Topper kncoked me directly when I heard their single Once a punk always a punk which was released by MVG before the summer 2000. I mailed them and got Jocke to phone me up. I was in a record shop when he phoned me but I phoned him up later in the evening. I let him take the history about Topper for me. - I and Tobbe played for 15 years in Taboo and we released a record called Visst nappar det. It was very good punksongs on it but it was a very bad title on the CD that went out so that nobody bought it. We like to fish, you can see that beacuse of the title of the CD. People said that the record was fucking good but you canīt do like that. We didnīt give a damn about because we did what we want. We continuied to play and we played around on places like Tre Backar and every other places in Stockholm.But 1998 so did Stefan quit Taboo and then Micke Gustafsson began to play bass with the group. And then we were only three in the group and in the same time we began to sing in english. we did a gig on Kafe 44 and after that Knocke came to the group. And he played the second guitar. After that everything went on fast. We played in Hultsfred last year and we played with Buzzcocks. We recorded a record which was called Once a punk always a punk just like the singleand it was a miniCD about 20 minutes long. We recorded it at my work. MNW liked the single and they distributed it. It was most for fun we recorded it and nobody is playing 77-punk nowadays ,every band wants to sound like Green Day, and we wanted to do that. All in the band is about 33-35 years old so thatīs why itīs going to be a different type of music. We played at Alcatar with another younger punkband. They were really hungry. We always drink Dry Martini before our gigs and the band have heard that we have done a CD and we sat there with our Kosta Boda glasses and drank Dry Martini and the young band asked us if we would sell our records tonight. The Kosta Boda glasses is packed in boxes which is like the one that CDīs packed in. No, weīre going to take a Dry Martini tonight we said. When we talk about Stiff LIttle Fingers isnīt it anyone who have heard about them and when we say that Clash,SLF and Sham 69 is our references everybody looks like they know nothing. We must take back the scene. That was why we began to play 77-punk. The other bands right now sounds like Backyard Babies and Hellacopters and if I want to hear them I can buy their records. Everyone in the group is old punks and we can write our opinions in our lyrics and play three chords which is easy and then we can take some beer. And thats the goal with our music, to have fun and now weīre goign to record a video which we have all that things in it. Weīre going to be dressed as we were when we were small and in the end of the video we go to our Volvocars to show that you can have fun even if you have a Volvo.
Once a punk always a punk have been on the swedish radio 6 times only this week and I hear it very often when Iīm out and drive my car.Jocke laughs and say that when they were political correct didnīt anything goign the right way the commercial way. They had fun but when they changed to english and Janne Cleman on Hultsfred heard them and take them there he didnīt understand anything. Everything happened so fast. But Jocke thinks the whole recordbusiness is a shitbusinees.- Thatīs the next goal to write a song about the whole shit, now we have a contract is it time to write about it, laughs Jocke. They want so fucking much because when we first recorded our Once a punk we recorded it in a weekend. When we now recorded the single we just have three days to remake the song.
It+s not difficult to think about Clash when you hear the single and when you see the single. Micke and Knocken loves the Clash and that does Jocke too. But Stiff Little FIngers is Jocke big idols. Of course you can hear it in the music says Jocke because he wants the same singing tunes in the background. In the beginning they were named CSKA Topper from a hockeyteam. People thought it was wrong and we they did a sellout to play at Hultsfred. They took away CSKA. The cover on Once a punk.. is the whole Black Market Clash and the next single is going to be SLF:s Inflammable Material with Topperfires on it. -When you do it that way I hope people understand that we are joking. But itīs always people who gets mad. When youīre 20-25 years old you still believe that youīre going to be a rockstar. If youīre 35 years is it no chance and then itīs only a funny thing. Micke couldnīt play when he started to play bass and we help him out precisly like they did with Paul Simonon. You can hear on the song that it isnīt any difficult basplaying on it and what we eman with this is that you can start to play anywhere in your life. Itīs really fun to go to the rehersals nowadays because you have no pressure on you. We have said to the record company that they canīt put any perssure on us. Beacuse all the other in the groups have children and Iīm going to be so we donīt put all our strength in this. We have a special rehersalday which we donīt do sometimes and sometimes we drink and play. But we donīt think weīre going to get a americacontract because of my bad english. Theyīre going to sell the stuff abroad but I donīt think theyīre going to sell it to any englishtalking countries. I have to practise soem more on my english. I was in London some years ago and then I met Bruce Foxton and Jake Burns in a pub and Bruce didnīt want to talk about the Jam with me, he only want to talk about SLF even if theyīre doing some Jamsongs sometimes. It was really fun to talk to them and they got a Topperrecord.
