I haven't been to this site in so long, but back in the day, Dexter used to do commentaries on some songs but now I can't find any of them. Did they remove this feature or is there some way to find it still? The one I was really looking for was the the commentary on the conspiracy of one album art. I've tried google with no luck so I was hoping some offspring veterans could help me out.
The only Offspring I know of is in the Music Video Collection DVD. At least, that's all I can think of right now. But it doesn't seem like that's what you are talking about.
Nah, I mean like back in the day next to the songs there was a section for Dexter's commentary for some songs where he talked about the making of it or something along those lines. It was pretty cool.. the only ones I really remember any of though were Beheaded and Conspiracy of One.
Edit: this was probably 4+ years ago when I last saw it so sometime between then and now it must have changed. I know I had to re-register to be able to post on these forums again so its probably been overhauled but this is something I'd really want to see again if anyone knows where to look for it.
The last REAL time I frequented this site was back in 2004, when they had sections for all the show photos displayed as large images. from 2004 and 2003.
The "Dexter on the songs" section seems to be retired. Tijs may have it archived though. Its been years since Dexter posted anything in it.
That's exactly what I was looking for! Any idea where I might be able to find that stuff? It sucks that it got retired, it was always cool to hear what he had to say about the songs..
Hey guys. I know you're thinking, wow, two posts from Dexter in less than a month, that never happens! But I wanted to. I'm excited about our CD coming out in December, and I want people to know about it. I'm gonna be talking about some of the songs on the new record, as well as behind the scenes stuff, studio stories, artwork, all the stuff you're only interested in if you have too much time on your hands!
So I've seen a lot of stuff posted on our BBS about Da Hui so I thought I'd just explain it once and for all. Da Hui (pronounced Da Hooey) are a group of tough, but fair, native Hawaiian surfers who live on the North Shore of Hawaii, where you find some of the best, and gnarliest, surf. If you're gonna surf the North Shore, you gotta give 'em props, cause you're surfing their backyard. If you're respectful of them and stay out of their way, they're cool, but if you're not, you'll probably get a beating. And that's not only from insulting them, but it's also dangerous surfing out there. The North Shore breaks big, especially in the winter, and often over shallow reefs just under the surface. If you cut somebody off ('take off' on 'em) or make them fall, they could get really hurt or killed. Definitely not for novices.
I'm sure that many of you have been to a different neighborhood, city, or part of a town where the streets are known to be run by some pretty tough locals. Unless you have some sort of chip on your shoulder, you're going to try to be respectful of those locals, and do your best to earn some respect for yourself. Feeling uncomfortable when you're out of your element is something that I think everybody can understand. On the other hand, we are all just people, and if we treat each other with respect, we can get beyond our differences and learn to make the most of this world together.
So I decided to write a song about Da Hui just from hearing about their legend of being badass. There's been tons of surf songs, of course, but I thought it would be cool to write a surf song about a white guy from the mainland who's intimidated by Da Hui. It was as simple as that. And I wanted it to sound punk as hell. When we finished it, we were stoked, and we played it for our friends who surf, and they were pretty into it too. One of our friends knows Da Hui and played it for them, and they gave it the thumbs up. Since this friend of ours, Paul, makes movies, we asked if he could get them to make a video of the song with us. They agreed.
So it was on. We flew to Hawaii, paid for the video ourselves, and shot it in two days. The four Hui guys in the video are Johnny Boy Gomes, Kala Alexander, Sunny Garcia, and Makua Rothman. They're all world class surfers - in fact, Sunny won the world championship a couple years ago. You might also recognize Kala from movies like Blue Crush, and Makua surfed the biggest wave of the year last year (66 1/2 feet!). So these guys are the real deal. The video turned out great, thanks to Paul, and we sent it to surf shops and surf magazines. Which means, of course, that it's on the internet so I'm sure you can download the video and the song.
