Matt Carmichael
mattc@rocknroll.net
Blind Melon
Shannon Hoon is no stranger to the criminal justice system, but he's got it all figured out now. He's had a lot of scrapes with the law. "I always seem to end up on the wrong side of the stick - literally!" he says from his hotel in Seattle, where he's checked in under the name Bob Evans. His most recent run in was in New Orleans where Blind Melon recorded their new album, Soup. While trying unsuccessfully to play moderator, he wound up in a fight with an drunken off-duty SWAT team member.

He was taken to a jail so cold that all he and the other prisoners did was try and conserve energy, not fight back or complain. "If I was to make a jail, that's how I'd do it," he says.

He's trying to put his past behind him, though. "I'm a new man now," he says, "I've come to realize that that type of behavior takes away from what I could really be learning and what I'm trying to do."

He also has some strong views on capital punishment which come through in songs like "Toes Across the Floor" ("Doesn't anybody feel that all these killers should be killed") and when discussing the subjects of "Skinned" and "Car Seat (God's presents)" both of which deal with famous murder cases. "Car Seat" is about Susan Smith, who was convicted of killing her children. "I don't believe that the world really has a place for people who kill children. I believe anybody who kills children should be put to death. There is nothing that can happen to anybody that can validate that type of scenario," says Shannon.

The driving force behind his views and his new, shaped-up image these days is Nico Blue Hoon, his new-born daughter whose ultrasound appears in the CD booklet.

Nico is the daughter of Shannon and his high school sweetheart, Lisa, with whom he has been together for 10 years. "We've been wanting to have a child for a long time but we had to wait until I stopped acting like one before we could think about having one," he says.

Have you stopped now?

"We have twins! One's just a little bit taller than the other."

Shannon's relationship with his parents has always been an important one in his life even if its been unstable at times. For now thought, his status with Nico is fairly common: "The relationship between her and I right now is just made up of me cleaning her butt and trying to keep mine out of trouble."

Full interview text is also available.

c1996 Thompson Target Media