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Glen E. Friedman

“IT’S NOT ABOUT ME, IT’S ABOUT
DOING FUCKING JUSTICE TO THE SUBJECTS”

Glen E Friedman by Hisham Akira Bharoocha

I thought to start with approaches to looking and how we see ourselves. It seems live music photographers have been increasingly hemmed to take photos from the gap between the barrier and stage. Photographs of musicians on stage are looking more and more the same: black background, primary-color wheel lighting, the increasingly ubiquitous angle from below. Do these images transmit and reflect something different for you?

Well, it’s generic, you know? People have a formula and then just keep going, and I have my own formula too, but very often people just do what they can get away with and you can see it in the work. Would it last? What’s iconic? What do and what don’t people remember? What makes the impact? When I shot photographs, I didn’t know they were going to last twenty years. I did it because I cared and worked hard at it to make it happen. The style of the photographs you mentioned reminds me of photos that were cross-processed with weird colors and layers, which was really big in the ’90s, because the photographs were basically boring otherwise.

I learned to capture a photographic moment in time thanks in most part to Skateboarding. There was a peak 500th of a second and if that 500th of a second passed and you didn’t click correctly, then you missed it and you were late and your photos didn’t matter. So it’s about setting up your own goals to get a particular type of shot and when it’s a part of your lifestyle you know what’s important. I was a skater so I knew what the right moment was and I loved the music so I knew what needed to be captured. I wasn’t shooting because I was taking an assignment, I almost never took one my whole life and you can count on one hand the number of times I’ve ever shot in a studio. What is that? It’s nothing— you take away all the character, like where a person comes from, why would anyone want to do that?

When I got into hip-hop photography, most photographs at that point weren’t being taken in people’s natural surroundings nor their normal environments and I thought, “What the fuck is that about?” That’s a big part of what makes people and the culture interesting— where it’s coming from and how it’s different. This is what people want to see but you have to show the right balance of the environment and the subject. And sometimes, the environment becomes a part of the subject and other times the environment is just as important as the subject. With skateboarding photography, the reason we used a fisheye lens wasn’t so everything was easily in focus but because very often the location was just as important. You needed to see the skater in relation to his environment and that’s what made it radical or interesting and as a skater you wanted to see the pool, you wanted to know what the skater was doing.

When I got a photograph printed in a magazine at fourteen years old, it was like, “If someone else can do it, why should I do it? I’m just going to copy them?” That doesn’t make any sense. Other photographers at the time were older and they had been doing it longer and were going to get their photos published so I had to separate myself and make my photographs more interesting. And it’s not about competition, but more about proving and pushing yourself to be more, to really speak in your own voice, and that’s what I intend to do with the camera. I try to do something that’s undeniable, something that other people can’t shoot. It also depends on what kind of story you want. Some people might not need a deep story. Okay, you can go look at the gossip pages and bullshit fashion magazines and learn, and that’s okay because you’re a shallow person and all you need is a shallow photo. That’s fine! I don’t give a fuck! [laughs]

Some people have a sense of composition, and some don’t. That said, shooting in the pit, everyone’s pictures are going to look very similar because you have a very limited range of what you can do and it comes down to your timing and your own angle at the moment. And with other people right next to you, it can be hard to move around so I’m always respectful of the audience and never want to be in their way— you need to be like a chameleon. Photographers who think they’re more important because they’re documenting something and think they have the right to get in front of someone else are assholes. And being in front of the stage for a few songs at the beginning of the set before the band is even sweating or warmed up— if you’re that desperate, you’re working. I mean, I’m working when I take pictures, but I’m working for myself. It’s not a job because I love doing it, right? And the main reason why I don’t do it anymore is because I’m not inspired. And if I am, I will be close enough to the band and gain permission to travel around the stage as freely as I want to because the band trusts or respects me and they want me to do my best because they know what I do pays off for them. People will see the work, and it will further the inspiration as well as the ideas, and ideals, of their art. It’s also about perspective and my perspective is why I move around, why I use the lenses I do, why I use the lighting I do, why I capture the moments I do and why I show the pictures I do.

