Hunx (aka Seth Bogart) is something of a hometown hero in San Francisco. While technically he grew up in Tucson, Ariz, his name and music became synonymous with the Bay Area underground garage sound. A former member of electroclash cheerleaders Gravy Train!!!!, he collected the chant-worthy fun elements of that group and added Wall-of-Sound backup singers, doo-wop, and party punk layers to his next group, Hunx and His Punx.
Since then, Hunx has released a handful of Hunx and His Punx records, a weepy solo album (Hairdresser Blues, Hardly Art), a few naughty singles, and a line of eye-popping t-shirts, along with other people’s records through his own label, Wacky Wacko. And in the midst of all this, that hometown descriptor slipped away: Hunx moved to LA and says it kind of saved his life.
But Hunx still returns to the Bay on occasion, like on this tour behind spring-released snotty punk record, Street Punk (Hardly Art), which brings him to the Chapel this coming Monday night. In anticipation of that show, I asked Hunx about his most recent releases, his personal favorite punk bands, what he loves so much about LA (note: running into icons), and if there’ll ever be a Hunx X-mas album:
SF Bay Guardian What changed for you between your solo record, Hairdresser Blues, and Hunx and His Punx release Street Punk?
Seth Bogart I moved to LA, basically quit my job and found a drug that made me stop getting depressed... Hairdresser Blues is kinda like an embarrassing suicidal teen diary entry? I was so sad.
SFBG What (or who) influenced the songs on Street Punk? Can you tell me about the song writing process for that record?
SB The crazy short punk songs were inside joke songs we made up on tour that turned into the real thing. The rest Shannon [Shaw] and I basically wrote in the "studio" aka my friend Cundo's warehouse while she visited me in LA. Making this album was extremely easy and fast and fun.
SFBG Who are your favorite punks bands (living or dead)?
SB Bikini Kill, X Ray Spex, the Germs, Frumpies, Kleenex, the Dicks, Limp Wrist, Neo Boys, Nasty Facts.
SFBG What was the inspiration for "Everyone's a Pussy (Fuck You, Dude)" off Street Punk?
SB Amy and Shannon wrote that when we were touring around our "Too Young To Be In Love" tour. But personally for me it's like #1 fuck you to guys who use that word and #2 if I'm a pussy, so are you so shut the fuck up, man.
SFBG The Wacky Wacko shirts you create with Peggy Noland are brilliant -- I saw Kenny Mellman wearing one at the Julie Ruin's SF show. Where do you come up with the ideas and how do you and Peggy collaborate -- who does what? Also, any more designs on the way?
SB Yes, I just put out a monster one and a Perfume Maniac one. I just think of a theme that would be a cool pattern and start painting and scanning. Peggy designed a couple for me back when I launched it earlier this year. It has become my job -- I am totally obsessed. It's really fun to tell companies like Urban Outfitters no and to see your shirts in a store like Patricia Field. I'm looking into moving into towels and sheets next.
SFBG "I Vant to Suck Your Cock" is now a Halloween anthem -- do you have any intention of releasing more holiday records?
SB I love Christmas music. It's only a matter of time...
SFBG What's the best part of living in LA? What do you miss most about the Bay Area?
SB I miss my friends so much. And running into people wherever I went. LA is oddly anonymous but kinda saved me! Plus the other night I hung out with Pee Wee Herman and Elvira!
SFBG Can you take us through your typical day in LA?
SB The only thing a typical day always has almost no matter what is my boyfriend bringing me coffee and immediately having sex with me (he's perfect). Then I go to Daddy's Gym, work at the Wacky Wacko office or go to one of the weird design classes I just started taking. I try to make time to paint or do a creative activity -- the secret to happiness