Thursday, December 1, 2011

Tony Asaro of the Sacramento River Cats

Tony Asaro of the
Sacramento River Cats
Tony Asaro works for the AAA Minor League Baseball team, the Sacramento River Cats.  The same week that I gave a presentation to my school about making the choice to be drug free, Mr. Asaro also spoke to my school as a part of Red Ribbon Week.  I was lucky enough to be able to interview at my school after he spoke to all of us at an assembly.  Mr. Asaro is a really inspiring man!

PMAKid: How did you get involved with the Sacramento River Cats?

Mr. Asaro: My whole life I dreamed about being a part of baseball, and the path that got me - eventually - to the River Cats...I played baseball up until I was in college. I graduated from Sac State and then I worked for several years - about ten years - as a community schools director in the San Juan Unified School District.  And then I left that.

My wife and I - we started our family - and then I left schools, being a school person to own my own business.  I owned a paint store downtown.  I did that for twenty years, but I always volunteered my time, gave back to kids, and loved the game of baseball. So when the Sacramento River Cats came to Sacramento back in 1997, 1998, 1999, I volunteered to help them get back here.  I did my job, but I did it as a volunteer thing on the side. Eventually, when they put the team together, they called me and they asked me if I would like to be the community person for the River Cats. I dreamed about it my whole life.  That was the opportunity, so I reached out and grabbed it. I've done it now - I am going into my 13th season.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Henry Rollins Interview

Henry Rollins

Henry Rollins is known for being one of the vocalists in the band Black Flag, for being in various movies, for his positions on various views and for being a really smart (and intense!) guy.  Mr. Rollins was nice enough to let me interview him.  I hope you like this one!!!

PMAKid: I know that you have been in Black Flag and the Rollins Band. You have been in TV shows and in movies and on the radio and that you have written books too. Are there any of these things that you like more than the others?

Mr. Rollins: The lowest stress environment is the radio show. I am not on camera and I can let the music do the talking. The rest is more highly pressurized or in the case of writing, time intensive task. I say yes to all of it and like all of it but the radio show, by nature of what it is, is the least hassle.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Carlos Izurieta of the band Police and Thieves

Carlos from Police & Thieves
Photo by Fredrik Malthe
Carlos Izurieta sings for the band Police & Thieves and is one of the really cool guys who helped out my school last year by donating items for the Hardcore for Education fundraiser.  It was very cool to meet Carlos in person at the React! Records Showcase in September.  He is really smart and really nice! I hope you enjoy the interview! 

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why?

a. Hammer of the Gods by Stephen Davis. I know people hate on Zep but I grew up on them and still dig them, plus the book inspired one of my favorite movies, "Almost Famous." I mean who wouldn't want to travel with their favorite band?

b. Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger, really connected with me when I was in high school, since it was a time, I felt really alienated and ostracized. I think everyone goes through these emotions at some point in their life, while trying to find their identity and place in life, I think this book does a really good job upon touching on these themes. It's also interesting to note that after this book was published, it drove the author into hiding because of all this unwanted fame and notoriety it brought him. It was really too bad since he might have had a few more masterpieces in him, if he hadn't turned into such a recluse.

c. A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway, I think it's a great read on so many levels, the description of  Paris at that time and the cast of historical characters who were inspired by living there is incredible and inspiring.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Jonathan Raymond Sacramento City Unified School District Superintendent

Jonathan Raymond, Superintendent
Sacramento City Unified School District

Jonathan Raymond is the Superintendent of the Sacramento City Unified School District, which has close to 50,000 students and 85 different schools. I was able to interview him recently when he came to my school.  He is a really nice guy with a really hard job!

PMAKid: Last year we had very little PE, and I know that schools were not following the state law which said that we had to have a certain amount of PE.  Now we are getting PE.  Why were the schools not following the law, and what is happening to to make sure all the schools are following the law?

Jonathan Raymond: We have a district coordinator of our physical education programs now. Her name is Heather Deckard. Her job is to not only support our PE teachers - to make sure they have the training and the equipment and tools that they need to run our PE programs, but she's also there to keep checking up to make sure our schools are following the requirements and that all our kids are getting their necessary PE and activities. Physical Activity is very, very important.  It's a big part of learning that we have to support and we have to monitor and hold our schools accountable.  That's what Heather's job is.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

John Porcelly of Youth of Today, Judge, Project X and other bands

Porcell of Youth of Today

I am really excited about this interview.  John Porcelly (or Porcell) has played in a lot of straight edge bands like Youth of Today, Judge and Shelter.  I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I did!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite songs (by any bands)? Why are they your favorite and what impact did they have on you?

