Fluke issue 1 sees a second run!






Purchase here! 
Fluke 1, 1991 (second printing 2017)




Fluke article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Click here --> Fluke makes the hometown paper! Also in the Style section of today's printed copy, go pick one up!
Trusty packs Vino's, Little Rock 1991. Pic by Barrie Lynn Bryant.

Yet another Razorcake review of Fluke 14!

Matt Average review from Razorcake issue 99. That's $6, postage paid!


The (mostly) unedited Barker Gee interview for Fluke issue 11, 2013


Dead Rat Beach, Oakland, CA 2012

FF: Tell me about your first guitar.

BG: My first guitar. I had pretty conservative parents, I lived in the

middle of nowhere.

FF: Where did you live?

BG: Well, my dad was in rehab a lot while I was growing up so I lived

in Memphis, I lived in Blytheville, Arkansas, I lived in a town called

New Madrid, Missouri. New Madrid is where I went to high school, a

great school but I was never in that town except when it was time to

go to class because otherwise I was always in Blytheville with my

grandparents. In any case, my mom was pretty strict. I told her I

wanted a guitar and she was like, “Whatever, you gotta work on the

farm.”

FF: How old were you?

BG: 11 or 12. She was like, “That’s not happening.” Had my dad been

there, who was a musician, he was in a pretty popular rock group who I

don’t want to say the name of but I’ll tell you – Black Oak Arkansas,

for a little bit.

FF: Didn’t Carmine Appice play drums for them at some point?


BG: I don’t know, I never liked them.

FF: No, Tommy Aldridge, that’s who it was! At first, I almost thought

he was your dad because you have Tommy Aldridge hair. He also played

with Ozzy.


BG: He might be my dad. (laughter)

FF: Now we’re getting somewhere!


BG: No, me and my dad look a lot alike so I’m not trippin’. But

basically, my mom was like, “No! You cannot do that rock and roll

thing, look at your pops, he’s in rehab all the time.” My dad is like

the sweetest person in the world and my mom knows that but she also

knows that he’s a wild one so she didn’t want me to do that. So, I go

work on the farm and she’s doing her thing working on the farm.

Meanwhile, I sneak off and go find all the right pieces of wood and I

find all the right wires and everything. I got all the tools to make

the guitar so I made my first guitar and hid it from them. I’d play it

in this little water pump shed on the farm, where we’d irrigate the

crops. This nice cool place, it was dark and perfect.

FF: What songs were you playing?

BG: Ones that I just made up, I never really cared to know the other

ones because those people could play them just fine so I’d just kind

of make up my own things. I didn’t have any formal training because no

one even knew I had...the shittiest guitar ever. And of course it was,

I didn’t know how to tune it but it sounded pretty good to me. And

then they found it and they were like, “What are you doing?” and it

was so embarrassing. I was like, “You wouldn’t give me a guitar!” My

dad came home and told my grandma and she told them, “We’re going to

get this kid a guitar, we’re going to do it right.” They went to the

pawn shop and bought me an acoustic guitar for fifty bucks. I wanted

an electric guitar but I told them that it was better than my guitar

and I thanked them. They knew that I was going to do good because when

I was a little kid I didn’t speak too much but my grandma had a piano

at her house and I just sat on the stool and I would play songs. They

were like, “He can’t talk but he can play piano, he might be autistic

or something.” They knew I had it in me because my dad was a musician

and here I am not willing to talk but playing songs on the piano. They

got me the guitar for Christmas and said that if I was still with it

by my birthday and was doing good, they’d get me an electric guitar.

My dad told me, I think he said, “If you can play ‘Stairway’ by the

time it’s your birthday, I’ll buy you any guitar you want.” Some

impossible song to learn and he couldn’t have bought the guitar, he

didn’t have the money, but I learned the song anyway. I did pretty

damn good, I thought, or in hindsight I definitely think that. At the

time I thought, “I want the electric guitar! Whatever it takes, I’ll

play this shitty ass song.” I wanted the electric guitar, it didn’t

matter what kind. I just wanted one that gets loud and one that I can

jump on my bed with and really be like, “I got it, yes!” So, I learned

how to play “Stairway (to Heaven)” and I said, “Pops, I learned how to

play ‘Stairway’, what’s up?” and he was like, “It’s not your birthday

yet.” He was kind of...mad but he was stoked at the same time. He

didn’t have the money to buy it so he was like, “I never told you

that!” He’s not a shitty guy, he’s like the sweetest guy in the world

but he’s kind of having a laugh about it because I totally did it. So,

he told my grandma and she said, “I’ll do it, don’t worry, we’re happy

he did this. He’s not in a lot of trouble yet.” Because I would get

grounded and I could just sit in my room and learn all these songs.

Perfect! I got grounded a lot, that’s probably why I got good at

guitar.

FF: What was your relationship like with the other students at your

school?


BG: I was the only punk and they thought I was weird but I was also

really funny so I got by. The way the fat kids survived.

FF: How did you discover punk rock in Blytheville, Arkansas?

