Greener Pastures: a No Doubt fan site

Archive for July, 2009

Manson, Guitar Hero, L.A.M.B. bags, audio

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009


Shirley Manson performed “Stand And Deliver” with No Doubt last night!!  Jenny has a video up here!


“No Doubt’s “Ex-Girlfriend” from Return Of Saturn will be a featured track on the upcoming Guitar Hero 5 video game due out September 1.  Visit for more information.”

Photos from the upcoming Fall 2009 season of L.A.M.B. bags have been posted on Facebook.

I’ve added audio of the May 19 show to the audio section.

new audio, interview

Sunday, July 19th, 2009

Hello!  I’ve just added audio for two shows, July 10 IN and July 8 MO, to the 2009 live audio section.

There’s a new interview with Gwen on the Seattle Times site:

“Gwen Stefani is no doubtedly back with No Doubt.

After taking a five-year break from the ska band, the 39-year-old singer has found success outside of No Doubt — with a fashion label (L.A.M.B.), two hit solo records and two kids in tow.

But this summer she’s back with the band that launched her, and in its 1990s and early-2000s heyday, sold more than 27 million records and won two Grammys.

No Doubt plays the White River Amphitheatre in Auburn on Sunday. Stefani talked to The Seattle Times over the phone from Calgary, Canada. And true to her onstage persona, she was funny, down-to-earth and fashionably dressed, wearing (as she reported) L.A.M.B. pants, Topshop socks, a Vivienne Westwood sweat shirt, a Hanes tank top and a hot-pink bra.

Q: What classic No Doubt songs will you play at the show?

A: We’re just trying to do the songs that make people really happy — the hits. … There’s no way you’re going to walk away and not have fun. We put everything we have into it — all of our love, all of our energy, everything.

Q: As a solo artist, you sold 8 million albums and won a Grammy. Why did you decide to get back together with No Doubt when you had such personal success?

A: Since we were 17, we had never taken any time for ourselves. It was always band band band band band, because we loved it. … It was an opportunity, a window in time to just do something different. … It was never intended to be so long.

Q: Are you going to do more solo work?

A: Not that I’m planning on. I feel like I’m in a time of my life where I can’t really make plans. … It’s really about living in the moment, because if you start to look ahead too far, you kind of miss where you’re at. Right now, I’m just so grateful that we’re out here. I can’t even think about writing. I mean, I think about it, and I get excited, because I listen to a lot of music when I put my makeup on. When you’re a mom, you don’t have a lot of spare time. … The whole point of going on tour was to fill myself back up, because I felt really empty after having that baby. It’s just like — wow, I don’t have anything to give, talk about or say. So now, when we go home, the idea is to just go and start writing and do No Doubt records.

Q: There was some criticism — from folks like Margaret Cho — about appropriating Asian-ness. How do you respond to that?

A: People catch bits of things, so they don’t see the whole picture. But if you go back and listen to the whole song — “Harajuku Girls” — the song is clearly a song about loving a culture and being inspired by a culture. That’s all it is. It’s just being a fan. So, if anybody takes offense, of me publicly saying this culture is amazing, then there’s something wrong with them. It was very positive.

Q: How do you describe yourself?

A: I just see myself as really busy and really passionate about all the opportunities that have come my way. … Now I have a family, that takes up obviously my No. 1 priority, and I try to make some good kids, you know. That’s the newest, hardest thing I’ve ever done.

Q: How do you balance family life now that you and your husband [Gavin Rossdale] are on separate tours?

A: He’s actually here right now — he just got in last night. … I think when you have the family involved, you take it to a different level. It’s such a very self-centered lifestyle out here. It’s about just doing everything you can to put on a great show and that takes a lot of energy, emotionally and physically, and so when you have two little humans … and you’re missing your husband, and you’re trying to work it out all the time, and you’re catching me on a day when you’re like, “How’s it going to work?” Some days it doesn’t work and most days, it just works itself out.

Q: Would you want your two kids to be rock stars?

A: Hell no, they’re not allowed.

No, I want them to be happy. I think the most important thing, the most blessed thing is I get to do what I feel passionate about. I love, love performing. I love being creative. I love designing. Being able to be passionate makes you able to work really hard and just do so many things and just enjoy life. My life is so rich and full because of that, so I hope they find something that they love.”

catching up on news

Monday, July 13th, 2009

Hello!  I meant to update before now, but I’ve been studying for my insurance producer’s license-I passed the test today!  Not exactly a rockin’ career, but it pays the bills lol.

There’s a new video interview with Adrian from July 1st on Zildijan’s web site here.

There’s also a new video interview with Tom on Dunlop’s YouTube channel here.

Another new article on about how the band has been traveling with personal trainers.