All in all, it was a great experience, and also inspiring to meet guys that are such awesome surfers. I'll tell webdude to put up the lyrics to this song so you guys can check out the full lyric scene. If some of it doesn't make sense, ask someone you know who speaks surf!
[Click here for Da Hui lyrics]
Now, this is really going back. Beheaded is a song off of our very first album, so that's like 10 years ago! It's also the only song off that record that we still play live sometimes.
I still lived at home back then, and I remember that I wrote the music for that song one night when I was just sitting in my bedroom on my bed with a guitar, being bored. I guess, sometimes, being bored is a good way to make up songs. It was one of those times where I was kind of watching TV, and just kind of strumming my guitar, not really even paying attention to what I was playing, when I just kind of accidentally played some chords that I liked. Pretty soon I had all the music written, but I had to come up with some lyrics.
This is where James Lilja came in. Now, James was our first drummer, and this was before we even recorded our first record. James is a great guy with a pretty warped sense of humor, and this guy was dying to get into medical school. In fact, he was so intent on getting into medical school that he didn't really even practice with us much - which is part of why he's not our drummer anymore! But anyway, James and I got together one day and I told him how I was trying to write lyrics for this song.
I had the idea of calling it "Beheaded," and having it be about this crazy guy who enjoys that sort of thing. You know, actually, this kind of song is something that a lot of old punk bands did back then. There's tons of songs where the band talks about liking something that's gross or sick or whatever, but of course it's just a joke. Want some examples? Like, let's see, the Dead Kennedys did songs like "Stealing People's Mail" and "I Kill Children." Suicidal Tendencies had "I Saw Your Mommy and Your Mommy's Dead," TSOL had "Code Blue," (which was about necrophilia), and D.I. had a song called "I Like Guns." Of course, these bands didn't really advocate these kinds of things - it was just done for shock value, and it was kind of funny too.
So we decided to make our Beheaded be in that vein, and one afternoon James and I just cracked each other up making up silly lines about beheading people. You can check out the lyrics on another part of this web site.
Little did I know that day that we'd still be playing that song ten years later.
And James? Yes, he got into medical school, and believe it or not, he's now a gynecologist! I hope his patients don't find out that he once helped write a song called 'Beheaded'!
Conspiracy Of One
We Told You So.
Hey everybody, I know I haven't written a Dexter On The Songs for a while - I'm gonna' have to try to make more of an effort on that front. Sometimes songs seem kind of self-explanatory so it seems retarded to write a synopsis about it. So maybe I'll try to think of a different angle, like where I was when I wrote it, or what I was thinking about at the time. So I don't always just pump these things out, I try to be inspired to write one. Because, you see, it's about quality, not quantity. I'm an artist dammit!
Okay, so this one's gonna be about the song Conspiracy of One. Conspiracy of One was the last song written for our last album. We wanted to have another really fast, punk type song on the record, because even though that's not what most people hear on the radio, it's an important part of who we are as a band. So I wrote the music and was trying to think of a subject to write about. We were in the studio making the record at the time and I remember one day the band and Brendan (O'Brien, the producer) were talking about nuclear war or something. I know, nice topic, huh. (I mean, when you're in the studio, the conversation can get a little strange. Just ask Noodles about our last album's tentative title, Dirty Sanchez). Well, this was the point of our little talk: a generation or ago, our parents and our country feared attack or even nuclear armageddon, but that attack would have come from the Soviet Union because it was the time of the cold war and all that. Nowadays, however, an attack would be more likely to come from an individual or small group, and that idea was actually much more frightening, because you don't know where of whom it's coming from.
I thought about that conversation for a couple days. I thought about how it must have been during the cold war. I mean, during the 50's, 60's, and 70's, you had nuclear buildups, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and a lot of tension, and I believe that that was pretty frightening. Today we don't have that threat from another nation. But we do have that threat from others - if you haven't noticed, we're not the most popular people in a lot of the Middle East. We also hear horror stories such as how Russia 'lost' a half a dozen suitcase-sized nuclear bombs and no one knows who got their hands on them.
