To everybody...

first, a lot of you are writing in and asking if BR is playing your area.
First off, since all the BR info ever is almost exhausted in conversation
here, if any signifigant batch of tour dates comes out, someone on the list
is gonna post it, if not Len.  so if anyone is looking for BR, go to, Ticketmaster might have info, or I think the best one is  This site has tons of better
stuff in a better delivered format.  Anyway...enough of that crap.  

@@@@Anyone going to see Mr. T. Experience, ME First and the Gimme Gimme's,
with Groovie Ghoulies and two other bands in Minnesota on Sunday Oct. 12.?  


Subject: An interview with Jay

This interview was originally published in Life In a Bungalo #6.
It can be republished with my permission only.  I think it sheds some
light on Jay's relationship with Brett, and is one of the best interviews
I ever have done.
George (LIABungalo): The Gray Race seems a lot lighter then Stranger Than
Fiction.  Do you feel there were any differences in making this one; any
less of a push from the record label? 
Jay Bentley: Letís get the label out of the way.  They donít have
anything to do with what we do, and they donít give a shit.  We told them
flat out, we make records, and thatís what we do for a living, so weíll
the record, and you sell it.  They donít care what we put on it.  As far
as lighter; do you mean the sentiment?  
The sound? 
George: It seemed almost fast and cheery.  Stranger was pretty dark and
Jay: I donít know, I never thought of it that way.  I donít think I care
much for Stranger Than Fiction.  
George: I kinda liked it. 
Jay: I didnít hate it.  I donít think this album is cheerier lyrically. 
I think itís probably a little more painful personally.   
George: Should I ask why? 
Jay: Thereís a lot of things going on in everybodyís lives, and that
usually dictates what you write about.  You write about what you know. 
Weíve spend the better part of our career writing about how we perceive 
things.  The last few years weíve also been writing about how it affects
us.  So itís a combination of how we perceive things and how it affects
us.  On the Grey Race it was a lot more of how it affects us versus just
a question.   
George: Are you working on a new album yet? 
Jay: Yeah. 
George: How far into the project are you? 
Jay: Weíve got a live album.  How far are we? 
Brian Baker: Weíre about half way. 
Jay: Weíre mixing songs from live shows.  Weíve been recording this whole
tour.  Thatís just a project though.  It doesnít count as a new album. 
The next studio album will probably be late next year.  Weíve got 
five or six songs for that right now.   
George: How long have you been on tour for?  Where have you been, and how
many tours have you done for this album? 
Jay: Five tours.  Weíve basically been out since January.  Weíve got
Japan, Australia, and South America after this.   
George: Is the writing any different on this album since Brettís not on
Jay: Very much so, Brett was a very big factor in the writing.  Since
heís not writing anything anymore, basically, Brian brought in about four
and a half musical writings- some songs and some just parts, and Greg 
wrote the rest on his own.  On one half, it would have been a problem if
Greg was lacking in an area to write in, but he felt a lot more open
about writing types of songs that he wasnít writing before, because Brett

would write them.  Brett wrote specific types of songs and Greg wrote
specific types of songs.  Greg had a good time writing songs that he
wouldnít normally deliver to the band, because he just believed that
would just write a specific type of song. 
George: Political stuff? 
Jay: No, Brettís not a very political writer.  Heís more into prose. 
Gregg was always the political type of writer.  So to write the prose
kind of stuff... I donít think any of us want to go back to slick black
midnight crying lamp post type of shit.  We were like, ďWhat the hell are
you saying?Ē  Iíve been in this band saying that since day one.  What
does that mean?  But I was always interested in trying to figure out
ďWhat are we getting at; what are we trying to say?Ē  Brett got to the
point where it was, not only do I not know what it means, but nobody
knows what it means.  A lot of the sentiments in the songs donít mean
anything to anybody.  It was just blabbering.  On the whole, I feel that
the Grey Race is a lot more complete.  It sounds more like an album
instead of a collection of weird songs. 
George: I liked the last two albums. 
Jay: I liked Recipe, but we really could have done without Stranger. 
Itís an OK album, but not one of my favorites. 
George: Recipe For Hate; Iíve seen it listed as an Atlantic album and as
an Epitaph album.  What label is it on? 
Jay: Epitaph released the first 250,000, and then Atlantic bought it from
Brett, and they have been releasing it since.  Basically, the first
pressing of it was Epitaph and everything subsequently has been Atlantic.

