1,000 Mona Lisas Spill Their Secrets

ATN's Jennie Yabroff reports: An unassuming little band

from Southern California, 1,000 Mona Lisas never expected to be thrust into the

spotlight quite as abruptly as they were a few months ago, when their

aggressively fast version of Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know" began

rivaling the original for radio airplay. Startled by the attention, the band

nonetheless remained true to their roots, and commenced a national tour to try

and earn recognition for their own songs, taking time out to speak with us

about sudden stardom. We spoke to frontman Armando Prado about the band, life

on the road and oral sex in theaters.

Addicted To Noise: What's the

1,000 Mona Lisas story?

Armando Prado: We've been together about

three years. We got together in LA, and started playing in clubs there, and

started traveling up and down the coast quite extensively, and we got signed to

RCA. We were really just relieved, it was what we were aiming for.

ATN: And how did you decide to do the Alanis Morissette

cover?

Prado: We were sitting at Bottom Of The Hill in San

Francisco, and we were thinking, what can we do to mess with people, and we

decided to do that one. It was at the end of July, and she was starting to get

popular. I really just thought maybe a college radio station here or there

might pick it up, but it's been playing all over the country. I didn't change

the gender in the lyrics because I wanted to stay true to what it was, I didn't

see any reason for messing with her lyrics, it's her song. I definitely respect

what she's done. It's funny -- I was interviewed by this Toronto newspaper

yesterday, and they were totally trying to get me to dis Alanis, and I

couldn't. I mean she's paid her dues, she definitely deserves what she's got.

But I guess she was like the Tiffany of Toronto, so their view of her is pretty

mixed.

ATN: Any other covers coming up?

Prado: We don't

want to be known as a cover band, so we may be ending that pretty quickly. This

one cover has gotten us more notoriety for doing covers than we care to have,

but it's also really gotten us where we are. We did do another one for our full

length, but I can't tell you because it's the hidden track.

ATN: Oh,

come on. You can tell us.

Prado: We did "Jet" by Paul McCartney and

Wings. But you can't tell anyone.

ATN: How do you see the band

evolving?

Prado: I see us getting noisier, moodier -- I'd like to do

a Sonic Youth/U2 type thing, but also keep our pop thing.

ATN: Are

you having a good time on the road?

Prado: Yeah, it's us and Red

Five and Mr. Meringue, and it's just like a big incest-fest. It's a big fucking

mess, but we're having a great time.

ATN: You guys got thrown off

stage at Huntington Beach.

Prado: Yeah, I swore. I swore at the

promoter from on-stage, and said this is fucked, because people were moshing on

the sand, and it's like, they're on the beach. If they fall, they fall on sand.

But they wouldn't let them mosh, and they wouldn't let us throw T shirts into

the crowd in case someone got hurt. Huntington Beach is like the punk rock

capital of Orange County, and we're an aggressive, loud band, and it's like,

what do you expect? It was just stupid shit.

ATN: Has the humor gone

out of rock and roll?

Prado: I take my music very seriously, but I

think a certain irreverence is necessary. I mean, we don't do humorous, like,

jokey music, but you should have fun with it, which is what we were doing with

the Alanis Morissette thing. But that is not necessarily indicative of our

music. I wouldn't write "Would he go down on you in a theater."