So the idea that we as a country face much of that same danger today, but actually in a much scarier way, made an impression on me. I decided to write the lyrics to the song about it. That's what Conspiracy of One means, that the threat or danger that we face comes not from a whole nation but from one crazy individual.
I was also feeling particularly artistic about this one, so you'll notice if you look in the CD booklet that on the page for this song there are a couple of cryptic pictures with a little caption underneath. I wasn't going to explain these, because I think some things should be left to everyone's own interpretation. I also feel a little bit like a guy explaining how a card trick works! But, what the hell, since you guys are cool, I'll give it up.
The first picture starts off with "Ah, the good old days." That's supposed to show that this is how things were a long time ago. The picture shows two giants connected by a rope to their innards, and a caption that says, "Two men, from opposite sides, bound together by a siamese ripcord tethered to their souls. Who will pull first, knowing that it will destroy them both?" And that's how it was, the giants are the two superpowers, the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. The picture and caption means that if one had attacked the other, then there would have been mutual destruction, because both nations had enough bombs to wipe out the earth ten times over or some crazy number like that.
The second picture represents the situation today. The caption says "One man, from opposite sides, struggles to keep the dangling ripcord from the reach of a little man who does not hesitate to pull, knowing that the falling carcass will destroy them both." In this picture, the giant is the U.S. and the little man represents a terrorist. It also shows the suicidal nature of terrorists today, that he doesn't hesitate to destroy himself in order to destroy his enemy. It's insanity, I know, but we were trying to show things the way they are.
Our album came out November 14, 2000. We could have never predicted that the threat that we wrote about in that song and album title would be borne out the way that it was the following September.
Staring At The Sun
This is probably my favorite song that we play live right now. There's just something about that really gets me going, I don't know - it just has a cool energy about it. And also, it's pretty amazing seeing kids bounce up and down to any of our songs, and live, people seem to really get into this one. But you know, what I like most about this song, though, is the lyrics.
Now don't get me wrong: I've always said that lyrics aren't the most important thing about a song, and the reason I say that is because I don't want to be one of those preachy, self-righteous, 'my-messages-are-so-deep' kind of songwriters, 'cause I hate that crap, you know? You know, the 'let's-sit-at-an-outside-cafe' and smoke unfiltered cigarettes and have another mocha and talk about how 'I'm-an-artist-and-nobody-understands-me' kind of bullshit. I mean Jeez Louise, that stuff irritates me to no end.
What I think is, if you're writing lyrics, the idea should be to connect with an audience, not try to show how much "above" them you are, you know? I suppose that I feel that way because that's just where we came from as a band, playing little clubs for years and years. So anyway, when I say I like the lyrics to this song, what I mean is that I think it's really got something positive to say, and I like that.
The idea that I was trying to get across in Staring at the Sun is this: I know that one of the toughest things about growing up is trying to figure out who you are, and how you "fit in" to everything. And believe me, it doesn't just stop once you're grown up, either. I know that for me, I definitely felt like I didn't "fit in" in school. In fact, I hate those words: "fit in." I didn't feel comfortable trying to be a part of any one clique at school. I didn't want to just be one of the athletes, or one of the stoners, or one of the popular kids, or whatever. And I remember that a lot of kids wanted to fit in so badly, that they compromised who they were a little bit in order to be a part of one of these groups. I thought that was really sad.
The words "staring at the sun" are kind of a metaphor, or an analogy, for people that are being self-destructive, or compromising themselves. And in the song, I'm saying that I won't be a part of that. Maybe this line wraps it up the best:
But I won't be burned by the reflection
Of the fire in your eyes
As you're staring at the sun.
That's like me trying to say that if you're going to destroy yourself, you're not going to drag me down with you.
Does that make sense? I think it's so important for kids (or anybody) to just be who they are and not care what anyone else thinks. And that's the hardest thing to do.
Ok, now I need another mocha, dammit. Waiter!