There’s a really good new article on  Gwen talks about how some quotes from the recent Elle article were taken out of context, and exaggerated:

“By Mike Usinger

After a five-year hiatus, No Doubt is back and having a blast—but don’t expect a new album anytime soon

While completely pissed is an exaggeration, it’s not stretching things to suggest Gwen Stefani sounds more than a little agitated.

The reason for that says plenty about the platinum-tressed icon’s devotion to her bandmates in No Doubt, the Orange County quartet that has returned from the wilderness after being MIA for a half-decade. On the morning Stefani calls the Georgia Straight, high-profile fashion glossy Elle has been all over the Internet pimping its upcoming story on the band’s decision to end a five-year hiatus. The angle the magazine is using is that the reconvening of No Doubt has been loaded with drama, with band members battling it out with “heated conversations” in the studio.

There’s a small grain of truth to that. Earlier this year, Stefani, bassist Tony Kanal, guitarist Tom Dumont, and drummer Adrian Young set out to record a cover of the Adam and the Ants new-wave nugget “Stand and Deliver”. If you’ve thrilled to No Doubt’s dub-tastic mid-’90s reinvention of Bad Brains’ “Sailin’ On”, or 2003’s smashingly synthetic take on Talk Talk’s “It’s My Life”, you know it’s not like it was the group’s first time tackling a classic. This time, there was a small hitch in the recording process, with Stefani and Kanal briefly disagreeing on the direction they wanted to take things. The squabble was over before it began, which is why Stefani isn’t thrilled to have Elle suggesting that things devolved to the level of a battle royal.

“When a magazine has an article coming out, they put these weird quotes out there which are totally out of context,” the forthcoming singer says, on the line from a Philadelphia tour stop. “They’re trying to get people talking, and I totally get that. When we were in the studio, there was a fight that Tony and I had about a keyboard line in a song that we didn’t even write. Clearly, we were having a fight, even though we haven’t had a fight in I don’t remember how long. It was so foreign to us that we were on the phone going, ‘We don’t even know how we’re going to end this conversation.’ It was just one of those things where there was a lot of pressure. And there was a lot of pressure.”

Indeed, after years apart, spent raising families, designing clothing lines, working on soundtrack projects, dabbling in production work, and launching insanely successful solo careers, the members of No Doubt suddenly found themselves under the gun. The band agreed to record “Stand and Deliver” for the teen-soap sensation Gossip Girl, only to find out that, even when you’re tackling a cover, getting on the horse again isn’t always effortless.

If Stefani is a tad on edge this morning, that’s nothing compared with where she was a year and a half ago, when she finally accepted she was having no luck recapturing the magic that helped No Doubt sell over 20 million records. As hopelessly stoked about being on the road as she is today, the return of No Doubt was anything but easy.

“All of a sudden we were doing this song that we never even intended to do,” Stefani says. “You think it’s easy to just go in and do a cover, but it’s not. You’re competing against the perfection of the original song. There was that, and then everyone thinking that this was going to be our first comeback single, which it’s not. I think once we got in the studio we realized how much pressure there really was, and that there was this bubble that needed to be popped. It was like, ‘Whoa, where did all this come from?’ We just wanted to go on tour and have fun.”

When Stefani decided in early 2007 that she’d had enough of being a multiplatinum solo artist, she and her bandmates got together to write a new record, only to discover that things weren’t the same as they once were. Pretty quickly, it became evident that, while the will was there, the focus required to write new material wasn’t.

Reached in Florida, where he’s taking his two young kids to Walt Disney World during a break in No Doubt’s tour schedule, guitarist Tom Dumont remembers being initially amped up about returning to action.

“When Gwen came home from tour in 2007,” he recalls, “she said, ‘This is what I’d like to do: I’m planning to get pregnant again, so let’s start writing again. It’s a perfect time—I’ll be home, I’ll be pregnant, and I’ll be able to sing while I’m pregnant.’ So we started getting together a few days each week.”

At first, the members of No Doubt found themselves using their time back together to reconnect. Following an 18-year run, the band went on hiatus in 2004. Dumont started a family with his wife, as well as producing and touring with Matt Costa and doing soundscape work with a project called Invincible Overlord. Young had a kid and indulged in his passion for golf, while Kanal honed his in-demand skills as a producer. Stefani, of course, was the busiest of all, making an effortless transition to a solo career with two platinum-shifting records (2004’s Love. Angel. Music. Baby. and 2006’s The Sweet Escape). In between tours that found her selling out hockey arenas, she managed to give birth to a son with rocker-husband Gavin Rossdale, and also launch her own much-hyped clothing line, L.A.M.B.

With everything that was going on in their lives, it was perhaps no surprise that the bandmates, who started out as kids playing third-wave ska in an Orange County garage, had drifted apart.