Porcell: Wow, this is a tough question. Let me preface this by saying that I absolutely love music, and I was probably around 6 when I realized this. My dad was this old Italian guy and had the worst record collection ever. It was filled with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Tom Jones and other music that even at an early age I just couldn't wrap my head around. Somehow or other, amidst the dozens of LP's of Rat Pack crooners, almost unbelievably, my square dad had one rock and roll record. I have no idea how it got there, and to this day I think it must've ended up in his collection by mistake because he never played it once or even mentioned the band's name. The record was "Between the Buttons" by the Rolling Stones. I played that thing incessantly. I would sit there with my Planet of the Apes action figures and listen to it over and over and over. After that I managed to talk my dad into buying me the Kiss "Alive" record and forget it, that was the knockout punch. I was a rocker from then on.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Sunny Singh of Drug Free Video

Thank you to everybody who sent me drug free videos to use for my presentation at school.  I am ending my presentation with this really cool video from Sunny Singh of

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Choose to be Drug Free Videos

PMAKid is going to be doing a presentation at his school about choosing to be Drug Free next week.  Various folks around the world have been sending short video clips to him to utilize within his presentation.  This video is with Roman from Kiev, Ukraine.  Intro is in Russian and he finishes in English.  You can see some of the other videos at  Julian asks you to also contribute a video to help his school mates learn that there are many types of people who choose to be Drug Free.  If you want to contribute a video, please keep it under 30 seconds and email it to Preferred format is quicktime video.  Thanks!

- PMAKid's dad

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Vote for my picture!

Hi everybody!  Bridge 9 Records is having a contest where people vote for their favorite picture on their website.  Whoever gets the most "likes" wins a $50 gift certificate to spend at the Bridge9 store.  I want to see if I can win and if I do, I am going to donate my gift certificate for the Hardcore for Education fundraiser.  Can you please go there and click the Like button below my picture?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Dicky Barrett of the Mighty Mighty Bosstones and Jimmy Kimmel Live

Dicky Barrett of the Mighty Mighty Bosstones
One of the guys in DYS knows Dicky Barrett from the Mighty Mighty Bosstones and asked Mr. Barrett for me for an interview.  Mr. Barrett was really cool and said yes.  He also was really cool and said he would also donate some Mighty Mighty Bosstones and Jimmy Kimmel Live stuff for the next Hardcore for Education fundraiser!

PMAKid: You have done a lot of different things that you are well-known for like singing in the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, being on some TV shows and in movies and being the Announcer for Jimmy Kimmel Live. Have you always wanted to be a performer? What made you get into it in the first place?

Dicky Barrett: No I don't think I always wanted to be a performer but I've always loved entertainment and entertaining people. As far back as I can remember I've always loved music, Rock and Roll, and especially Punk Rock. I end up doing the things I do just by trying to see if I can. I'm not afraid of failure, and I'm willing to give anything a shot.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tony Hawk: Pro Skater, Video Game Maker and COOL GUY!

Tony Hawk, Pro Skater
Tony Hawk is a really busy guy because he is always travelling around and opening skate parks and stuff.  He was epically cool and agreed to let me interview him while he was travelling. He is also donating something for my school's next Hardcore for Education fundraiser! Mr. Hawk is really cool!

PMAKid: You've obviously been really successful as a skateboarder. You have obviously won a lot of competitions. You have your own video games. You have your own clothing line. You even have your own amusement park ride! How was a skater able to go from grinding to be as succesful as you?

Tony Hawk: By choosing my projects carefully, and seeing them through by being involved every step of the way. Authenticity is key to everything I get involved with. Kids are very savvy these days and know immediately if someone is faking it.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Chris Bavaria's Photography

Julian and new friend Jason from Chicago sitting on the stage at the React! Records Showcase between bands. Excellent photography by Chris Bavaria.  If you are getting married or have other photography needs, you should consider his services.  Check out his site at

-PMAKid's Dad

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

President Barack Obama's Drug Czar - Gil Kerlikowske

Gil Kerlikowske
Director of
Office of National Drug Control Policy

I have always been told that if I wanted something that I should work hard to get it.  I wanted to interview President Obama's Drug Czar, so I asked and they let me!  How cool is that?  Thanks Director Kerlikowske!

PMAKid: I know you were a police officer for a long time and made your way up to being the Police Chief in Seattle, Washington.  Why did you want to be a police officer in the first place?   What did you like about being a police officer that made you do it for so many years?

