KNOW YOUR SCENE is a brand new feature where we will be taking a closer look at certain individuals who make this DIY underground thing of ours great. They may not always be “hardcore household” names but they still play an important role in making our scene a better place with various contributions that may often be overlooked by many. The goal is to shed some light on their hard work and hopefully get others motivated to get involved and do something positive. Helping out can be as easy as handing out flyers for a show or turning people on to new bands, starting a zine, taking cool photos or videos or drawing logos and artwork for bands like our man Bobby Draws Skulls did for the top of this article!
Our first go around here has Marc Lopez who books shows on Long Island with SBC Bookings as well as playing bass for the hockey themed punk rockers Two Man Advantage, Holly Berchielli who has been doing Outsider Zine up in Newburgh, NY since the turn of the century and Pongsakorn Neton… but you can call him “NUT”. Straight outta Bangkok but now living full time in NYC and taking tons of photos at hardcore shows wherever mass transit (or kind scenesters with cars) will take him. In Effect salutes these 3 individuals and the many more out there like them who are dedicated to what they do making the hardcore scene a better place. More articles like this to follow!
MARC LOPEZ- SBC BOOKINGS/TWO MAN ADVANTAGE
IE: Please tell us about what SBC is, when it started, about how many shows you guys have done to date and what were some of the more memorable shows you have put on so far on a whole?
Marc: The SBC stands for "Something Better Change" which is a response to what I saw going on in the Long Island scene when I decided to start this collective. I did shows back in the day, actually stopped playing music too for 11 years. When I had free time and wanted to start playing again, I had no interest in doing shows. After observing the amount of pay to play and ticket sales tactics that I saw was the way clubs and promoters were operating, I didn't like it. Instead of accepting their ways, I decided to get the right people involved and do this the DIY way. It can be done, it’s a different time with the internet side of things but I wanted local bands and touring bands to know, there are people out here doing things for the band’s first. Not saying the other people aren't but we are not about the $$$, this is all about the bands and the people who support them.
We have been doing shows since Feb of 2016 and I believe we are around 60 shows so far. The most memorable shows to me personally are all the benefit shows we do. I love the fact that this community of ours comes together to support each other when times are tough. We have done quite a few benefit shows and will continue to do so.
IE: SBC primarily books shows on Long Island. What are some of the pros and cons to the local scene there these days?
Marc: We do the majority of our shows at Amityville Music Hall. I have a strong bond and personal connection with them since the first day I walked in there. Pros on LI? Lots of places to play. Cons on LI? Lots of places to play, haha. What I mean by that is there are a lot of options for people on a nightly basis. I don't see too many people working together meaning, people will put up a show regardless of the competition that night. I try to look around to see what else is going on before I book a show.
IE: Where did you grow up and how did you find out about punk rock and hardcore?
Marc: I grew up in Orange County in California. I moved around a lot as a kid but spent most of my youth in Huntington Beach and Long Beach. I was really into music from an early age as my pops took me to a lot of shows, you know, the stuff he liked. I was really into Kiss and one day in 7th grade this girl hands me a Ramones record. That changed everything. My best friend’s brother heard us listening to it and handed me the “Nervous Breakdown” 7 inch and that was it, I was hooked.
IE: Favorite punk or hardcore band from your youth?
Marc: There were so many and I was lucky to have been at the right place at the right time. My all-time fav will always be Black Flag but if I had to list a top 5 I would have to add TSOL, Circle Jerks, Social Distortion and The Descendents. I know they are all Cali bands and I live in NY but that's just the honest truth.
IE: Favorite new bands?
Marc: Being that I have seen a lot of new bands I gotta say I really dig Mutiny Abroad, Out Live Death, Hangman, Copsucker, Radio Daze and Red Arkade to name a few. I could go on and on but I really like seeing a band develop and grow and I do watch every single band that plays our shows. I have seen thousands of bands in my time but I still enjoy watching a band give it everything they got.