“There was a little bit of getting to know each other again,” Dumont notes. “Although we’d been in touch during the time apart, we weren’t together like we used to be. In the old days, we lived together in a bus for months on end.”

While the goal was to make a new record, those initial bonding sessions looked like the early days of the band, with everyone sitting around eating and shooting the shit. It gradually became clear, however, that things had changed since the group’s last album, Rock Steady, which not only went stratospheric after its release in 2001, but also marked No Doubt’s official transition from ska-pop torchbearers to beat-blasted urban-dance kingpins.

“We kept trying to write for a couple of months,” Dumont reveals. “And for whatever reasons, Gwen wasn’t in a mode where she felt inspired to write lyrics. She didn’t know what to write about, she didn’t know how to approach the album, and it just wasn’t flowing. So we took a break for her to have a baby, and my wife had a baby at the same time.”

Even in the midst of the insanity that comes with caring for a newborn, Stefani was obviously thinking about more than dirty diapers, sterilizing bottles, and praying to good God above for more than three hours of uninterrupted sleep.

“We were having dinner, I think in November of last year,” Dumont remembers. “She said, ‘Guys, you know what would really help me? Let’s just go out and play some shows. I want to get back into shape, and back into the mode of being the singer of this band and all that that entails.’ As an idea, it was kind of naughty. We would get to go out on the road and have all the fun of touring without putting in the effort of making a record. That’s how it all came down. We were all excited because playing live is what we’ve always been about. Before we ever made records, we played shows—there’s a big camaraderie that goes along with that.”

Stefani doesn’t mind admitting that she was frustrated at the lack of progress she was making in the studio.

“It wasn’t really happening,” she says candidly. “I feel like I was kind of knocking my head against a wall and also not feeling very modern at home. The idea was to just get out there and forget about all that. It’s like, if it’s not working in that situation, you have to take yourself out of it, get in a different place, and change it up.”

Looking back, she’s crystal clear on why she found herself unable to focus. When you have your first kid, everything changes, with days suddenly scheduled around afternoon naps, late-night feedings, and 5 a.m. wake-up calls. When you have two, as Stefani now does—three-year-old Kingston and 11-month-old Zuma—all hell breaks loose, to the point where getting anything accomplished becomes mission impossible.

“It’s crazy,” she says bluntly. “This kind of life is very self-indulgent, and having kids is very much the opposite of that. You don’t want to miss out on being a mom and being there for them. You can’t just go, ‘Okay, I’m going to go write a song from 2 to 5 when they are having their nap.’ ”

Laughing, she continues: “I’m not used to that. I’m used to rolling in at 4 o’clock, eating, and then maybe by 1 in the morning start writing a song. Being up all night? That life is gone. I did it last time [for The Sweet Escape] when I had a baby, but it’s different when you have a baby and a three-year-old.”

No one in No Doubt is begrudging her that. Dumont sees the band as a family that has grown up together. Still, one might be tempted to read between the lines when the guitarist admits that he didn’t expect Stefani’s solo career to take off the way it did, sticking No Doubt on the back burner just when it was coming off the career-reshaping Rock Steady.

“When the break came, and it was a number of years ago now, it was time,” Dumont offers. “We had worked so hard for so many years, and toured so hard, everyone really did need the time off.”

Pausing, he adds: “Although the idea of our singer going off and doing a solo tour… Umm, that wasn’t the most exciting thing.”

Stefani also acknowledges that her solo success was probably harder on the other members of No Doubt than they let on.

“When I did The Sweet Escape, there was this kind of thing where it was ‘Oh no, how am I going to tell these guys that I want to do another [solo] record?’ ” she notes. “But it’s one of those things where you have to follow the inspiration when it hits. We’re experiencing that right now—it’s like the inspiration [for a new No Doubt album] wasn’t there. I couldn’t write. I could sit in a room with those guys every day and spend the time, but if the songs aren’t going to come out, they aren’t going to come out. It’s not like there’s a magic button you press. I had to write those songs [on The Sweet Escape] when they were coming to me, and, because these guys are my best friends, they got that.”

Indeed, Dumont is quick to add that he couldn’t be happier with the way things turned out for Stefani.

“Gwen had grown up in the band, in a way,” he says. “At the point when we took that break, she was an adult on her own. I think for her to get out from under the band and make her own decisions and follow her own inspiration was an important thing. A band is like a marriage in that it’s always a compromise for all the parties involved. That can be hard, getting married when you’re 17, and then finding yourself in your 30s and going, ‘Hey, I want to do my own thing for a few minutes.’ ”

The most pleasant surprise about the reunion, then, is that the marriage that is No Doubt suddenly seems new and shiny, instead of like four people doing their best to recapture a slowly dying flame, something that was the case before the hiatus.