Director Kerlikowske: I spent nearly 40 years working law enforcement. I served as a beat cop, a narcotics officer and eventually the Chief of Police in Buffalo, New York and Seattle, Washington.   When I entered this line of work I really enjoyed helping people and doing everything I could do to make communities safe.  I continued in this line of work because I found it very rewarding not to mention it was exciting and fun.

Michelle Rhee - Former Chancellor of D.C. Schools and head of

Michelle Rhee and staff from the
Connecticut Black Alliance for Educational Options
I had heard about Michelle Rhee from the movie Waiting for Superman.  I thought it would be interesting to interview her because I am interviewing the Superintendent of my own school district and because some of Ms Rhee's positions are controversial with some people.  She is really cool and nice too!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why?

Michelle Rhee: A Hope in the Unseen by Ron Suskind: He followed Cedric Jennings from his last year in a DC high school to Brown University. In a compelling way it highlighted the urgency for reform in DC and cities like it.

Why Boys Fail, by Richard Whitmire: I even wrote the foreword to this one! He points out a lot of the research showing challenges boys face in particular, and I would definitely recommend it to educators, parents, and students.

Love You Forever, by Robert Munsch. Read it and you'll see why it's one of my favorites :).

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Matt Gill's React Reacts Showcase Photography

The React! Records Showcase this past weekend was a blast.  Lots of good positive vibes! A sample of the fine photography produced by new friend Matt Gill.  Not Sorry was absolutely great live (as always).  Check out Matt's other stuff.

-PMAKid's Dad

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Interview with Ian MacKaye of Minor Threat and Dischord Records

Ian MacKaye
Ian MacKaye is the guy who actually coined the term "straight edge" by writing a song with that name. Last week he was really cool and let me interview him over the phone before school.  He is obviously really smart and has a lot of interesting things to say.  I am really excited about this interview.

PMAKid: What are your three favorite songs and why?

Ian: I was looking at some of your interviews and I see that you often ask about your three favorite songs and your three favorite bands.  The problem for me is that I - actually - I don't think like that. I don't have three favorite songs.  I don't have three favorite bands. What I can tell you is that music that is important to me is music that is being made by people that sounds to me that they don't have a choice in the matter. What I mean by that is that I think music is something that is deep, and something that is very serious, and a part of all of us and some people - the music is so powerful in their lifes that they have to make it.  That's the kind of music that I like to listen to.  So I can tell you that - in terms of my life - one of the first musicians that I listened to - that made me think that way was Jimi Hendrix.  I still listen to Jimi Hendrix.  I listended to him this morning. I've been listening to Hendrix now for forty years.  I'm still interested.  I'm still listening.  I'm still thinking about what it is that he is wrestling with, the sounds that he was trying to capture - what was in his mind - and then represent it into his guitar.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

React records showcase...

We got to the React! Records showcase early and we got put to work stamping test presses and other stuff. It was fun!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Interview with Mayor Kevin Johnson of Sacramento

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson
Kevin Johnson played professional basketball for the Phoenix Suns.  He is now the Mayor of Sacramento.  He also works to improve education.  He was really nice and let me interview him.  Thanks, Mr. Mayor!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why?

Mayor Johnson: My three favorite books are A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving, Strength to Love by Martin Luther King, Jr. and Wooden by Coach John Wooden.

A Prayer for Owen Meany is about a boy who discovers his purpose in life at a young age and relentlessly pursues his objectives. I aspire to exhibit the passion and diligence of young owen meany.

Martin Luther King, Jr. has always been one of my role models. His ability to show compassion even to his oppressors is admirable.

Before his passing, I considered Coach John Wooden both a friend and a mentor. Wooden is a guide to life. His simple yet provocative lessons teach how to treat people and how to "make each day your masterpiece."

Jeff Terranova of Up Front, Smorgasbord Records and Long Beach Vegan Eatery

Jeff Terranova played in the band Up Front and runs Smorgasbord Records.  He also is opening a new restaurant in Southern California called the Long Beach Vegan Eatery.  Mr. Terranova is one of the really cool guys that helped my school out last year with our Hardcore for Education fundraiser that helped raise money for my school band and other stuff. I hope you like the interview!
Jeff Terranova

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why?

