STUCK MOJO's official forum was recently updated with a question-and-answer session with the group's new frontman Lord Nelson. A few excerpts follow:
Q: Were you a fan of STUCK MOJO before you auditioned and did you know Rich [Ward, guitarist/songwriter] or Bonz [former STUCK MOJO frontman/rapper] beforehand?
Lord Nelson: Yes. I was and I am still a fan of STUCK MOJO. I was introduced to the band back in the Nineties. Bonz and I actually went to school together. I was at a DE LA SOUL, GOODIE MOB and FISHBONE concert and another friend of Bonz and myself told me about the MOJO. He suggested that I check them out. I was excited about this because I had not seen Bonz in a few years and did not know he was in a rock group. I can remember to this very day, walking down the hill to club Rockafella's and there was Bonz. He yelled my name out when he saw me and gave me a pound and a hug. It was great to see him and how he was interacting with his fans. I did not know what to expect but I was ready to see them perform. The band was fucking awesome and the show they put on was incredible. Here I am this six-foot-five, 300-pound guy standing in front of the stage wondering why everyone was standing about ten feet back. As soon as the music started I found out quickly, I was in a mosh pit. It was beautiful chaos. I loved it. I met Rich and the other guys after the set and they all seemed to be the most down-to-earth dudes.
Q: How did being friends with Bonz affect your decision to join STUCK MOJO upon asking? After all, you were already participating in this project and Bonz did not sound happy with the decision to sit out. I would imagine you had quite a few angles you had to think about when deciding whether or not to do this.
Lord Nelson: It was very hard, because I have nothing but respect and love for Bonz, and if it wasn't for him none of this would have been possible. The issues between the band and Bonz are between the band and Bonz. Bonz and I, in my mind, and I hope in his, will always be friends. As for how I got involved, sometime in the writing process for "Southern Born Killers", Rich had asked Bonz if he could find some guest vocalists to appear on the album. I always told Bonz that if he ever needed me I was there for him and finally it happened. Bonz brought me to this and introduced me to Rich. I was just so happy to be involved with the project and at that time, I came in and recorded vocal tracks on "Friends" and "Yoko". After the recording session in Atlanta, I told Bonz and Rich I was so very thankful and I hoped to continue this relationship with them. I followed the band on MySpace as they toured and wished I could be at every show. I did not know they were having problems internally until Bonz called me about a month later. He told me that he did not know if he was going to continue with STUCK MOJO. This surprised the hell out of me. He never went into details, but to me that was his business and I had no opinion on it, I just listened. I told him I wanted to hear the songs I was on and he told me to call Rich. So I did. When I spoke to Rich he did not go into the problems that the band and Bonz had with each other. We just talked about the songs I was on. He then asked if I would be willing to help him write a few songs. I was, like, "Cool." I have been writing for a long time and I felt honored to be asked. We got together first online and then person-to-person to write. The vibe was just so damn good. When they asked me to join, I struggled with the decision for a few weeks. I spoke with my family and many of my closest friends to get their opinions. The majority of them told me that this was the chance of a lifetime. A few were on the fence. The final decision was mine and I made the decision to join the group. I know I made the right decision.
Q: Over the years, there have been many membership/lineup changes in all of Rich Ward's bands (with the exception of FOZZY's Chris Jericho, Rich is the only original member in all of his bands). Why do you think there have been so many changes? What has your working and personal experience with him been like and why do you think he has a reputation of being hard to work with?
Lord Nelson: To me, when you are in a band, you have to deal with many personalities. It all depends on how well you can handle these personalities. Everyone is not the same. You must be able to accept the good with the bad. If not, you move on. My relationship with Rich has been nothing but professional. We work very well together. I know who I am and I respect each member of the group. I expect nothing but the same from them. I expect honesty and a positive attitude in all areas, business and personal and I will give the same. Rich may be hard to work with for some because he is a perfectionist. He wants the best product for the fans and never wants to settle. I agree with him on this.
Q: You have joined a band that has a long history and a loyal worldwide fan base. Are you nervous about being able to live up to the fans' expectations?
Lord Nelson: Yes, I am nervous, but not for being able to live up to the expectations of the fans, but more about being able to deliver what I know I bring to the table every time out. I know what I can do and I hope the fans old and new accept me for me.
Q: Almost all of the initial feedback of your vocal performance on "Southern Born Killers" has been very positive. What would you like to say to all the fans around the world who are now Lord Nelson supporters?
Lord Nelson: I am so appreciative of the love. So many of you fans have embraced me unconditionally worldwide. I am a humble dude and I know exactly what you guys mean to us. Without you there is no us. I will work hard to deliver the things you expect and I believe you will see and feel my passion for the music. To all the Lord Nelson and STUCK MOJO fans past and present, let's continue to add on and keep building for the future. You are our past our present and, God willing, our future.
Read the entire interview at this location.
In a bold move, STUCK MOJO released its entire new album, "Southern Born Killers", absolutely free for download via the group's web site at www.StuckMojoMedia.com. The response has been overwhelming both in terms of sheer number of tracks downloaded as well as people purchasing a hard-copy of the album directly from the band to show their support. The limited-edition CD is numbered and signed by the band and it includes a bonus DVD with the "Open Season" video, a feature on the making of the video, an interview and more. At the web site above, Rich Ward also explains the rationale behind making the CD available freely for download.