If you look in the dictionary for DIY, you should see a picture of the Bouncing Souls. For 20 years, they’ve been eschewing corporate, and making their mark their own way. This year they’re celebrating their 20 years of hard work with a new album, available online only, and a world tour. Bryan Kienlan shares what’s close to his heart.
Name: Bryan Kienlen
What is your job? The Bouncing Souls –founding member; bassist, artist, music and lyrics
What social causes are most important to you? I don’t think I have any one that speaks louder to me than others; I just follow my heart and do what I can when opportunities/decisions present themselves to me.
What charities do you support – and how?
SSE, or The Syrentha Savio Endowment helps under-privileged women fight breast cancer. We play benefits and work with “Shirts for a Cure” to help raise fund. We also participate in events such as “Freeze for a Cause” and donate money and merch to that foundation to raise help.
We also work with IVAW (Iraq Veterans against the War) (which is more a social cause than a charity). We ship care packages to punk rock soldiers overseas or just flat out donate or bring our vet buddies on tour to table at our shows. We also bring Microcosm publishing on tour to table because they educate people about worthy causes, and education is vital!
We donate signed/special merch, sometimes the whole Chunksaah catalog to shows/raffles/benefit shows/ charity auctions for various causes such as homelessness, families of cancer patients, paying for treatments…We donated music to Barack Obama’s campaign, we try to work with everyone who approaches us whose causes we believe in. The list goes on and on…
Do you have a passion for one in particular; is there a personal tie?
I feel personally tied to all of humanity’s struggle actually. We really are, after all one big family. To get more personal than that, Cancer hits all of us close to home, if not in the home. I lost a sister to Leukemia, and have watched countless others around me struggle against it.
Is there a particular way you would want to encourage readers to be involved?
Check out some of these links, listen to your heart. There are so many ways to help and money can’t buy the good feelings you get from doing the right thing. It’s good for the soul. To fellow musicians, I’d say that reflecting back on 20 years of music, the things we did that actually improved the world or helped people resonate as the most gratifying and feel the best.
Have you done a song about this topic, or dedicated a song to a charity?
We recorded “The Man in Black” for All Aboard: A Tribute to Johnny Cash; To Benefit the Syrentha Savio Endowment
How would you define social responsibility?
Living consciously. Try to a make positive difference even with your smallest actions every day. Ride a motorcycle instead of driving a Hummer. Eat a vegetarian meal. Shop in independent stores. Recycle, reuse. All that silly hippie shit is really good stuff. Actually, I’m preparing to convert my Diesel van to run on used frying oil. Badass. www.greasecar.com
Quick list of tattoos/mention artists:
New York Adorned rocks. Lori’s a genius and all of her artists there kick ass.