Mistresses of Metal Exclusive Interview with “Big Dad” Ritch of Texas Hippie Coalition 2

M.O.M: Big Dad! How are you today?
BDR: Hi, Sweetheart. I’m real good. How are you?
M.O.M: I’m great! I understand your coming to Minneapolis really soon, with Fozzy.
BDR: We take off on Nov. 16, I think we’ve got a few dates before we hook up with Fozzy on Nov 19th in Flint, Michigan.
M.O.M: So, how long has it been since you guys have been to Minnesota?
BDR: Ah…you know, it hasn’t been that long, because I’ve got some good buddies up there that I like to visit, but I think before the Mayhem Tour, when I was out runnin’ with a young band called AntiMortem on Roadrunner Records, I think that’s the last time we were in Minnesota. That would’ve been May of last year.
M.O.M: The new Texas Hippie Coalition album is AMAZING, and you have ALOT of fans here! Is there going to be a new single anytime soon?
BDR: You know, right now, there is no real push for a single at this moment. We’re probably gonna wait for Christmas to come and go, then around the first of next year, we’ll kick off with a single, a song called ‘Go Pro”. Alot of bands like to come out and push the single a couple of months before the album, but we really want the world to get a chance to get ahold of the album, and have a chance to get to know us. Radio, and that business, the months of October, November, December,we all know it’s preparation for the next year, and there’s alot of stuff that’s gonna carry over anyway. We hoped that we’d have the album out earlier, in time for Mayhem, and we would push it then, that’s typically the way we wanted to do, you know, we don’t have a giant label, we have a GREAT independent label, and we want to make sure we spend money wisely. And what we’re hoping to do is get some licensing, and we’ll spend somebody else’s money. ( LOL)
M.O.M: Good plan, yeah! (Lol) So, the videos are VERY popular. They are just EVERYWHERE, on all the social media sites, we get ALOT of people from Minneapolis asking if we work with you guys at all, and can we or will we post some of your stuff, and I guess my question is, for you, how is Minneapolis, compared to other markets- are you doing as well here as you would like to be?
BDR: Oh, um, we feel like we’re growing in every market, and it seems like every …ya know, I remember the first time we came up there, to Mankato, and played there, it was our first time in Minnesota, and there were like 100 people, and the next time we came up there it was 200 people, and then we went to Minneapolis with about 150 people, and then the next time it was about 300 people. I think the last time we played up there, it was at Pickle Park, out in the middle of nowhere, and the place was packed. ALOT of fans out there, and it seems like our fan base just keeps growing. Mostly of word of mouth. Great fans we have up there, you know, like Betty is up there, Sarah Peak, um…just alot of great fans up there in that area, that treat us like family, which is important for us. So, ya know, we would come back up there, just for those people alone,but it’s always great to come in and have a nice crowd in front of you.
M.O.M: Have you spent alot of time on tour this year?
BDR: Ya know, at the beginning of the year, we stayed pretty busy with the album, and we still kind of toured in and out through the recording, getting to be out in California, writing some songs, headed out to Nashville and got to chill and hang out there, made for an easy first half of the year. But then me and the boys got busy, went out on Mayhem, the largest touring heavy metal festival in North America in 2014, and we were out there kicking ass, you know, letting everybody know who we were and what we were about. The first time I come out on stage, and there’s Ice T greetin’ me, tellin’ me, “Hey man, I just wanna let you know your band is freakin’ awesome, and you, sir, are BAD-ASS!” , and I’m like Oooh, maaan! I’ve been trying to tell everybody for YEARS that I’m a bad-ass! (LOL) If Ice T says it, I know I’m right! (LOL) . then we stopped back through Colorado and did a show with Five Finger Death Punch, and Hell Yeah. Colorado’s a favorite, so that was alot of fun- great show, great crowd, great response. I like the way they played some johnny Cash, and now we’re fixin’ to go out for about a month with ol’ Chris Jericho and Fozzy. You know, this band- that’s how we make money- puttin’ miles on tires. Only one Platinum album this year, and our name ain’t Taylor Swift. ( LOL). I think alot of it has to do with how people get their music now. Jason Aldeen had over 10,000,000 streams, but he didn’t even break 750,000 in total sales, so it’s a crazy world now. Platinum could be a thing of the past. The way you make it work is, you stay on the road. Put miles on the tires. FFDP and Hell Yeah are just constantly on the road, just like Korn. Those guys have toured non stop for a couple of years now. There are just so many ways for people to get music now. You know, as a musician, you’re kind of torn. If I want a CD- I’ll go out there and buy it- you remember back in the day, if you wanted to borrow music from somebody, they gave you a cassette, now if you wanna borrow music, they can just give it to you.
M.O.M: How many years have you guys been at this?
BDR: Well, we’ve been together for about a decade now. This is our 4th album, our 3rd with Carved Records, and you know, it’s been alot of fun, and we’ve been growing. At first we just wanted a band, to play around locally and have fun with, for something to do. But then we saw that there’s an appetite or this kind of music out there, and then we got playin’ and just started getting bigger and bigger crowds, accepting us with open arms, and then Dallas was offering us gigs down there, and things got crazy. I told John at first I thought there was an appetite for this kind of music, and then I thought maybe a hunger, but then I could see people were starving for it! Just some good ol’ real music. You could tell when we were out on Mayhem. There’s no tracking involved- we’re a real band- it’s absolutely real frickin’ singin’, I’m REALLY dyin’ out there on stage for ya. (LOL)So, you know, it’s me and my boys. When we take that stage, we’re there to kick everybody’s ass. We love to get our audience in it, and just start off with a good old..you know, kick ya right in the neck! We just try to deliver that at every show. I think that out on Mayhem, we earned alot of respect, from the bands as well as alot of those bands’ fans, ’cause there was alot of people out there wearing Mushroomhead, Korn, and A7X shirts. We have to credit those bands, and everyone involved in Mayhem for introducing Texas Hippie Coalition to a larger fan base. It’s so very much appreciated, because those same fans that were wearing those Mushroomhead, Korn and A7X shirts were also in my line, buying my tshirts, and offering to smoke weed with me! (LOL)
