Junkie is a four-piece garage punk band from San Antonio, Texas. We got to talk to them about their upcoming album and working with Vertigo Volumes to play their first headline show in Southern California.
ALTANGELES: How did you meet and start the band?
JAMES: It was high school, right?
DANIEL: You’re saying it like you had the question, like did we meet in high school? Yes we met in high school. Me and Mark met in high school and Mark and James had a band going on.
MARK: Me and James went to the same middle school and we lived in the same neighborhood. We were playing music together, but then I quit that and started doing Junkie. James was my best friend, still is, and I asked him to jam with me. In high school I met Daniel, he’s a cool guy so we asked him to jam with us. We added Nick recently, we’ve known him forever through the scene back home.
JAMES: We were all doing our own thing.
What are each of your roles?
MARK: I play guitar and sing.
DANIEL: I play bass.
NICK: I play guitar.
JAMES: I play drums.
What is the songwriting process like?
MARK: I just write whatever I’m feeling and what sounds good to my ear. I try not to think about it because then I get upset, and I don’t like that. I don’t want to get frustrated, it’s supposed to be fun. I’m just trying to throw out what I like to hear and what I think other people like to hear. Before I used to write all the time but now I’ll write songs and we’ll write songs every now and then together.
Who inspires you when you’re making music?
MARK: Honestly I don’t have anyone who inspires me. Not in a cocky way or anything.
DANIEL: He inspires himself.
JAMES: We always come back to my dad.
DANIEL: James’ dad is our real inspiration, a true rockstar.
JAMES: My friends all around me are constant inspirations.
DANIEL: The environment we surround ourselves in really inspires us.
Why did you name the band “Junkie”?
MARK: One-word, simple, you can relate to it in anyway – bad or good. There’s always a story behind any word and I liked it because it’s simple and you know what it is.
How has it been working with Vertigo Volumes to play your first headline show in SoCal?
MARK: Those guys are so kind to us. We met them back in like 2016. We used to watch their videos back at home when we were nobody and think man, I wish we could play their shows. They really hooked us up this time.
DANIEL: Nick’s a cool guy.
MARK: Nick and the whole team.
You have a new album coming out soon, can you give us any info on that?
MARK: Yes, we just finished an album together so we’re waiting to drop all those songs, so for now we’re just chilling. It’s gonna be on vinyl that’s for sure. We’re waiting for the label to tell us when it will be released, but we are thinking July.
JAMES: It’s called Fast Times.
DANIEL: We got ten tracks, ten new songs.
If you could collaborate with any band or artist, who would it be?
JAMES: The Ramones. Or someone really crazy like Elvis or Ritchie Valens.
MARK: I don’t know if I would want to collaborate with them because they probably wouldn’t want to collaborate with me but I would love to hang out with Tennis for a day. I love them.
What is your biggest roadblock when it comes to creating?
JAMES: Ourselves, our brains.
MARK: The label.
DANIEL: The fact that we can’t release things and can’t do it on our own. That we have to depend on someone else.
JAMES: It’s not as easy as it is when we can push it out ourselves.
MARK: It be like that.
If you were a cover band, what band would you cover and what would you call yourselves?
ALL: The Ramones.
DANIEL: The Ramonies.
JAMES: The Rams?
MARK: That’s the only band I would want to cover.
What artists or albums have you been into lately?
JAMES: I’ve just been stuck on Frank Ocean for such a long time.
NICK: The Cure.
DANIEL: I always go blank on this. Anderson .Paak.
MARK: Honestly I’ve been digging and listening to Beach Goons’ new album. It’s so good. That and a lot of NPR.
Is there anything else you want to add?
JAMES: Stick it out with us until this next album comes out and you guys will be happy.
MARK: It’s gonna be worth it, you guys will have vinyl and merch and more shows, it’s gonna be awesome.
JAMES: Sorry it took so long, but it’s gonna be badass.