DURING OUR FIRST YEAR, FROM SEPTEMBER 1999 TO AUGUST 2000, WE WERE KNOWN UNDER THE MONIKER CHICKENHEAD. DURING THAT FIRST YEAR, WE INTERVIEWED A LOT OF PEOPLE. NOT ALL OF THEM WERE GREAT INTERVIEWS. YOU CAN TELL THAT WE WERE JUST STARTING TO FIGURE OUT OUR STYLE. BUT WE'VE PICKED TWELVE INTERVIEWS OUT FROM THAT FIRST YEAR THAT EPITOMIZED WHAT WE WERE TRYING TO DO. DURING JUNE, JULY, AND AUGUST WE WILL BE PLACING THESE OLD INTERVIEWS ONLINE FOR YOUR READING PLEASURE. THERE WILL BE FOUR NEW INTERVIEWS EACH MONTH. ENJOY THIS BLAST FROM TASTES LIKE CHICKEN'S PAST!
INTERVIEW: FRANK KOZIK
ORIGINAL PRINT DATE: MAY 2000
HOW MANY FORMER AIR FORCE RADAR CONTROL TECHNICIANS DO YOU KNOW THAT HAVE MADE THEIR MARK ON THE WORLDS OF BOTH UNDERGROUND ART AND PUNK ROCK? WE KNOW ONE, AND OUR RETARD CONTROL TECHNICIAN, VINNIE BAGGADONUTS, SAT DOWN WITH HIM. MEET THE MAN THEY CALL FRANK KOZIK.
Vinnie: What made you decide to join the Air Force?
Frank: I was in trouble. Me and my friends dropped out of high school, lived in my car down by the river, and supported ourselves trying to deal pot and stealing shit. Everyone was turning 18 and getting busted. I got busted when I was still a minor, and it was like this total movie thing: I went to the youth farm for six weeks, then I went for my thing with the judge. He was like, "You're obviously a bright guy. I'm gonna' give you a choice. You can fuckin' join the military and get the fuck out of Sacramento County, or I'm gonna classify you as an adult, and you go to the county jail." And I was not real into that, so I immediately went and joined up.
V: What did you do in the Air Force?
F: I actually had a pretty good job. I aced all their entrance exams, and they were like, "What do you want to do?" I said I wanted the job that has the longest schooling. I wound up being an air traffic control radar technician. I maintained all the radar systems. I maintained the stuff in the tower. I also learned to do air traffic control stuff incase of emergencies. I actually ended up with a super interesting job, 'cause we were autonomous. We had really cool uniforms, and our own trucks and shit. It was actually like the military, once I got past the school part, which was a year-and-a-half of hell. Once I actually got to my Air Force base, it was totally killer. And I made tons on money. I was a sergeant. I was makin' like $500 a month, take-home, in 1980. I mean, I had a new car and shit, so it was actually a really good experience for me. If you're a loser, I recommend it.
V: When you got out, did you ever imagine yourself owning a record label?
F: Oh no, dude. When I got out I didn't know what the fuck I was doing. I was hanging on the punk rock scene, just doing local punk rock bullshit kind of stuff. It just slowly, over the years, turned into a living. I never had a plan. I was just hoping someday, maybe, it would become a job.
V: It seems to be doing really well.
F: Well, on paper. But, actually, it's a real hassle. It's hard to have a small business; especially in California. But it seems like most of the stuff we do is appreciated. People seem to enjoy it. It supports us. I would say it's successful that way. We are actually functioning as an independent thing, which is good.
V: Are there any big plans for the future?
F: Not really. I'm actually trying to figure out how to make it a little bit smaller. It's a little out of hand right now. The amount of activity we have to provide to support the records is kind of more than we can do. So, next year, we're going to scale down the amount of releases, and just do a better job on fewer releases. I'm gettin' kind of tired. I'm almost 40. I've been doing this for awhile. I'm a little burned out. Hopefully, sales will increase. But as far as frantically putting out six records a month, those days are pretty much gonna be over soon.
V: Does it intimidate you at all, knowing how many people look up to you now?
F: To be honest with you, dude, if any of them hung out with me for a day, they'd be so disappointed by the bland reality of my life. I just got lucky-- pure luck. It's about exploiting the luck for whatever. I don't think about it in those terms. Maybe because I've been doing it for so long. I'm so used to it that maybe it is all flamboyant and cool; but to me it's just kind of like a daily routine.
V: How are you received in Europe as opposed to here in the States?
F: Our European activity is increasing all the time. Our problems are always with the industry. Like the industry here, the distributors, they don't really get it at a certain level. So they're not very helpful. In Europe it's like, the distributor and the press people, they kind of get it more. They're way more supportive. We get tons of press, and they're very enthusiastic. They're like, "What can we do to help?" I can see it getting to the point where our sales in Europe are going to be totally bigger than in the States, which is totally freakish. They're just way more into it in Europe. I think it's because your average music fan there is a little bit older, and a little bit more intellectual. They're not doing it because it's cool. They're really into these records. We do really well in Europe, and my artwork does really well in Japan.
V: Do dogs have lips?
V: Do you hate TV?
F: Yes. It makes me very depressed. Everyone's so beautiful. They all have nice teeth.
V: Anyone whose ass you'd really like to kick?
F: Totally, yeah.
V: Care to share?
F: Whose ass would I just like to fuckin' stomp into the ground right now? My fuckin' upstairs neighbor. He's a total fuckin' arrogant yuppie fuckin' pathetic crock of shit that makes my life hell with his fuckin' parties. He's fucking annoying.
V: Were you a big KISS fan?
F: I was a fan of the look, but I never liked the music.
V: Right on. Who was your favorite?
F: Um,.. Gene Simmons. He had the best look. I thought the rest of them were actually kind of gay. I mean, I had all the posters and stuff, but I never listened to their records.
V: Yeah. I don't get Paul Stanley's make-up, either.
F: Yeah. He's a total homo. I think girls thought it was cute or something.
V: Is there anybody now whose work you totally admire?
F: Yeah. I'm totally obsessed with this guy named Trevor Brown. He does these amazing, immaculate paintings of sexual doll people. They're really fuckin' cool. It's all stuff like a beat-up little doll wearing a sexy little nurse outfit, laying in a pool of blood. His stuff is so awesome.
V: My last question: Is there anything new you'd like to promote?
F: I hooked up with these people at wildbrain.com. They're a traditional animation company that does stuff for TV and movies, and they hooked up with some high-end Flash animators. We're doing a half-hour series in 13 vignettes, like a Flash-animated Internet cartoon show using my characters, and Dante's Inferno as the storyline. I'm starting to get the first tests back, and they're amazing! Especially considering it's Internet animation. The first episode should be up in June.
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