Rob Zombie and his band of gothed-out musicians (John 5, Piggy D. and Ginger Fish) recently returned from Zombie's first European tour in almost 12 years. They'll soon embark on their 12-city "Hell on Earth" North American tour with Slayer. The commander of living dead girls, rotting flesh, and perverted and horrific films will grace us with his dark presence on Saturday, July 16, at Capitol Federal Park at Sandstone. We recently spoke with Zombie about his upcoming tour and film (The Lords of Salem), band members, and why he's directing and creating un-Zombie-like commercials and comedy specials these days.
The Pitch: You and the band recently returned from Europe?
Rob Zombie: We finished up our European tour. We've been back
in the states for a couple weeks. We have a couple weeks before we head
back out on tour.
Is there anything about this upcoming tour you're excited about?
Yeah. I mean, we're always excited. It's funny. No matter how many
shows we've played or how many times we've done this, I mean, every time
a tour is starting, it's always exciting. It's weird. It never gets old
I assume if it did, you'd probably stop touring.
Yeah. I mean, sometimes I see bands, and they look bored, and I can
never figure out why or how. Predominantly, a lot of this tour takes
place in Canada, which will be fun because we love going to Canada, but
we love playing everywhere. There's really nothing negative about
anything we do. So, you know, overall we're excited about everything.
Touring with Slayer is fun because we've known those guys forever. It's
Now that Ginger is in the lineup, how has he changed the overall sound? And has he recorded anything with you guys yet?
He hasn't done any recording yet. He will, but he hasn't done
anything yet. As far as being in the band, he's really added -- most of
our songs have a strong groove factor to them, and he's a very groove-oriented drummer, which is nice because you can really hear it.
Especially with some of the older songs. That's a big plus. And I think
when it comes down to recording, he'll be a big factor, too, because -- in
fact, it's strange -- I'm still really getting to know Ginger. I
haven't known him very long, but as I discover more and more about him,
he's very technically proficient as far as programming and things of
that nature, so I think he'll play a big factor on the next record. As
far as it goes right now, he's a really good fit for what we needed.
You direct and write music. What's the difference in the
creation process? Is it similar or is it different? Do each inform each
It's both. It's similar in the fact that any creative venture, you
start with basically an idea -- an idea for the song, an idea for
anything, and you have to figure out how to get it from this tiny idea
in your mind to a finished product that will one day be put in front of
people. So, that part's the same. The sort of creative process. As far
as the nuts and bolts, that's very, very different. Writing songs and
working with a band is a very small project, and you sort of have the
four people in the band, and maybe a producer. That's pretty much all that
comes into it. But with a movie, you've got hundreds and hundreds of
people working on it around the clock, so it becomes a much, much bigger
What sparked your interest for your new film?
It's an idea I've had for a long time and really what started the
idea -- I started messing with the idea maybe five years ago? I was out
of town staying someplace, and in the lobby of the hotel, there was a little
area where they sold gifts from the gift store, and I bought a book on
the Salem witch trials and I started reading it. I'm from Massachusetts, so I'd already known about it, but that book started
to rekindle my interest in it and started the whole thing.
I know you've cast a few of the same actors in some of your films. Will anyone from previous films be in the upcoming project?
I'm not sure yet. I haven't cast the new film.
I read that you said this film will be darker than your other films.
Some of your previous movies have had a bit of camp or humor. Will this
one be very dark and have no humor at all?
Well, I mean, I hate camp. So I never try to make anything campy. I
thought my last film especially was a pretty dismal affair. I don't actually like
humor in horror movies. I think it underscores the films a lot of times.
Usually when people list their favorite horror movies, they're movies
that have no humor in them whatsoever. I don't remember any funny
stuff in The Exorcist. So, this movie is pretty bleak. I mean, maybe
there are moments of humor between the characters, but that sort of
comes naturally from the characters.
Anything else new you're working on? I know you directed
a Woolite commercial awhile back. Is there any other kind of thing
that would be unexpected that you would like to try to do in the future
that would expand your creative boundaries?
Well I don't have anything planned for the future. Probably the next
thing that's coming out that's different for me is I directed a stand-up comedy special for
Tom Papa for Comedy Central. That will probably be on TV in the fall. That was pretty exciting and very different. But really
the rest of my year is finishing these shows, and then the movie will
just dominate everything.