Although there’s no shortage of musicians who drink, there are just some bands that seem like a perfect fit for a drink of their own. Some — like the late legend Lemmy Kilmister — have to wait until after their lives (or at least careers) are over in order to have an established drink named after them, but others take matters into their own hands while they’re still making music. As of this week, South Bay punk veterans Pennywise now fall squarely into that second category.
"After 10 years of us talking about doing a beer, it's finally happening thanks to our good friends at Lost Coast Brewery,” says Pennywise guitarist Fletcher Dragge. “We've been trying to get this idea off the ground for awhile now, and to find a like-minded company with a DIY attitude of doing things their own way and not conforming to the usual corporate ways of the beer making world.”
For Dragge and the rest of Pennywise, working with a major corporate brewery was never really an option. As much as they like beer, the punk rock spirit has always flowed through everything that is Pennywise, and that remained a priority even when crafting their favorite beverage. Of course, the other half of the equation was finding an independent brewing company that could make a punk rock beer like Pennywiser worth its weight in “Bro Hymn” chants.
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“This is about making a good tasting beer, with good people that have the same mentality as us, and bringing it to our fans… or anyone that likes beer for that matter,” Dragge says. It's no secret that we drink beer, and that our fans like to knock back a couple cold ones as well. We hope we can deliver something that will bring some good times for all in the future.”
“People have been coming at us for years to make a Pennywiser beer, but Lost Coast finally created a brew for us that got it right,” adds Pennywise singer Jim Lindberg.
Along with next month’s release of Pennywiser, the band’s name also figures to get at least a few extra Google searches thanks to its namesake returning to the big screen. Between the beer and It releasing (and that’s not even counting the second It’s Not Dead festival this weekend), many punk rock fans have plenty to look forward to — and even the bandmates themselves are hopeful that the Stephen King remake will do the novel that terrified them justice.
“The book scared the shit out of me when I read it before there was a Pennywise,” Lindberg says. “Literally one of the few books where I got up and locked the doors and windows after reading the first few pages. It's not always easy to capture the tension that Stephen King can put into a great horror novel, but the trailers I have seen look pretty good, so I'm hoping for the best.”