BG: My friend Zach Dees, who is the only person I still talk to from

there. We became really good friends because he was the funny fat kid

and I was the funny punk kid and he was really into horror films and

all this really creepy shit. Everyone was like, “You guys are weird”

and it’s true, we were weird. We’re still weird and I love him for

that. He got out of that place the same way I did – somebody found

something in him and gave him some money to get the fuck out of there

and go learn about what he wanted to do. We would hang out at school

and stay over at each other’s houses on the weekends. He showed me the

Jerky Boys movie when I was eleven or twelve years old. There was this

song called “2000 Light Years Away” by this band Green Day. I thought,

“Whoa, cool name, Green Day.” Then, you know, you go stay with your

grandma in Memphis and you got Camelot and there’s the older punk guy

working there and you’re like, “Hey, what’s up with Green Day, can you

order me the tape?” and he does that and then tells you about a couple

of other bands. You read the Green Day liner notes and you find out

what a “Blatz” is (laughter) and maybe Sewer Trout, and you find out

what Lookout Records is and the dominoes fall and it’s all good. So

then you go digging around in the medicine cabinet and you find the

peroxide, you find a chain, maybe make your own wallet out of duct

tape, and then your grandma takes you to the mall and you get a Green

Day shirt or something. You get all the weird catalogs and someone

mentions Maximum Rocknroll at some point. Then you go to a smaller

record store and you pick up a copy of Maximum Rocknroll.

FF: Where did you get the copy of MRR?

BG: I went to St. Louis with my mother, to go get another psych

evaluation, and I was like, “I have to go to this record store, you

dragged me here kicking and screaming, I promise I’ll be good if you

take me to the record store.” That was Vintage Vinyl, a big record

store in U City, on Delmar. I was like twelve and I got Maximum

Rocknroll and I wrote to every single address in there, saying “send

me stickers, send me catalogs, send me anything.”

FF: What did you get in return?

BG: A lot of funny notes, lots of stickers, lots of catalogs, lots of

free shit. Some of the notes were kind of making fun of me and some

were like, “Here, take all of this shit” because they understood that

I was living in the middle of nowhere. So, a lot of people helped me

and a lot of people gave me a lot of fuel, a little anger with that,

but a lot of sweet people hooking me up, that was nice, you know? So

you got the guitar, now you’re playing punk songs, and you’re like, “I

want that electric guitar.” You know what punk is and you’re like,

“This is what it is, I can only play punk with an electric guitar,”

which is not true but when you’re young and dumb – whatever. So my

grandmother said, “I’ll buy you any guitar. Any guitar.” My dad took

me to the music store with my grandmother’s blank check. Rosemary Gee,

the sweetest lady. I find this Ibanez Blazer for $120, it was the

shittiest guitar in the store but I loved it because it was beat up.

The pick guard was kind of broken, it was perfect! It was wood grain,

black pick guard and I was like, “This is the one I want.” My dad

seriously tried to talk me out of it for like an hour, he asked if I

would rather have the Stratocaster and I said, “No, this one is

better, I promise!”

FF: How’s West Oakland treating you?

BG: West Oakland is a beautiful, sprawling lawless land full of

freaks, wingnuts, punkers, queers, dykes and crazy shit going down,

all the time.

FF: Where’d you get your jeans?

BG: Oh, my jeans (laughter)? There’s a million home bums and I don’t

have a job, I just do whatever I want, I’m a reducer by trade. I take

garbage and I sell it, just like my friends on the street. I know them

all very well and I help them out in their time of need. I was about

to go to Europe for the Neon Piss tour a few months back and a bunch

of them knew it, they were really stoked. They were like, “Take

pictures so I can see what Europe looks like” because some of them

will never know. Some of them have never left Oakland. They’re all

really cool. One of them, my buddy Rob, asked me what I needed before

the European tour and I told him I needed a new pair of jeans because

I couldn’t keep sewing this pair with dental floss. He asked what

brand and size and he came back in ten minutes with the exact pair I

wanted. I asked him how much he wanted and he said four bucks so I

gave him ten and he was like, “Whoa, no way!” I give him breakfast or

coffee sometimes or when things are slow for him I give him my cans

and he gets me my jeans and stuff. He gives me all these cool little

things – like this whale paper weight thing that’s hanging on my wall

here, he gave me that. Not just him, there’s a few guys who give me

stuff. There’s a lot of crazy stories out there on the street.

FF: Tell me about your tape label.

BG: Oh, Pave the Amazon. I was wheeling and dealing in...I’m hesitant

to say junk, but used things, shit that you can sell to keep yourself

alive. I had a bunch of crap from some dead guy, I went over to his

house to clean out all of his stuff and I just hoarded it all in my

basement. While I was selling it, this one guy who also does the same

thing and who may or may not be into meth was like, ”it’s all gotta

go, folks!” He had a tape duplicator and I’d been looking for a tape

duplicator for a long time so I can do this tape label. I go over to

his house and I trade him all this shit that’s garbage to me and that

I couldn’t sell and he’s stoked. He had a use for this garbage and

this tape duplicator is the best you can get, it’s industry standard

for making pro tapes, like the Lionel Richie tape.

FF: What’s the thing with the Lionel Richie tape, you’ve mentioned

that a few times today?


