Music Bugle Exclusive – Q & A – Ben Osmundson Of Zebrahead

Photo credit – Kevin Baldes.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez

In a career that spans more than two decades, Zebrahead persevered label changes, got a Grammy nomination from a collaboration with Motorhead and have seemingly toured the entire world by now.

However, one thing has remained the same – they’ll continue to bring the energy no matter the occasion, with over 2 million albums sold and just over a million Spotify listeners as a testament to their influence on the punk scene.

The Orange County, Calif. outfit – composed of singer/guitarist Adrian Estrella, vocalist/rapper Ali Tabatabaee, bassist Ben Osmundson, drummer Ed Udhus and guitarist Dan Palmer – have rattled cages and shook stages with their rebellious spirits, with no end in sight.

Fresh off their European tour, The Music Bugle had the chance to talk with Osmundson about their year so far, what to expect for the future and more, which you can check out below.

Music Bugle – You guys have had a pretty active summer touring in Europe – what was your favorite part of it?

Ben Osmundson – I personally am a sucker for anywhere new. Music is the gift that has given us the ability to sightsee and explore the world. We are super lucky to be able to travel so much. If I pick a place…’s all of them!

Music Bugle – How would you sum up your 2023 so far?

Ben Osmundson – Great, but we have some really fun stuff coming up with the “When We Were Young” festival, San Diego House of Blues and Anaheim House of Blues. That is going to be a really fun week.

Music Bugle – What do you feel is left for Zebrahead to accomplish at this stage of the game?

Ben Osmundson – I guess we always set a goal to accomplish more than we did in the past. We have done really well the last couple years and it feels pretty amazing to see things still growing.

Music Bugle – What’s a quote that motivates you to keep doing what you do?

Ben Osmundson – “Ichi-go Ichi-e” – Basically, it is a Japanese saying that means, “In a roundabout way, enjoy the moment because it could be your last.” Each time we go somewhere or get to experience something, don’t waste it, as it could be your last time getting to experience that. This is a little interpretation going on from me here, so basically, cherish each moment in life.

Music Bugle – What’s your stance on the use of AI in music? 

Ben Osmundson – It is silly what can happen with AI these days. Love it and hate it at the same time. I mean, who doesn’t like some of the ridiculous photos circulating or the cross genre-blending of songs. Sure, it is a fine line of confusion and misleading people, but as of now, it makes me smile and laugh. Who knows what can happen in the future, though?

Music Bugle – How would you sum up the Zebrahead live experience?  

Ben Osmundson – We basically are doing a similar show to years ago – try to bring a high-energy, fun party to every venue around the world. Our goal is to hopefully have people leave the show with a smile and being able to forget about the crap of life for a few hours.

Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise?

Ben Osmundson – Like everyone else in the world, I really am liking Turnstile. It is nice to have some old “Quicksand”/”CIV”-type vibes coming out in new music.

Music Bugle – Does social media help or hurt musicians?

Ben Osmundson – Social media is whatever you want to make of it as a musician. You can create a career in music with just some imagination and zero money these days. It has opened the playing field to everyone who wants to work and to me, that is amazing. That being said, we don’t even have a TikTok. Uff!

Music Bugle – What do you wish happened more in today’s music industry?

Ben Osmundson – It would be cool to see a few bands just explode the way you saw The Offspring or Green Day take off back in the late 90’s. The world needs a few more huge festival headliner-type rock bands. So many good punk, metal and rock bands out there. We need a few to take off and keep things alive. Love to hear songs with actual guitar on the radio. It makes me smile.

Music Bugle – Have you ever heard the band’s music in a place you wouldn’t expect it to be played?

Ben Osmundson – Usually, not really, but a few times, I have heard our song played at Home Depot. Both times during the holidays. We once recorded a Christmas song and that seems to be the choice. Don’t get me started on the subject of Christmas songs… Uff… See you guys out there on tour soon!

*Photo Credit – Alex Ochoa/Kevin Baldes*

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close