Bad Brains by Glen E Friedman

Guy Picciotto by Glen E Friedman

Could you elaborate on bands and trust? Your images of an emerging Bad Brains or bands you have had a long relationship with come to mind…

Well, the relationship with each band is very different. In 1980, the first time I saw the Bad Brains there were less than twenty-five people there so the band made up a fifth of the audience. That’s a big difference. Maybe a year or two later there were two or three photographers, but by that time the band had seen my photographs. When I met them, I don’t think they could tell if I knew what I was doing or not, but once they saw some proofs, they became excited and friendly. When an artist sees you can do something for them in a way no one else has there then comes a mutual respect. I photographed the Bad Brains because I was inspired by them, and all of a sudden they could see it in the work.

So when you’re looking through proofs, what satisfies you?

The character. Literally, how you see the subject’s character in the image. The composition is very, very important. Does the photo tell the story of the moment? Does it pass the inspiration that I see in a person to me and to the viewer?

I believe sometime in the early ’90s certain magazines didn’t care anymore and just thought it was cool to print shitty photographs, out of focus with bad lighting. Like it didn’t matter, “We say it’s cool, so it’s cool.” The emperor’s new clothes all of a sudden took over and you had all these whack-ass photographers in the 2000s capturing a bit of character by being goofy, pornographic, exploitative or kitschy but it’s not photography to me. They’re just getting moments, not creating a photograph. Are my pictures of Darlene a bit more exploitative than they needed to be? Yes. It was part of how Ice-T expressed himself and she was part of his thing. We were exploitative of that situation but it was unique at the time, before people started putting all the T&A and weapons in hip-hop videos. We didn’t have that. We had our way to tell the story and obviously, months and years after that, it got way out of control and before it did, I was gone. I stopped because the truth is, showing a gun in a picture is like showing naked genitalia, it’s like, “everyone’s going to look!” It’s a gimmick and I’m a better photographer than that. The way I look at it, I try to tell a story, and not every photograph I’ve published does that, mind you. Some of them just had the idea of transferring the moment and the people but the ones that people remember, enjoy, or are inspired by are the photographs that display a certain kind of character and composition.

And it’s not for the sake of being different, it’s to excel and to want to tell a story no one else has told, but only if I can tell it better. I’m not out for my own just to get a picture, it’s not about me, it’s about doing fucking justice to the subjects.

So, to have the timing to capture is important but to be able to capture is my goal. Being a little kid, shooting the DogTown guys, there was no way to get the entrée I did unless my stuff was undeniable. To be down with this crew I had to prove myself because as far as they were concerned I was a squirt from the wrong, or nice, side of the tracks. And they got me to work the way I did and become a contributing photographer for Skateboarder Magazine when they had a million readers in 1978. It then became my goal to push it to the point where my stuff was undeniable so they just had to print it, you know? And it didn’t always happen like that!

Is it your litmus test to ask, “Is it for remembering or not— otherwise why snap it?”

The litmus test is, “Am I adding to this situation? Are you a part of the problem or a part of the solution?” Like hippies used to say, right? I’m a part of the solution and my solution is to do better, to inspire people and to idealize moments. There are times I have taken pictures of subjects that no one knew about, no one cared about yet, only the people who were very close, and I portrayed it in a way that helped others see what I saw, even if it wasn’t true. I saw in my subjects what was going to come forth, something that I was going to bring out of them and that would inspire something positive— to move forward politically and artistically. So if I’m not adding anything, then why the fuck am I doing it? And it’s not for the sake of being different, it’s to excel and to want to tell a story no one else has told, but only if I can tell it better. I’m not out for my own just to get a picture, it’s not about me, it’s about doing fucking justice to the subjects.

What manufactured tastes or norms did you feel you were going against as you grew up?

When I was young I was definitely more inspired by positive things. I read National Geographic, Surfer Magazine, Sports Illustrated and learned about the world, sports, photography, destinations around the planet and different environments. I was inspired to be a better photographer although later on, I was inspired in some ways by all of the shit photography. You know, the washed-out pictures of people just against blank walls, doing nothing! No character, people looking like they were junkies. It was just nothing, just blank. In my mind and in any craftsman’s mind, all of a sudden a photograph didn’t have to be in focus nor have to be composed. The story didn’t have to be told by the photograph, it was just part of a graphic and some art director jerking off onto a page to make it look “good” and then he’s some kind of talent when the reality is, in my opinion, they’re trying to make themselves more important than the subjects and the words that the subjects speak, or the writers write. And eventually there was a breakdown where the words didn’t even matter and the writers and people who tell lies and do pranks get over. You see, that’s offensive to me and I’m against that because I experienced some very real, incredible stuff in my life and for the attention to be taken away from the incredible things I have witnessed by literally fake things— made-up stories and made-up situations— I just do everything I can to tear that shit down.

