|Few artists have mixed music and merriment as well as the punk pranksters in Blink-182 have over the course of the last twelve months. During that time, the San Diego trio of guitarist Tom DeLonge, bassist Mark Hoppus, and drummer Travis Barker has sold more than 3.3 million copies of its "Enema Of The State" LP -- thanks in large part to a devoted fan base the band built up during multiple stints on the Warped Tour as well as its irreverent videos for "What's My Age Again?" and "All The Small Things."
Blink-182 is currently in the midst of one of the most anticipated rock tours of the season, as the band has headed out on the road with wizened socialist punkers Bad Religion as well as its good friends in Fenix TX. A few weeks ago, the tour took a dramatic twist when Barker was jumped prior to a show in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, and suffered an injury to his hand. The Blink boys were forced to enlist the aid of Fenix TX's Damon Delapaz, who switched from his normal guitar duties to taking up the drum sticks for Barker.
MTV News' John Norris caught up with DeLonge and Hoppus shortly after the incident, and the band talked about switching drummers mid-tour, the pros and cons of being a punk rocker, and their thoughts about the tragic circumstances related to "Adam's Song" and the suicide of a Columbine High School student in May.
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John Norris: What was it like, having [Fenix TX guitarist] Damon Delapaz step in on drums for your injured comrade, Travis Barker?
Mark Hoppus: It seemed like it was pretty easy for him. He knew the songs. We've toured with [Fenix TX] a lot, and he was familiar with the music.
Tom DeLonge: That questions our ability as musicians, that in three hours he learned our whole career of best songs.
Hoppus: Not a good sign.
MTV: What actually happened with Travis?
Hoppus: He was at a Taco Bell [in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio] and there were these two redneck losers-yahoo dudes that were physically abusing his girlfriend. So he and his girlfriend left the restaurant and went across the street. [The guys] drove up in their truck and hopped out and just started beating him, and as he was trying to defend himself, he broke his pinkie finger on his right hand.
DeLonge: On one of his hands he [wears] a brace, because he's had troubles with his wrists while drumming -- sorta like a carpal tunnel kind of thing. He had a brace on, and Travis is a small guy, and he was just like, "Damn, I'm not gonna fight you," and then he had to. He got some punches in, I think. [RealVideo]
MTV: Do you guys go out with bodyguards and stuff?
DeLonge: We're not that scared.
Hoppus: I always feel arrogant [walking] around with a bodyguard. We're just totally normal dudes, everyday guys. This is all really new to us, like with people recognizing us when we go out places. I always feel like a dork when I have security with me. Even just walking into a venue, I feel stupid.
DeLonge: After the incident with Travis, we're going to step it up from just one security guard, and we're gonna get wizards and warlocks.
Hoppus: We're gonna have this company called Medieval Security, and we're gonna have wizards come in, and if anyone tries to mess with us, they're gonna put a spell on them.
Trying not to think, keeping fans happy, and loads of live video... NEXT >>>