Skud- lead guitar/vocals
Justin 2X- battle beats
G-Bear- rhythm guitar
Great Scott- bass kicks
One rad, sweltering summer evening, I bombed down 95 to interview the Quickies at their creative chill-out Mecca, the “Man Castle.” I was greeted with smiles and offers of Yuengling from a rebellious and free group of musicians ready to make me feel at home, and blow my hair back with their music. We descended to their basement set-up which smelled richly of smoke. There was a sizable pile of broken drum sticks behind the kit, ground down from the rapid, rhythmic and raw sound I came to learn so much about. They each call it something different - power pop, punk rock, and old school - but they all have their own musical influences and bring it together to make pure energy.
H: Well good evening, my dudes.
I've heard some of your music, I love the energy - and you’re incredibly true to your sound. Great identity! Well done. So, I understand the lineup is Erik “Skud” Steeley on the guitar and lead vocals, “Justin 2x” Gordon on the drums, “Great Scott” Moran with the Bass, and Garrett “G-Bear” Farrow with rhythm guitar and backing vocals.
Tell me a little bit about how The Quickies came to be, and its progression through the present.
Garrett “G-Bear” Farrow: Me and Justin were playing in our other band - Andy Social and the Antidotes - me and him play on a daily basis; we write a lot of music that wasn’t being used in that band, and we wanted to do something else, so we wanted a bass player to make it a three piece. Justin brought Erik over and he was gonna audition for bass - but he wanted to play guitar, so we just started jamming.
“Skud”: The Quickies is my first real band, I played a few gigs in a live karaoke band before this. Well, I’m from Newark originally; but my wife and I bought a house in Wilmington in 2011, and there was not a lot going on here at the time. It meant a lot to me to have friends out here to rock with, so I was here [at Justin’s place] all the time after work and stuff. It didn’t take long before we knew were onto something - so we needed a bass player, I asked Scott at a BBQ and it was lights out from there.
“Justin 2x”: There were like 3 people in line for that day - and once we heard Scott, he was first in line, it was like “Oh! Keep Him.” Know what I’m sayin’, like holy shit. A lot of the new songs are written by Scott! They’re some of our best songs.
Scott: I’ve been playing in bands for around 12 years now, played guitar in a band for about 6 years, played drums for a few years, and it’s been around 2 years since I’ve been playing with you guys now.
H: Well you’re all doing a great job of playing well together. What made you gents decide on the name The Quickies - what’s in a name, where did it come from? I could probably makes some educated guesses, haha!
ES: We wrote a lot of shit down on a piece of paper, and at the same time we were talking about our lives. I was workin’ a job across from my street and I’d get home to see my lady… gettin’ laid on every lunch break. I wanted to call us the “Nooners” but they said “nobody’s gonna get it, what’s a Nooner?” and I said “Well it’s a quicky!” So, alright we’re the Quickies.
GF: You know, we play fast… like punk rock. *everyone laughs*
ES: My theory behind it in the end, is that we’re all a bunch of spontaneous dudes, we like to live in the moment and enjoy our lives. It’s like, we work all fuckin’ week, and then we come in here and get a quickie out. Your whole life is based on just a bunch of quick moments that are fuckin’ awesome, and that’s what we’re trying to harness.
SM: I thought it was a lot less deep than that, I’m sorry. *more laughter*
H: Haha! And the songs are usually under 2 or 3 minutes too. I love the tongue-in-cheek aspect, as well as the deeper philosophy.
Do you guys have favorite bands, genres/eras, that you think influence your sound?
GF: Ramones is the core for me. Initially, Nirvana and the whole Seattle grunge scene got me into playing music - when I was like 13, 14. When I was 16, I got into the Ramones, the Misfits, shit like that and I just stayed there. 20 years later, and I’m still just right in that area with it. I like old blues, I like a lot of shit. The Queers...
SM: Growin’ up one of the biggest influences for me was Cock Sparrer… definitely like that old school Oi, skinhead shit... The Bruisers, Discipline…
JG: *interjects* Teenage Bottlerocket…From bluegrass, to country, to blues and punk rock. I’ve got a lot of influences. The first thing I listened to and got really into was Bluegrass - that was the shit. My dad played the banjo really, really well.
