‘Jersey Boy’ is the quintessential nod to how an actual ‘Jersey boy’ carries himself, and Asbury Park-based band The Vice Rags, do a good job of showing and singing their version of one with their new single, “Jersey Boy.” The guys that make up The Vice Rags are Jersey boys themselves and all four were previous members of popular Jersey independent rock bands before joining together.
Check out the guys in their music video for “Jersey Boy:”
The group has been featured in regional press including the heralded The Deli along with The Aquarian and Real Gone, which all three have praised the group’s musicianship. We chatted with members Paul and Gay Elvis about what a “Jersey boy” means to them, the production of filming it’s accompanying music video, and our traditional “fun questions,” getting to know a lighter, musical side to a group and/or musician.
In you guys’ opinion, what does a Jersey boy mean to you?
Paul Rosevear: I always liked the Tom Waits song “Jersey Girl” that Bruce made famous. So I think in writing this tune I was imagining her counterpart. To me, that Jersey Boy is tough, but humble. He’s got a big heart, and he’s a dreamer. At the same time, he keeps it real and has no patience for phonies.
Gay Elvis: A Jersey Boy is sarcastic, cynical, arrogant while at the same time insecure and smart enough to succeed where he’s to stupid to know he shouldn’t even try.
Many folks, movies, and other forms of pop culture attempt to precisely define what they think a “Jersey Boy” is…what would you tell these folks to create the embodiment of the ideal Jersey Boy?
Paul: Everybody has a little Jersey in them. It’s the part of you that will always have something to prove.
Why did you guys decide to depart your previous bands and form The Vice Rags?
Paul: It was very organic. I don’t think any of us were actively playing in bands. Or even wanted to play in a band for that matter. But one night we got together just to play and have some fun, and the rest is history.
GE: It was either this or join a bowling league and my wrists are so weak that I’d have to use one of those pink 8 pound balls and they’re always the first taken by the kids at the alley, not to mention all of the pink ball shaming that I’d have to endure…So I chose this.
What was the production like for the filming of “Jersey Boy”? How much direction and involvement did you all have in it?
Paul: Jack, our guitar player, is a filmmaker. He took the reins and we all followed his vision. He shot it with the help of a friend down at the Hot Dog House, our practice space in Asbury Park.
GE: He had a yard stick that he would use to hit us on the back of our hands when we stepped out of line and if we chewed gum we had to stick it on our noses. You don’t see the gum in the video because he used CGI noses.
Is there a new album on the horizon?
Paul: Yes, we have a handful of songs written for the next release on Mint400 Records, out next year.
Who was you guys’ first concert, and who has been your overall favorite?
Paul: First rock concert was Eric Clapton at the Meadowlands. Overall favorite, probably Oh My God at Arlene’s Grocery.
GE: Twisted Sister and RATT!!! Overall fave was Jellyfish at the Stone Pony.
What was your first album on vinyl, cassette and/or CD?
Paul: First cassette was a Motown Greatest Hits tape I got in my Christmas stocking.
GE: First Vinyl, I’m pretty sure it was Sesame Street’s Manamena
Which five albums or artists would you not want to live without?
Paul: The Beatles, Miles Davis, Eminem, Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder
GE: Jellyfish, The Beatles, The Descendents, ALL…That’s it…Only 4.
Do you guys have a music or entertainment pleasure?
Paul: You mean like a guilty pleasure? I watch “Real Housewives of NY” with my wife. It’s pure evil!
GE: I collect comics…I don’t feel guilty about that…I love TV…I don’t feel guilty about that either. I feel guilty that I left my bowling team a man short.
The Vice Rags are Paul Rosevear, Jack Roberts, Joe Chyb & Gay Elvis
Check the band out on Facebook.