George: Is Atlantic treating you guys differently or better? 
Jay: No, they treat us about the same as we treated ourselves.  They
leave us alone, basically, which is what we asked for.  We said, look,
weíve been doing this on our own for a long time, and itís come to the
point now, where itís either the band or the label.  I donít want to sit
behind a desk; I want to play music.   
George: Were you all involved in Epitaph? 
Jay: I worked there; Brett owned it, and that was his problem.  He
assumed he could do both, but in reality you could do both if the band
you were in wasnít on the label youíre in as well.  Believe me, you donít
want to have an argument between five band members and one guy stands up
and says, ďWell as the record label, I say youíre doing this.Ē   
George: Were you under contract? 
Jay: Of course we were.   
George: How did that work? 
Jay: Brett gave us a contract.  Itís really funny.  People assume that we
had this strange and free relationship, but we were under contract to a
record label, just like any other band.   
George: I just figured since you created it, you were free to do what you
Jay: You would figure that.  So people are like, ďWell how could you
leave.Ē  Well we walked into Atlantic with our contract, and said, ďThis
is what we want you to give us.Ē   
George: Whatís your favorite album or song by Bad Religion?  Does anyone
like Into The Unknown? 
Jay: Yeah, thereís stuff on there that is OK.   
George: My personal favorite is Chasing The Wild Goose.   
Jay: I have no problem with anything off that.  It could have done
without the keyboards, I suppose.   
George: You were in the band at the time? 
Jay: I was in the band for half of the first song, and then walked out in
the middle of it.  I wasnít really interested in pursuing a progressive
rock career.  Itís a good album by the wrong band. 
George: What was going on between the years that the band disbanded and
Suffer came out? 
Jay: Into The Unknown came out in Ď84.  In Ď86 there was Back To The
Known, the EP.  Not a whole helluva a lot.  Greg was going back to
school.  I wasnít in the band, and Brett wasnít in the band.  It was 
basically, Greg and Hetson, and whoever would play drums and bass.  They
would play four or five shows a year.  There really wasnít anything
happening.  But there wasnít really anything happening in LA either.  We 
had gotten to the point where everything went metal, and punk rock was
basically shunned from the clubs.  Since that was what Bad Religion was,
and they all new it, we were werenít going to change our names and become
a metal band like a lot of other bands did, or try to change our style,
and try to accommodate ourselves into the clubs.  We kind of just fell
apart like everybody else.   
George: What do you listen to? 
Jay: Mostly Celtic.  Folk music.  I like the new SamIam album, I hope it
comes out on some label.  Just weird shit.  I donít listen to music the
same way I used to.  I used to listen to it passionately, now my ears 
just canít take any more music.  If that makes any sense.  Itís really
kind of sad, Ďcause it used to be such a big part of my life- just
sitting back and listening to music, and just getting into an idea of
whatever this song was... seeing this video in your head.  MTV kind of
ruined that for everybody, by giving you their idea instead of creating
your own.  At this point I just listened to so many different styles of
music, but nothing 
really in particular. 
George: How did you come up with the 21st Century video?  I always
thought that was neat. 
Jay: The directorís idea was to somehow get us on a television screen,
but to have us appear in a 3 dimensional way.  So we filled up a plastic
swimming pool, like a 5,000 gallon swimming pool with water, 
green food dye, formaldehyde, and some toxic emulsifier.  We had a friend
of ours from Heal The Bay come down and look at he told us that he
wouldnít get in that water, but we did anyway.  It was just this thick 
green liquid, and we painted ourselves blue.  The idea was we were all
going to be static, like the background is.  And the reason for us being
blue and the water being green, is that when we would feed the 
picture into the computer it could differentiate between us and the
water.  So that way we could give ourselves some definition.  When the
second edit came in with the the static in the back with us blue, we 
liked it so much we just left us blue.   
George: Are those apples in the background of the video? 
Jay: Those are ping-pong balls.  I still canít figure that out. We were
