The Business: Punk is Their Business and The Business is Good

 

Business-DoingthebusinessYou’d be hard pressed to find an Oi punk band that has had as much influence on the genre as South London’s working class heroes The Business.

The lineup has gone through some renovations over the 30-plus years – even with taking a few years off in the ’80s – but their music has always been a rallying cry for street punks and hardcore kids on both sides of the Atlantic. Over the years, the group has managed to inspire a generation of punks from Operation Ivy to The Dropkick Murphys with anthems like “Smash the Discos” and “Drinking and Driving.”

The Business is thankfully back again this year with an album of live cuts and new songs entitled Doing the Business released on the recently resurrected Sailor’s Grave Records.

Front man and band founder Micky Fitz was kind enough to answer a few questions recently about the new album, the band’s legacy and telling your detractors to “fuck off.”

Innocent Words: Micky, you started the band 30 years ago. Did you have any idea you would still be doing this three decades later?

Micky Fitz: I’m not sure that 30 years ago I even knew what the word ‘decade’ meant, let alone three of them.

IW: The Business took some time off in the late ’80s; at the time did you think you would ever reform the band?

Fitz: No, not at all, but when I wasn’t working at weekends or whatever, I would daydream about gigging never thinking it was soon to become a reality. The years ‘87-‘92 are now a very distant memory thank fuck.

IW: Why did you guys call it quits for awhile?

Fitz: Same reason as other bands, I should imagine. Apathy had set into the scene and with the “Isn’t it time you grew up?” brigade all round me, matters just took their course.

IW: Having been a part of punk music from the very beginning, are you surprised that the genre is still around?

Fitz: I’m more than pleased. The brigade I mentioned earlier was told in no uncertain terms by myself, “Told you so, now fuck off.”

IW: Are you encouraged by what you hear from some of the younger punk bands?

Fitz: Not just encouraged, but equally proud of being a part of this evergreen scene.

IW: What can you tell me about the new record Doing the Business?

Fitz: There’s brand new studio takes together with archive live recordings. The sleeve cover alone makes it worth having!Business-DoingthebusinessCD

IW: What’s the biggest misconception about being in a working/touring punk band?

Fitz: When people say how great it must be to travel to all those beautiful countries. As the reason we ask for postcards to be on our rider, is so that we can see where the fuck we are and what it looks like.

IW: How did you end up connecting with the label Sailor’s Grave?

Fitz: Constant obscene phone calls from Andy King the CEO.

IW: Any plans to tour the U.S. this year?

Fitz: Mais oui! (I’m fluent in German). We hit the East Coast/Southern leg of the tour in April through May, with the West Coast leg starting around Sept. 8 through to October.

IW: Anything else you want to add?

Fitz: Just like to say a big thanks to you and your readers. See you at the shows, and remember this: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try and try again,” you’ll be gob smacked!