I have gotten lots of emails about my "Off My Chest" column and I decided that I should share some of them

Subject: RBF
To: Tim
Hey, what's up, I was reading your section on the letters you received from those people. I'd just like to say that, I have only liked ska for 2 years, but then again, I am only 15. And if you really think about it, would ska be where it is today if THE SPECIALS and MADNESS and THE ENGLISH BEAT etc. had not signed on to a MAJOR LABEL and according to so many people these days, "SOLD OUT"? So, you can tell all those punky girls and two tone jasons that some of the most important bands to modern day ska had sold out. Besides, isn't being in a band supposed to be a way to get your income to live, regardless of the type of music you play? Isn't ska supposed to be about unity. The MMB sing, "we won't stand for you hate." In an interview RBF said, "the purpose of life is to be happy, and get along with everyone." It sure seems like these sell outs actually know what ska is. Aaron Alexander ( untrendyfish@hotmail :that's my real e-mail address)

Subject: hey there
To: Tim
hi.. i was just looking at your website for reel big fish and i came across the article entitled "off my chest". i can honestly say that i haven't read anything so true in a very long time. i feel exactly the same as you do, and i think "punky girl" should really get her facts straight before trying to disprove anyone else. she seems really ignorant, and i feel bad for her. and i commend you on not stooping as low as her by telling her she "sucks" and is a "fuckin faggot". i write a fanzine called honeyspider (in nyc). we recently interviewed andrew from reel big fish (the interview is in the next issue and also at our website). somehow the topic of people being into and labeling types of music came up, and i was glad to see he felt the same way as i did. i think its really pathetic that people feel they have to "keep it real" and only listen to "REAL SKA".. whatever that is.. i just got into a disagreement with someone over this whole issue as a matter of fact. he (i won't mention any names, would'nt want to embarass him) told me that reel big fish wasnt "real ska" and how could i possibly like them because they suck. well i asked him what is real ska anyway? was he listening to ska back in jamaica when it originated? was he the first bob marley fan around? or was he into madness 10 years ago when he was 7 years old? who cares what music is labeled as.. as long as it sounds good. the way i look at things, is, if you like it, then listen to it. and as much as i may not be into certain types of music, i would never disrespect them. well that's about all i have to say, i don't want to bore you any longer. i just thought it was cool that we agreed on this. its reassuring to know that not everyone is ignorant and narrow- minded. thanx.

Subject: rbf page
To: Tim
i just wanted to say that i think your rbf page really rocks. i think i've seen the old one, but the new one is really good. i got into rbf in the summer of '96 when a friend who is very much into oc ska recommended them to me. i have since seen them 4 times and met them twice. i even went to their last show in denver (feb 17th) by myself, because i couldnt get anyone to come with me and i was not about to miss one of my favorite bands. anyway, i just wanted to say thanks for putting up such a good page for the band. and i think your response to that "punky girl" or whoever she thinks she is was excellent. i just dont see why people are always trying to be "ska" or "punk" or however cool they think they might be, when they're no different or cooler by any means than anyone else. and name calling shows zero intelligence on her part when she can't even back up what she says with any kind of fact. and somehow it doesnt seem like the band themselves would really be into anyone who's gonna act like that. well, thanks again.

From: May (
Date: Tue Mar 10 23:45:39 1998>
The letter
Tim, I have since comeback to your site. And as you know, I have nothing agaisnt RBF. It's just the "I listen to ska for an image" kids that I really hate. I have "Turn the Radio off" and I have seen them at Warped. Listen, to all you people out there that hate me. That's cool. to each thier own. But, please don't go around saying "I'm a rudie and i listen to RBF" or something, ya'know? I can't handle that. And as for that letter, it was a bad personal attack on Tim, and as far as I'm concerned, Tim and I our friends.

Subject: I LOVE IT!!! From:
To: Tim
Hey Tim,
I just went through ur Reel Big Fish web site and it's great. I liked the pics and what others thought about it. I just went through over my chest and i think that a bunch of people dont know what they are talking about. I feel the same as u do. Reel Big Fish and the Bosstones are great bands and lyrics are just words. The bands dont really mean what they say. I just think that all ska is great. I like modern ska today. RBF rules!!! I saw them in concert and they rocked. More people should respect them. If u can, can u email me back at I love ur web page!!! I'de really apreciate it! THanx!! Oh by the way Reel Big Fish aren't sellouts!!
Thanks guys for inteligent well thought out letters. If you want me to post your letter or you just want to say something to me just
email me
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