And eventually there was a breakdown where the words didn’t even matter and the writers and people who tell lies and do pranks get over. You see, that’s offensive to me and I’m against that because I experienced some very real, incredible stuff in my life and for the attention to be taken away from the incredible things I have witnessed by literally fake things— made-up stories and made-up situations— I just do everything I can to tear that shit down.

There’s that generation-spanning clamor, of a generation aghast at the loud and rambunctious attitude of the younger generation making the noise. An older friend of mine commented he was having trouble hearing the noise today, as if the older generation is actually outraged that the kids today aren’t loud enough…

Well, every generation has made the noise. My parent’s generation had Elvis and before them it was Jazz and Bebop. The beginning of my generation had The Beatles. Then it was punk rock and the crazy thing is that since punk, there’s been almost nothing as rebellious. Hip-hop came along but again it’s crazy that these movements have stood the test of time when they weren’t even meant to. They were only meant to last for a little while. I remember when I printed Fuck You Heroes people asked me, “What’s the next thing? What’s going on now?” That was twenty years ago and shit has barely progressed. I think it’s partly because of the nature of media and communications or maybe it has to do with the way people have just been beaten down, limited in their way of speaking and how the authorities have taken control of things like never before. It’s peculiar and weird and I don’t have all the answers…I went on a tangent like I often do but…

Well, let’s go with twenty years ago. Before this interview I revisited the preface for Fuck You Heroes, “Even some of the more ‘open-minded’ art book publishers are mainly interested in putting out their pre-(ill)-conceived notion of ‘fine’ art. Some of them worried that my book was too far outside the mainstream to be profitable, or not of great enough importance to risk any kind of financial loss.” The culture you photographed— overlooked at first, then lauded, exhibited in museums, albeit through a compressed narrative— could you revisit your decision to self-publish your books in that atmosphere?

Henry Rollins by Glen E Friedman

Chuck D by Glen E Friedman

Back then I put out the books myself because no one else was interested in doing it the way I wanted to. I never thought of doing it myself, but then I think it was Rick Rubin who said, “What about Henry’s book company? He puts out books…”

I always had aspirations to do more, to go beyond our horizon, and not only to make money, I’m talking about changing people’s attitudes. I never believed in preaching to the converted, ever. A great picture of Black Flag is just going to remind a punk of why they got into it but it’s not going to change their attitude. I’m trying to reach new people, not limit my audience and again, it’s not about the sales nor the fame, it’s about waking people the fuck up. That’s what hip-hop bands in the ’80s did to a whole generation of people: expose them to an understanding of black culture in a way they didn’t know before.

The problem is also that people weren’t around back then. Black Flag in their peak era got no coverage from any major music magazine; it was only fanzines. I submitted photographs to every major newspaper and news magazine, and to every major music magazine, when Black Flag was told by the first major distributor that they would ever have, that their record was anti-parent and wasn’t going to be distributed because of the supposedly anti-parent lyrics, which doesn’t make any sense because it was totally untrue.

Not only that, what was even more important were the riots going on. Police officers, who are meant to protect us, were threatening our lives and in fact, beating kids, breaking bones, breaking windows and blaming it on teenagers because they saw it as a threat to their power. No one was interested at the time and no one covered it and no one cared. Black Flag was never talked about in Rolling Stone until they were no longer a threat. They were first mentioned in Rolling Stone only as an afterthought on an article about SST because that’s the label that the Minutemen were on. Not that Rolling Stone is the bastion of rock and roll necessarily; they sure are the bastion of corporate rock and roll and always have been since I was a teenager. Most magazines only covered corporate music because that was something handed to them on a silver platter with meet-and-greets, hors d’oeuvres, wine and press things but Black Flag was urgent, being done by kids for kids and as in skateboarding, there were no adults to teach us how to play or to put on shows at all ages venues. Of course there were radical bands before punk rock like The Stooges, not necessarily the first punk band, and before them The Sonics and MC5 and others. There was a lot of very aggressive stuff that I didn’t know about until later because I wasn’t Mr. Cool digging in the crates when I was 12 or even 19, but these bands still hadn’t done what the punk rockers did as far as the venues they played in.

We have this “attitude” because we know things need to change and know things can be better. We are not nihilists. We actually believe in our future and want it to be a better place, and that’s why we fight for that. We have a goal to share these moments, to share this attitude and hopefully inspire others that something needs to be done. We need to move forward and this is the way we express ourselves.

