Dirtbag Journalism

Brontez Purnell : Old Skool, New Skool, Fag Skool

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2009 at 5:34 AM

BrontezYour not going to meet many dudes like Gravy Train’s Brontez Purnell, believe me. Although he’s known for his antics in Gravy Train!!!, he’s also written for a number of different publications like Jigsaw and he also had a column called “She’s Over It” in Maximum Rock N Roll.  His first zine, Schlepp Fan Zine, was released in the early 2000’s.  The  queer punk zine featured an interviews with The Gossip, Operation Makeout, Los Rabi’s, and Lady Killa, who was also the editor of Crackwhore zine.

In the zine, Brontez also touches on experiences growing up queer and black in a hardcore christian environment. Article titles like “Top Ten Makeout List” and “My Totally Fag-A-Licious Bedroom Dance Party Mixtape” should tell you that this zine was a riot. This was followed by Fag School. This zine only had three issues and their all  just as wild as Schlepp.

Our interview was very straight to the point, but all the bases were covered. Read it below.

1. What’s Gravy Train!!! been up to lately ?

Brontez : Hanging out, school, and trying to figure out the next record.

2. Awesome!! So there is another record in the works ?

B : Yes.

3. The California gay scene has always been a mystery to me. It seems pretty wild and crazy. Can you give me an idea of some of the stuff that goes on ?

B : It’s not that mysterious at all! If you lived here, all you’ll do is art and potentially bone the same 10-12 guys over and over again. It’s beautiful.

4. Where is the best place to cruise for boys ?

B : Church ?

5. It was really weird for me growing up as a gay black kid. How would you say it was for you ?

B : The same. Let’s make out and let the healing process begin.

6. How did The Younger Lovers get started ?

B : I was in a band at the time called Panty Raid. The band broke up and the last song I wrote for it called Sha-boo-lee became the first Younger Lovers song and it all jumped off from there.

7. How was it recording the record ?

B : Super rad, drunk, and fun! It did some of it with Vice Cooler in a basement in Oakland and the rest of it at my house. I had to record all the instruments because I’m an ego-maniac.

8. What band did you like playing in the most ?

B : All of them brought different things to me. I’d have to say The Younger Lovers because I feel the most freedom in this sort of way.

9. You first zine was amazing. What made you start Fag School ?

B : I wanted to be punk.

10. I’ve heard a few entries read on YouTube, which was hilarious. Is their anything you’ve written about based on life experience that you regret ?

B : I don’t think I’ve ever been ashamed of anything.

11. I hear you also DJ. What do you spin ?

B : 60’s soul, pop..ect.

12. Can you come to Toronto ?

B : Yes!!

13. You had a mini interview in BUTT Magazine. According to the interview, you love black boys like a fiend. What is it about the brothers that you prefer over other guys ?

B : I love all men, but I have to admit that there’s this extra understanding(sometimes challenge) that comes with black men. But it’s complicated because not all of them feel the same way. A lot of the time in the gay scene you get brothers hating on other brothers and that sucks. However, in looking I’ve found some extraordinary men that have helped me connect better as a black men with things I was going through when I was too young to articulate. It’s complicated.

14. Have you ever had a guy that was just too big. Any crazy sex stories ?

B : I don’t like big ones all the time. I’m a lazy bottom.

15. I read an interview done by Kevin Ritchie with Juan from Abe Vigoda. Juan talked a lot about Bob Mould’s influence on him. One of the things Kevin and I talked about after reading the interview is how “hush hush” a lot of  the gay punk scene is about their sexuality. What’s your take on that ?

B : It’s definitely true, but it’s fine. I know plenty of punk dudes and at times I’m just like “dude, I don’t wanna know what your scary ass is into”.

16. Last question, you and Jared from Black Lips don’t have the best history. How did you guys work it out ? Give me the short version.

B : Honestly, it was dumb and I wouldn’t want to bore you to death. We didn’t work it out, but on the flip side I just heard Jared got his ass beat by Wavves tour manager. Not to shit on a dead duck, it was music to my fucking ears.




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