BG: Oh, I got Janelle this Lionel Richie pin and she was like, “I just

had that tape!” and she said that to three people and they all said,

“Oh, I was just listening to that!” It’s so funny because it keeps

coming up. But in any case, I got the tape duplicator and he also had

all these blank tapes that came from a church, because that’s where

most people get them. If you’re looking for a tape duplicator, check

every church because they record the sermons and sell them. Little do

they know, cds are a dying format and cassettes are coming back and

they’re all out there for the taking. They just look at this as

garbage so you can give them twenty bucks for a machine that’s worth

eight hundred bucks or something. I got the best one, fortunately, and

I’ve had a couple more since then that I’ve given to friends to start

their own tape labels. But when you call up the church to ask about

the tape duplicator, ask them if they also have tapes because they

usually got a shitload of them. I kind of made that work for me,

whatever length they were, and I’ve put out every release so far from

those extra church tapes. Even if the albums weren’t that long, I made

it work. The Huff Stuff Magazine demo is only twenty or twenty-five

minutes long but the tape is fifty minutes long on each side so the

way I made that work is I played the tape forward, the album goes and

it ends. You’re up at 3 a.m. so you’re feeling a little crazy and you

want to listen to the tape backwards so you put the tape upside down

in the four track and it plays the record from the very end to the

very beginning, backwards. So you kind of feel like you’re on acid. It

was all free for me, these tapes. It was all garbage and I named the

label Pave the Amazon because it’s funny. I came up with Pave the

Amazon because this environmentalist guy who I argue with - but I love

him - was like, “You want to put out tapes, that’s an environmental

crime!” but I’m like, “I’m a fucking reducer, man, it was garbage.

It’s not going to the big dump in the sky, people are listening to it”

and I went back to reading my ancient Harper’s magazine. There was an

article about somewhere in Brazil where Amazon Road was being paved

over because people were using it so much and I thought of “Pave the

Amazon.” Environmental crime, my ass. I went to my friend, I was in

New York, and at the time I had this band called Huff Stuff Magazine

and I wanted to call the label that but not really. I had ten

different names and he’s over there at the coffee maker and I’m like,

“Aaron, what do I do about this?” I’m riddled with indecision but

there’s an easy answer so you ask your friend. Aaron said, “You got a

way with words, you just don’t know what they are quite yet.” I

rattled off a bunch of names for him, like Huff Stuff Magazine, Actual

Factual Art, Pave the Amazon. He said, “Pave the Amazon,” so there’s

the name of the label. I get all these funny Bay Area environmentalist

people, many of them are my friends, who are like, “What’s up with

that?” and I try to make up a different story just to kind of rile

them up and the actual story may be really good but I give them a more

boring story for them to kind of hate me or something, because it’s

fun. Like “Make the Collector Nerd Sweat” or something. You do the

smoke and mirrors where they’re mad at you but they’re walking away

mad and you’re like “haha.” (laughter) Meanwhile, back at the ranch,

you’re doing the right thing and you’re sleeping easy, living off the

church’s garbage.

FF: So tell me about the (fake) ‘80s band compilation.

BG: It’s not out yet. I don’t mind talking about it because the people

who are going to buy it probably will read Fluke first, then go buy it

and have a laugh at the people who will be fighting to get one of

three-hundred copies and they’re going to be convinced that they

really are bands from the ‘80s. They’re at home at their computers,

googling all these band names that never existed. But the idea is that

there’s all these bands from the ‘80s, you’ve never heard them. Don’t

kid yourself. You can pretend, and many do, that they’ve heard of

these bands. There was this DJ in New London, Connecticut, on WHMU, a

college radio station. He would play all these demos on his show and

it was like a curse. All the other DJs would make fun of him because

every band he played on the radio would break up. His name was Lance

Chance Menanski. They called him “Take a Chance Lance.” Try it, I bet

you won’t. The hand of fate puts those bands down, every time he plays

their demos, he thinks he’s doing the right thing but all of the bands

break up a few weeks later. He’s pissed when they do but he has all

these obscure demos. You find all these recordings around, his

friends...

FF: Old school punkers.

BG: Old school punkers, you know, people who went on to do better

things, some went on to die. I have put together a compilation of

these ‘80s punk bands and I think I’m going to call it “Golden

Moldies.” “Pave the Amazon presents Golden Moldies” and it will come

out whenever I can find a few more golden moldies. It’s almost there

and a lot of people ask me about it because they’ve heard of it. I’ll

play you a song or two. But yeah, there are a lot of people doing good

things with their cassette labels and they’re hard to find because

there are only so many church tapes out there. If you want to buy

blank tapes, you can go online and just google “bulk blank cassette

tapes” and they have all the links there and if you want to hear some

more golden moldies besides from the Pave the Amazon comp, you can

check out my buddy Greg Harvester’s blog. I don’t have the internet

but I’ve heard of it and people have told me about his blog

(laughter).

FF: Where can you get the internet?


BG: That’s what I want to know! But anyway, Greg’s got a blog called

“Remote Outposts.” He finds all these old demo tapes but he was there,

he was in a million of those bands. He was in one of my favorite bands

The Grumpies. But he has a lot of demo tapes of all those sick ass old

bands like Impractical Cockpit and Butt Hand aka Street Legal but if

anybody asks you, their real name is Butt Hand. Some of the shittiest

and best music you’ve never heard. They’re out there, it’s all out

there for the taking, it’s free so check out Remote Outposts.