They are very untrendy and their mates is about 30-40 years and they are liking what they do. But itīs no chance to get into Hannas krog and you hear Topper in there. That they came on MVG is Peter Yngens "fault" because he likes them and wanted them on the label. Sankan(the producer) likes them too. Jocke got a little chocked because he thougth they wanted to get a distributioncontract with them. The goal for the future is that a new single will see the day in october and a full-lengthalbum in january 2001. I depends on that they donīt want to drown in the flood of records which is coming around Christmastime. On the new rceord itīs a song that really sounds Clash.- You really can hear the influences there and that is much from the first Clashrecord to London Calling where we are. Itīs there and to SLF:s Go For it we want to be. Thatīs why we play Suspect Device by SLF as a cover because not any bastard thinks we will do that. Weīre going to play Baby Baby with Vibrators and Gotta getaway with SLF in the future.
To play with Buzzcocks was an experience thinks Jocke and the best thing was when Pete Shelley get up on the stage with a Topper t-shirt. Paul Simonon getting thanks on the record and thatis Micke big bassgod. Jocke donīt know if Micke have been meeting Paul sometime but he know that he have met Mick Jones some times. Itīs really funny with Sanken that he has produced the record because when you talk about Sanken itīs always heavier productions he have done.- It was a little special that Sanken wanted to produce this and Dagge Lundquist have been on it and mixed. Itīs very heavy name up here. Sankan could see the humour in our music and when we were in the studio wasnīt we so pretentious as other bands are. Vi bought some booza and have some fun. We did like bands did in the past and that liked Sankan and he thought it was fun. He likes drinks and Dry Martini and Knocken who is playing the guitar is a bartender and he had the big drinkbook with him. We also get chocked when we put our names on the contract on a thursday and the monday after we got 10.000 kronor to do a video for. The only thing we have changed after that Sanken began to produce the song was in the stick when he put in a drumthing and then a stop and then the song is going on again. On the next record Chips from Sator is going to produce. He has been on many of our gigs and he have some ideas what to do with us.
Jocke feels that he is a little boring because he have many records but he only listening to Stiff and Clash. He thinks itīs very easy to only listen to two groups. He works with children and there he works he have built up rehersalstudios and a recordingstudio. He has music with the kids and he is "forced" to liten to the kids but when he sits in the car is it Stiff and Clash which is the bands or could it be Radio Stockholm to hear about the traffic. He thinks Cranberries is good but he donīt ever put them on. -Right now there isnīt many good bands in Sweden. we came on a 23rd place on the single of the week in Sweden and when we listened to this on the radio it was only Håkan Hellströn which I think was good. Markoolio.....(laughing) Andras Johnson, I can put on a U2 record instead or a Babybird record. I really hate Bob HUnd,itīs too deep and you going crazy when you hear it. Bob Hund is hating us too. We use to meet them at Kvarnen and they donīt like Topper. Facer is a little fun and I like Manic Street Preachers and I can put them on sometimes. I like when they did the old MASH-theme. The other guys in the band is laughing at me because my twogroupsyndrome. But they are taking it because I do the songs. The other ones can sit down and listen to Stereophonics and think that theyīre fucking good. Itīs like Hulstfred this year and there Iīm going to see Thåström and Teddybears because itīs good groups. I think Caesars Palace is good to even if Caesar Vidal is a boring person.