M.O.M: Your fan base is amazing- it’s HUGE nationally. Did you expect that, or were you surprised that Texas Hippie Coalition has become so well known?
BDR: Well, I think it all starts at the very beginning,with 25 or 50 people, and they just became family. Every time we came to their town, they were there, and they brought more people with them. it was just like havin’…you know, family. We just wanted to keep treating all the new people the same as we treated the first ones, and I think that’s why you see alot of, uh, Chapters, worldwide. Ireland, Brazil, Australia…uh, it’s just crazy! Even in Texas, there’s a couple of Chapters, and in a couple of other states there’s a few Chapters, and it’s awesome that people have come out and championed the cause. It’s just staying true to your roots, where you come from, and letting everybody see what you’re about, you know, on your sleeve. Those people that are around us, those are people that, when I come up to Minnesota, I get to stay at their house, I get to eat their food, you know, they’re TRUE family, and that’s why we have a saying- it’s called Faith, Family, Freedom. Faith first, Family foremost, and Freedom is a must!
M.O.M: Is there anywhere you HAVEN”T been, that you would like to play?
BDR: Well, you know, I really wanna go to Ireland really bad. I just place a value on it, I love the place, of course you know, the whole place just gives me butterflies, as home. I know we have an Ireland Chapter, and we have alot of great fans over there, so that would be super cool!
M.O.M: What do you do to take a little time for yourself before a show? Is there a THC pre-show ritual?
BDR: Well, we have a…what alot of people would call a prayer circle, but it’s really a positive energy circle, and alot of people in that circle have great faith in Christ, and we give it up and praise the lord, and some people are just there for that positive energy. it’s just something we do to bring everybody together and let everybody know there’s one goal, one focus, and it’s to go out there and kick everybody’s ass. And of course, you know, the band- THC- we all like to be in the right state of mind.(LOL)
M.O.M; So AFTER the show, when everybody in the world wants to talk to you and have things signed, do you like to go meet the fans right away, or do you need a few minutes to yourself?
BDR: Well, usually when I come off stage, I need 5-10 minutes to come down, because if I go straight out there, you know, I’m still in kick ass mode. I need 5 minutes just to calm down a little bit, clear my head, have a drink or anything like that, chill out for a little bit, and then I wanna go straight to the fans, straight to my family. Give hugs, take pictures, you know, sign some titties. ( LOL) You know how that is.(LOL) I know I’m gonna get in trouble with Mama, but… (LOL), you know, Baby Girl’s gonna be mad at Daddy. (LOL) But you know, I wanna hang out, and let everybody know how much I appreciate them. Because, like I said, you have to make it up somewhere, and we want our family to wear our brand, alot of people got THC tattoos now, so, they’re willing to brand themselves with that brand, and that’s why I gotta get out there and let those people know that I love them. Because that money that they’re spending on that stuff is putting food on the table for my kids, and helping my family get through this year, and they need to know how much I appreciate that. My 65 minutes on stage is not enduring enough, for me, to show them that. I need to get down off the stage, go to the merch booth and hang out, and show everybody some love. Sometimes that’s almost impossible. At Mayhem, it was NUTS! But on this upcoming tour with Fozzy, we’ll be out there, treating everybody like family.
M.O.M: What do you have coming up for the next year?
BDR: EVERY 4-20, for the next 5 years, we’re gonna release 4 songs. It’s gonna be called “THE 420 Chronicles”. 3 songs will be originals, and 1 song will be a cover, which the thing about THC is, we’ve only ever played 1 cover,ever,1 time. And what we’re gonna do is, at the end, in 2019, we’re gonna release the 5th one, and it’ll have the same 4 song format, 3 originals, 1 cover, and in 2020, we’ll release all 5 albums together in one 20 song CD, and it will be called “The 420 Chronicles In Their Entirety”. That’s just something we’ve been talking about, a little something special for the fans.
M.O.M: Wow! That is very cool! Really unique to the THC fans! I think that’ll make them feel really special!
BDR: They ARE really special!
M.O.M : Well, Big Dad, we won’t keep you, but thank you so much for talking to us. Is there anything you’d like to say to the fans before we go?
BDR: Well, just all around the world, the Coalition is growin’ like a weed, and we’re just here to let you know, if you’re all about about positive thinking, positive energy, and you wanna test positive for THC, this is the only band you need to have in your CD player, downloaded on your itunes, and you need to always have the volume on 11!
M.O.M: Thank you so much, Big Dad!
BDR: Thank you, Sweetheart. Bye.

© 2014 Misi & Cari Mistresses of Metal
Photo by James Bland"Big Dad'' Ritch


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2 thoughts on “Mistresses of Metal Exclusive Interview with “Big Dad” Ritch of Texas Hippie Coalition

  • Renee Douglas

    Absolutely my favorite band! Lived in Denison for 5 years ,got to see the early days with Coop. My daughter and her friend would hang out n see Big Daddy at Calhouns.. I knew then They were gonna kick ass. Now we live In Humbolt County. Lookin to see the band in our area. Santa Rosa?? Best wishes to all n thanks to M.O.M for the fantastic interview..Start your day wTHC. Renee),(Kelly and Paige)