When it comes to all things snowboard-related, Shaun White is the Ice Man. The Olympic and X Games gold medalist has never had any problems in the half-pipe, but on the first major tour by his band, Bad Things, White told MTV News he’s definitely had some stage fright.
“It’s just a whole different scenario,” said White, just before the group took the stage for the first of two gigs at the Lollapalooza festival in Chicago over the weekend. The first, on the Kidzapalooza stage, found White and the gang joined by Lolla founder Perry Farrell, who also pressed Shaun into stepping in as a headliner on another stage on Saturday night after Death Grips bailed on their performance.
“The only thing I can say that’s comforting is everything else that I do in the world of sports it’s just me,” said White, who plays lead guitar. “This is this collaborative team effort, we’re all going to be out there together. It’s not up to me, it’s up to us.”
In addition to a promo tour that last’s through the end of the week, White and the rest of the Los Angeles-based band have spent time in the studio and finished their major label debut for Warner Bros. Records. The as-yet-untitled disc was produced by Rob Schnapf (Beck) and the first single, the Coldplay-meets-Blink-182-like slice of dreamy pop rock, “Anybody,” will be available on iTunes mid-month.
But with the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, less than a year away, is White worried that he’s neglecting his snow duties for show duties? “It completely interferes with everything else that I’m doing,” laughed White about the time commitment to the band. “But that’s why it’s good. For me it’s nice to take a break from the sporting world of things and have fun and play music.”
Frankly, it’s because of snowboarding that White finds himself in this enviable position. Years ago, he won a guitar at a competition and he learned how to play on that instrument. “That’s how I started playing,” he said. “It’s funny how intermixed my world of sports is with music … I was actually ashamed to play it out in public because it was yellow and had an X-Games logo on it.”