FF: Aaron used to do compilation tapes of Bay Area bands in the ‘80s

and ‘90s, it’d be cool if you did that here.


BG: Oh, like of current bands? Yeah, there are so many. Oakland has a

weird thing going on where there’s a lot to fight for but there’s a

lot to be happy about. There’s a lot to hate, there’s a lot to love

and I think a lot of people have time on their hands because they’re

artists. There are so many good bands here, yes, thank you for the

tip. I will do that, I can already think of ten bands if I can get

them to agree to be on it. They might go, “Pave the Amazon? What’s up

with that?” (laughter)

FF: Why do you think this cassette revival has come about?

BG: Out of necessity. High prices at the pump, economic turmoil at

home and abroad. I think punkers don’t have any money and they should

protect each other and certainly try to at least capture the moment

any way they can but sadly it costs so much to put out records and

punkers are poor. That might change but I doubt it. Don’t know, don’t

care, most of us are poor…

FF: Or at least broke. I think there’s a difference between poor and

broke.


BG: I agree, I agree. So we’re broke and all of our money goes back

into our creative endeavors or our rent or whatever it takes. You

gotta live and I think it’s really easy to find a tape anywhere and

put tape on top of the holes and record over that Lionel Richie tape.

Bands like Autonomy, Subclinics, Poison Control, Nasty Intentions,

Dirty Looks, 40 Watts or Red Thread - they never had the money to put

out their own records although several of those bands got deals with

labels but they initially had to put it out themselves and I think

other bands should too, initially, if not again and again and again.

FF: What was your favorite band before you discovered punk rock?


BG: California Raisins (laughter). I had this tape that smelled real

weird and cool. It actually smelled like grapes to me and raisins come

from grapes. It kind of smelled like that artificial grape taste. Do

you remember those children’s chew up Tylenols and there was the grape

flavor?

FF: Yeah, certain tapes smelled like that and some of them didn’t.

Maybe it was a certain cassette manufacturing company that had the

grape smell.


BG: The California Raisins tape definitely smelled like a grape to me.

Whether that’s real or not, I don’t care. It was real to me, my great-

grandmother bought that tape for me. I get a lot of tapes and maybe I

smell them (laughter). Maybe that’s weird but I don’t care but

occasionally a tape will smell like that and I’m like yeah, “Ruby, my

great grandma.” She shot two of her husbands, she’s the toughest lady

I know. Actually, this guy who I thought was my great grandpa - for my

entire life I never knew who my real great grandfather was because she

ran them all off (laughter) – he was a Memphis mafia guy, he owned a

burger joint on Union, right down the street from Sun Studios. He told

me, “Yeah, Elvis played there.” When I was 15 or 16, my grandma told

me that he wasn’t actually my great grandfather. He was afraid that

Ruby was going to shoot him so he refused to marry her but they lived

together so as a kid, I thought he was my great grandfather.

FF: So why did she shoot her two husbands?

BG: The first one had stepped out on her so she shot him in the arm or

the leg. It was just a .22 and she was just teaching him a lesson.

FF: Just a .22 in the arm, no big deal. (laughter)

BG: Yeah, so they second guy would stay late at work because he had

to. It turns out that he wasn’t cheating on her but she’s a crazy lady

and she’d been through this before so she was like, “I’m tired of you

coming home late, this is what I got for you” BAM! and he’s like

“Damn!” (laughter).

He was like, “I got friends who can vouch for me, what do you need!?”

and she said, “I don’t need anything from you but to shoot you just to

teach you a fuckin’ lesson!” So, he bounced and W.C. came along. He’s

the guy I thought was my great grandfather, he was a sketchy guy who

refused to marry her because he thought she was going to shoot him.

Toronto's Zine Nation interviews Fluke for "My First Zine" series!

Matthew Thompson
Name of First Zine: Fluke
Year of Publication: 1991
What/Who inspired you to make your first fanzine?
Steve Schmidt and Jason White, whom I started Fluke with. We skated and went to shows together, and Steve had interviews with Fugazi and Plaid Retina, so we built upon that. I didn’t really play an instrument but I wanted to be more than a spectator of punk, so it fit for me.
What was the zine about?
Punk rock! Interviews, photos, comics, record reviews, opinions and art.
If you had to sum up the content/design in a few sentences, how would you describe it? 
Fluke is a magazine about punk rock, community, connection, music and art. It’s life.
Memorable line or quote?
From my grandmother: “If you’re bored, you’re boring.” 
What was the soundtrack of your life during this period? What music or other forms of art were you accessing that may have influenced your zine writing?
Crimpshrine, Fifteen, Operation Ivy, Jawbreaker, Plaid Retina, Fugazi, Minor Threat, Trusty, Numbskulz, Econochrist, Chino Horde, 8 Bark, Fuel, Shudder to Think, Ignition, Nation of Ulysses, Nuisance, Filth, Blatz, so many great bands came out of that time. Public Enemy was a huge influence back then. 
How, or did your early zine making help inform your later art/writing?
It introduced an audience who was into the same music and lifestyle which influenced my writing and content of the magazine.
Do you still make zines/chapbooks or participate in zine events?
Yes I do. I just published issue 14 last week. It’s 40 flyers from Little Rock punk shows between 1988 – 1992. It’s a supplement to Fluke 13, which was the 25th anniversary issue.
What are you currently working on?
I’m working on a compilation tape of Little Rock punk bands from 1988 – 1992. It goes along with the last two issues I just released. It’s the 25th anniversary year so there’s been some nostalgia around the early days of Fluke and the Little Rock scene of that era. I’m also working on Fluke 15, which will be out sometime in the near future. Keep an eye out for it!
Read other interviews in this series: Zine Nation "My First Zine"

Fluke issue 14 | 40 punk flyers from Little Rock, AR 1988-1992!