IE: You are also on your second stint with the band Two Man Advantage. Give us a brief rundown on what the Two Man is all about for anyone not familiar with the name. What name do you go by in Two Man Advantage and how did you get that name?
Marc: Two Man is all about having a good time. Our music isn't rocket science, pretty straight forward punk rock and our message is simple, have fun. The guys in the band are the closest thing to brothers that I have, I love them all and I am honored to still be doing this with them. My name in the band is Teemu Heineken, it’s a combination of my fav hockey player (Teemu Selanne) and my favorite beer. I am more of a Guinness man now but it’s too late to change my name, ha!
IE: When did your first stint start and end and why did you leave?
Marc: Spag (singer) and I started the band in 1997 and I stayed in the band until September of 2001. My last show was on 9/8/01 at the Continental in NYC… just three days before that fateful and dreadful day that changed so many lives. I will never forget it. I left the band because I had a job offer that I couldn't refuse. I wouldn't be able to tour like the band was and I didn't want to hold them back. It was a tough decision for me but a man's gotta take care of his family.
IE: When did you end up back in Two Man Advantage?
Marc: Jeff Snapshot took my place for 13 years and I will always be very thankful for that. He is a great dude and when he decided to move to DC, I told the band that if they got a show offer that they couldn't refuse, I would play with them. That became a "hey, you are playing again, why don't you come back in the band" type of scenario. My first show back in the band was opening up for the Misfits at the Paramount in February of 2015. No warm up show in a small club, right back in the deep end. It was a great night and a lot of fun. I am very grateful to be doing this again with the greatest guys I know.
IE: How many kids do you have and do you think they will be punk rockers like their dad?
Marc: I have four boys and they all like punk rock but they have other musical interests. I am very supportive of them in everything they do. I love being a dad and they have made me the man I am today.
IE: What do you do for your occupation and how long have you been doing It?
Marc: I am a mechanic at Newsday, (Long Island newspaper) been there for 18 years. It’s a good job, has its pros and cons just like everything else in life but the bottom line is this, my job takes care of me and my family so I respect it and do the best that I can every time I walk in the door.
IE: Craziest shit you've ever seen at a show?
Marc: Holy crap that’s a loaded question… seen people get it on at a show, seen way too many fights and brawls but I think the craziest single thing was seeing someone fall from the balcony at the Hollywood Palladium in 1981. That was some seriously scary shit.
HOLLY BERCHIELLI- OUTSIDER MAGAZINE
IE: Hey Holly, please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from, how old are you and what inspired you to start Outsider Zine?
Holly: I’m from Newburgh, in Orange County, NY located in the Hudson Valley about 60 miles from NYC. I’m 33 years old and have been publishing Outsider Magazine for just over half my life. Honestly, I don’t really remember what it was that made me decide to start Outsider. I’d been making one-offs and Xeroxed year books all through high school and I thought it would be fun to have something with multiple issues. I just remember deciding on the name with some friends and putting together the first issue and from there I just kept going.
IE: When did you start it and how many issues have you put out to date? Can you tell us about some of the accomplishments you've had with Outsider that may give you that proud parent type of feel?
Holly: I started Outsider in May of 2000. Our slogan is “A fanzine started at the end of the world”. Haha. So far, there are 32 issues. Other than the print magazine being read by other humans for the last 17 years, the thing that has made me super happy is the live music scene that’s surrounded the zine. I’ve been booking and promoting shows through the zine for almost as long as I’ve been publishing. I know people whose first ever show was an Outsider Show and now, they’re in bands of their own or booking their own shows. We threw a prom once, too, with dressing up and dancing and cake. That was ridiculously fun.
IE: Outsider covers underground music from all over the world but also really caters to the Hudson Valley area as far as underground shops, bands, venues etc. Was your plan from the start to cover your home area or did Outsider sort of fall into this type of coverage more out of a convenience type of thing?