When there would be riots at the shows, the local news stations in Los Angeles just exploited what little violence there was when in fact, most of the violence was because of the police. Other people say they were trying to clean up Los Angeles before the 1984 Olympics and you had Police Chief Daryl Gates rule with an iron fist, like no police force anywhere else in the country back then. I saw kids handcuffed to newspaper machines for no other reason than, as the police used to say, “Don’t come back to these shows” and “Don’t come back here!” and threaten you with a billy club. What the fuck is that? And people don’t know that, and it’s okay, you weren’t born, you don’t have to realize it. Even people who were there don’t remember it all because they were getting high or drunk.

And not every band back then was great either, there were a lot of bands that weren’t that good! I didn’t get to shoot pictures of everyone I wanted to, but I’m happy that what I worked so hard to do back then, continues to help carry on the legacy and if it didn’t, if there is something more radical going on now, it is the blueprint for what has come. And that’s great! Move on already! How is a mohawk still considered rebellious? I’ll never understand. Or the leather jacket— I saw a girl at the post office today with green hair, a leopard skin belt and creepers that were worn thirty-five years ago. And that’s okay! She’s just going through her thing but it just boggles my mind that this way of rebelling has stood up this long. And the same goes for hip-hop, you know? Since N.W.A. and the Geto Boys, what band has been that groundbreaking and insane? People talk about gangster lifestyles, dealing, doing this and that, and it’s eye-opening but still kind of sad that it hasn’t progressed any further culturally. Now, in entertainment you certainly got the Kanyes and others making the music the way they do and it’s a bit of an art, but is it as culturally significant as it once was?

I feel a lot of talk centers on “attitude” and “energy” and that’s great, but haven’t they become the go-to words for skateboarding or hardcore, with less attention to why there’s an “attitude,” why there is this “energy”?

Well, this could be worded another way but what I can say is that the heart the artist put into their work, I feel as though I have to put into my work. If I don’t give what they give, again, why am I doing it? It’s a waste of my time, and their time and we aren’t adding anything. We have this “attitude” because we know things need to change and know things can be better. We are not nihilists. We actually believe in our future and want it to be a better place, and that’s why we fight for that. We have a goal to share these moments, to share this attitude and hopefully inspire others that something needs to be done. We need to move forward and this is the way we express ourselves.

How about the political dimension often being overlooked?
Yeah, people who take photos or write and decide to leave the political aspect out of it, the inspiration for it all, they’re worthless. They’re part of the problem, not the solution. Fuck them for not caring and putting into it what the subjects do. How’s that sound?

It sounds confrontational and that’s good. So would you say your political consciousness is a result of your involvement with the artists you photographed and worked with?

Absolutely, I was always a political person. I was raised in the ‘60s and remember being very motivated for every presidential election I’ve been alive for. As an eight-year old I would give peace signs to people when we were driving in our car on the highway. I knew war was bad and I was, as they say, a lover not a fighter— that was a choice that people made back then, right?

Then as a teenager, punk rock definitely re-politicized me and gave me the drive and belief that I could actually make a difference and contribute and not just be on the sidelines. That was definitely due to the music and activity of my era. It started when we realized we were doing something that adults and people before us had no concept of. I sent skateboarding pictures to Sports Illustrated magazine in 1977 and wrote letters, “Look at this activity that’s going on!” No one had any idea. When Stecyk was writing the articles, he made me realize we were doing something that was special and unique. That then gave confidence and was emboldening and was very empowering to a teenager, right? When we started putting on our own shows and playing in our own bands, it was like, “Yo, we’re doing our own fucking thing. It doesn’t matter what other people say or do, we’re doing this!”

My political ideals and thoughts were also energized by people like Jello Biafra and Chuck Dukowski and other bands of the era, even the Sex Pistols, the Damned, the Buzzcocks, the Ramones, you know the earlier bands, they all contributed in some way. Punk rock changed our lives as Mike Watt and D. Boone of the Minutemen said and it wasn’t a simple choice. When you dressed and looked a bit punk back then, people wanted to beat you up. They were offended by your presence because you were such an outsider from the way you looked, the music you listened to and because of the way you were politicized. We used to joke around, “Let’s go to Dairy Queen and get beaten up.” It’s kind of hard to believe now but that’s just how it was.
Noam Chomsky by Glen Friedman
Today, I take a piece of wisdom from Noam Chomsky, “We have really come a long way. We’ve got a lot further to go.” A lot further, but people have moved forward. Now, there’s always been a percentage that doesn’t do anything and you can’t pick on a generation as a whole, but as an older person, now 52, you look and ask, “Where is it?” I don’t see the rebelliousness I saw in my generation. I’m sure there are young people out there doing things, and my peers and I always hope so, but it’s just not as vocal or it’s in a place where I’m just not hearing it. It’s all controlled by corporations. And people have asked me, “Why don’t you take pictures of bands now?” to which I respond, why don’t you take pictures of bands today that are as good and as inspiring as mine were? Some of them are!