"There’s very little rock in Arkansas”   - Henry Rollins, 1987
On February 13th, 1986 Black Flag played the first ever punk show in Little Rock, Arkansas. Although it was 21 and over, some local teenagers managed to get in. Prior to this, there wasn’t much of a punk scene in Little Rock. Undoubtedly, this night sparked a movement and word quickly spread throughout high schools in the greater Little Rock area.
The following year, a short-lived venue called the Annex was opened by local punk Rob O, who saw Black Flag. Meat Puppets played the Annex, which proved to be its most successful show before the venue closed its doors. In that same year, Tim Lamb, also in attendance for the Black Flag show, started Lighten Up! fanzine, which covered the nascent local scene as well as bands outside of Arkansas. Lighten Up! gained national attention and played an influential role in the formative years of the Little Rock punk scene.
In 1988, the art gallery Urbi et Orbi opened on the corner of 7th and Chester in downtown Little Rock. The venue switched hands (and names) a number of times until finally it settled into a pizzeria called Vino’s. With the restaurant built in the front, Vino’s kept the performance space for bands in the back. Most of the employees were in the bands that would play shows at Vino’s. James Brady, who formed Trusty with Bobby Matthews, Paul Bowling and Bircho, was one of these employees. James had access to the show calendar so when touring bands such as Fugazi and Green Day were booked, James would simply add “Trusty” to the bill. He and Bobby would create the flyers and Colette Tucker would drive around town, stapling them to telephone poles. The best part is these were all-ages shows.
Teenagers from many different schools converged to find one another and, in turn, found themselves. A scene was born and the movement exploded. Here you will find 40 show flyers from 1988 through 1992, from that old brick building on a corner of small town America. Build it and they will come. 
Cover photo ©1991 Barrie Lynn Bryant, all rights reserved

Maximum Rocknroll review of Fluke 13











Razorcake review of Fluke 13

Razorcake review

One of the coolest zines happening these days, and this issue marks twenty-five years of existence! This issue is a love letter to Arkansas punk, which is where this publication started. There are interviews with people who worked behind the scenes to make it happen, from promoter Fletcher Clement, to flyering with Colette Tucker. Then there are the folks who play, or played in bands: Andy Conrad (Numbskulz, Smoke Up Johnny), Colin Brooks (Numbskulz, Big Cats), and James Brady (Trusty). Then there’s the piece from the legendary Tav Falco, a detailed play list from Mitchell Crisp, and a piece from the editor, Matthew Thompson, on his introduction to punk way back when. Reading through this, you will get a strong sense of community, the important role everyone plays in keeping their local scene alive, and how it affects what they do during and after. –Matt Average (Matthew Thompson, PO Box 1547, Phoenix, AZ 85001, fluke.bigcartel.com)


Fluke 13 Review by Tales From The Middle 8

Tales From The Middle 8

Fluke Fanzine #13
This is Fluke‘s 25th year, and issue 13 of this great zine; as a bonus I was lucky enough to get my hands on a limited edition t-shirt to celebrate this momentous issue but would have been satisfied just to get my hands on the latest issue on its own.  I always look forward to a new Fluke; the enthusiasm that Matthew has for the scene and the great people he’s met over the years really shines through; he writes with a nostalgic edge but you get the feeling he is always looking to the future with excitement.  Perhaps its because we are the same generation that I connect with his world view so well, or perhaps its just the easy way he draws you in with his great writing style, but this issue of the zine is a fascinating glimpse into his life and the music and people that inspired him growing up.  Highly recommended.

Interview at Phoenix Zine Fest, 10/22/16

Interview by Michael Gipson, Art Education student at Arizona State University, researching visual culture issues.

What is a zine?

A self-published publication. Whatever content the publisher/editor wants to include is freely and totally up to them.

Describe your zine.

Fluke is a punk fanzine. It usually features interviews with bands and artists and has photographs, writings, personal stories, art and other ideas.

What are the most important elements of a good zine?


Content. I like to include stuff that hopefully inspires people. I like for it to be visually appealing. Affordability is good. Zines should be accessible to common folk. If it's more than five bucks that's probably too much for it to be called a zine, in my mind.

Why do you make your zine?


I make it because it's a creative outlet. It keeps me connected to creative people. I have things that I would like to share, and it's a part of giving back to the punk community that gave so much to me.

How do you define success for your zine?


The quality of the finished product, the sales numbers, and positive responses from peers. Really it's about how I feel about it, the way that it looks, the content, and obviously the reception.