Holly: Actually, we started as a literary zine with poems and short stories and a little bit of humor. By the second issue, though, we were covering our friend’s bands and that was that. It has always been Hudson Valley focused and we would interview the touring bands that came through the area, but because distribution was limited to smaller print runs in the beginning it just stayed in our area for a while. Once we were able to print larger runs and get copies further, it got the attention of more bands, more people from all over the country and then world.
IE: What are some of the things about doing a fanzine that you may find hard or don’t actually like doing?
Holly: I find interviews to be difficult to prepare for some reason. I get excited to do them and then tend to get stressed out about it. I also really don’t like doing layout, which is silly, because when it was all still cut-and-paste the layout was my favorite part of making an issue. Thankfully, my husband is a graphic designer and does most of it now, with my direction. I’m just not the digital media type. I’m very analog.
IE: Do you have any big plans for the future of Outsider or is it a take it one issue at a time type of thing? Where do you see it in say 3 to 5 years?
Holly: I don’t have any long-term plans for it. Outsider is a fanzine at heart, even though it has a large format and a pretty vast circulation. We usually just plan two issues a year and see where that takes us, issue by issue. In three years, I will have been publishing Outsider for two decades. Maybe that will be it….either that or I’ll keep it going forever.
IE: What other kinds of hobbies or activities are you into besides doing your fanzine and music?
Holly: Yoga is a big part of my everyday life. I’ve been practicing on and off for the last decade or so. The last two and a half years, I’ve made it a daily practice. I really like to bake, even working part-time at cafes sometimes. I’m gluten and dairy free due to allergies, so I have all these original recipes for all my favorite baked goods. I’ve recently begun to get into producing and making music with my husband, Joe. He plays essentially every instrument and records and produces his own records for his band, Martyr Art. Being around all that creative musical energy has pulled me in. I also collect cassette tapes. I've got a couple hundred and I actually listen to them. I like the way tapes sound.
IE: Being that you cover Newburgh so well what are some cool things to do if people pass through there?
Holly: There’s The Wherehouse and Ms. Fairfax on Liberty Street if you want something good to eat. Both have music (though very different) and a good atmosphere. The downtown area where those two places are have lots of art galleries and there are pop-up shops. We host shows at 2 Alice’s on lower Broadway once a month. It’s a coffee shop with a PA. My favorite thing about being out in the city of Newburgh is the buildings and views of the river. There is a park on Liberty Street, Washington’s Headquarters, which was where George Washington had his headquarters during the Revolutionary War. It overlooks the Hudson River and is a favorite place of mine. Right below the headquarters is the Newburgh Brewing Company and down a few blocks from there, on the waterfront, is Millennium Tattoo. If you’re in Newburgh and want some work done, that’s the place to go. They’ve always been big supporters of Outsider and are excellent.
IE: What is your occupation and how long have you been doing it? Do you like your work?
Holly: For my day job, I’m the general manager and printer at ColorCube. We are a full service screen printer and graphic design studio. I thoroughly enjoy my trade. I have been printing by hand at home for years. Before I started working at ColorCube, I printed all the Outsider t-shirts by hand, but now I have an automatic press, so that means I can print a lot more at a time and utilize more intricate designs. We print for bands and clothing lines, as well as sports teams and all kinds of businesses. It’s a really challenging job where you’re always learning.
IE: 3 newer, possibly lesser known bands (any genre) that you really like or maybe even love?
Holly: From my local scene, the two bands who come to mind would be Cell 63 and Ate Bit. They’ve both have been around for a little while, now, and are made up of people who have been in local bands for a long time. Both are punk bands, but I’d say they are on different ends of the spectrum. I’m also really into July Talk. My friend Mike got me listening to them and I’m hooked. They’re Canadian and I think they’ve been around for a few years, but they are new to me. If I was to throw one more in there, it would be the Svetlanas. That band is incredible live.