Jeff: I am honestly not an avid reader. I have tried numerous times in my life to read more and I actually own a ton of books that I look at and constantly say to myself that I need to read them. I do love Charles Bukowski though and I have read almost all of his novels as well as some of his poetry books. If I had to pick a favorite, I would have to go with Women. He has a magical way of describing things, in particular women, that I really relate to. Another favorite of mine is written by Legs McNeil, Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History Of Punk. It is extremely well written, informative and was enlightening to me.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Former 7 Seconds guitarist Chris Carnahan, Currently serving in Afghanistan

Captain Chris Carnahan with an Afghan soldier

One of my favorite 7 Seconds albums is Soulforce Revolution.  On that album and for a little while after, Chris Carnahan was the guitarist for 7 Seconds.  I thought it would be cool to interview him because he was in 7 Seconds, but also because he is currently a Captain in the United States Army.  He is currently serving in Kandahar City in Afghanistan.  

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books to read and why?

Chris: Siddharta by Hermann Hesse because it was one of the first books that turned me on to the idea that there could be an internal spiritual life, Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac because it was one of the first books that made me want to be creative, and Dune because it helped me to escape while I was in Iraq.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

PMA All Day Wristbands - Ford and Felix from Chicago!

Ford's and Felix's dad bought some of my PMA All Day wristbands and he sent me this really cool picture!  Thanks!!!

Interview with J25 from Straight Edge band NOT SORRY

J25 (John) from NOT SORRY
I first met J25 (John) from NOT SORRY in 2010 when I went to the React! Records Showcase with my dad to see our friends 7 Seconds play.  I was wearing my DRUG FREE t-shirt and J25 and his girlfriend came up to me and told me how much they liked my shirt.  He was so cool that a couple months later he sent me two H2O 7" eps from his own personal collection!  I hope you enjoy the interview!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why?

J25: Ishmael by Daniel Quinn, Preacher by Garth Ennis, and Our Band Could Be Your Life by Michael Azerrad. Ishmael is a great book about how life can evolve and move forward without being destructive and that it is possible to move away from how we live now without going back to living in huts and foraging for berries. Preacher is just a gnarly comic series that deals with religion and the ideas of good and bad, right and wrong. Also features probably the most bad ass character ever created, The Saint of Killers. Lastly, Our Band Could Be Your Life is a great read for anyone who cares about underground music. It destroys the barriers that mainstream music puts up and shows that anyone can play an instrument, get in a van, and let loose.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Donate to my school for Red Ribbon Week, Please!

I go to a really great public school in Sacramento, called Golden Empire Elementary School.  The web address is  I am trying to raise money for my school's Red Ribbon Week activities.  If you don't know what Red Ribbon Week is about, you can google it.  It is basically a way to remember a DEA agent named Kiki Camarena that was killed by drug gangs and to help kids learn why it is important to be drug free. My school does not have a lot of money, so it would be REALLY cool if you could donate a few dollars to help my school pay for the Red Ribbon Week activities.  Just like the Hardcore for Education fundraiser my school had last year, any donations are for a non-profit group, so if you want a letter or something from the school for when you do your taxes, you should add your name and address and stuff so the school can send you a letter for taxes.  PLEASE HELP MY SCHOOL!!!!  Thanks!

The Donate button above goes right to my school's PTO account, not to me. That's why it is important for you to put your name and address in the comment box if you donate so the people at the school know who to send the tax paperwork to. If you need to check with the school about it, you can call my Principal, Dr. Eister. Her phone number is (916) 228-5890.  THANKS!

Interview with Tom Hedrick and Lorraine Popper of Partnership at

Before school yesterday, I got to interview Tom Hedrick and Lorraine Popper from the Partnership at A lot of people have heard of them by their old name, the Partnership for a Drug Free America.  A lot of people have seen their "This is your brain on drugs commercials". I was a little nervous as this was my first interview over the phone instead of just emailing my questions.  Mr. Hedrick is one of the founders of the Partnership and Ms Popper is one of the people on the Parent Advisory Board.  She also works on the commercials and other advertising for the Partnership.  I hope you like the interview!

PMAKid: Tell me how the Partnership at first started.  My dad remembers the commercials from when he was young so you have been around for a long time?

Tom Hedrick: Yes. I was one of the founders - not quite twenty five years ago - in 1985 and 86 - when drugs were an even bigger problem for the country then they are today. Crack cocaine in particular was an epidemic of use of young people and people in the cities and it was creating a lot of violence and crime.  It was associated - unfortunately - with the spread of AIDS, the breakdown of families, school dropouts and a lack of productivity in the workforce.  The Partnership was started to be a voice for families and for parents about how harmful drugs can be to families and individuals and society and help provide a different point of view then was being promoted at the time, which was that drugs were fun and harmless and okay for everybody.

Friday, September 2, 2011

The guys from Outlast wearing my wristbands! Cool Photo!

This is such a cool picture! As a thank you to Dave from Outlast for doing an interview with me, I sent the band some of my wristbands.  I really like this picture!

