Geek: Did you have any trouble at all getting the band onboard with making a TV show out of the Aquabats and then doing this demanding gig each week?
Jacobs: Not really because it’s always been something that we’ve been shooting for as a goal. And I think going out and playing live shows, never being on a major label—always being on indie labels and punk rock DYI, and touring—we’ve always had great responses from small audiences and we always thought, “Man, if this could get out on TV and people could see what we’re trying to do on a bigger level, then this could really get out there.”
And we always thought that, maybe with the nature of the Aquabats being written off as kind of a novelty thing from the music side, we never really got a ton of support from radio stations or things like that. So we thought that the only way to really grow is to make a kids’ show. And maybe that was lofty aspirations and it sure did take quite a long time, but I think the band was always right there, and were kind of like, “Hey, if you can make it work, we’re there to do it.”
But then once we got picked up and once we got greenlit, I think that’s when some of the panic started to set in from the other guys who are incredible musicians but worried, “Can we act, can we pull this off?” And so we got a little help from Matt Walsh from The Upright Citizens Brigade, he came in and gave us some pointers on how to be actors and comedians and how to pull off comic timing and stuff like that. We did some crash-course training and I think we’re getting better, we’re getting better at acting [laughs].
Jacobs: I tried to keep it together, like “Hey, it’s going to be great,” but beneath the surface I’m always a mess. I mean, even before we play shows, I’ll get to the venue and I’ll be panicked because I don’t think anyone will be there. And then we get there and the show’s sold out and I’m like, “Well, what if we mess up?” I’m like that every show.
So definitely, beneath the surface, I’m always a basket case. And when it came to making the show, I put on that smiley face, but I’ve been incredibly stressed out. Because with Yo Gabba Gabba, I‘m used to being behind the camera and calling the shots and writing things and directing things with my friend Scott [Scultz]. But with Aquabats, I’m in front of the camera, and I’m trying to act at the same time I’m distracted by “Hey, I think that light is shining in the wrong direction,” or, “I think we should frame the shot this way.” And so there’s all these extra pressures and weird, creative things that I’m dealing with—it’s been a little stressful, that’s for sure.
Geek: On the music side, are there any plans in place to release any of the tracks that you’ll be putting into the show?
Jacobs: Yeah, for sure. I mean, there’s a couple of songs in every episode. And it’s pretty ridiculous, because we’re trying to weave music into the narrative a la a musical or something like that. So yeah, I think definitely. I’m actually excited to take some of these songs out on the road and see how they do, playing them out in front of audiences and kind of get a gauge on if our fans are watching the show or not.
It’s exciting because there’s always been a big gap between Aquabats albums—a lot of years in between—the main reason being that we could never do this full-time. You know the last time we were full-time Aquabats was back in our early 20’s. And so now being full-time Aquabats again, the guys show up, and we’re working on music every day and we’re scoring the show and it’s exciting to see what we can do now that we can work on the show full-time.
The Aquabats! Super Show! Premieres Saturday, March 3rd at 11 AM ET on the Hub.
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