Can you talk a bit about your process?


Usually it begins with a single idea. A single interview or idea and then it kind of builds from there. I usually have bits and pieces from a lot of contributors. I have a lot of friends who do really cool stuff so a lot of what Fluke is about is really about my friends. I just kind of pull everything together and see what sticks. The cool thing about doing the zine is I never really know the end result. The magazine always seems to create itself. The end product is usually nowhere near what i thought it would be in the beginning. It kind of has a mind of its own. It's always been primarily cut-and-paste, like in the copy shop. This new issue that I did, a friend of mine named Joey Cadre helped with the layout and design. I'm really happy with the way it turned out. It's a combination of cut-and-paste and computer graphics. Computer layout, I should say.

What specific target audience is your zine trying to find?


Mostly punk culture, but it's intended for anyone who wants to read it.

Where can your zine be found?


Around town in Phoenix and Tempe area, I have it in independent shops like Stinkweeds, Revolver Records, Double Nickels Collective, Zia Records, Ash Avenue Comics. Also, Wasted Ink Zine Distro carries Fluke, as do independent record stores and bookstores around the country. Also, it's distributed by Last Gasp of San Francisco and Microcosm Publishing. A lot of people think that the only work involved in doing a zine is making the zine itself, but getting it out there is the other side of that, which I really enjoy doing. It's still a huge job once the magazine's finished and in your hands. It's a lot of work to get it out there across the country.

Does your zine have an online presence?

I have a Big Cartel page: fluke.bigcartel.com, where you can purchase back issues and my current issue. I have a blog: flukezine.blogspot.com and there's an Instagram: fluke_fanzine. Facebook. Just do an online search and all kinds of stuff pops up.

Do you feel like there's a sense of community amongst those who make zines?


Yeah, for sure there is. There's a certain type of person who does zines and it's usually not your typical mainstream type of person. There's definitely a common bond there I think.

Why do you think zines are an important art form?


Because it's the voice of the people. It's the voice of those who may not have had a voice in any other arena.

Fluke 13 review by Ashley Naftule at De'Lunula


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Fluke 25th Anniversary Issue

“It’s the people who put in the sweat that make a scene go.”

Fugazi were legendary for putting on cheap shows. Paying $5 to see a band of their stature is just nuts. Throughout their career, they could have asked for significantly more money from people and they would have gotten it- hell, they would have DESERVED it. But as a matter of principle, they kept their art affordable and accessible. I wonder if that is the same reasoning behind Fluke’s $4 cover price.
$4 for a zine of this size and quality is an insane price. To say its generous is an understatement. I have no idea how much it must cost to print out a run of zines that are as dense as these Fluke issues are, but I would be surprised if they’d be able to break even at just $4 a pop. Even if the zine was pure dogshit, I would have to give them props for making their work so accessible. 

Luckily Fluke’s 25th anniversary issue is far from dogshit: It’s a very compelling zine, put together with strong layouts and striking photos. This issue focuses entirely on the punk scene that emerged in Little Rock, Arkansas. Fluke digs through the scene by not just talking to bands, but also talking to the people who helped make the scene happen: Promoters and graphic designers and the peeps who put up the fliers get just as much print time as the musicians themselves. It does a great job of not just letting you know what the Little Rock scene was about, but giving you a sense of what it was like to live through it in the first place.

There are great stories scattered through this issue about skater kids growing up in high school, about Fugazi tricking out the inside of their touring Penske truck (they nailed in Lazy-Boys and furniture to turn the back of the truck into a living room), about Tav Falco taking a chainsaw to a guitar in front of Alex Chilton. Interviews with Falco from Panther Burns and James Brady from Trusty go in depth on what it was like playing (and eventually leaving) the Little Rock scene, and also include insights about people like Chilton, Ian MacKaye, and artist buZ blurr.

What makes this issue interesting is that it approaches its subject in such a way that even if you have zero interest in Little Rock’s scene, it’s still a fascinating read. While I doubt I’ll be doing a deep dive into the music of Econochrist or any of the other Little Rock scene mainstays anytime soon, I’m glad I was able to spend some time getting to know them and their community.

In addition to the lengthy interviews, Fluke also has some fun crosswords and one word horoscopes mixed in. Not bad for a measly $4.

Fluke is available at Wasted Ink Zine Distro, Lawn Gnome Books, and at their online store.

Fluke 13 review by Dagger

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Well, here’s one that I completely missed. Seems like this zine that was straight outta Arkansas first got going in 1991 but I missed the boat on it. At the time though it seems like they were focusing mainly on punk bands and by that time I had left that scene (mostly but not completely) behind and was more into the indie rock/pop scene. This is a terrific little (digest-sized) rag though and this is their 25th anniversary issue. Edited by Matthew Thompson who now lives in AZ, he dedicates this issue to days of yore in the Little Rock (and beyond) scene. In addition to a cool piece on Tav Falco (I had no idea that he was originally from Arkansas) there’s interviews with folks who helped the jumpstart the different scenes in AR, folks like Fletcher Clement and Colette Tucker who booked gigs. In addition there’s an interview with James Brady of Trusty (later signed to Dischord Records) and a cool little play list done by Mitchell Crisp (who also did the excellent cover) and other odds n’ ends. This one is well worth the price of admission and it’s got two covers, a variant one and the one pictured above. Dive in, punk. www.fluke.bigcartel.com

Fluke interview with Mike Watt on The Watt From Pedro Show

So Dig This Big Crux

With Watt, Tucson 2009

Mike Watt interview from Fluke 7, 2009

Watt Spiel
mike watt on bass in 2004
F: Who is your best friend?

