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“I’m trying to remember where I first heard the MC5. I think The Presidents Of The United States did a cover of Kick Out The Jams on their big record. Being a little kid at the time, that was prime time for me to listen to that.
“I was always kind of curious about the song; it was one of those phrases that would pop up. I tried to find the MC5 record – this was pre-iTunes or YouTube. I located one on eBay, but it was too much money. But then I managed to find one in, of all places, the dumpster behind the record store. It was like finding the Ark of the Covenant. A light was shining down on this record from up high.
“It was the most punk-rock record I’d ever heard – by being the least concerned about being punk rock. There’s no way I could have seen the band in their era, but in my head they’re the coolest band that ever existed. This record is the mission statement.
“Being from the punk scene myself, one of the things that always pissed me off about punk was its rules. You can’t dress a certain way because that’s what pop people wear. Don’t use melodies like this – pop people do that, too. The one thing about the MC5 and especially Kick Out The Jams that hit me so hard is, it’s musical shit. The melodies and harmonies that shouldn’t be in punk rock are there, and they did it hard.”