Best Quotes from Greg Ginn

Most good things happen with time; especially music, which needs time to breathe and to find its own way.

Greg Ginn

I still think the best metal bands have a blues feel. The first Black Sabbath album is kind of a bludgeoning of blues. Deep Purple also started out as a blues band.

Greg Ginn

People from major labels were afraid to go to Black Flag gigs throughout most of the band’s existence. They treated our gigs as something threatening. I’m sure that it probably was. They probably had reasons to be scared.

Greg Ginn

As a label, you have to treat every group and every record as a unique entity. I think that that has been our success, rather than relying upon a fan base.

Greg Ginn

Black Flag was formed in 1977. We first recorded in 1978.

Greg Ginn

I didn’t have a lot of overtly political songs. I think it was more the actions of the group that were threatening to the authorities, and also our political philosophies apart from the music.

Greg Ginn

I didn’t want to wait around for some business entity to come around and give me money and tell me what to do. We just started releasing records as best we could.

Greg Ginn

I had business experience. I had made my living designing and building electronic equipment. Basic business was not new to me, but the music business was completely new to me. I knew nothing about distribution, or any of those things.

Greg Ginn

I like a lot of electronica. I like older jazz rather than newer.

Greg Ginn

I listen to everything that comes in. I’m not real worried about demo sound quality. I can hear through that sort of thing. If a band can play, then they can play.

Greg Ginn

If people are really excited about their music, and that’s their primary motivation, then that comes through in demo tapes. That’s the most important ingredient.

Greg Ginn

It took us two years to get our first real gig. That was a big dream. We ended up booking a lot of our own gigs and putting on a lot of our own shows. We were trying to get our actual music across, trying to make a connection there.

Greg Ginn

Punk rock really came out of N.Y. as a philosophy before the groups were ever recorded. I had a kind-of intellectual interest in the idea of creating a new scene that could be a grassroots thing.

Greg Ginn

Putting out the things that I like best hasn’t been the easiest way to run a label, and it still isn’t because it requires finding an audience for each record.

Greg Ginn

SST was formed to put out the first Black Flag record. Basically, there wasn’t anyone else to do it. I felt that what I was doing with Black Flag was very worthwhile, and I wanted to get it out there.

Greg Ginn

Stores can be indifferent to something new.

Greg Ginn

The biggest disappointment has been seeing the number of people in this business with very shortsighted views.

Greg Ginn

The English scene got more media attention with their emphasis on fashion, with the safety pins and all. There were some really good bands over there. The Sex Pistols were great.

Greg Ginn

The Minutemen were seen as more of an art thing than Black Flag, although I didn’t see them that way. It confused people when we put out Saccharine Trust, too.

Greg Ginn

The public is usually slow to catch on to new things, and it’s important that musicians stick to their guns and not look for that instant gratification.

Greg Ginn

The REM and Nirvana successes don’t mean much to me except as a potential distraction for bands who want to cash in on the trend. Don’t try to sound like someone else. REM and Nirvana don’t sound like anyone else.

Greg Ginn

The small companies who feel that the majors are a threat, or are predators, will use that as an excuse for their eventual downfall. Don’t blame others for your own inadequacies.

Greg Ginn

There are several books out on punk history, but I haven’t read any of them. I was there.

Greg Ginn

There aren’t enough people who are scaring the kind of people who work at these record companies.

Greg Ginn

There’s not much music I’ll listen to if it doesn’t have pretty heavy swing. Rhythm is so important. Punk rock would have more power and feeling if it had swing.

Greg Ginn

We aren’t as concerned about the live aspect as other labels. The best live bands are the easiest to record.

Greg Ginn

We had a lot of riots. We came under attack from many of the police departments. It certainly wasn’t some publicity thing. I was afraid for many years. We couldn’t play in LA for many years. A lot of people got very cynical.

Greg Ginn

We were excited when we sold our first 10 records. I always felt that if we could get the music out there, and if people became accustomed to it, then a substantial number of them would enjoy it.

Greg Ginn

We’re not good at propping up old carcasses. We want to be on top of what’s vital at any particular time, and not just hold onto something because it has a name.

Greg Ginn

We’ve gotten involved in cat rescue – we take them in and find homes for them. I’ve always loved cats. I saw how homeless cats were living out there. We take them in, put out flyers.

Greg Ginn

You have to keep the business side together as well as the creative side. We have constantly surprised people and stayed with bands until they have grown on people.

Greg Ginn