W: Raymond Pettibon.

F: Why do you like to drive while being interviewed?

W: Because I get to show people my town while I'm doing it.

F: Why do you guys pronounce your town San Pedro (Pee-dro) and not (Pay-dro)?


W: It is a colloquialism of my town that was here before I moved here from Virginia. Even the Latin people call it "Pee-dro" - I think it might be kind of a test to see if you've really been here, I don't know. It's kind of trippy.

F: How did all of the lingo you guys use come about and is it still evolving to this day?

W: Yeah, well it's called slang and I think a lot of humans engage in it. I think it's about taking some kind of control over the situation you find yourself in, empowering yourself to define your own reality. Some of it's practical, some of it's fanciful, lots of it's funny.

F: What's a day in the life of Mike Watt while at home in San Pedro?

W: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings I paddle my kayak and the other four mornings I ride my bicycle. I do my music, do prac with my guys. I chow about four p.m. I konk around seven or eight - I usually only stay up late to do gigs.

F: You have a lot going on, could you fill us in on all the projects you're involved in and how to find out more about them?

W: Funanori, Mike Watt + the Black Gang, Mike Watt + the Missingmen, Mike Watt + the Secondmen, Dos, Banyan, Brother's Sister's Daughter, Los Punkinhedz, Hellride. You can go to hootpage.com for infos on these.

F: Why do you often wear plaid flannels?

W: I got the idea from John Fogerty when I was a boy. I also like the idea of them being made from many different threads - my ideal of positive human interaction.

F: What is your attraction to Creedence Clearwater Revival?

W: That was the only rock band D. Boon knew when I met him. We'd listen to them all the time and learn to play their songs. They were very profound on us, like punk was on us later on.

F: What does "punk rock" mean to you?

W: Trying to really let your freak flag fly. It's not a style of music, it's a state of mind.

F: What could be romantic to Mike Watt?

W: That was a lyric I wrote in the Minutemen! Being inspired is very romantic!

F: What makes a man start fires?

W: That's the name of a Minutemen record, I borrowed the title from a Raymond Pettibon drawing. I sometimes think the question is more intense than the answer.

F: Is it hard for you to listen to "History Lesson - Part II"?

W: Yes, it's hard for me to listen to lots of Minutemen but then other times it makes me bust up laughing.

F: What are some current bands you're listening to right now?


W: Black Moth Super Rainbow, the Dirtbombs, Mi-gu and Boris.

F: Why do you always begin your awesome radio show with Coltrane?

W: Because his music is such an inspiration to me, that feeling he brings forth on me and I feel I have to pass it on.

F: Explain your obsession with Madonna and her music.


raymond pettibon art for cover of the minutemen's
W: I was turned onto her by Kira in the mid-80s and I thought she was interesting. I did a band interpreting her works called the Madonnabes after my days with fIREHOSE so I could stay in prac on my bass. I did Ciccone Youth with the Sonic Youth folks to help me deal with D. Boon being killed.

F: Are there enough hours in the day for Mike Watt?

W: That is an excellent question.

F: Henry Rollins wrote in "Get in the Van" that he'd like to punch you because you talk too much. Do you think you talk too much and did Henry ever punch you?

W: We were teasing Henry a bunch on that tour but actually, we loved him much. He didn't punch me, no.

F: Did you enjoy touring with Black Flag?

W: I loved touring with Black Flag, it was fantastic.

F: Did you ever give Kathleen Hanna's Annie record back?

W: No and that's because I never had it, she was just having fun with me in that tune.

F: Are you planning to release another solo record?

W: Yes, I am doing many solo recordings soon. Back in April, I did a Black Gang album with Nels Cline and Bob Lee that's gonna be mixed this fall. In December, I take Nels Cline to Tokyo to record with Mister Shimmy and Ms Yuko. Next spring I wanna record my third opera with the Missingmen.

F: How do you want to be remembered?

W: As D. Boon's bass player.



d. boon + mike watt of the minutemen in 1985
- D. Boon + his bass player -

25th Anniversary Issue

A love letter to Little Rock, the 25th Anniversary Issue looks back on that city's early '90s punk rock scene. Fluke 13 opens with a story from the editor, about discovering this scene while in high school. This is full of interviews with those who played a big part of early Little Rock punk - James Brady (Trusty), Fletcher Clement (promotor), Colette Tucker (she hung the flyers around town), Andy Conrad (Numbskulz, Five-O, 12ft6) and Colin Brooks (Numbskulz, Substance). Mitchell Crisp returns with Mitchell Crisp's Rainy Day Playlist, as does John Pugh with Zomby Fun Pages. This issue also prominently features Arkansas native and rock n roll legend Tav Falco, with a 12-page spread on the leader of Panther Burns. 68 pages of Arkansas underground music history!



