Grant Hart TV Interview

Off-Beat Special, Tele 5, Dusseldorf, Germany

25 Nov 1989

Note: This interview was conducted in English with German voiceovers. The transcription below was assembled by combining the intelligible English portions with a translation of the German portions provided in 1990 by Andreas Martin of Syke, Germany (near Bremen), and is a less than perfect reconstruction.
Setting: A room near the stage of the performance hall (presumably Zack) in Dusseldorf.
Unidentified female reporter: Beside me now is Grant Hart. You probably know him from Hüsker Dü. He has a new album called Intolerance.
Grant Hart: I have a new band called Nova Mob. It's clear to me that everybody wants me because I played in Hüsker Dü, but we are trying to look forward into the future rather than to dwell on things that have happened already.
Reporter: Your new album is called Intolerance. Is this a good thing or a bad thing to you? There are people who feel that intolerance is one of the worst things in our time. So what do you think?
Grant: Well, you live and let live—that's tolerance. Bad things like racism, sexism, things that are harmful to children or animals — these are things you should be intolerant of. Many more things as well, I'm sure.
Reporter: I've read some interviews you gave where you spoke about your drug problem after Hüsker Dü broke up. This is something I wonder about, because people pointed at you as the reason for the split of Hüsker Dü. Why do you talk so openly about all those things?
Grant: I'd rather hear it from my mouth than from the mouths of my former partners.
Reporter: So your relationship has turned bad?
Grant: I love the ex-members of Hüsker Dü. [...] All the speculating about what would happen if Grant ran into Bob*' makes me sad.
Reporter: Tonight you're playing with the Strangemen. How did this come about?
Grant: Me and Rudi have been friends since we were little children...[etc, etc — Grant is having some fun with the interviewer]
Translator in German: Now here comes a little white lie. Grant claims that he and Rudi from the Strangemen have known each other since they were little children. He lies that he was born in Hamburg and that his parents moved to the US when he was seven years old. Grant says that he lived near Rudi and that they played ice hockey together! This is nonsense. Rudi confirmed a few days later that this is all a lie.
Reporter: I can't believe it! He's telling me lies without any shame! The new album, it's very melodic and romantic. It seems you're into the harmonious side of things nowadays.
Grant: There is harmony, and there is discord. Sometimes even discord is very harmonious. Maybe my next album will be very discordant.
Reporter: You were the first Hüsker Dü member to do a solo project. You did an EP, 2541. Was there a desire to be the first one, or was it just that you couldn't stop being into music?
Grant: I need to work. My music is what I do. I wanted to prove myself after so many people said how Grant is a bid drug addict and everything else. I had to prove it to myself and to other people that I was very functional.
Reporter: Do you play drums any more?
Grant: I've done that for a while. Now I'm doing something else for a while. Life's far too short to keep doing the same things.
Reporter: You're not only a drummer, you're more of a songwriter, aren't you?
Grant: Yeah.
Reporter: Will there be a real tour of Europe?
Grant: We hope in May or June 1990. Bye bye.
(Performance clip of "Louie, Louie" from ZACK show follows.)

*Grant and Bob at this time were touring Germany simultaneously, occasionally playing the same clubs within a day or two of each other.