The guys in Outlast are so nice and so COOL!

Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) ALL DAY!!!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Interviews Coming Up!

Hi everybody!

I have some really cool interviews coming up! I am waiting for some of them to come back and I have some I am working on. They are

1. The band NOT SORRY from Seattle
2. John Porcelly from Youth of Today and Judge
3. Tom Hedrick from the Partnership for
4. Gil Kerlikowske who is President Barack Obama's Drug Czar
5. Ian MacKaye who was in Minor Threat, Fugazi and runs Dischord Records

And a bunch of others!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Chris Bavaria from Mindset and Praise

Chris Bavaria plays bass guitar for both Mindset and Praise and is a REALLY cool guy! I got to meet him when Betrayed and Praise played in San Francisco a few months ago and thought it would be really cool to interview a guy who plays in two different bands. He is also a really cool photographer. You should look at his photos!!!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why?

Chris: The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac - I was living in the Bay Area at the time and instantly connected with Kerouac's writing and the way it got me excited to be alive and be adventurous.

Salad Days by Charles Romalotti - This is a great novel about growing up being a punk. It is almost scary how some of the experiences the main character has were so similar to my own. Everyone should read this!

A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn - I love reading about history and this is the real deal. Find out about all the horrible stuff we've done! I guess it's kind of depressing in retrospect. They aren't teaching this stuff in your high school history class.

PMA All Day at Oakland A's v. Texas Rangers

Monday, August 15, 2011

Drug Free | PMA All Day Wristbands are shipping

Thanks to everybody who has bought some of my Drug Free | PMA All Day wristbands (especially my Principal, Dr. Eister!).  Most of the orders went out in the mail yesterday and I will send out the rest today.

PMA All Day!!!!!!!!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Drug Free | PMA All Day Wristbands

These arrived while I was visiting my grandma. I am selling them really cheap, so please buy some, so I can earn some spending money!!!!!

Darrell Steinberg - President pro Tem of the California State Senate

Because I want to interview a bunch of different types of people, I interviewed my California State Senator, Darrell Steinberg. Senator Steinberg is also the President pro Tem of the Senate. You can check out his website here.

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why are they your favorites?

Senator Steinberg:
1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
2. I Know This Much Is True, by Wally Lamb
3. Biographies of the Presidents, especially Abraham Lincoln

PMAKid: What are your three favorite songs and why are they your favorites?

Senator Steinberg:
1. Misheberach by Debbie Friedman
2. Thunder Road, Bruce Springsteen

Friday, August 5, 2011

React Records Showcase

Hi everybody! I hope you are liking my interviews!

I wanted to let everybody know that they should go to the React! Records showcase on September 23 and September 24. All the bands are really great and it is going to be fun!!!!!!

You can buy your tickets here.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Interview with C.J. Wilson - Straight Edge/PMA Pitcher for the Texas Rangers and American League All-Star

(Update 10/10/2011: I am really excited to say that Mr. Wilson has committed to donating to the next Hardcore for Education fundraiser!  Good luck in the playoffs, Mr. Wilson!)

I have wanted to get an interview with C.J. Wilson for a few months now. Mr. Wilson is a pitcher for the Texas Rangers (and also an American League All-Star!). You can check out his website at He is also on twitter as @str8edgeracer. I hope you enjoy the interview!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite songs and why are they your favorites?

C.J. Wilson: My favorite songs are all over the place- so many years of listening to music it's hard to boil down into that kind of detail, but I'll always like Voodoo Chile (slight return) by Jimi Hendrix, Don't Lose Sight by Throwdown, and Da Funk by Daft Punk.

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why are they your favorites?

C.J. Wilson: One of the first books I really got into was Dracula by Bram Stoker when I was about 10 years old...super creepy and just great imagery overall. I've loved reading my whole life. I also read one called Mind Gym, its a sport psychology book. Lastly, I'd have to say The Alchemist. Just a really emotionally motivating book.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

For vinyl collectors...

PMAKid's dad here again...

Help support a great label, REACT! Records. Once again, Aram is auctioning a lot of great/rare pieces o' vinyl to help fund one of the best labels around. Check out the eBay auction here.

Interview with Chris Wrenn of Bridge9 Records

Chris Wrenn runs the record label Bridge Nine Records. A couple of my favorite bands (DYS and H2O) is on Bridge Nine, so I thought it would be really cool to talk to Mr. Wrenn. Unlike some other folks that I have interviewed (like Toby Morse from H2O), Mr. Wrenn was not always Straight Edge, but made the decision to be drug and alcohol free after going to college. I hope you like the interview!!!!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite songs (by any bands)? Why are they your favorite and what impact did they have on you?

