The Offspring’s Noodles Says They Never Expected to Become Popular, Names Song That ’Feels as Fresh Today’ As It Did in the ’90s

Guitarist Kevin Wasserman, popularly known as Noodles in The Offspring, looked back on the band’s long career and said that, back in the 1990s, the guys never expected to become as popular as they did. Speaking to Review STL recently, Noodles touched upon this while discussing the band’s long career and how they affected the music world back in the day.

Asked to reflect on the impact that The Offspring has made on fans all over the world, Noodles replied (transcribed by Killer Guitar Rigs):

“I’m very thankful that what I do for a living is really kind of going out and putting smiles on people’s faces. Not every song is a happy song. There’s some songs that are serious, they’re touching — ‘The Kids Aren’t Alright’, ‘Gone Away’, songs like that.”

The Offspring - The Kids Aren't Alright (Official Music Video)

“But we’re really commiserating with people, even in those songs, we’re connecting with people. And given what we do live on any given night, we really are just kind of helping people have a good time, get away from all the shit that happens in normal, workaday lives, and just kind of come together and have a good time together. I consider myself so lucky that I’m able to do that all the time.”

During the interview, Noodles was also asked about The Offspring’s 1994 album “Smash” and how he feels about it now, being one of the most successful rock albums of that decade. Kevin then replied by explaining that they never really expected that they could turn this into an actual career:

“It’s incredible. It was incredible at the time when it started taking off out of nowhere. I was the head custodian at an elementary school when that record took off, and we couldn’t believe it.”

The Offspring - Gone Away

“We’ve had some friends that have had some success, who — like the guys in NOFX — were able to quit their day jobs, tour for a living and just make music for a living. They weren’t getting rich by any means, but they were able to actually do it, and you’re like, ‘Wow, those guys actually can do it’. And it’s punk rock, who would have thought?”

And, as he added, they had some success but they just thought that it would die out after a couple of years:

“And we thought, ‘Maybe we could do that for a year or two’, we didn’t think it was going to ever, ever become what it became. So, to think back, it just blows me away that those days ever happened. You know, we still end pretty much every show with ‘Self Esteem’ off that record, and it feels as fresh today as it did back then.”

The Offspring - Self Esteem (Live in 1998)

Another topic that they touched upon is whether they, as musicians, feel like anyone who puts out music have this responsibility to speak up about important societal issues. He responded:

“Every musician needs to figure out for themselves what they want to say, and I don’t think they should shy away from saying something if they’re feeling it. We don’t consider ourselves a political band, yet we touch on political topics, for sure.”

“I don’t think you’re going to change somebody’s mind, politically, I’m not going to take a conservative and make him become a liberal, or vice versa.”

The Offspring | Self Esteem | Vainstream Rockfest 2022

“But what we might be able to do is, if people feel strongly about something and feel the same way that we do, maybe we can inspire them to at least act on those feelings and try to make the world a better place — whatever that means — for them.”

“I think we need to get more people — especially more young people — out voting. I understand the frustrations that come with never having what you’re voting for become a reality, but I still think it’s important to do that, because there are forces that want to take the voting away from a lot of us, especially young people and people of color, there are people that are trying to strip those rights from us.”

The Offspring - Full Set - Live In Austin TX 8/11/23

“And so I very much try to inspire people to do that. So they go out and vote for… I try not to tell them. It’s more important that they just go and do it. Especially young people need to get out there and do that.”

One of The Offspring’s songs from the latest album “Let the Bad Times Roll” is “The Opioid Diaries.” And during the interview, Noodles was asked to weigh in on the matter and explain how he feels about this song “drawing such positive attention to an important topic.” Noodles said:

“Every family has somebody that’s been touched by this, or friends. I know people that have lost their lives to it — not just metaphorically, but literally lost their lives to it.”

The Offspring - The Opioid Diaries (Official Music Video)

“So yes, it’s just an awful thing, and something Dexter was feeling, and he wanted to write something about it. He wanted to make it succinct, and I don’t think he was trying to get out there and touch people with it, it was just something that he was feeling at the time. So he worked on it and came up with it.”

“I thought he really did a good job of pointing out that these people are getting addicted to something that was sold and marketed to them as non-addictive — it wasn’t like rockstars experimenting in the back of the club, trying to see if heroin is their thing or not.”

“This was kids, football players, grown adults who had some kind of injury and were prescribed a medicine that ended up being hugely addictive. They were lied to, and the doctors were being lied to about what it was.”

The Offspring - 2023-06-06 - Liseberg, Gothenburg, Sweden (Full Show, 4K)

Photos: Mr. Rossi (The Offspring – Rock im Park 2022 – IMG 1633 – 1)

  • David Slavkovic

    David always planned for music to be nothing more than a hobby. However, after a short career as an agricultural engineer he ended up news editor at KillerGuitarRigs, senior editor at Ultimate-Guitar.com, as well as a freelance contributor to online magazines such as GuitaristNextdoor and brands like Sam Ash.

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