Violent J Interviewed about God, Fred Durst, the FBI, more!

One of our FLH Forum regulars, MitchellKing, came across a brand new interview with Violent J conducted by the OC Register.  In the interview, J speaks on Hallowicked, how he and Shaggy have been able to get along with each other for over three decades, quite a bit about God/religion, and lots more.

It’s a pretty lengthy article, and one thing that surprised me was that he spoke about the Shaggy 2 Dope drop kick.  He says that ICP and Fred Durst are actually friends, and that the drop kick was definitely more of a prank than anything.

The interview speaks on a bunch of topics we pretty much already know about, but doesn’t say a word about Fearless Fred Fury.  When will we get some kind of update about the album?  Hopefully soon.  For now, check out the latest from Violent J.


Violent J of Insane Clown Posse talks about God, the FBI, magnets and Limp Bizkit’s Fred Durst

Violent J of the Insane Clown Posse is a sincerely nice guy when he comes on the line from the road in Texas, which really shouldn’t be a surprise, but then again his first name literally is Violent.

There’s an outdoor gig that night in Lubbock and rain in the forecast, and all the guys on the bus have been passing around the same cold, but Violent J is upbeat despite all that. Nothing, he says, can put a damper on the 25th annual Hallowicked Traveling Freak Show Tour that brings him and his Insane Clown partner Shaggy 2 Dope to Anaheim on Wednesday.

“It’s Halloween time, that’s like our special time,” he says of Hallowicked, which started out as a one-off Halloween show in their hometown of Detroit and over time spread to a month or so of expanded performances across the United States. “It’s probably the same for every band that’s ever been similar to us with the face paint and stuff. Probably Alice Cooper does shows all October. (Bleepin’) Kiss probably does.

“So we try and step it up,” Violent J says. “We try to make sure we got a big … show. And pretty much we kiss any chance of making any money goodbye by bringing so many guys and doing as big a show as we can afford.”

Insane Clown Posse might be the most misunderstood long-running musical act out there. They wear insane clown-appropriate face paint. Their style of rap often falls into the sub-genre of horrorcore, with lyrics that might double as pitches for B-movie splatter flicks. (Though sometimes they write sweet odes to friendship as in “Homies,” or head-scratching odes to miracles, which in the ICP universe include magnets – but more on that in a minute.)

Their fans, who long ago adopted the name of Juggalos, are similarly looked down upon, with the FBI once listing them as a kind of gang, an assertion that so offended Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope that they teamed up with the American Civil Liberties Union to fight the feds in court.

But there’s nothing scary at all in conversation with Violent J. It’s all love and blessings and different ways of connecting with God. Seriously.

“I think the key to our getting along so well and our longevity because of it is we love each other,” he says of how he and Shaggy have stuck together for three decades now. “Sincerely. We’re best friends. We don’t even argue. We tell each other things we can’t tell our wives.”

The secret is the same as any good relationship, he explains. They make sure to give each other space — no codependent clowns here.

“We spend every day together so the second half of the day, when we’re home, that’s like our away-from-each-other time,” Violent J says. “I think that’s probably the biggest reason we get along.”

As for keeping their modest but die-hard fan base with them over the years, “that’s a straight-up blessing, brother,” he says. “I think it’s God. I think God talks to people through many, many other people. And I think we do our role for him.”

It’s God that’s allowed ICP its success, Violent J continues.

“I think he blesses us with with the three ingredients that are the keys to our success,” he says. “Which is creativity, drive, and … I guess imagination would be the same thing as creativity. And a musical ear. Musical talent, you know what I’m saying? Those three things.”

Why then do some pious people single out Insane Clown Posse and its Juggalo following as bad actors, followers of darkness, not light?

“They don’t hear the message in the music,” Violent J says of the ICP philosophy in which the concept of the Dark Carnival fills the role of a kind of limbo through which the Insane Clown Posse and their fans must strive to find their way to a place akin to heaven. “They don’t understand it, they don’t think it’s anything special.”

But at every show, Juggalos come up to the group and tell them how the music and its message helped them understand their lives, Violent J says.

“And most of all it led them to Shangri-La, which is our way of saying God without sounding corny,” he says. “Because in today’s day and age some things in religion sound kind of corny. So we have sort of code words that we use to hide it.

“If we’re doing that type of good, who cares about everybody else that thinks of us as this evil thing?”

Only occasionally does the Insane Clown Posse break outside of its own niche in the world into the mainstream, so we asked Violent J his take on a few of those occasions.

On the FBI labeling Juggalos a gang: “We had to say, “(Bleep) you,’” he says of the decision to fight the listing. The ACLU teamed up with the group and the lawsuit was in and out of court for a few years before apparently ending unsuccessfully for the band. But a march in Washington D.C. in 2017 got a large amount of media attention and helped them make their point. “It turned out to be the best, greatest, most wonderful thing we ever did,” Violent J says of the demonstration.

On the mocking they got for “Miracles,” a song that included the line, “(Bleepin’) magnets, how do they work?”: “That was awesome,” he says. “To go viral like that? I don’t really give a (fig) what everybody thought about that line being stupid. I had a son that was asking me that very same thing. That’s who I was talking about when I wrote the lines. So I don’t give a damn about people laughing at that.”

On being parodied multiple times on “Saturday Night Live”: “That’s so much an honor,” Violent J says. “Nobody would even get the joke if they didn’t know what we were talking about. And the whole staff of ‘Saturday Night Live’ came down to our show. Unbelievable.”

On Shaggy 2 Dope attempting to dropkick Limp Bizkit singer Fred Durst on stage earlier this month: “Well, you know, just wild style,” he says. “Fred Durst is a friend of ours, you know what I mean? Just having fun. Things look so crazy when they get into the news wire. He obviously threw it as a fake thing. If he actually wanted to hit him I don’t think he would have thrown a pro wrestling dropkick. It probably would have looked a lot more serious and ruthless.”

Insane Clown Posse’s Hallowicked Traveling Freak Show Silver Jubilee

When: 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 24

Where: The City National Grove of Anaheim, 2200 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim

Tickets: $30

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