Stay Sick Recordings outspoken and downright raw band of brothers, BackWordz, are making a scene spreading a message of hope for all of the hopeless who feel as though their voice is overlooked in our ever-changing world. Dishin’ out lyricism that liberates and educates the masses, BackWordz takes ownership of their inner beings and translate their thoughts into musical art. I caught up with lead vocalist, Eric July, to discuss what’s in store for BackWordz in 2017, the election cycle, tattoos, and more.
First and foremost, introduce yourself to our readers. Who is BackWordz?
BackWordz is a brand that uses different mediums to spread the message of liberty, without any sort of apologies. Music just happens to be one of those mediums. Without this message, however, there is no BackWordz.
Tell us about the concept behind and the message sent through your powerful new single, “Self Ownership.”
“Self-Ownership” is a core principle of libertarianism. The world would be better off if they understood this concept, which was the message that we were trying to portray. In this current climate, it seems as if everybody has something to complain about. But where they get it wrong, is thinking that it’s moral or effective to use the State to fix an issue; especially if they created it. If people realized that they own themselves, they could take off the blinders and place their frustrations in the right direction.
Any upcoming tour or festival appearance plans that you can fill us in about?!
We just played at the International Students for Liberty Conference and are now set to perform at Anarchapulco in Mexico. In March, we’ll be on the road with Like Moths To Flames and Sworn In which will be our first big tour of the year.
The 2016 election cycle was absolutely insane. What one aspect of it racks your brain and what do you perceive is our country’s greatest opportunity for change?
I think the reactionaries are the most interesting. Donald Trump is being opposed at every level all of a sudden. From regular Joes to famous entertainers, it seems as if everybody thinks this guy is the next Hitler. These same individuals for the most part, however, were silent during Obama’s reign. Even worse, some praised the guy. He ended up bombing more countries than Bush and added more to the National Debt than any president before him. But because he was cool and had a “D” by his name, there’s no way he could be the next Hitler, right? This goes to show the dangers of politics. I don’t see any legitimate change happening until these individuals become consistent in their approach to government and the politicians that seek office.
How do you perceive musicians and artists can make an impact within the state of shock that our culture is in due to the 2016 election cycle?
Politics are the downstream of culture. You change the culture, the politics change by default. I don’t think artists and musicians recognize the role they play in influencing politics or the world in general. They have the influence to change hearts and minds, regardless if there is an election taking place. But I’d highly suggest that artists use this past election as a platform to get some great ideas out there through their mediums.
What do fans of BackWordz have to look forward to in 2017?
We’re going to spend this year hitting the road, as we know a lot of people have been waiting for this. But people have to understand that our efforts aren’t just in the typical tours. We’ve launched podcasts and have other partnerships that will include our material and brand. So you never know where BackWordz will appear. The objective is to spread this message, after all.
Any words of wisdom that you can share with those just picking up an instrument for the first time in hopes of starting up a band?
Think it through. One of the things I’ve learned was that there’s a musical establishment and ideology that perpetuates a narrative for success. You HAVE to do this, you HAVE to do that in order to see success. It was largely nonsense for the most part. There are a million ways to get things done and see success. But the key is getting on the same page with the people you’re deciding to work with. You can have all the talent in the world but that doesn’t mean you’re going to ascend into a superstar. Before you even get to playing songs, I’d suggest that you determine the direction that you want to go. Devise a plan, put it in motion.
Let’s talk tattoos. Tell us about some of your favorite personal pieces and the artists that brought them to life.
Answered by Kevin Kerestes- My two favorite tattoos are most definitely my rose on my chest and Reptar on my calf. Two totally different atmospheres, the rose was done by a dope artist in San Antonio named Xavier Avila. I plan on filling out my chest completely in due time and make it a bold, colorful chest piece. Reptar was quite the opposite tattoo experience, it was done by the singer of my old band while I was standing on a chair in his bedroom. It’s a nostalgia tattoo and a throwback to my 90’s childhood.
Last but certainly not least, any closing messages for your fans?
No matter the human affair or subject, analyze it. Do not be afraid to embrace your ignorance and do not just accept people’s words as truth. Even if it is truth, you should want to research it and come to your own conclusion. In this digital age especially, there’s so much false information. But it only gets spread as people continue to eat it up without question.