Interview With Stitched Up Heart's Alecia 'Mixi' Demner April 29th, 2020 • Interview #163
Metal Pulp And Paper: Hello Mixi. So glad to be catching up with you. Thank you for taking the time to speak with us here at Metal Pulp And Paper. We appreciate it. Well, first off, before we even begin, how are you doing? The year 2020 has to be, pardon the language, one of the fucking worst years ever, and, to top it all off, we aren't even close to being halfway done with it yet. So, how have you been holding up so far during all of this pandemic madness?
Mixi: I am just trying to stay as positive and optimistic as possible. Taking it one day at a time and doing my part by listening to authorities and staying home. MPAP: Obviously, all the news headlines this past month and future months to come are anything and everything about the Covid-19 virus. This invisible disease has practically covered the world and entered us into some very terrifying times. Unfortunately, because of the Covid-19 virus, along with many other tours, but your recent tour, opening for Sebastian Bach, had to be postponed. That has to be tough to cancel a tour when you have absolutely no control over it, right? This isn't like your tour bus broke down, and you can't make it to the next city. It's sad to see that pretty much 2020 is almost all but canceled so far? Mixi: It was definitely a bummer when it got postponed but there's nothing we can really do about it. At least the dates were rescheduled for fall so we have something to look forward to! MPAP: And, most important, going out on tour is how you make a living. Tours equal money in your pocket, so this took away a lot from you, and your band didn't it? Mixi: Right now, it's more important we stay home and save lives and not endanger others. So, we do what we have to help resolve this horrible situation. MPAP: Not only has everyone, from bartenders to even dishwashers at your local restaurants, took a hit from this virus and became unemployed, but everyone in the music industry took a major black eye as well. Like mentioned earlier, countless tours are getting canceled worldwide, and, just recently, the State of California's Governor announced that there would be pretty much nothing going on in sports and music that holds large gatherings until there is a vaccine for the virus. Ouch. That's a Mike Tyson punch to the face kind of ouch! And this hits home even a little bit harder because Stitched Up Heart is from California? Mixi: I am not worried about us touring. Obviously, it isn't the best scenario in the world and we miss the stage like crazy, but there are lives on the line. I've had some friends who have gotten the illness and it's definitely not something we want to mess with. So, if I had to choose playing a show over saving a life, I would choose saving a life any day. MPAP: So, when all is said and done, this is going to affect hundreds of thousands, and millions of lives everywhere. Carnivex, a death metal band that formed in 2005, recently announced that they will lose $250, 000 for canceling a headlining tour. That's something that isn't easy to make up right away. So, what are your thoughts on all of this? Mixi: Sure, there are struggles. Money is just a piece of paper with writing on it. It is not as important as someone you love not being able to breathe because their lungs are full of liquid and they suffocate and die. It's a scary thing. So, whatever money we lose from this whole ordeal, it doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things. Everything will come back around; we just have to be patient and wait out the storm. MPAP: Other than being a musician and your recent tour is postponed, in what other ways has this pandemic affected you, or even someone that's close to you? Mixi: I have had people I know very close to me suffer from this. They went to the hospital and said they heard screaming from the rooms next door. People were dying very fast and they couldn't save them. He was the second person to leave that hospital alive. I have stayed in my little bubble at home for the most part taking care of my foster kittens and only going out to do essential things mostly. I'm trying my best to not spread anything anywhere. MPAP: And are you the type that can't be locked down for a very long period of time? Do the four walls surrounding you close in on you very fast? Mixi: I am a hermit by heart. I love being home. It doesn't bother me at all. However, I would like to do something every once in a while! But I have my guitar and my kittens to care for, so, I am fine right where I am. MPAP: Continuing on with the Covid-19 virus, what are your thoughts on China's wet markets? To fill everyone in, just in case they don't know about them, but wet markets are an outdoor series of stalls selling meat, fish, produce and other perishable goods that are popular throughout Asia. Animals alive and dead are sold at these markets, and they include such animals as pigs, oxen, ducks, chickens, bats, dogs, monkeys and cats. It is believed that the recent Covid-19 virus came from the city Wuhan in China and was spread by someone eating a bat. The markets are not very sanitary at all. And this isn't the first time a virus has come from a wet market either. There has been Avian Flu and SARS also. What are your thoughts on wet markets, and should they be banned in China? Mixi: I read somewhere recently that they were taking dogs off the livestock menu. They are supposedly altering the wet markets due to all this. I do hope so, as it's a horrible way to treat animals, and maybe this virus will help the situation we are dealing with in that area involving meat products. MPAP: You foster cats, so it has to be hearth retching that some people are adopting pets during the pandemic quarantine, but