Now for our tenth feature interview, we got a chance to ask drummer, Christian Crowe of Essential Records' group,
All Star United several questions. The interview was completed for your enjoyment on April 13, 1998.
Jesus freak Hideout: Why the name, "All Star United?"
We went about this whole thing backwards, usually you have a name, songs,
and a fan base before you get a deal. We kind of leap frogged off of Ian's
solo career into the band, so when it was time to come up with a name, we had
to appease the record label as well (which wasn't easy!) We spent our days
back then driving around in our van making lists of names. Some were awesome,
some left a lot to be desired. But the label hated all of them. There
suggestions were absolutly horrific! At one point we were almost the Sugartones.
It was a good thing we didn't pick that, 'cause two weeks later we heard the
Supertones for the first time, and that would have been pretty confusing.
Finally, after submitting a name to the label and being rejected for the
umpteenth time, we firmly stated, "OK, it's All Star United or the Tigers!"
They finally agreed to All Star United (after turning it down originally). We
are glad; we like the name; it looks great on a t-shirt!
JFH: How did the band get started?
Christian: Ian had been traveling for about a year, when I met him. His second solo
record was just about to be released. He asked me to play drums in one of his
videos. We got along like sisters, so I suggested if he wanted a drummer for
any shows, to let me know. He hasn't been on a stage since, that I haven't been
on as well, making a racket behind him. Later that same year, we had a band
from New Mexico, the Echoing Green, open for us on tour. Patrick was in that
band, and we thought he was funny, so we stole him. Dave had played guitar on
an early record that Ian had done. So by the time we had put All Star United
together, we figured he had gotten better. Besides he was the only person we
knew that could parallel park a van and trailer. The rest, as they say, is
JFH: How would you describe your sound?
Christian: We feel that we reflect our influences, while adding enough of our own
flair to make any song that we do an All Star Classic!
JFH: What bands have influenced your sound?
Christian: Blur, Menswear, Supergrass, Dodgy, Oasis, Pulp, Radiohead, Ash, Wannadies,
the Longpigs, Gene, James, The Charlatans, Sleeper, Echobelly, Ride, The
Verve, Super Furry Animals, Nancy Boy, Ivy, New Order, Depeche Mode, Ereasure,
The Missing Persons, and dc Talk.
JFH: When All Star is over & done with, as a band, what would you like people
to remember you for?
Christian: I hope that people realize that we were not trying to cash in on the
"Smash Hit," all we wanted to do was entertain, and write songs that pointed
out that life without God was and is pointless, and that the only way to have
eternal life is through Him.
JFH: You guys released your 1st album this past spring, did you have any
goals set while you were making it?
Christian:We wanted to at least finish it by the turn of the century.
JFH: At the end of your album, there's a lady singing an old love song. Who
sings it & why'd you put it on the album?
Christian: That is Ian's aunt singing a song that Ian's grandfather wrote a long time
ago. She was singing it into a Playschool Tape Recorder. Originally we were
going to have Ralph Carmichael orchestrate it and make a whole big band track
out of it, but alas we ran out of time and money. So we put her version of it
on the record. She was quite surprised to find out that we put her on the
record. I'm not sure if she is talking to Ian yet, because of it.
JFH: What is the song "La La Land" about?
Christian: It is plainly and simply about the people who claim to be Christians and
think that because they are that they can sit back and just wait on God to
give them everything. They live in this euphoric place we call la la land.
JFH: What inspired "Torn" to be written?
Christian: The Holy Spirit.
JFH: What lead you to write "Smash Hit"?
Christian: It can get pretty frusterateing living in Nashville in the middle of the
"Industry". I'm speaking of the Contemporary Christian Music Industry. Just
like everything that you want to do full time, at some point it has to be
self-sufficient. You have to be able to make a living doing what you can to
keep doing what you can, if you know what I mean. Because of this, all these
things that started out with completly pure intentions, have become
buisiness'. Now we have Christian Record Stores, Christian Radio Stations,
Christian Record Labels, Christian Rock Bands, Christian T-shirts, Christian
Bumper stickers, at some point you have to look at all this and think are
these still the same good intentions that we started with or are we just
trying to make a buck by putting the word Christian in front of it. God
doesn't need all of this to be God. Like we say in concert, "2000 years ago
God didn't need all these things and if He was walking the earth now, someone
would try to be His booking agent. Jesus Christ is a Smash Hit on His own
JFH: What is your favorite ASU song?
Christian: It changes from time to time, but at this point and it's been this one for
quite awhile, it's "Lullaby." I think It's my inner child that likes being sung
to sleep. : )
JFH: What's your favorite movie?
Christian: The Wedding Singer.
JFH: Which do you prefer Mello Yello or Mountain Dew?
Christian: Dr. Pepper.
JFH: What does the future hold in store for All Star United?
Christian: We are currently putting the finishing touches on a whole new batch of
songs. We go into the studio on May 2nd, to start recording. These new songs
are great! We are all real excited about finally having enough material to
fill a headlining set. It has been difficult, because we have been out on
stage in front of thousand of people that want us to play over and hour show
and we only have 45 minutes of music at our disposal. We have done three
officials tours of the US and many other dates and gigs here and abroad. We
have played this record live so many times. We are very ready to have some
new exciting rockin songs!
JFH: Do you listen to Christian Music? If so, what bands?
Christian: Generally the bands we listen to are the ones that we have toured with or
done shows with and we like them; such as Fold Zandura, Delirious, and Third Day.
JFH: Any last comments?
Christian: Yes, the new All Star United record hits the shelves December 31st, 1998.
Please buy it! In the mean time if you happen to hear that we are coming to
town, go see us. Remember God wants to have a personal relationship with you.
Talk to Him!