Scott Shriner Experience interview with Scott Shriner - August 2002
What were you like in junior high and high school?
I was a messed up kid all through that time - too much going on in my head, like a lot of young people. I had no idea how to fit in. I sucked at sports and kept trying anyway. I was a small guy and not too sporty; the only way I could deal was [to] saturate myself in music. It was the one thing that I loved. I smoked a lot of weed and hid out behind buildings with my couple of friends trying to get someone to buy us beer. Followed girls around at malls…hahaha…and got high…I found another misfit who played drums and we would jam every day after school. Learning Rush, Police, and other songs we could figure out. So I spent a lot of time in basements and hiding behind buildings. I was what was considered at that time a stoner. I don’t smoke weed anymore.
If you had not joined Weezer, where would you be now?
In LA trying to make a living…I would be sad that Weezer got a new bass player and I wasn’t it!!!!!!! Hahaha…I played with a band called Broken, but we weren’t happy and I am sure I would be auditioning for bands and playing with as many people as I could…just trying to be a better musician.
If you have not already noticed, [people on] the weezer.com message boards refer to you as “hardcore” all the time. Do you think the word "hardcore" sums you up? If not, what words do?
Goofball, freak...Aww man, I don’t know, I just wanna rock is all!!!
How does your family feel about your fame? Do they think it’s weird that you have fans, etc.? Also, do you have any siblings?
It is just me, my dad and ma, and my sister Lori. I brought my dad out for a couple of days on the Enlightenment Tour and he had a blast. I wish I could bring them all out all the time…they have always been really supportive and continue to be that way.
In your time in Weezer, what is the most embarrassing thing that’s happened yet?
Probably the first time we did "Holiday" in Japan and I messed up the breakdown. Rivers started laughing at me and got me all messed up. It is on the Lion and the Witch record that is coming out this month….what a laugh we had…har hahahhahaarrrrrr...
When you are not touring/being really, really busy, what kinds of things do you do?
I like to listen to music and practice/learn songs. I like working out and running. It gives me a rush.I am always looking for old basses to add to my family. I found a couple last time we were in L.A. They are hard to find these days, so it is challenging. I like driving around L.A. at night. I was hoping to take a road trip on my own this fall around the country, but it looks like we might start working sooner than I thought. I could be driving around your town at night so look out. Hahaha.
What’s your relationship with the other band members like?
Man, we get along really good. I can have a blast with anyone of the guys.
Exactly one year ago today, (the 18th) you became the “fill in bassist” for Weezer. Just a couple of days later, you had your first show with them, where you played a 10-12 song set. How did you possibly perfect each song on the set and become a true member of Weezer in only a short period of time?
I hardly perfected the set, that is for sure. I have always been good at picking up songs. That was a challenge though. It was the biggest show I had ever done and my first with Weezer. I am glad that my friend jumped on my back. It broke me out of my trance. It was wild.
Every single Weezer fan is dying to know this: Why do you use your birthday when you sign autographs? And also, What does that cross sign mean?
I have always dug symbols. It has always interested me since I was small. I was a World War II freak when I was a kid...since I was 10 or so...and all the different symbols and numbers that country’s would use on their equipment and uniforms - how they claimed their group and were proud of it. Like old times when ships would identify themselves to each other by flying flags; you knew if they were friend or foe. People had pride in their set or platoon or tribe or whatever. Some of the groups were less than positive but it is a part of the world. It is history.
I have pride in my set, my tribe. If I am the only one, I will represent. 711 is my number. The crossed hand grenades are borrowed from a tank division. I don’t follow other tribe’s beliefs - I follow my own. I have my symbols to identify myself. It is ancient. You know when the Hells Angels roll into your town. They are a proud group. They stick together, watch out for each other. The Masons wear rings and have codes. They don’t wear big emblems on their back like the H.A. but they can identify each other. They watch out for each other. It is a brotherhood. Can you dig it?
Why do you use those two very worn basses?
Old instruments have a vibe to them - a personality. The ones I have feel like family to me. I don’t get that feeling from a lot of basses. Fender has been giving me some to try out. I really like one of them. It is new and will take forever to break in, but it is cool. Not as cool as my old guys, but it has potential. I look for instruments that speak to me, that have something to say.
What’s something about you that people would never guess?
I was in the Marine Corps.
What is one thing that irritates you to no end?
Birkenstocks. And bad drummers.
What was it like being around the Muppets during "Keep Fishin'"? Were you happy with how it turned out?
It was really fun. Being around a bunch of puppets has a way of making you happy. You can’t help it. Marcos did a great job. Besides our shitty acting, I think it turned out fantastic.
What’s your favorite tattoo? Does it have any meaning?
All my tattoos have some meaning to me. The Cancer symbol on my hand is my favorite one today.
What do you think of MTV's, The Osbournes? Is that a weekly ritual for the band?
I don’t know what the other guys think or watch, but I don’t like to watch that show. I would rather watch Jackass - that is funny to me. I have a lot of respect for Ozzy and it is hard to watch him all fucked up and confused.