Skip to comments.Aging punk rocker still swears - but not near the kids
Posted on 05/08/2007 7:37:13 AM PDT by qam1
As the singer in a punk rock band, Jim Lindberg faces the dilemma of many of his graying contemporaries - how to swear and lead a life of rebellion while raising children and paying the mortgage.
Lindberg, lead singer of California band Pennywise, still dyes his hair and plays songs at full volume but he also drives his three daughters to school, lets them listen to Britney Spears, and pays his taxes.
Lindberg, 41, is one of the aging breed of punk rockers from the 1970s and 1980s who are finding a way to reconcile a life of rebellion with parental responsibilities such as disciplining children and worrying about media violence.
"This is the graying of punk rock where a lot of people who grew up in the 1970s and 1980s are now at an age where they are having kids and getting mortgages. It is a new experience for us," Lindberg told Reuters in a telephone interview.
"The strangest part for a lot of my peer group is that we grew up championing the rights of expression but then you see some slasher movie and won't let the kids watch it."
Lindberg has just written a book about raising a family while staying true to his punk core which is called "Punk Rock Dad" - but he admits he probably won't let his daughters, aged 3, 8 and 10, read it due to the bad language and party talk.
Lindberg said he is one of millions of dads who grew up in the 1970s following Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols and Joey Ramone of the Ramones, adopting punk rock's rebellious attitude toward the establishment and distinctive clothing.
Pennywise, named after the monster from the Stephen King horror novel "It", formed in Hermona Beach, California, in 1988 and is still going, with plans for a new album this year.
In 1996 the band's former bassist Jason Thirsk shot himself at the age of 28 after battling alcoholism.
Lindberg said Thirsk's death was a real wake up call and then he became a father which really made him grow up although some of his peers have changed little from the early days.
"Generation Xers are suffering from prolonged adolescence. You have a lot of people aged 40 and up trying desperately to hold on to their youth, shirking responsibility," said Lindberg.
"It is almost certainly defined by those who do have kids and those who don't. Those with kids have cut down on the party circuit and try to limit time away from their family but those without kids still act like they are 18."
But Lindberg believes becoming a father, who promotes the benefits of vegetables and early bed, does not necessitate abandoning punk rock.
He argues punk music is more about freedom of expression than anti-social behavior - and punk rockers can be conservative and make good, role-model fathers .
"I probably began with the idea that punk rock dads are different from others but I came out the other side realizing that we are really all the same," he said.
"But I think as long as you stick to the ideals of punk music, you can be a grey punk rocker."
IIRC, we chatted before when you were still in "baking mode". She's gorgeous (and of course, I'm in full baby fever now, hoping a second will arrive next year!)
Too bad you don't live closer to Florida (although GA is pretty darn close) -- I'm one of the only conservative Mom's I know. It's just too weird.
My parents live in Naples half of the year, so I do get to FL from time to time, but that’s pretty out of the way unless you’re around Ft. Myers or Miami...
I need to post an updated photo of Stella, she’s getting so big already! Oh my aching back.... ;)
Good luck working on #2! I can’t decide whether to go ahead with that myself (in a few months) or wait a few years first.
Ya the big bad establishment are the ones who sold you that guitar and amp, sold you your clothes and are offering a record deal so that you can sell your soul to rock & roll... and make a lot of money that you won’t be giving a way to the needy in some third world country as much as you cry “f*ck capitalism!” Ya writing rock songs in some mansion on the coast of California and feeling the pain for the world’s poor... and that you can’t get a proper butler that has been to butle school. Ah, woe is me...
Millionaire punk rockers like Green Day... now there's a happy, cash-cow contradiction. But they so desperately want to be thought of as dangerous! They will give you money if you tell them, "Look! You're Johnny Dangerous! George W Bush knows you and fears you!" Such flattery!
And that is one of rock's selling points, why you got to love punk rock music... its so wonderfully moronic.
Kix? Dokken? They rock, right?
Okay, I can’t carry on. Nuclear Assault, Fear Factory, Suicidal Tendancies; you know, the greats!
Regarding your tagline, you should get out of the city and into the ‘burbs. I live in Dacula and it’s all red here!
I was part of the SoCal punk scene, in the day. Still have all my real teeth, it’s a miracle.
One I never managed to see live was Angry Samoans.
“I can’t see too well, what’s it all about.”
“I dunno man, did you poke your eyes out?”
“That right, I did it today. Get hip to the lights out way”
“LIGHTS OUT! POKE, POKE, POKE your eyes out.”
LOL .... If I’d gone into the pit on that one, I probably would be missing a few teeth .... :)
Dacula? My m-i-l works at the middle school there....need I say more? ;) But seriously, we’re putting our house up for sale soon and aiming for Covington, it’s a super-cute lil’ historic town, and not too far for my husband to commute from. Don’t know about the political climate, but after Boston and Atlanta, we can handle anything!
I never knew where that song came from! I have a copy of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones doing that song, as well as a band called Dead Orchestra. I feel complete now.
I beleive you are the only other person I ever heard mention Kix. I had my their cassette stolen out of my car a few years back. I miss them... Rock On!!
I totally understand about #2 -- I think I might have waited too long, since my daughter will be 5 (at least) when a second one comes along (and I'll be 40 or more.)
I marvel at my friends who have 14 to 18 months between kids. I just couldn't deal with a second pregnancy so quickly after the first one.
Now, I'm an Army Dad, working 9-to-5, sporting the high-and-tight cut, wearing a button up shirt while I'm rockin' my Dockers, and enjoying vodka martinis.
Still, when I'm at home, the Old Devil still comes out, and my woman LOVES it.
But the only hippies I know are in their 20's. Nice people, if a little skewed.
I'm a Social Distortion guy, myself. My niece LOVES Social D, too.
Just goes to show that most of today's pop music is utter dreck. I DO like Shakira, Kelly Clarkson, and Pink, though. (Mostly because I think they're hot as hell LOL)
I'm sure my boys would agree with you on that one! Punk stepmom, that is. Or de facto punk stepmom, anyway.
Headbanger Dad here! REPRESENT!
I remember my younger son, banging his little toddler head and making the Sign of the Horns to the tune of Slayer's "Raining Blood".
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