12 musicians talk about a time when THEY felt starstruck
Meeting your heroes can go either way, and all of us can get starstruck—even musicians.
It can be a dream come true and subsequently a memory that you cherish for the rest of your life or a total nightmare that forces you to ceremoniously dispose of an entire body of work through tear-filled eyes.
They’re probably used to being on the receiving end of starstruck fans, but we asked members of PVRIS, Palaye Royale, Don Broco, Neck Deep, Milk Teeth, Bowling For Soup, Deez Nuts, the Faim, Grayscale and Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes when they themselves have been starstruck!
Rob Damiani, DON BROCO
When I first met Fred Durst—he was wearing a black cap at the time, the red cap would have been the ultimate—at Sonisphere Festival. I ended up [standing] next to him in the toilet queue waiting for the urinals. I didn’t know what to say to him and ended up having a wee next to him. For some reason, I looked to him and was like, “So, going for a wee, yeah?” and he was like, “Yeah.” That was the extent of our convo! I just panicked. When you meet someone who is an absolute idol when you were a kid, you’re like, “Shit, what do I say?” Luckily, I got to meet him again at another festival where I got introduced to him, and I pretended I’d never met him before. I played it a lot cooler!
Ben Barlow, NECK DEEP
The first time I met Mark Hoppus. He was totally chill. He laughed at one of my jokes! I was stoked, so that was a good experience.
Matt Caughthran, THE BRONX
I met John Travolta recently at a festival in Florida. He was hanging out with a buddy of mine; it was really cool. Honestly, people keep asking me so many questions about him—if his hair looked real or whatever! I was so enamored by meeting him. It was amazing. I handled myself well; you just got to be cool. But inside I was trembling!
Becky Blomfield, MILK TEETH
I met Oli Sykes at a festival; me and my sister used to listen to Bring Me, [so] it was somebody that we’d grown up with as teenagers, and that’s my association. So to then be stood having a conversation was just quite surreal.
Jaret Reddick, BOWLING FOR SOUP
Michael J. Fox. I saw him at the Grammys. I’m seeing all of these other musicians and people shaking my hand and stuff, and I saw Michael J. Fox and I completely lost it. He completely freaked me out. He was in a show when I was a kid and in all these movies as I was growing up—he was just like every teenager.
JJ Peters, DEEZ NUTS
I’m a huge Deftones fan. Since I was a kid, that’s the one band that I love everything they put out. I named my dog after Chino [Moreno] when I was a teenager; he’s the guy I look up to. We played Soundwave in Australia; we did that whole touring festival with them. I promised myself if I saw Chino I would play it cool, and I wasn’t going to try and talk to him because I didn’t want to possibly catch him on an off day or if he was in a bad mood and tarnish that whole thing for me. We were crossing paths in a small space, and I had to have some kind of human interaction with him, and he was like, “Hey man, what’s up?” and I looked up and a strange noise that wasn’t a sentence, that wasn’t words, that wasn’t a greeting, that wasn’t anything just came out of my mouth! He looked at me and we both stopped and I said, “Oh, I’m sorry” and then we both kept walking. I really put my foot in it. That’s the one time I’ve been starstruck. I fucked up. It’s probably best that I stay away from Chino!
Lynn Gunn, PVRIS
I was definitely slightly starstruck when I met Hayley Williams at the APMAs. She was so nice. I was too afraid to go up to her; we kind of passed each other in the hall, and she said hi to me. She’s a total sweetheart; she’s beautiful.
Liam Cormier, CANCER BATS
I get starstruck around professional skateboarders. Anyone who was skateboarding in the ’90s, when I come across them I’m like, “Duuudeee!” Meeting Steve Caballero. To me, being a professional skateboarder is so hard, borderline impossible. Anyone can be a musician! You can kind of hack your way through it. I think there’s talent, but it’s pretty easy to just coast—Cancer Bats being an example. But there’s no way you can fake skateboarding; you actually have to be legit good at it.
Remington Leith, PALAYE ROYALE
We went on a tour with Good Charlotte, and I always looked up to them as a kid. So, the first time I really hung out with them and met them, I was in complete shock. I watched so many of their music videos on MTV!
Josh Raven, THE FAIM
Pete Wentz. That got me a bit. I was trying to act cool about it! That was a real eye-opener.
Collin Walsh, GRAYSCALE
When we went to the APMAs we met a lot of leveled artists. Andrew McMahon—that was pretty crazy. I remember being like, “Holy shit!” Dallas [Molster, guitarist] could barely speak, and I spoke gibberish!
Frank Carter, FRANK CARTER & THE RATTLESNAKES
I get funny around artists, not around musicians. I’ve been playing music for such a long time that it’s just a bit more natural to me, and I’m a bit more in that world, whereas art feels like this really mysterious ethereal world that I know nothing about. I’ve met a lot of musicians that I love and I respect, but fine art is my thing, so I got a bit funny the first time I met Jake Chapman from the Chapman Brothers and the first time I met Sue Webster. But now they’re both my friends! So it’s cool, but I get a bit shook when I meet artists—I don’t know why! I just think they’re amazing people.