SHADOWS FALL INTERIEW WITH DRUMMER JASON BITTNER By Benji Womack – FELONY1 RECORDS May 2005 I caught up with Jason Bittner, drummer of Shadows Fall at the Slipknot, Lamb of God show in Sac. April 13 2005. It went pretty good until I asked him about Dime Bag; it changed the entire mood. I. Am Benji Womack with FELONY 1 RECORDS and I just got to do an interview with one of my favorite bands. I have to tell you that doing this interview made me realize some things valuable to me and why I do what I do. So without wasting any time, welcome to Shadows Fall. Benji .. Ok, without wasting any time, Ozzfest, what do you think about this year’s line up? Jason- I think it’s great, we’re extremely psyched about being a part of the Ozzfest again and being on the main stage. This year is even better, and just being on in front of Iron Maiden for two months is like a dream come true, so that’s going to be pretty awesome. Benji - The first time I seen Shadows fall was 3 or 4 years ago at the Masquerade in Atlanta, GA. opening up for Dismember. Do you remember the tour I’m talking about? Ok, how do you feel about the progress Shadows fall has made since that time to now? Jason- Nope, because I was not in the band at the time, but since that time the band has done amazing, you know? When I joined the band there were five of us riding around in a van, fucking doing all this stuff ourselves, teaching for ourselves, moving all the gear and crap? You know, we are all most becoming a real band. The four years I have been in the band doing this, our hard work has paid off. Benji - Tell me the best show you can remember playing. Jason- The best show I can remember playing, there’s been too many, but probably Castle Donington, 2003 with Iron Maiden in front of 25,000 people, definitely one of the highlights. Benji - Where is your favorite place to play on tour? Jason- We have a lot of them. Denver, my personal favorite is Denver, usually Texas are always good shows. Bay Area shows and the West Coast are cool. New York, Massachusetts, Atlanta are always good, and Florida pretty much; there’s a lot of places we have good shows. And it seems to be, you know, growing as a band grows, it seems to be growing across the country where to every show is becoming a great show. Benji - So tell me how is the new album doing and is it doing as good as you expected? Jason- Almost at 200,000 right now and it is definitely living up to our expectations and then some. We were just hoping that we sell as many as the last album and we have already beat that by 50,000 so far. We are pretty happy with it. Benji - Ok man, I got to be honest. Shadows Fall’s music is some of the most poetic, mindcrushing music I have ever heard; it puts me in a place where I can drift off into la la land. What does Shadows fall represent to you? Jason- It represents a combination of what I been doing in a ton of local bands and stuff, so basically for me it is to make a living playing heavy metal music. You know this is definitely the best band I have ever been in. Everyone gets along great, we have a lot of fun, and there are no restrictions on people doing anything as far as expressing themselves, creatively speaking. It's fortunately the way I pay my bills and myself. Benji - In your opinion, is the metal world living or dying? Jason- Definitely wouldn’t say it’s dying. If anything there’s been resurgence in it, how long it's going to last, well that’s another story. I hope that the resurgence for metal lasts for a while.
There are still many years ahead of us. I hope it's not going to be a flash in the pan and it's over and there’s some kind of new type of music out there taking over. We succeeded in killing NuMetal, so that’s good. Benji - What changes, if any, have to be made to the music industry? Jason- Well, artists need to make more money, that’s for sure. I think there needs to be a better handle on downloading music. This is what takes away from our pocket book, and taken away from our creativity as well, because what's the sense of putting your heart and soul into a record, and I know when I was a kid and one of my bands was getting ready to come out with a record you would wait two months prior to that day, now kids got the new record two months before it hits the streets, that to me is a problem. Unfortunately, you will see the music industry get worse before it gets better. Benji - What are Shadows Fall’s plans after the Ozzfest? Jason- First we have a tour before the Ozzfest. We are going to Europe on tour with Slipknot, then we come back for Ozzfest, then we will probably take September off. I’m doing some drums clinics over in the U.K and for October if we don’t go on tour with an area band as support like Disturbed or System of a Down, then we will most likely be doing a headline tour and working on a new record. Benji - You guys were one of the last bands to play with Damage Plan before Dime Bag Darrell’s tragic death on stage. Can I get your input on this? Jason- We was the last band to play with Damage Plan. What would you like me to commit on this, because this is kind of an open minded question, let me give you the brief summation. The tour was great. Dime Bag was one of the nicest people we met in the business, always wanted to have a good time, he was a good friend of ours and we are going to miss him terribly, and it was a honor to be one of the last bands to share the stage with him. So that’s something we really don’t. like talking about too much. Benji - Fair enough. Jason- NO, NO, NO don’t feel bad about asking the question. I’m just saying that it brings up the unfortunate incident again in our minds and we like to think about the good times. It’s a disappointment that we will not get to share the stage with him again. Benji - Ok man, it’s been a pleasure to do this interview with you guys and I’ll see you at the Ozzfest. Jason- No problem dudes, take care.