I was really happy to be with them, you know it's kind of like when you find that perfect woman, after a while you know, you catch her in the morning when she has to shave her legs and it's, "oh, not you again."

P: (Diabolical male laughter) You've jumped head first into the Internet. Live chats...constant updates on your web board...it's like you're traveling with a lap top and keeping this direct connection to the fans...how has it been seeing the brutal honesty of the fans online, how do you react to it, because in the past, artists have been pretty insulated from their fans.

D: Well, you know, I can tell the difference between someone who's just a little shit-starter who's going in there to cause problems and someone who is, has a genuine, legitimate gripe about something and I am open to constructive criticism. (Somebody) sent and e-mail to me the other day just railing me for being a Democrat and the reason the system hasn't failed, that the system hasn't failed, that I failed, and how dare I mock Bush and his administration and all this stuff. I sent it back to my webmaster and I said, "Why would you even send me this. I'm not even in a good mood right now; I've got some outside issues I'm dealing with." And I mean, any moron can see Bush is in front wagging his finger at Vic (Rattlehead), you know? And, you know, granted some people may not like this, but I voted for Bush, he was the lesser of two evils and I'm not going to vote for "Franken-Kerry" I'm not. I mean, there's just no way. I might as well just cut my own eyelids off. And there was no one else to vote for. And, if you don't vote, shut up. You got no right to talk.

P: I agree with that.

D: I did it. You know what, it may have been the right choice it may not have been the right choice, I believe in what I did, and you know what? Who knows who I'm going to vote for next (time). I'm not a card-carrying Republican. I voted for the lesser of two evils. I voted for Clinton! My god, (chuckle) talk about a dichotomy between two different people.

P: Vote for freedom if you can, in every case. But, we can talk about politics and you'll miss your time on stage tonight. A lot has been said over the years about you and Metallica...I'm not going to get into that with you....but I've always wanted to know...when KNAC debuted your song "Go The Hell", and I think that was on the "Bill and Ted" soundtrack, right?

D: Uh huh.

P: ...and it featured the bedtime nursery rhyme...now I lay me down to sleep, etc....what was your reaction some weeks later when we debuted Enter Sandman and when you eventually heard it.

D: I was a little surprised because I still believe that ours came out first. But you know, it could be they did theirs first and it just took longer to get there's out. I look at it like this, great minds think alike and even though it was uncanny because it was something so, so similar; such a dramatic thing, I think my way was a little funnier because at the end when I say "blah blah blah."

P: (Laughs) But it you're calling it an uncanny coincidence and you just took it in stride when it happened?

D: I think so, because who knows, they may have been listening to KNAC because KNAC when it was a radio station was the greatest radio station in the world.

P: Thank you very much.

D: You know, I can remember going to Japan and seeing all the Japanese fans with KNAC shirts on and thinking, "he ain't got no fuckiní idea what that station is. You're just wearing it 'cause itís gonna get you laid."

P: (Laughs) Although there was a guy recording our station and sending it off to Tokyo and they were playing it on a station there like 4 hours a day.

D: Oh, really. How great is that.

P: Yeah, but they were pirating it, and they got caught eventually.

D: Well, I guess that's not so brilliant then, is it?

P: But anyway the fact that your song was played on KNAC first means it actually was recorded first. That's how it works.

D: Thank you.

P: Any new Megadeth Music coming?

D: Actually, you know what? When I set up to record "The System Has Failed" I was gonna do two records back-to-back like Ozzy did with "Diary of a Madman" and "Blizzard of Oz" and then see if the public even liked me anymore, if they wanted to hear from me, do some live shows, kind of build and then if things were going in the right direction, do another record release at some point and be prepared to tour again. But um, half way through the process I heard from the publishing company that I owed them another Megadeth record and until then I pretty much was bound to them. And I love being an EMI artist but I also liked the fact that I was a free-agent. So, having said that I stopped doing the two and only did one, and it came down to pretty simple, you just do your thing.

P: So you owed music to EMI, or Sanctuary, the deal with Sanctuary is done, right?

D: Yeah. We're out of our contract with Sanctuary and I've fulfilled my contract with both them and EMI. You know, there was one time when I asked to be out of a record label and that was with Capital. And I feel kind of bad about that because I've never broken a contract. My name means a lot to me. If I sign a piece of paper, it's important for me to honor it. I find it detestable when people sign things and they try and weasel their way out of it. I just think, you know what? Your name doesn't mean anything. Why even sign in the first place, you have no integrity.

P: Makes sense. You don't live in Arizona anymore, do you?

D: No. I moved to down to Fallbrook. I live back in Cali. I'm a neighbor.

P: All right!

D: Yeah, man.

P: Fallbrook, that's like San Diego County, isn't it?

D: Yeah, it's up in North County, it's inland just a little bit from Oceanside and it's up in the hills.

P: Got a little acreage up there, got some avocados growing?

D: Yeah, just a little bit. I've got some fruit trees growing, but more importantly, you know, my children have a nice neighborhood to live in. And, my daughter when I first moved out there grabbed a bunch of leaves and threw them up in the air and said, "Daddy it's Fall." And I'm thinking, man, if we did that in Arizona you'd be scooping up decomposed granite, and then "OH MY GOD I'M SCALDING MY FACE!"

P: People can check out Gigantour.com for more information about the bands on the bill, the tour dates and find out when your next live chat is going to be.

D: The cool thing about Gigantour.com is I did a chat yesterday for an hour and we're going to bands online and chatting every day if possible, they're going to be blogging, and there's going to be video snippets of the back stage stuff that's going on. Nothing that's going to be as high resolution of high quality as the documentary we are filming. And trust me, it's not going to be some reality TV horse-crap, it's going to be basically a rock festival caught on film.

P: I know Nevermore is going stage in about 35 minutes, who's played so far?

D: It goes Bobaflex on two, then Nevermore on one, then Dry Kill (Logic) on two, then Dillinger Escape (Plan) on one, but they're here tonight. Then Symphony X on two, Then Fear Factory, the Life of Agony, then Dream Theater. Then no one in between Dream Theater and Megadeth because we want people to be able to take a break, go outside and get some "social lubricant" if you know what I mean.

P: Sure! How long a set are you guys playing?

D: I think me and Portnoy's boys are playing about an hour and a half a night. That's what we have it allotted for. Some places, the venue wants us to play a little bit less. You know, I can't get by that. I wanna play. I wanna play so hard for people and just show 'em, go out and show 'em, you know, I can still play. I may not be as good looking as I once was, you know 'cause age has effects on all of us, but, you know, I certainly can still play.

P: And historically, at Dream Theater concerts, a lot of times bands will mix up and play a couple jams on stage together. Are you doing that on the Gigantour?

D: No. Not that it hasn't been brought up, I mean, it hasn't been brought up. Also, I think the fans are so rabid about who they want to come and see, I just think if we leave this a pure thing and let all of the back-pattin' and hand-shaking and stuff to be done off of the stage it will make for better performances on the stage.

P: Dave Mustaine, I wish you continued success on the Gigantour. I look forward to seeing you in Irvine.

D: Thanks Phil

P: And, kick some ass tonight.

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