“One of the great things about this tour,” Dumont says, “is that, having been away for so long, everything is fresh again. It’s kind of like getting the chance to do this again a little bit older and wiser and finding that some of the negative aspects of touring so long and having slogged it out for years are kind of in the past.

“When you’re living in a bus for years together,” he continues, “it can get to be a grind, and it did towards the end of the Rock Steady tour. We didn’t realize at the time we needed a break, because we always had this ethic of working hard and pushing ourselves more. Now we’re refreshed and our batteries are recharged. Hopefully, that will lead us towards making a great record. That’s the goal after this summer vacation.”

Whether No Doubt is able to recapture the songwriting mojo that made it one of the alt-rock boom’s most iconic acts remains to seen. What’s indisputable, though, is that Stefani is in no way unhappy about where she is today. No Doubt is not only on tour, but it all feels so good that, even on the rare days when she’s a little agitated, she’s still having a blast.

“There’s nothing like the chemistry between us four,” she practically gushes. “I feel so lucky to have the history that I have with my band. We’re going to be playing the biggest show of the tour tonight in Philadelphia—I think we’re at 24,000 people. We’re all so pumped up and excited about it. It’s one of those things where it’s hard to take it all in. We weren’t expecting all of this, so we’re definitely having fun.””

Tony interview

Saturday, July 4th, 2009

Hello! There’s a new interview with Tony on

“No Doubt bassist Tony Kanal is pleasantly surprised with his band’s reunion tour. Not only are the bandmates having the time of their lives, but fans are as well, he reports.

“It’s unbelievable,” said Kanal, calling from Virginia Beach, Va., where No Doubt was to have a show in a couple hours. “It’s so much fun. I think we’re pleasantly surprised it is this big and the response has been phenomenal. We’re just having a great time.”

Kanal explained that when No Doubt, which also includes singer Gwen Stefani, drummer Adrian Young and guitarist Tom Dumont, stepped on stage for the first time after a four-year hiatus, the chemistry was tangible.

One of the first shows we did was headlining the Bamboozle shows in New Jersey (in early May),” Kanal said. “It was a huge audience, like 30,000, 35,000 people. Gwen asked the audience, ‘How many people are seeing No Doubt for the first time?’ I would say the majority of the people responded, which was very interesting and cool to see that there’s a whole new generation of kids who haven’t seen us before, who are getting turned on to us now.”

Kanal chalked up the new audience to Stefani’s solo career. Stefani released her debut solo album – “Love. Angel. Music. Baby.” – in 2004. Inspired by music of the 1980s, the album featured the single “Hollaback Girl,” reportedly the first U.S. digital download to sell 1 million copies. Her follow-up solo album, 2006’s “The Sweet Escape,” spawned “Wind It Up” and the title track.

“I think (Stefani’s solo work) maybe exposed (No Doubt) to a whole new audience,” said Kanal, who, during the break wrote songs for Stefani and Pink, as well as others. “When you look out into a No Doubt audience tonight, it’s really diverse. I think you’ve had the people who have been following us for many, many years. You’ve also got those same people bringing their kids now. Then you’ve got a lot of people who were turned on to No Doubt through Gwen. They were fans of her solo work and they’re aware that she’s in a band, and for the first time they’re coming to see her band, the band that she’s been in for all these years.”

Next up for No Doubt, when the U.S. tour wraps up in Hawaii in mid-August, is a new album. The band members began writing the record before they headed out on tour.

“We got in the room, we started playing, writing,” Kanal said. “There was about two or three sessions that I did with Tom and Adrian where we just went in with our producer, Spike Stent, and put a bunch of ideas down on tape. Then last year we – Tom and myself – did a couple sessions with Gwen. We have a bunch of really, like, exciting seedlings of ideas but nothing really in shape enough to say, ‘This is a song and this is a song.’ So, it was at that point that we just said, ‘OK. We need to go play some shows and get out there again, instead of banging our heads against the walls and trying force a record out. Let’s get out there get inspired, reconnect with each other, reconnect with our audience and come back and make a record.”

“And that reconnection is going well, he reported. Kanal said it feels like No Doubt is exactly the same band that they were 22 years ago.

“I feel that we have the same energy on the stage and we have the same connection on stage and we have the same amount of fun that we’ve always had,” Kanal said. “It’s just awesome. It’s a different dynamic behind the scenes. My bandmates have all have their kids and their families out. So it’s a little bit different as far as that goes. But it’s just a refreshing, nice change. We’re so fortunate and blessed that we get to experience all these things together still as a band, including now having kids on the road with us.”

Happy birthday to Dennis Stefani!  Happy 4th of July to you US peeps, too!!!!

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