SOUNDCHECK: Anthony Raneri (Bayside)

Music is a major part of all us. Whether it’s a sold-out show, an unforgettable kick to the face while in moshing in a crowd or a song that changed us on the inside, it provides an endless handful of memories that continue to shape who we are. While his house was being remodeled (think loud, obnoxious noises) frontman ANTHONY RANERI of BAYSIDE opened up about music and his life and mentioning artists like Lagwagon, Alkaline Trio and Paramore.

Name an album you haven’t stopped listening to lately.

I’ve really been into the The Green Album, the Muppets tribute album. Weezer does a song with Hayley Williams that’s mind-blowing; there are days I listen to that song five times in a row because I just keep rewinding it. Alkaline Trio does a really cool song on the album too, OK Go! as well.
What was the first album you bought on vinyl or cassette?

The first record that I bought that I wanted – well asked my parents to buy for me (laughs) – was Nirvana’s Nevermind and it’s actually the 20th anniversary for it right now, so that’s very fitting. It could be my favourite record.
Which artist would you say has the greatest discography of all-time?

That’s tough. I think it would be a toss up between Alkaline Trio and Weezer, but Weezer has sort of fell off. Then there’s Lagwagon where every record of theirs is one of my favourites. Them and Alkaline Trio are two bands I’ve never been let down by. There are some bands that have taken real wide turns for a different style, and that comes with maturity and new influences obviously, but then there are bands like Lagwagon, NOFX and Bad Religion. I feel like they started a band, created a sound and that is the sound. Now they just try to get better at being Lagwagon or NOFX or Bad Religion and it keeps things interesting and fresh without completely changing where they came from.
Who do you think is the most underrated musician today?

I think they’re about to get the appreciation they deserve, but I’d say I Am The Avalanche. They’ve been a band for about six years and they’ve been touring for a long time and their new record is another that I’ve been addicted to lately. I really hope it’s the album that catapults them onto a new level. Also, it’s really weird to say this because she’s so enormously famous but I’ve always thought that Paramore got a really bad rap, just for having a girl singer and because of the popularity and becoming teen sensations. How incredible the band actually is and how they write every note of a song themselves really goes unnoticed. Hayley can sing well and their live shows are so tight.

I see them to be another Foo Fighters; to me, they are a badass rock bad and I don’t think most of the world looks at them that way at all.
Name the worst scar or injury you’ve gotten from a concert.

We were playing a show at the House Of Blues in Cleveland when a crowd surfer came over the barricade, landed on the stage and then landed on me. They ended up pinned my strumming hand in between the stage and the mic stand and I broke my pinky knuckle and had to walk off stage so I could tape my hand into a fist with duct tape while still holding the pick. I finished the show that way and played a few others afterwards as well because I kept taping my hand into a fist. It never healed well and my pinky hasn’t been straight since.

What’s one band tee you will never throw away?

I have a Lagwagon hoodie that I bought in 1996 at their show and I love it. It’s definitely the oldest piece of clothing I own and I still wear it everyday. I love it because it’s a pullover hoodie and it’s Lagwagon, which rules. It has a really cool design with a yellow smiley face on the back that has its smile held up by safety pins. It’s an extra large hoodie and I’m a small guy so it’s a nice, oversized one that I wear every night when I get home.
What was the last concert you’ve attended as a spectator?

I went to the Fueled By Ramen anniversary show a couple weeks ago where bands like Paramore, Gym Class Heroes and The Stereo played. It was great because I used to listen to The Stereo back in high school and they haven’t been a band for a long time. I actually go to a lot of shows when I’m home but that anniversary concert was really cool because I’ve had friends at Fueled By Ramen since they started 15 years ago. As a band we’ve always had a close tie to that label even though we’ve never been signed to them. It was pretty special to me to see a lot of my friends there at that show because I can remember them starting the label in dorm rooms and basements.
What’s one band you’d love to see reunite?

The Smiths, obviously. The Smoking Popes were also really high on my list for a while and then they did actually reunite. We got to tour with them on their first tour back and that was really special to me. But The Smiths, that would be the band I’d pay to play a concert for me if I had a billion dollars.
What’s your favourite city to perform in and why?

I love New York; the hometown shows are really, really cool but they can also be a little stressful because you’ve got hundreds of personal friends so the phone is ringing off the hook all day. Like I’m trying to get ready for my show and my mother is calling me non-stop asking if her friend’s son can come so it’s a little stressful. Chicago has an incredible music scene too, same with Austin in Texas as people go nuts, but there’s something really special about New York, Boston and Los Angeles. Those cities are really hard to break into and they are all so spoiled as far as music scenes go. Bands that also come from a certain city just click in that city; you can see that with Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi and Dropkick Murphys. When you’re onstage in cities like those you wind up thinking about all the shows you played there before people started coming out.

They do say it takes ten years to be an overnight success.
What’s one song that holds a lot of significance to you?

This is so weird, and I’ve always thought of this in a really strange way and I’ve never thought anyone would ever understand it, but that song would be Notorious B.I.G.’s “Juicy”. For some reason I’ve always connected with that song and it might be because we’re from the same place. The places he mentions in the song are the places I hung out at and he talks about humble beginnings and rising to become something else. It’s probably the strangest thing in the world and I don’t think anyone will ever understand it, but I’ve always really connected with that song.

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1 Comment

  • Anonymous says:

    Hey this is Joey a huge fan, i need anthony raneri’s autograph for a school project. so that would be grat if i could have it. My email is and my cell phone is 630-335-3489. so thanks for reading this and please get back to me. thanks!

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