Jeff Schroeder has a gripping interview about the Smashing Pumpkins from his start to the present

Jeff_guitarIn this interview with Jeff on Jeff starts by talking about working on the new album:

“Yeah, we’re at home in Chicago and we’re really starting to work on a new album.  We’re at the very, very beginning stages, we’re not actually recording but just starting to work on new material.”

He goes on to explain the band will be playing more shows from May-July to support Oceania.


He then goes on to discuss about how he got into listenting to the Smashing Pumpkins:

“I was a fan from the first album, “Gish”.  I remember seeing an article about the band in a magazine and it seemed like the kind of stuff that I would be into so I picked up the album and the Sup Pop single for “Tristessa”.  I’ve been following the band since 91 basically…. I think it was just that combination of the soft and heavy spots along with the ripping psychedelic guitars or even the high voices…  For me, I loved it, I loved all that psychedelic Hendrix-y stuff and all the riffs that Billy was playing.  I also remember at the time that everybody was just so blown away by Jimmy’s drumming as well.”

Jeff went on to explain he grew up jamming in a garage when learning to play the guitar. He said that on tour Billy and him will “..go record shopping all the time which is a lot of fun.”Jeff

On how Jeff heard about the audition:

“Someone just called me out of the blue one day and said “Yeah, they’re getting back together and Iha’s not coming back so they’re going to be looking for a guitar player.  I’m trying to remember it all to be honest, I think I may have known they were getting back together because I followed all the post-Pumpkins bands like Zwan and I saw Billy’s solo tour so I knew about the ad he had taken out in the paper announcing the return of the band after his solo tour.  It was after that when I heard that they were going to be holding auditions.”

The interviewer asked about the rehearsals and if they were “crazy military or relaxed”

” I wouldn’t say they were militant crazy but at the same time I wouldn’t say they were calm and relaxed.  I think every single person in the band takes their job really seriously and everyone does their homework so when we show up to rehearse everybody knows the songs and we might end up learning another song that night because we’re not sitting there wasting time working on stuff.  When we do practice it’s very structured and to the point.  I guess from that end it’s a very pro band and we take our jobs very seriously.”

On the idea of playing full shows where the Pumpkins play all of Siamese Dream or Mellon Collie:

“I don’t think so, we haven’t talked about it and I don’t see us doing that anytime soon.  When the reissues were coming out we had talked about maybe doing a show here or there but I just don’t see it as something we’re terribly interested in doing.  Right now, I’m here in Chicago and we’re worrying about new material for the next album.  We really want to focus on writing great new material and there will always be time to play the old stuff.”

Asked about the Oceania album being played in full

“I mean playing our whole new album from beginning to end, I think it was a ballsy move but we feel like it went really, really well considering what we were doing show-wise.  Obviously having the visuals and the ball really helped make it a beautiful experience so I think people really got off on it and thought “Ok, hey even if I haven’t heard this album, even if I’m really here to hear the old stuff, this is really cool”.  I think we got a lot of respect for playing it well and presenting it well.  Yeah, it’s a challenge but where would we be if we didn’t believe that the future of the band was in the new material rather than just the old stuff.  Not that we’re trying to hit people over the head with it or don’t like the old stuff, more that we want to make it clear that we really have something to say for this time”