So, we make these political choices in our lives to make a difference in the world. Not for selfish reasons, but for the planet and the children who come after us. Generally speaking, the pervasiveness of and acceptance of greed is disgusting. Not everyone, but the acceptance of ignorance is disgusting, despicable and depressing to me but you have to fight that and you have to stand up against it and not let people say, “Oh, you’re so judgmental. You’re so critical.” Fuck you for not caring enough. It’s not to hurt people’s feelings— it’s because I care. Wake the fuck up already.

Beastie Boys

Let me keep going on your interaction with artists before we finish up. I wanted to get in a question about photographing the Beastie Boys, who you have known for a long time. They went from a hardcore outfit covering Minor Threat to a city park named after Adam Yauch. What was it like documenting them over the years?

Well, these are people that I was friends with and I don’t consider it “documenting.” When I came to their G-Son Studios in Atwater Village, I hadn’t hung out with them in like two years. The last time I had seen them all, they hated each other and were broken up for the most part. They were very funny guys, pranksters, and used to make me laugh to tears almost every time. We used to make fun of each other and since I didn’t care about drinking and all that I got made fun of. We didn’t necessarily respect each other’s values on certain things, but we certainly respected each other’s art.

And for some reason I called them out of the blue, “Hey, I’m in town for Thanksgiving, what’s going on?” “Hey, you want to come by? We’re sequencing our new album. Come listen, play some basketball and check out the ramp we built.” I go up there…typical good jokes, typical making fun of me, being silly. You pick up where you left off, and they’re playing the album for me and I’m like, “This is incredible! You guys, I can’t even believe you did this.” The sounds, the distortion, the guitars, and the instrumentation relative to the previous record, “I got to be a part of this like the old days, let’s shoot some pictures.” They said, “Our album cover’s already done, Glen.” “That’s alright, I got a vision, let’s shoot some photos before I get on the plane tomorrow because I’m inspired to— this is great, this is fantastic.” And they were like, “Hell, fucking yeah! Let’s do some photos with Glen!” I asked, “Do you have any ideas?” and Yauch, who was usually the visionary in the group as far as a “look” was concerned, told me one thing he had an idea to do a photo with the big sneakers like the animated introduction to the old TV show “My Three Sons” so I did my take on that. I think we learned a lot from each other, which is great, because for the best work you usually collaborate with the artist.

It’s like what I did with Chuck D and the first Public Enemy album cover. He gave me a sketch of what he wanted to do, I put my twist on it, and I created the photograph with him, you know? Their second album cover, when I heard the title, I created it completely on my own, ran the ideas by them and they loved it. That’s Public Enemy, that’s the greatest hip-hop album of all time, “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back.”

It’s working with and understanding the artist, being the fifth Beatle or whatever you want to call it. You’re part of the group, truly. Working with the Beasties the way we did, we’re just friends, and sometimes we had a mission. “We need a record cover, or a cover for a magazine. Okay, let’s do that together. What do we all want to tell in this picture?” And they trusted that Glen would get it done, even if he harasses us, even if he makes fun of us, or is difficult or pushes us around and tells us to hold still for too long. That day we shot the cover for “Check Your Head,” there are probably ten photos from that one day that no one has ever seen that are in the new book I have coming out. That was a great album, really special, and I put the pressure on myself to come up to the level of the artist, and that’s deep, that’s big man! It was a fun workday with great results— the material was so good it forced me to do them justice, and I felt as though I did.

About this new book, can you talk a bit more about re-engaging with your archive?

