EAGLES OF DEATH METAL "JESSE HUGHES: ROCK ‘N’ ROLL SORCERY"

February 12, 2020 10:31 PM

JESSE HUGHES: ROCK ‘N’ ROLL SORCERY

Cloaks, crystals, and pentagrams are no match for the wizarding world of Jesse Hughes

The Eagles of Death Metal front man, Jesse Hughes makes deals with the devil, transforms into a rock ‘n’ roll werewolf under the full moon, and sports a handlebar moustache better than any 70s porn star. But Hughes, who has just ventured out on his first solo mission, Boots Electric, is actually much deeper than his rocker-hillbilly persona would have you believe. After only a few minutes on the phone with Jesse, it quickly became clear that he’s totally off the wall, up for a laugh at his own expense, and has a big heart that shines through in everything he does.

TWELV summoned “The Devil” himself to discuss how he rocks so hard and makes it look so easy.

What drew you to music and how did you get your start?

My mother wouldn’t let me play any instrument even remotely connected to rock and roll, so I settled on the flute and believe me, it sucked. But, I guess it gave me an ear for music a little bit differently, you know?

So where did the name Eagles of Death Metal come from?

The Eagles of Death Metal was actually started by accident. This guy was fucking rocking out to [The Scorpions’] Winds of Change and we were all making fun of him. He noticed, and came up to me and said, “What the fuck’s wrong with you? This is death metal!” And Joshua [Homme, of Eagles of Death Metal and Queens of the Stone Age] and I went, “What? This is like the fucking Eagles of death metal!” And it really must have gotten to Joshua because the next morning, I opened up the door and Joshua was there, bleary-eyed, and he goes, “Dude what would The Eagles of death metal sound like?” And I’m like, “I don’t know, like The Zombies — sort of cool, like jazz beats with stripper…uh, hillbilly fuckin’ music?”

And he goes, “Excellent, let’s try it.”

You’ve been nicknamed “The Devil,” do you think the title suits you?

I’ve been a Southern Baptist church-going man, I don’t believe in magic talking monkeys yet, still, I’m here shaking my dick with the devil in the dark.

Tell me about one of your favorite moments on tour?

The first time that I got to take [girlfriend and Boots Electric band mate] Tuesday Cross in-between two tour buses and demonstrate biblical knowledge to her in a sense that she had never yet experienced.

What made you decide to do a solo album?

Well, one night me and my cousin were channeling evil spirits and we used a particularly old spell, and we manifested the devil himself and he told me directly that I had to make an album, I had to call it Honkey Kong, I had to meet Money Mark; and so I did it because the devil told me to.

You have a very unique style, sort of a 70s porn star vibe, have you ever considered shaving the moustache?

The moustache has never considered letting me shave it.

I know that the Eagles of Death Metal support a number of different causes, do you, personally, support any charities?

One of my big charities is Shelter from the Storm, a battered women’s recovery network that helps women reclaim their lives after being devastated by abusive men. I just did my very first benefit, organizedand spearheaded by me. A local musician’s leg was broken and Music Cares got involved, reduced his bills, and we held a benefit show. Even though I’m dead tired, I still went and did this because I want a shot at getting into heaven. ∞ 

 

WRITTEN by EMILY KIRKPATRICK

PHOTOGRAPHY MALIA JAMES

EDITED by CHIAKI NAKAJIMA  

 

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