Itīs not so much idea to ask him about favouriterecords because itīs only Clash and Stiff LIttle Fingeres even if Sham 69īs coming up. The best record with Stiff is Go For IT he thinks and then heīs going to choose Clashs London Calling. Nobodyīs heroes with SLF is coming in on the third place. Clashs Give em enough rope is one of the best ones too Jocke thinks and ONce a punk... is a song which is going to be good on that record. Safe European Home have the same style he means. The thing that is boring with their single is that itīs only two songs on it because you want to hear more. Jocke tellse me that their first record had 7 songs on it. But it had a song which was so bad, it took the whole CD down. But it was right then. Like any other punkcollector he likes the vinylrecord more thatn the CD:s. He gets some records on his work but he thinks he use his old recordplayer every day- Itīs like Ramones, if you compare the box which was out some months ago with Itīs Alive, itīs a different feeling. Itīs a unbelievable feeling with vinyl.
The most exepensive record he ever bought was a liveLP with Stiff Little Fingers.He bought in the autumn 99 and it was recorded in Sweden 79. Jocke thinks itīs a really good record even if itīs not so good sound on it. The Clashrecord Live in Paris 78 is one of the better bootlegrecords he thinks. It have very bad sound and he understand people which is buying newer stuff by this groups but he thinks the old bootlegs is more fun to listen to. He thinks me itīs an idiot which have been sold a lot of old punksingles and bought them on CD instead. - When I have dinner at home with some old friends, the singlebox is always coming to us. You know directly when you start to pass when Clash went down and you put on the Alarmsingles, yes now itīs that period. The best with singles is that you can change so fast. Itīs not the same way with CD:s.
They play out as much as they can after Hultsfred last year and they got the feeling ooh wow now we have done it but it didnīt became so much more after that. But now they have been rehersal a lot. And they have played with Buzzcocks and they have played on Torsgatan, Club Clampus and so on. They played at Mera Hitlåtar and it was very fun because it was many people in their age which was coming and watched them. When they stood outside afterwards three young guys came by and they thought it was very cool. They got an older audience which is around 35 because they are the poeple which are remembering this music. - But weīre getting more younger and younger people at our concerst now. It was like it was written in Close Up. "That this music itīs going to be on high volume" we saw on Mera Hitlåtar that more younger people came to the scene and they stood there and thought it was good. A good concert with us goign up to 180 km/h ,after that down to 150 and itīs going to stop at 210 in the end. Weīre so warm afterwards and I refuse to take my leatherjacket off. After Torsgatan I was so warm and I think people thinks itīs a little funny because I donīt take the leatherjacket off. You can go down some kilos so you can drink some more beer afterwards.We plays for about 40 minutes. For a while we were thinking of doing the Ramones thing, donīt talk between the songs but we didnīt make it. We got too tired. We must talk between the songs to manage to play.
To be interviewed isnīt something theyīre used to but they more and more willing to do it. Jocke thinks itīs funny to talk about their music, he shows it. He tries to say what he thinks about things and so. Because when he read other interview he get the feeling that people says some things because they must do. To sell more records or that theyīre going to be known at the pub. Toppers things itīs to have fun, they want to get Clash and Stiff to all people and that you can begin to play bass when you are 35.- Hobbe in the band refuse to talk on any interviews, he cannot do it. He loves to play out and he loves to rehersal. He hates when we go up to MNW and talk about contracts, he only want to play.
He donīt thinks itīs boring to do interviews as long as theyīre not being told by their company what to say. When he must say that Clash meant that or that even if theyīre very big for him. When he was alittle boy and a teenager it didnīt was the chance to buy any t-shirts with Clash so he did his own on his paitinglessons in school. They think it was very good when Jonas Almquist in Leathernun played Stiff LIttle Fingers on the radio.- I think itīs marvellous to have been on the 23rd place on the single of the week and that I have been on the first place on Megatoppen once. But more important is that the schools is thier last days for summer tomorrow and that I must work all night,says Jocke. So everything in life is humour.