Those books are classics to me and to a lot of people and I’ll say this new book is even better, it’s the best of Fuck You Heroes and Fuck You Too. In retrospect, the best of, right? Fuck You Heroes is now twenty years old and I might have edited it differently today than I would have back then. Back in ’94 I wanted to show how good photographs are taken and that was important to me because I didn’t think I was going to have other books so every photograph is full frame. When you take a good photo you don’t need to crop it— real photographers use their entire medium— you do it for real from the beginning. Now that I’m older, I’ve seen what the pictures mean to me and what they mean to other people. I cropped a lot of the photos in this new book because I’m not on the same mission. Now I’m on a mission to just expose beautiful, awesome, inspiring imagery as big as I possibly can. Some pictures are going to be 300% bigger than they were in Fuck You Heroes and on top of that, 30% of the book includes photos that no one has ever seen before.

The last few years we haven’t been able to have the books pay for themselves so I was ready to redo the book. The first ten years I put out my books, I actually made money but over the last five years, UPS has made more on them than we do and that’s just how shipping is today. Also, my books don’t fly off the shelves, people buy my books when they discover the cultures or they dig a little deeper when they’re more excited or interested. I’m okay with that too because I’m not “here today, gone tomorrow,” and I’m not rushing out to get your attention— I’m here— I’ve been doing this for a long time. These photographs are beautiful today, yesterday and tomorrow; whether people always appreciate them or not is a different story.

I was going to use Kickstarter for the new book and just keep it independent but then I was pointed in the direction of a company excited to take a book that I essentially already made and co-publish it with me. I could have done it on my own and probably would have lost some money but this seemed like a better opportunity and I’m trying it. We’ll see how it works out. It’s my book as much as it can be in that I had complete editorial control and the only thing that limited me was the page count as I would have liked another 40 or 50 pages and a nice index. I designed everything with Shepard Fairey and Cleon Peterson, who work together as Studio Number One, and it will be very interesting to see how the book does, who accepts it, where it goes and how many people it reaches. I believe in it enough. I’ve spent around $20,000 from my own pocket over the last five years archiving and making digital scans of a lot of my work for this book and beyond. I don’t know if I’ll ever get that back from this book but that’s okay because those pictures will eventually see the light of day. The earliest photos in the book with Jay Adams, Stacy Peralta or Tony Alva are dated 1974 or 1975 and there are photos in there as late as last month. Most of the photos are from the ‘70s and ‘80s, the peak era of the cultures that I photographed, but there are also pictures dated 2010, 2013 and 2014. There’s a recent picture of Lance Mountain since he wrote an essay that mentions his “state of skate” ideal, and I also got to meet and photograph Noam Chomsky last year, he’s a very inspirational person politically. I also got to meet two of the women in Pussy Riot and I’m very excited to have them in the book too.

Pussy Riot by Glen E Friedman

There are introductions from Shepard Fairey and Craig R. Stecyk III, how did their contributions materialize this time?

For my previous books the texts were based on the subject matter, but for the new book I had very specific questions. These people are my friends, they are people I have known and have worked with over the years, and some of them I hadn’t even spoken to in ten or fifteen years. This time, I wanted all of them to talk about the era of the photographs, the photographs themselves, and more about their own inspiration and journey that got us to the point where we were working together. The words— from Adam Horovitz and LL Cool J, who rarely speak up, to Ice-T, and from Adams to Alva— all are very personal and their words go right up to the photographs.

And you’re reinstating the title My Rules?

Yeah, I was going to call it “Fuck You All” because that’s what my exhibition was called but then I felt putting “Fuck You” on the cover of a book was more of a big deal back in ’94 and I thought “Fuck You All” at this point was playing too much of a game, almost becoming corny…and it lacks the impact that it used to.

The original title was based on the Black Flag song in some ways, but My Rules is also about how I get things done on my own. It’s about people doing things that they believe in, that they care about and that they don’t give up on, including yourself. Not selling yourself out, about being true to yourself and the cultures that we’re involved in. That’s what My Rules was originally about in ’82, and that’s what it’s still about today. I thought people really liked that zine when it came out, it was one of the first national looks at the scene and I think it made a big impression. This time around, I know Guy Picciotto was very inspirational, telling me, “Glen, that’s great. You have to call it that.” I didn’t want people to misinterpret it like the whole ‘80s generation of me, me, me because it’s not about that. Guy said, “No, nobody is going to think that.” So before I start doing direct interviews for the book I should be clearer on my argument, but I really think this new book is about personal integrity, holding on to your beliefs, and when you know something is correct you go with that and not let people sway you into giving in on your real instincts.

Related:

http://www.burningflags.com

Purchase My Rules on Amazon or view a list of booksellers here.

MY RULES Book