At the Amnesia Rockfest 2014, we sat down with Alex Barreto of the Southern California straight edge hardcore band Chain of Strength for a brief five minute chat about unjuries and the life lessons he’s learned in his career. If you’re a fan, then you’ll know that the bassist goes by the name “Al Pain,” and Alex goes into his own origin story with us.
Why are we talking about injuries? Well, there’s actually no particular reason other than we atthink it’s an aspect of the music industry that fascinates fans, but that there’s very little information out there on it. Plus, it’s a question we can ask fans too. The genesis of this question loosely comes from thinking about Nikki Sixx and the thought, “Well, dying is a pretty serious injury.” Ha, yeah, I’d like to ask him that someday.
Anyway, here’s Al Pain’s answers:
I guess I kinda go by Al Pain. My nickname, “Pain,” came from an onstage injury, constant, every night, every show. When the band started we were playing a lot on the East Coast, up and down the Coast, our record company, Revelation Records, is an East Coast-based label, but anyways, I used to cut my hand really bad on the birdge of the bass, you know, playing very aggressive, blood everywhere. I was a kid, so I didn’t really know. So, you know, all these bloody bass strings, bloody bass, created the nickname, “Al Pain.”
I’ve witnessed kids do stage dives gone wrong, that kind of stuff. Not enough people to carry, people just bloody. Actually, on this trip, we’re on a 10-day trip, we started in Washington D.C., New York, Boston, and now here in Canada, one of the vocalists from the bands, I believe Praise, oh, it was the guitarist or bass player, jumped with the guitar which hit him in the head and he still kept rolling — a lot of blood, A LOT OF BLOOD.
Greatest Life Lesson?
Enjoy yourself, maximize on your opportunities. Travel. Not too many people in a day job are going to have the opportunity to meet and travel. You know, partying responsibly and in moderation sometimes is good because life goes by pretty quick and if you’re always fucked up, it seems kind of like a shame. Just pump the brakes. When I was younger and I got into partying, and I partied so much that I started to be like, “Am I a bad person?” because I feel like all I do is abuse myself and my senses and I’m always just trying to feel good. I think wisdom or age lets you still kinda do the same things but just in a different way. The music business is tough and you’re lucky if you’re in it and doing things that are financially worth doing, so if you’re doing something that you’re lucky to be doing you should do it and not abuse it in a shitty way.
Rock Hard \m/