The word punk means almost more for Jocke nowadays than that is was doing in the past. He gets so upset when he sees the small punksters running around and shout things that they donīt understand what they means. The punk was doing him more sure about things and it made him know who he was. He wasnīt forced to be someone he didnīt want to be. They were off course political interested and they were thinking it was very good listening to Stiff.- About two years ago I have been to McDonalds(I know all vegans gets mad at me and Iīm doing wrong) I got around a streetcorner and see some punksters breaking bottles. I go to them and sayy tom them stop it. They wonder what right I have to say to them what to do or not to do. I said to them this wasnīt the thing I was fighting for. They saw that I have a mobilephone and said what do you know about punk who have a mobilephone. I get naive and said. "Do you know which band Stiff is" I get so bored with them because for me punk isnīt to destroy a lot of things. The punk have given me a lot of friends and you could listen to punkmusic and we ran out on festivals and have a great time. I can see on my brother who is one year older than me, he was a synthguy and I donīt think they have as half as fun as we had. He surely had but I donīt think it. But of course if you compare different punkstyles with each other someone who like hardcore can say Iīm wrong. The punk have given me a good alternative and I think itīs more important to sing about real things that stand and shout about the devil and that sort of things When I meet the kids on the work which is punks.(I have done a SLF-club on my work) and someone is asking them what punk is. They say Jocke says so and so. Then I say it isnīt important what I say beacsue itīs all about what you think by yourself. Sedan när jag träffar ungarna på gården som är punkare(jag har en SLF-klubb) och det är jävligt sch
Weīre talking about Internet and some more modern things and Jocke thinks itīs a shame when Metallica tries to get money from Napster because the fact that people download their things. He thinks Internet is good but he had a little difficulties in the beginning becuase he is so old. He goes to Stiffs and Clash websites and he has set them as bookmarks(surprised)- You must be in the deveolpment because I canīt just sit in my apartment and listen to Clash and Stiff all the time. I think itīs a good way to many poeple to get thier music out. I use email and I send it. We have had a site before but itīs down right now. Itīs going to be www.topper.nu . I have seen that SLF have a pubchat out there but here my interest for chatting stop. I have done chatting with the kids on my work. To do a papaer on the net is probably the future because every kid have the chance to see it.But I personally thinks itīs more fun to read a paper on paper
I tell him about my homesitework for Skrutt and that I do my sons footballsteams homesite too. Jocke tells me that he plays football to and on their homesite he is sometimes and writes some things down. When they have Taboos homesite they wrote fishing down as a searchword and then they saw how man people who is doing homesite about fishing. He plays football in the division seven club BK Träsket and they have practising once a week and a match in the weeked. Itīs precisly like their music.- The ninety minutes I can handle if I only can sit afterwards and talk and take some beers on the pub. I can handle with putting down one krona and five krona as players and go throught the tactic. We forget everything when we come out on the field. Itīs a little difficult because I live in the south of Stockholm, the big team there is Hammarby but heīs grown up in Gothenburg so he likes IFK Gothenburg. I have also played in GAIS beacuse them and Häcken have a footballschool together. Micke likes Djurgårdens IF and Knocke likes Hammarby and Tobbe likes AIK. It shows that people who like different teams can be together. So I donīt understand the violence in Copenhagen and that shit. We thinking of doing a soung about the footballviolence.
Weīre talking about collecting things and I tell Jocke about my and my sons collecting of footballcras of the Euro 200. He thrives after to get children to do that sort of things to. They get their first child in august and he has always let the other guys in the group say that they must rehersal some other time because they must pick up their children. Now he can do it soon. When you were younger children wasnīt punk. But Jocke says itīs nice that he can do what he want nowadays and not doing "the right things" whole the time. In Jocke engagementring it stands SLF and itīs something his grandma hates. His first daughter/son itīs going to get a leather jacket with SLF on the back. When itīs getting older he/she can take what she/he want. The future plans for the band i sgoing to be releasing a fulllength CD and in the summer itīs not going to be any festivalgigs. Jockes biggest plans is to be playing on Roskilde.