in the middle of shooting, and like someone yelled, ďOh yeah, throw in
the ping-pong balls.Ē  They like poured in a thousand orange ping-pong 
balls. I was like what the fuck is that for.  I still donít know the
meaning behind that. 
George: The song Operation Rescue, you donít seem to be playing it much
Jay: Weíve been playing it. 
Brian: Weíve been playing it for the past couple of nights... 
Jay: We wonít be playing it tonight, but weíve been doing it lately.  A
lot of that has to do with still teaching Brian... he needs to learn 160
songs.  So itís like tonight.  What did we teach him tonight?  Quality or
Quantity.  I think there comes a time for a band, I donít know about
every band, shit weíve been together for seventeen years.  Weíve played
those songs thousands of times, and I know a lot of people still want to 
here them, but I know a lot of people that come and see us every year and
all we do is the same songs plus five or six new ones.  Greg and I have
been talking, and I would like to play a lot of songs that we havenít 
played before.  People are like I want to hear Along The Way, well no, we
want to play God Song.   
George: Last time you played here (Stone Pony) you seemed to be playing
only the stuff off of All Ages and the last three albums.. 
Jay: Well unfortunately the greatest hits album is basically just that. 
The All Ages album was Brett and Greg picking their favorite songs, that
they each wrote, but there is no getting around the fact that those are 
the songs that we basically play live and those are the songs that
everyone wants to hear.   
George: So you did have a say in All Ages?  I thought it was just a
squeeze to make money on whatever you guys still had left at Epitaph.  
Jay: I donít know what was happening at Epitaph at that point, I will say
what I was told, and that was that Brett had nothing to do with it, and
it was Andie Caulkinís (?) idea to do this whole thing, and I donít know 
any different then that.  I donít know why it came out.  I didnít really
want it to come out, but itís out.  I donít care.  Thereís not much I can
do about it.  It could have come out with or with out our approval. 
Thatís the being under contract part.   
George: Back to Operation Rescue, is that pro or anti-abortion? 
Jay: Itís about neither one.  Itís about Terry Randall or Randall Terry. 
I donít know what the hell.  Whatever the fuck his name is.  Itís  just a
song about people who actually believe that they have a say in other
peopleís life.   
George: Do you believe that they should or shouldnít? 
Jay: I think that they should just shut the fuck up.  Everybody should
shut up.  Those who are pro-abortion should shut up; those people who are
anti-abortion should shut up, and just leave the people who have to 
deal with a real troublesome issue in their lives to the fuck alone. 
Itís not an easy decision for someone to make, and it really pisses me
off when men think that their going to make decisions for women.  Thatís 
really funny.  You think men would allow women to make decisions on if
men should have vasectomies.  Fuck no.  Never.  Thatís the joke about it.
 Who has the right to say anything about what someone else does?  Thatís
the problem.   
George: Whatís your stand point on all the reunion shows going on?  Does
it bother you that youíve been working all these years and all these band
are just getting back together to cash in on what you helped make. 
Jay: No, not at all.  We donít give a shit.  On one side of the coin itís
great for kids who have never had a chance to see these guy play, whether
itís Kiss or the Sex Pistols or Fear.  On the other hand, some of these
bands believe that they're just going to get back together again and make
a million dollars on a tour... Kiss 
will.  I donít care.   
George: Have you guys gotten burnt out at all from all the touring, have
you reached a point where youíre 
just tired? 
Jay: I think the touring, which is the driving and waiting around is
tiring.  But the playing I never get tired of.  Itís like anything else,
I like doing it.  So sitting around for twenty-three and a half hours a
day is tiring.  
You play for a half an hour, and then cut, youíre into the next day
George: Are you guys married... have kids? 
Jay: The majority of us are married.  Three out of five are married, and
two out of five have kids.  There are four kids, so the ratio would  is
almost one to one, but weíll call it .095.  Letís just do that.   
George: Is there any where you want to go to go to in the future? 
Jay: Home, I want to go home, and I want to go to the moon.  Those are
the two places that I want to go.