"In the late ‘80s, a punk rock scene began to grow out of an art space on the corner of 7th Street and Chester in downtown Little Rock, Arkansas. It switched hands and names, from Urbi et Orbi to DMZ to Nemesis then Mandrake’s before Henry bought the place, built a pizzeria and named it Vino’s. Most people outside of Little Rock won’t recognize most names within this issue, but the names are insignificant. What matters is the connection that was made between teenagers all over the city who found each other at the only “alternative” space Little Rock had at the time. I believe that’s what we all truly crave - a common bond. Something to grab onto and call our own. This bond that was formed on that corner has stuck and what was once a scene is now something much deeper and more meaningful. To me, punk rock has always been about building something and the greatest structure erected from it has been the friendships we’ve made, and we continue to make. It was built from the ground up. Fletcher Clement booked the shows, Colette Tucker hung the flyers, Mitchell Crisp designed the t-shirts and record covers and John Pugh published fanzines. James Brady, Andy Conrad and Colin Brooks played in the bands. Dozens of others did their part, from working in copy shops to taking out the trash at the end of the night.

And then there’s the enigmatic Tav Falco! Rogue male, Falco grew up in Arkansas and transitioned to Memphis, where he formed Panther Burns in the ‘70s. Their first show outside of Memphis was at Burns Park in North Little Rock, Arkansas in 1979. Tav Falco is one of the truly original and romantic forces in American music - the voice that America lost and found. Not just a musician, Tav is a performance artist, actor, filmmaker, and photographer. He is presently living in Vienna and sometimes Paris."

68 pages, half-sized zine
Cover by Mitchell Crisp

Brazilian Punks @ Rock Fã Clube interview Fluke!



1. You, Jason White and Steve Schmidt invented what would become a very influential fanzine, Fluke. How did Fluke come about? Whose idea was it?

It was Steve’s idea. He had graduated high school in Little Rock and felt like he was complacent so he started a band, a radio show and a fanzine. Fugazi and Plaid Retina came through town so he interviewed them. Jason and I got on board. I was taking a college course in Journalism and one of our assignments was to write a letter to the editor of the local newspaper. I wrote a letter about violence on television and the paper printed it! So, I put it in the first issue, as well as some photos and record reviews. Jason interviewed Tim Lamb, who published the earlier Little Rock fanzine called Lighten Up. We had local contributors and ran some ads, too. We liked the end result and the response was very positive so we continued together on issue 2.

2. How important was the history for Fluke Fanzine, to interview Tim Lamb and Fugazi?

Fugazi was undoubtedly the most influential band in the punk scene at the time, if not the whole decade. Having them in issue 1 was huge for us, I think. As for Tim Lamb, we definitely wanted to recognize those who came before us in the Little Rock punk scene and Tim was a key figure in the early development of Little Rock punk.

3. After Fluke was released, how was it received by the alternative scene of Arkansas?

Yes, the Little Rock, Arkansas scene was very receptive to Fluke, as were MAXIMUM ROCKNROLL and other reviewers of Fluke.

4. How was it to see Fluke being mentioned and reviewed by the magazine Thrasher and MAXIMUM ROCKNROLL?

It was a great feeling to know that people outside of our humble scene liked our magazine. Thrasher reviews didn’t come until I started Fluke back up in earnest in 2009.

5. All fanzine leaders know much about the independent scene, what do you think of the scene in Brazil? Ever heard of it?

Not much, sadly. There was a Brazilian woman who reviewed Fluke a few years back. I do know there is a strong punk scene in South America and I hope to visit sometime in the near future.

6. The punk / hardcore scene is still strong in Arkansas, what do you think of it?
I haven’t lived in Arkansas in over 20 years but still have ties to the music scene there. A lot of the musicians who were playing punk in the ’80s and ’90s are still playing music, mostly rock and roll now. There is a new generation of punk in Little Rock, house shows have never stopped happening there.

7. How were Chino Horde shows?

Powerful, energetic, thoughtful and inspiring. A great band to see live, always a crowd pleaser.

8. In 90’s – 00’s, Jason White decided to invest in a sound quieter (as Big Cats and Influents). What did you think of this?

Jason is a musician and musicians play music. He is a fan of Paul Westerberg and Alex Chilton, so it makes sense he went that route. Jason is also a songwriter. I really love what he’s done throughout his musical career.

9. How was the Towncraft compilation recording process?

Each band recorded their own songs and submitted to the project. It also came with a booklet, where local fanzines had a page. Fluke got center spread! That is a really solid record that holds up to this day.

10. In 1991 Green Day played at Vino’s. Have you had contact with the band? How was this meeting?

Yes, we all hung out at Catherine’s parents’ house after the show, where we had a pool party with Green Day. It was a lot of fun.

11. Last question. What are your future plans for Fluke Fanzine?

To continue creating and sharing. The 25th anniversary issue will be out in September!

Fluke #12 is out now!


Fluke 12 is a 76-page comic by Bobby Madness! This issue is an autobiographical account of Bobby's early teenage years on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Revolving around three shows - Ramones, The Cramps and Stiff Little Fingers, Bobby and his droog Chris search for drugs, girls and punk rock!




Fluke #12 (Bobby Madness issue)