"Pre-Morrissey" Interviews with Jesse and Matt


wasted 8 of her 9 lives.
My Brother-in-law, an avid guitar player and collector, has a huge collection of old music magazines, all the usual ones, (RS, Spin, Filter), but also niche ones like "Fender Frontline", and other more indie 'zines, going back to the mid-1980's. Browingsing through some of them the past few weeks, I found two Morrissey-related ones, an interview with Jesse from 1995, and one with Drummer Matt Walker from 2000. (Scroll to the bottom of the page for the Matt interview link!)

The Spring 1995 issue of "Fender Frontline" has an interview with Alanis Morissette's guitar players, and Jesse is one of them. I learned a few things about him that I didn't know before, like his p/t work in a vet clinic in between the RHCP and Alanis gigs.
I don't have a scanner, but I typed it up since it was relatively short.

Jesse Tobias:

Luck has certainly smiled upon Austin, Texas, native Jesse Tobias: just

23,Tobias is playing in his third major label band, travelling the world

with Alanis Morissette. Of course a little hard work along the way bolstered

his good fortune. Tobias picked up his first axe at the age of seven. "I

just always wanted to play guitar," he says. Jesse considers himself mostly

self-taught and counts War and Santana among his earliest influences.

"My tastes always change. I liked Hendrix, I liked [Nirvana guitarist Kurt]

Cobain's playing a lot." After a few years spent knocking around clubs

deep in the heart of Texas, Tobias' first band Mother Tongue decided to

relocate to Los Angeles. But a funny thing happened on the road to stardom:

while recording Mother Tongue's debut, Jesse was asked to join the Red Hot

Chili Peppers. While it was difficult to leave his hometown buddies behind, the

gig was a dream come true. (The Chili Pepper's last album, Blood Sugar Sex

Magik, had sold several million copies.) Jesse left the band after just

three months, but he heard about the Alanis Morissette demo, got a copy

and set up an audition. (He was working part-time vaccinating dogs in a Malibu veterinary clinic

when he tried out for Morissette.)

It's been smooth sailing since then, and Tobias

couldn't be happier. "We've come a long way," he says. "Touring really

brings out a band like us. It kind of puts everybody on the spot, but

we've developed in a really cool way." On the road, Jesse plays a '63 Fender

and a '65 Fender Mustang, mostly holding down the rhythm parts.

He credits the band's cohesive playing to the months of steady touring

they've done since last summer.

Matt Walker Interview from Pando 'Zine 2000:

Matt discusses working with his brother Solomon, and the band they were both in at the time, Cupcakes.(Interesting trivia from the article: Their self-titled debut album was produced by none other than Stephen Street! )
Matt also talks about his family, working with Billy Corgan, 80's new wave, writing music, and his admiration of Ric Ocasek and Sting. Matt says that "The Police" are his all-time favorite band!

Pando Magazine Interview, Summer 2000
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