Chris: I can't narrow down three songs but I can tell you 3 of my favorite bands from when I was just getting into hardcore... Minor Threat, Dead Kennedy's, and The Misfits. I think those were 3 of the more influential bands for me early on (and probably a lot of people in HC/punk).

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Really cool Straight Edge video

By Partnership for a Drug Free America

Monday, July 25, 2011

DYS at 924 Gilman Street

PMAKid's dad here. We had a blast last night at the DYS show at Gilman. Good opening acts (especially Wolves & Thieves). Lots of positive energy and the guys from DYS were good down to earth fellas. Got a shot of Julian and Dave Smalley.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Final Hardcore for Education T-Shirts

Hi everybody!!!

Last summer, a bunch of bands and labels and other people helped my school to raise a bunch of money by donating rare records and other stuff which we auctioned off. We also sold a bunch of t-shirts. Chris Lohman from AC Silk Screen was really cool and would print and then ship shirts for us at a really low price. My dad wants to do another fundraiser but has been too busy to do it for now. He says we will probably do another after school starts again. The school is going to do a final sale of t-shirts for a couple weeks and then recycle the screens used to make the shirts. You can order the shirts at All the money goes directly to my school. The school is only going to sell these for another two weeks. There are two different designs, both made for free by Dan O'Mahony of No For An Answer, Carry Nation and 411.

DYS Show at Gilman Street this weekend

Hi everybody. I just wanted to let everybody know that DYS is playing at 924 Gilman Street this Sunday. My dad and I are going to go. It will be really cool because I will get to meet Dave Smalley who gave me an interview a couple weeks ago.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Interview with Jordan Cooper of Revelation Records

Anybody who listens to hardcore or Straight Edge music should know about Revelation Records. Jordan Cooper and Ray Cappo of Youth of Today (and other bands) started Revelation a long time ago when my dad was not old. Now they have about 150 records they have put out! Jordan was one of the donors for my school fundraiser last year, giving us a bunch of test presses! He was really nice and let me interview him. I hope you enjoy!!!!

PMAKid: What are your three favorite songs (by any bands)? Why are they your favorite and what impact did they have on you?

Jordan: That's a tough question to answer at this point in my life. When I was young I really tried to identify myself by what I listened to so it might have been easier then. A lot of the hardcore that I really liked had more to do with the energy and sound of the songs than the message. On some of my favorite songs I had no idea what the bands were talking about (e.g. Coptic Times by Bad Brains and Hybrid Moments by the Misfits - still not sure what that one's about). Obviously a lot of what hardcore is about what's actually being said so I did have a lot of stuff that I liked as far as that went, too. Without racking my brain too hard, I remember that Filler by Minor Threat was a song that I felt like I understood and related to the first time I heard it. Same with FVK by Bad Brains. DRI also had a lot of great songs about being a suburban punk that seemed like they could have been talking about my friends and me. When I first started liking hardcore I took it really seriously and then once I started going to shows I really started to like the funnier bands like AOD, Violent Children and bands like that. There aren't any specific songs that I can point to that really influenced me, but taken as a whole, the music, the people and the experience of being at shows and other places together and caring about a lot of the same stuff was how hardcore impacted me.

Five Interviews coming up!!!!

I have five interviews coming up:

Jordan Cooper from Revelation Records
Aram Arslanian of React Records
California Assemblywoman Connie Conway
California Senator Darrell Steinberg

- and an interview I am extra excited about -

C.J. Wilson, Straight Edge pitcher for the Texas Rangers (and American League Allstar!!!!!!)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Kevin Seconds Artwork

Hey everybody...

PMAKid's dad here. PMAKid interviewee (and family friend) Kevin Seconds is a pretty cool artist (we have five pieces of his here at our home). You will not regret picking up one of his really cool pieces!

Go get some!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Interview with Dave Smalley (DYS, Down by Law, All, Dag Nasty

Dave Smalley is a really cool guy! Not only has he been in a lot of really cool bands, he helped my school fundraiser last year! I hope you like this interview.

(UPDATE by PMAKid's dad: One of Dave's band's - DYS - is playing on Saturday, July 23, 2011 at the Sound & Fury Fest in Santa Barbara. Three days of great bands and a lot of PMA! They are also playing at the famous 924 Gilman in Berkeley on Sunday, July 24, 2011. All should go check DYS on Sunday.)

PMAKid: You have been in the hardcore and punk scene for decades and have played in a lot of bands. Some of your early music was more hardcore, and your more recent stuff is more melodic. Which style to you like more? Do you even like one more than another?