ES: I’m total fuckin’... Minor Threat, Operation Ivy, NOFX for sure. When I was growin’ up in Washington state, my parents took me to live Bluegrass festivals, and these guys would rip SO FAST - on like mandolins and shit. And I was like - they don’t have any fuckin’ percussion, it’s all bass - and I thought “these guys are fucking tight.” And so I always wanted to listen to fast, tight music and when I found punk rock, and metal I was like HOLY SHIT. I can see the relation in the skill, if not the sound. I also love the blues, I’d record it from the radio and learn to play it from the tape.
SM: Not that we sound like bluegrass. At all. [Laughter]
ES: When we were young it was instilled in us to just play fast as fuck.
*Turkey noises imitating shredding*
H: HAHAHAHA. The energy you guys put out is infectious! How do you guys approach writing music? Tell me about your creative process.
ES: There’s a few songs we wrote with just lyrics and a tune in our head. Cop Car Baby, me and Justin wrote down here. One of very few songs we’ve written like that… Most of our songs we usually come up with some kinda riff first.
GF: Whenever we’re here together, the writing process is, finding a guitar or bass riff, Justin adds the drums with the riff and when we all agree it’s clicking, we’ll continue with it, then I can add another guitar. We jam a lot - and a lot of times, the lyrics are often the last part of the process.
JG: There’s really no structure… [Laughter]
ES: I gotta say though… Justin is the fuckin’ driving force of this band. Not to be reckoned with - this fucking dude. I can play a fuckin’ riff - the drummer can make it whatever it’s going to be. He immediately turns everything into rock ‘n’ roll, fuckin’ punk rock.
H: I think you can really hear just about every influence you listed in your writing and how mathematically you play.
What do you think are your greatest inspirations for writing?
GF: I’ve been fuckin’ motivated for the last 6, 7 months whenever I’m over here…when I wanna bust it out, I’ll pop ‘em off like fuckin’ hot cakes.
SM: I binge write, man. I won’t write anything for a couple weeks to a month, and then I’m like - every night for a fuckin’ week I’m putting in 3 hours just recording shit, recording shit… I kind of think if I personally play constantly that I kinda get bored with myself and I’m not putting everything into it - so I give a little bit of a break, and I’m more inspired when I come back and play.
ES: When I get stressed out I’m ready to come the fuck over here, and when I’m pissed off I fucking write. We get here and we get our energy out, you know what I mean…We ExPlOoOdE. [Laughter]
JG: My son, he comes down here and sings with me, and I’ll play his favorite song… he loves Bad Religion and stuff and he’ll sing and I’ll play drums with him.
H: That’s awesome - really it sounds like you all have your own creative processes, and are most inspired by coming together. What do you guys like best - performing, writing, etc? Any favorite jams to perform?
All at once: Live - I love playing live.
ES: I had to wrap my mind around something different, but I play what I like. So I thought we were poppy at first, had so many doubts… but playing live on stage? Fuckin’ changed my life. I overcame so much social anxiety. First show? People were like “alright” and then, second show, people were like “FUCK YEAH!”
SM: I think we’re definitely, as a band, we’re becoming favored in the area for playing shows. We have a pretty broad sound, we can play with different bands of different genres and it’ll still work. I think our newer songs that we play are definitely songs that we like to play the most, and we’re happy we’re fuckin’ nailin’ ‘em, cuz we practice hard and they’re a little more technical than the first songs we wrote--
JG: Yeah! It’s getting better all the time.
SM: “When I Drink” is definitely a song we love to play. You always try to get people - grab a beer, get your shots, put ‘em up! It’s a social thing.
GF: We’re all about fun here, in this camp.
ES: We write our songs about living in the moment, and about having fun. That’s what it’s about.
H: I definitely get that! Hell, I’m having a great time. What do you think you guys uniquely bring to the scene?
GF: We’re something totally different than anything else that’s going on around here - like, it shines through like the Bat Signal…. It’s not the fuckin’ dime a dozen there’s… some of.
SM: I love a lot of [the local] bands. We’ve gotten to meet a lot of rad people and bands around here. And, there’s also a lot of bands that have that same sound, throughout their whole set - they’re a good band, they can play well, but it can get boring. So I think the fact that, a lot of our songs sound completely different, from each other - someone might not like our entire set, but there’s probably going to be people that really dig this song, and these people that really dig this song. So, I think we’re gonna get a little bit bigger group of people liking our shit because we have a different sound.
GF: The fact that we’re having so much fun, and we love playing music so much, doin’ this - people fuckin’ relate to that and they fuckin’ react to it.
H: I feel it too. Thank you so much - I hope you guys are heard far and wide!