The Rapture Talk Baseball, Seattle, Postpunk Redux, And Their Difficult Second Album

Categories: The Rapture

In this week's Voice, we profiled the Rapture, recently re-signed to DFA Records. Luke Jenner, Vito Roccoforte, and Gabriel Andruzzi are voluble guys, so there was plenty of material that we couldn't fit into the story. Here are a few pieces from our interviews that touch on the band's early years, as well as the fraught making of 2006's Pieces of the People We Love.

On baseball:

Luke Jenner: My first dream was to be a baseball player. My dad worked at University of Hawaii when I was a kid and worked with the baseball players there. They just started the College Baseball Hall of Fame, and one of the first people in there, Derek Tatsuno, the first left-handed pitcher in college baseball to win 20 games, was [at U of H] when I was a kid. I used to go around when I was a kid in Hawaii saying my dad was Derek Tatsuo—and I don't look anything like a Tatsuno. I worshiped these guys and wanted to be like them.

I played high school baseball and had a real crisis in my life because my junior year I didn't play a single game. I just put my uniform on and sit on the bench every day. That was my pressure outlet, and that's where I got love in my life. My family wasn't really able to show love for me. My baseball coaches [were]—they'd take me out for pizza or give me a ride to the game. They'd just give me the love that didn't exist in my house.

When I was 17 I quit baseball, which was a huge decision for me. [My] coach was really nice about it. He took me out of class and sat with me: "Everyone has to quit baseball sometime. I quit baseball in college." I just started playing with people who were good at a level I'd never seen. Southern California is a baseball hotbed. Southern California, Texas, and Florida is basically where most of the baseball players are from in the U.S., because you can play year-round.

I was kind of a jock to that point. I got on the tennis team—there's a picture of me in the high school yearbook wearing a Sonic Youth T-shirt, playing tennis. I started going to shows a lot. I wanted something no one could take away from me, so I started playing guitar. One of the guys on the baseball team—the guy who took my spot—had a guitar, and I asked if I could borrow it. He wasn't using it, because he was playing baseball every day. Eventually, my parents bought me [a guitar] for a graduation present. They were like, "Either you can go to Europe with us again"—we had gone the summer before—"or we'll buy you a guitar." I stayed home all summer playing guitar and drinking cheap beer.

It's funny: I was the best pitcher in my little league. This younger kid [whose] dad pitched for the Red Sox used to play right field. Every time they hit the ball to him, I'd cringe, because he'd always try to dive to catch the ball, no matter what, even if they hit it right to him. I would try to not let anyone hit it to him. He's the guy I got the guitar from.

VV: He played outfield like a lead guitarist?

LJ: Exactly. He was trying to be the Jimi Hendrix of right field.

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