Dave: I like both. I think all human beings are at least a little bit Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde, and many of us are downright quadrophenic (Quadrophenia is a classic album by The Who). I think too many times people can get rigid in life, put our blinders on, get locked into one way of thinking, and forget that life has many flavors to savor. I listen to tons of hard rock and metal, like Iron Maiden, Motorhead, etc., but I also listen to Beethoven and Mozart, to Discharge and the Bad Brains, and to Charlie Parker and Duke Ellington. So I think there's merit to both the melodic punk and to the hardcore stuff too.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Interview with Former California State Assemblyman Mike Villines

When I first decided to build, I knew that I wanted to interview people in the hardcore music scene and talk to them about being positive and drug free. A family friend - former Minority Leader in the California State Assembly, Mike Villines - may not be a musician and I am pretty sure he would not like hardcore music, but he is a really positive guy. I thought it would be cool to talk to somebody who really knows how government runs.

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why are they your favorites?

Mike Villines:
1. Atlas Shrugged. I love this book because it focuses on human nature, economics and government/private sector. It also is a gripping read.

2. Reluctant Rebels. A great book and dynamic read of the founding of our country.

3. Trinity. A great historical read of Irish history and a great character in Conor Larkin. I liked the Character so much that our first born is named Conor after the character.

4. Dancing Bear. I added a fourth book because this book, “The Dancing Bear” is a great book on California Politics and a must read on old time politics in California.

Interview with Kevin Seconds of 7 Seconds

When people think of "positive" and "hardcore", one of the first people they think about is Kevin Seconds.  Kevin has been a friend my whole life and I am really grateful that he did this interview with me.  Thanks again, Kevin!!!!

PMAKid: You have been in a lot of bands like 7 Seconds, Go National, Drop Acid, 5' 10" and a lot of solo stuff.  Do you have any favorite styles of music you like to write and play (like hardcore? your solo stuff? your stuff you play with your wife, Allyson?) or do you like to write and play any of the stuff depending upon your mood?

Kevin: It's hard to pick my favorite style of music, since I love all kinds. I love playing various things for various reasons. punk rock because i love the energy and volume and urgency. the quieter, folk stuff because it gives me a chance to get my ideas across without having to scream it into anyone else's face.

PMAKid: What are your three favorite books and why are they your favorites?

Woody Guthrie's Bound For Glory
Michael Azerrad's Our Band Could Be Your Life
The Autobiography Of Malcolm X

like a great record, movie or piece of art, it's hard for me to put into words why certain ones are my favorites.

PMAKid: What are your three favorite musicians and why are they your favorite?

Billy Bragg  - great songwriter, storyteller and humble
Johnny Cash  - for making rebellion, defiance and love sound so good
Joe Strummer - all of the above

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Dave Smalley of DYS, All, Down By Law, Dag Nasty

I just sent interview questions off to Dave Smalley.  As I was figuring out what I wanted my questions to be, I was thinking about the really cool letter he wrote that went with a framed photo (by Ken Salerno) as a part of my grade school's Hardcore for Education fundraiser last year.  I just thought I would post the letter here because the words are really cool.

- PMA Kid


 My name is Dave Smalley. I’m a punk rock singer, screamer, songwriter, guitarist and general tattooed misfit. And I can sometimes be an idiot. But I’m also not a total idiot, for the most part -- and the thanks for that go to some really, really wonderful teachers over the years. And my really, really wonderful parents.

If you’re reading this, that means you get it. You get the big picture – that we can’t raise the next generations of poets, scientists or punk rock singers without great schools, great teachers who are infused with enthusiasm for helping kids reach their highest potential.

For me, it all started with Mrs. Carolyn Zolbe at Jamestown Elementary School in Arlington, Virginia. It was really Mrs. Zolbe who is responsible for all those albums I’ve made over the years – without her, there would be no “Can I Say,” no “punkrockacademyfightsong,” no “Brotherhood” or “Allroy for Prez.” Because Mrs. Zolbe saw in me not just the young rebel/dork that I was, but also someone who had a gift for music. And she developed it in me. When we did plays or musical skits, she told me to sing, so I did. And I found that I loved it.

And I’ve never looked back since then. She gave me confidence, put me on the path. Without her, who knows what I’d be right now.