IE: 3 things that you think would improve the current day punk/hardcore/underground scene???
Holly: I think the thing that will improve the underground scene is our political climate. As we are being threatened everyday by our own government and being pitted against each other, I think the way to react positively is through art and community. What’s better than a good “fuck you” or unity call in a fast and heavy song?
PONGSAKORN "NUT" NETON. PHOTOGRAPHER
IE: Please introduce yourself. How old are you? What is your given name and what name do people usually call you within the hardcore scene?
Nut:: My name is Pongsakorn Neton but people call me Nut… there is no meaning in Thailand. I'll be 25 years old this July. Well, I use PN on my social media accounts as a short name for my full name, but I prefer they call me Nut.
IE: Where were you born and when/how did you end up living in NYC?
Nut: I was born in Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand. The reason that I came here is my mom. My mom forced me to come here because she wanted me to have a better life in the US. When I was in Thailand, I was a punk kid. I arrived in New York on August 1st, 2012 and I have been living here since.
IE: Do you remember the first show you went to in NY and did you bring your camera? Who played the show and where was it?
Nut: My first show was the United Forces Tour 2012 that took place on Long Island. There was Trapped Under Ice, Backtrack, Naysayer, Out Crowd and Born Low. I didn't bring a camera with me at that time because I didn't have one however I used my cell phone to take some photos and showed it to my friends in Thailand. At that time, we were real crazy about TUI.
IE: Do you feel like the people within the NYHC scene have accepted you as an equal or do you feel like a visitor here still?
Nut: Well, for the past few years, I don't feel like a visitor anymore because when I go to shows, those people who know or recognize me come to me and say hi. What's more, they also help get me to shows when I'm not be able to get there by train.
IE: Besides bands what are some of the things you like to photograph?
Nut: I like to photograph documentary portraits and lights and shadow.
IE: What have been some of the craziest situations you have been in while photographing hardcore shows?
Nut: Well, I'm not thinking that it is the craziest situation I have ever been in but I think it is the funniest moment I have ever been in. It was a show after Dr. Know’s (Bad Brains) benefit show at the old A7 club, now called Niagara next to Tompkins Square Park. There was a woman, I guess she was 40-50 years old and she took her top off and Mike Botti from Regulate stood next to her and took a selfie with her. I photographed that moment also.
IE: Is there a hardcore scene back home to speak of?
Nut: What to speak of?! Yeah, I have a lot to speak of about the hardcore scene in Thailand. There are only a small number of supporters but it is getting better than 10 years ago when I attended shows there. We have many good bands, such as Monument X, Born From Pain, and Ten Baht Per Hour, but those bands don't get very good support because hardcore music is not popular among Thai people. However, what I really want… I want bands from the US and Europe to start to look and make South East Asia tours. We don't have many bands to play in Thailand because of flight tickets, estimated time and their schedules, but we will never give up. We'll do the best as we can to get bands to Thailand. Anyway, if some bands are interested, you can contact us HERE or HERE.
IE: What are some of your favorite things about living In NYC?
Nut: My favorite things about NYC:
1…The hardcore scene and its history
IE: What kind of profession are you trying to go towards and when you are done with schooling do you see yourself staying here and living in NY for good?
Nut: I want to be a documentary photographer or a photojournalist. I have decided to live in New York but my future can change at any minute. Thank you for interviewing me.
"Catch Our Breath"
I was disillusioned with hardcore
Angry at the bullshit in the scene
Then I looked past all the morons at the shows
And realized things weren't bad at all
If it were only my friends behind me
Those numbers would be enough
But I'm meeting new people all the time
The scene is catching up with it's growth
It took time
To catch our breath
It took time
Now we're changing for the better
People from every race and background
From all walks of life
Coming together with vision and hope
For a united scene that's more than talk
Not the rule of the mob
Our self esteem restored
We have chosen to work together