unfortunately, most will return the animals once this is all over with because they will have to go back to work and will be unable to care for the animal. Some people just don't think all the way through things, right? Mixi: People are going to adopt animals in any situation, I just hope the people adopting them out are screening people enough to make sure the living situation is good. The rescue I work with does a very good job screening their adopters and if any pets need to be returned, they tell them to bring them back to kitten rescue. MPAP: Now, let's not go all doom and gloom and yell 'game over' because it's the end of the world and kick the chair out from underneath us just yet. Let's talk about your latest release Darkness, and one of the songs from it titled "Lost," which just happens to feature Sully Erna from Godsmack on it. So, tell us a little about? Mixi: Yes, I've known Sully for a few years now and we've just grown a strong friendship. He is the kind of guy who goes above and beyond for people he cares about or believes in. He went out of his way wanting nothing in return just to help a lil band like us out by singing on a song and taking us on tour when we didn't even have a booking agent at the time. He's just a great dude. MPAP:Darkness is your 2nd studio album. There have been some lineup changes, and four years since your previous release, Never Alone, that was released in 2016. Do you feel you now have hit all the right cylinders in the Stitched Up Heart machine, and it's time to rock and kick some ass now? Mixi: Yes. I think it takes time to find the right team and chemistry. Sometimes things don't stick in the beginning but they were meant to be there for that time. Just like any relationship, you learn what you want and what works and by going through what doesn't. The four of us are all 100% dedicated to Stitched and would do anything the band needs to do in the drop of a hat. They are my brothers. MPAP: As we bring this interview to a close, let's change gears. In a recent interview, Jim Root from Slipknot said, "I've put off having a family, 'cause I knew that I was gonna be gone on the road all the time, so when I go home, it's just, like, me," he said. "Some of the other guys, Clown, and Corey, they have children and wives and things like that. And I'm sure for them, it's a weird transition to make." So, Mixi, have you had to put off some major life events, like becoming a mother, getting married, or basically put off anything in your life to be in Stitched Up Heart? Mixi: Absolutely. We sacrifice everything for music. A lot of males can have kids and tour. It's much more difficult for a woman. I left my whole family in Florida in 2005 to move to LA and pursue my dream because I knew where the industry was and I needed to be there. I miss them tremendously all the time, but it's a sacrifice we make for music. MPAP: Ozzy Osbourne recently stated, 'I'll Always Be Known as the 'Bat-Biting Lunatic'. Most everyone knows. Maybe there's a chance that even most don't, but in 1982 at one of his concerts, while performing, Ozzy bit the head off a bat. Rumors say it may or may not have been alive, but, no one really knows. In a Los Angeles Daily News interview in February 2020, Ozzy said, "It's not the way I want to be remembered, but, I know I'll be the man that bit the head off the bat," So, how do you want to be remembered as a person, and, of course as a musician in your lifetime and career? Mixi: I want to be remembered as someone who used our music as a medicine to help heal people. I want people to in turn do the same for others and have that spread in a positive way as far as possible. MPAP:And final question, Neil Fallon from the band Clutch in a recent interview mentioned his top five weirdest places he's slept on tour being in a band. One of the weirdest places, he said, was the one time he slept in the bushes at an Oakland auto repair glass shop. He also mentioned that was by far the weirdest spot was The Marco Polo motel that's just outside of Chicago. 'We were young and very dumb and decided to check into an old motel called The Marco Polo. It was the first time I saw rates advertised by the hour, day, week, and month. It was in a real shitty neighborhood so we pushed all of our gear into the room. The room itself was laid out like the letter L, with a bed at either end of it. Each had a huge TV that got exactly 3 channels. Straight, gay, and B&D porn. That's it. For some reason I picked up the phone to call the front desk (again, very young, very dumb). The hand set was covered in some kind of fruit jelly. And ants. I laid my guitar case on the floor and slept on top of it.' Do you have a similar story like this that you can share? Mixi: When I first moved out to LA I was homeless for a year. I would sleep in the back seat of my car, on a pile of clothes or at a friend's garage, where we would jam. It took a while to get on my feet. So, every day I have a roof over my head, I'm grateful. Because of all that, I'm well-groomed for the tour life! MPAP: On behalf of myself, and Metal Pulp And Paper, I'd like to thank you, Mixi, for taking the time to do this interview. Hopefully, the gates to the concert venues open soon so we can all see you play live, and we all can get back to being normal metalheads again. So, stay healthy, and keep those metal horns high up in the air, and we look forward to what Stitched Up Heart does in 2020 and beyond. Mixi: Thank you so much for taking the time with me! MPAP: Any last words for all your fans out there?
Mixi: Check out the kitten rescue I foster my babies at they are always accepting donations! Also, make sure to stream and purchase Darkness. Links for both are here... Darkness Stream Link: https://lnk.to/DarknessAlbum. Kitten Rescue: www.kittenrescue.org