But it wasn’t just me. She did the same for all the kids. Kids with special needs got special attention. Kids with gifts for sports were encouraged to get out there and play hard. Kindness was encouraged. I remember she made me one of the tutors for a couple of the kids who had challenges with reading, and I was so honored to do that, that it made me realize the importance of helping others. That has influenced my view of punk rock, and what it means to be a musician. See, despite my absolute love for the Sex Pistols, I never was into the whole anarchy idea – instead, I saw punk rock as a chance to make the world a better place. Tear down the bad, leave the good, and improve the rest, including ourselves. Go for ALL!

So thanks for supporting this auction. Thanks for giving of yourself to help kids who really are at those critical points in life. What you’re doing, right now, by buying this and reading it, means you, me, all of us together, can be part of something bigger than ourselves. It proves that punk rockers and punk fans are, once again, the greatest group of people I’ve ever been honored to associate with. And it proves that even a tattooed misfit can do something worthwhile – all because of a teacher, an education, and some serious heart.

Dave Smalley 

Friday, June 17, 2011

Last Day of School

Today is my last day of school and I will be working on this website more this summer.

I am really excited to go to the React Records showcase in September.  You can see who is playing at

I also have a Twitter account! I am @PMAKid

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Stuck in the Past Interview

I was interviewed on Stuck in the Past! How cool is that?!?

Interview with Dave from New Jersey Straight Edge band, Outlast

One of my favorite bands at the moment is Outlast from New Jersey. The lead singer, Dave, was kind enough to do an interview with me. 

PMA Kid: Who is in Outlast and what do they do outside of the band? (school? work?)

Dave: Outlast is myself, Dave, on vocals, Shaun on bass, Ian and Tom on guitars, and Joe (nicknamed Jah) on drums. Outside of the band we all work, Tom and I are in college, and we all just like to hang out and do our thing. Typical stuff really, eat burritos and hang out.

PMA Kid: For anybody in the band (or for all of you guys), what are your three favorite books and why are they your favorites?
Dave: “Animal Farm” by George Orwell is probably my favorite one because it shows how power corrupts individuals. I remember reading it in high school and the phrase “absolute power corrupts absolutely” really stuck with me. Another favorite is Jack London’s “White Fang” because I’m a big fan of hiking, camping, nature, and just general wilderness type things. Finally, I’d have to say “Old Yeller” by Fred Gipson. I loved it as a kid and I think it has to do with the, again, the whole frontier/wilderness aspect of it. Something about that stuff really gets me.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What is PMA and Straight Edge?

For those who are not aware of what PMA and/or Straight Edge is, check out the video by Texas Rangers Pitcher C.J. Wilson on>

Don't Need Drugs t-shirt from React Records

For anybody who is interested in picking up their own Don't Need Drugs t-shirt, I got mine from the really cool people at React Records. They were also really cool and helped raise a lot of money for my school last year. They are at

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

An interview with Toby Morse from H2O and

Ever since my dad played one of H2O's songs, I liked all of their music. I also like because the whole purpose is not doing drugs and living a clean, positive life. I got into hardcore a couple of years ago because of my dad's long friendship with the guys from 7 Seconds. Some of my favorite H2O songs are One Life One Chance, Sunday, and What Happened.

When people in hardcore think of keeping a positive outlook, one of the people they think of is Toby Morse, the singer of H2O and the guy behind I am really happy my first interview is with Toby.

PMA Kid: Tell me about the OLOC project.

Toby: OLOC is the name of my organization that goes to schools to inspire kids to make healthy life choices and maintain PMA and be themselves and to avoid peer pressure.

PMA Kid: What made you want to start Where did you get the idea for the site?

Toby: I asked to speak to kids at a school in Rockaway Queens by a H2O Fan who was a Teacher there . She had made the students a PMA Mixtape for a memoir project and the number song that kids related to on it was a song called Sunday By H2O and the kids wrote me these heartfelt letters and  the Teacher asked me to come and meet them the next time is was in NYC and the rest is history (as they say).

Welcome to PMA Kid!

PMA stands for Positive Mental Attitude.

 I started this website because I thought it would be a cool way to learn new ideas, interview people that interest me, and discuss ways to always keep PMA.

Upcoming interviews include:
  • Toby Morse from H2O and
  • Kevin Seconds 
  • Dr. Irene Eister (my Principal)
  • Outlast (New Jersey Straight Edge band)
  • Police and Thieves (D.C. Straight Edge band)
  • Mike Villines (former Minority Leader in the CA State Assembly)
  • Dan O'Mahony (No For An Answer, Carry Nation, 411,
  • Dave Smalley (DYS, All, Dag Nasty, Down by Law, Editor at the Free Lance-Star)
  • Noose (Chicago Vegan Straight Edge band)
  • and more...
 I hope you enjoy the website.