Throughout an look on “Speaking Bollocks”, the month-to-month steel podcast hosted by ACID REIGN frontman-turned-stand-up-comedian Howard H. Smith, Harley Flanagan, who based the legendary hardcore band the CRO-MAGS on the age of 14, was requested if he thinks the traditional lineup of the CRO-MAGS will ever reunite. He responded (as transcribed by Phoosi.com): “Nah, actually, sadly, I do not. And you recognize what? For these of you who’ve adopted my social bullshit media and all that, you see that I have been over it for a lot of, a few years. I’ve prolonged the olive department to all these fucking guys a gazillion instances. Even with all of the bickering that has gone on, backwards and forwards, I’ve at all times been prepared to speak, I’ve at all times been prepared to attempt to see what all people might do to fucking simply make all people stroll away feeling entire on some degree. No person’s ever gonna be completely happy about something as a result of all people’s too bitter, all people’s too pissed off, all people’s too outdated. However I attempted and I fucking tried and I attempted, and all I actually obtained again was a number of negativity and hostility and bitterness. And that ship has type of sailed.
“I am at all times prepared to speak, as a result of on the finish of the day — and I mentioned this to all of them — we have now the flexibility to make so many fucking folks completely happy, to simply give them that second, and if that does not matter to you, if you cannot get previous your individual bullshit for 45 minutes… That first album was solely like a half-hour lengthy; if you cannot put your bullshit apart and get on some type of platform and play collectively for half-hour and make all these folks fucking completely happy, then you recognize what? Then you do not actually deserve these followers. If you cannot give them that, then they should not provide you with shit. You do not deserve it.
“I do not know if anyone’s observed, however me and outdated JJ [former CRO-MAGS frontman John Joseph], we stopped speaking shit about one another a long-ass time in the past,” he continued. “When the entire settlement ended, that was it, man; we fucking let it go. That was a part of our settlement. It was, like, ‘This shit, when the smoke settles, it is completed. Let’s transfer on with our lives. Go away me out of the press. I will depart you out of the press. I will solely ever say one thing that is true or one thing that is good or humorous or no matter. I am simply completed. I am completed.’ And I requested the identical of all people. I am, like, who desires to get on stage and play with any person who’s actively shitting on them, actively wiping their ass with their face each time they open their mouth? I am imagined to rise up on stage with you while you simply talked all types of bullshit and I know the historical past — I truly know the historical past— and also you’re gonna preserve working your mouth and I am imagined to rise up and take a look at you with out punching your fucking enamel down your throat? Fats fucking probability, bitch. Let’s have a dialog like two motherfucking males.
“I ain’t attempting to show… Look, I am not a bully. I am a motherfucking grown-ass man,” Flanagan added. “I do not give a fuck. I need not intimidate anyone with my toughness and shit like that. I’ve kicked sufficient asses in my time; I do not care. But when these motherfuckers ever wished to have a dialog, we might have a dialog. However simply let or not it’s identified — it price me motherfucking over 250K [$250,000] in my authorized entanglements simply to fucking get the shit locked down that I owned. That entire fucking authorized bullshit was simply to get these dudes to cease enjoying beneath a trademark that they did not truly personal. I owned the trademark.”
In 2019, Flanagan reached a settlement with Joseph and drummer Mackie Jayson relating to possession of the CRO-MAGS title. Flanagan is now performing beneath the title CRO-MAGS whereas Joseph and Jayson are performing as CRO-MAGS “JM”.
In 2018, Flanagan sued members of CRO-MAGS for allegedly utilizing the band title with out his permission. Claiming that CRO-MAGS was his concept when he fashioned it again in 1981, Flanagan filed a lawsuit in opposition to the then-lineup of the group — together with Joseph — partly for copyright infringement, saying he trademarked the “Cro-Magazine” title for recording in 2010 and for merchandise in 2009 after which once more in 2017. Harley claimed within the lawsuit that the opposite members of the CRO-MAGS took over the band round 2002 when “Flanagan‘s first son was about to be born… and Flanagan needed to cease touring to assist with the child.”
In July 2012, Flanagan was arrested in New York Metropolis on prices of attacking a number of members of the CRO-MAGS in the course of the CBGB Competition. Flanagan, who had been a panelist at one of many occasion’s seminars, allegedly tried to attend the live performance of his former band. On the time, Joseph informed the New York Submit he and Flanagan began the band collectively within the early ’80s, however Flanagan regularly took all of the credit score for himself. Joseph claimed the state of affairs obtained so unhealthy, Flanagan pocketed each cent from their 1986 tour. “That induced me to lose my condo and be homeless in 1987,” John mentioned. “I lived hand to mouth.” In a separate interview with The New York Instances, Joseph mentioned that Flanagan “has been a unfavorable thorn within the facet of this band endlessly.”
The historical past of the CRO-MAGS is integral to the historical past of hardcore, its evolution from punk and the event of other music genres equivalent to hardcore, cross-over, thrash steel, submit punk and grunge, to call a couple of. Quite a few iconic bands from METALLICA to GREEN DAY, and people equivalent to Dave Grohl have credited CRO-MAGS with having had a primal affect on their growth.
Born out of the violence and depravity of the Decrease East Facet of New York within the late ’70s and early ’80s, the CRO-MAGS was the brainchild of a really younger Flanagan (on the time 14 years outdated) when nonetheless enjoying with THE STIMULATORS. By 1982/83 he wrote and recorded the very first CRO-MAGS demos consisting of 4 songs that might turn out to be the blueprint for the debut album, “The Age Of Quarrel”. He wrote the entire music, performed every instrument and sang. Earlier than lengthy, he linked with Parris Mayhew and the 2 began writing music and auditioning band members.