Travis Barker on His New Music, Automotive Assortment and Constructing a ‘Batmobile’

At any given time, Travis Barker has many irons within the hearth. Whereas best-known because the drummer for the favored rock band, Blink-182, Barker is consistently pursuing new concepts and collaborations.

A 12 months in the past, he launched his personal document label––DTA Records––and signed new artist jxdn. Earlier this 12 months, he collaborated with Machine Gun Kelly and produced MGK’s acclaimed new album, Tickets to My Downfall.

Lately, Barker revealed one other profitable collaboration––a customized Polaris Slingshot that appears like a real-life Batmobile. Barker personally designed this tricked-out whip as a part of a build-off competitors––Polaris Slingshot’s Best of the Builders West vs. East––that pitted DUB Publishing and Travis Barker (West) towards The Auto Agency and Teyana Taylor (East).

We just lately caught up with Barker to get the news on his new trip, what makes the West Coast the very best coast for automotive tradition, and what he’s been as much as within the studio.

MJ: What have you ever been engaged on in 2020? 

On the finish of final 12 months, just like the day after Christmas, I received within the studio with Kels [Machine Gun Kelly] and didn’t actually have a set plan. However we received in and recorded what was to turn into, Ticket to my Downfall. We wrapped that up proper earlier than quarantine after which simply made movies throughout quarantine.

I primarily spent nearly all of the 12 months producing and writing music. So yeah, working with everybody from MGK, Iann Dior, POORSTACY and signing my very own artist, Jxdn, to DTA information. So I’ve simply been actually centered on writing and producing.

MJ: 2020 has been such a tough 12 months. However what has it been prefer to principally simply deal with writing and being within the studio?

I’m actually unhappy for the individuals who have gotten sick and sadly the folks we’ve misplaced. Fortunately, my household, my children and my buddies have been wholesome. However for me being house, I’ve been capable of do issues I’ve by no means been capable of do, as a result of I’ve toured for the final 20 years of my life, each summer season.

Travis Barker at work.
Travis Barker at work. Chelsea Lauren/Shutterstock

So I’ve received to do issues I’ve by no means dreamed of or imagined, simply from being house. It’s been actually unimaginable. Writing and producing is one thing I’m at all times keen about, however time normally permits me to solely do it with the band I’m taking part in in.

I miss taking part in reveals and identical to, the power. However I additionally love the artistic a part of being a musician. Writing music and difficult your self production-wise to make issues sound completely different––that basically retains me going. It strikes me.

MJ: Past music, we all know you’re additionally a giant automotive man and have your personal assortment. The place did this ardour for gathering automobiles come from?

I believe the fervour got here from my pops. My dad at all times preferred to speak about outdated automobiles that he had or reminisce about automobiles he wished. So after I began making just a little cash, I’d purchase a number of old-schools for pretty low cost and simply repair them up. I suppose that’s the place it began.

As time went on, I noticed model new automobiles that I liked and simply all the things from off-road 4×Four autos to low riders to luxurious automobiles. I’ve type of had all of them. And it’s positively one thing that I’m nonetheless actually keen about.

MJ: Once you have been requested to customise a Polaris Slingshot for this West v. East Build-Off, how’d you give you the idea to your trip?

Proper now, I’ve mainly centered on having all black automobiles, for no matter purpose. I can’t actually clarify why, it’s simply one thing that got here to me sooner or later and I used to be like, ‘I don’t need any automotive except it’s black.’ In order that’s type of why I did the Polaris all black and murdered out.

The batmobile.
The batmobile. Courtesy of Polaris

I used to be like, how do I make the Slingshot as cool because it might probably be. And I simply assume murdering one out, however nonetheless having these particulars once you actually stand up on it, like, ‘Oh, cool. I see gun shell print on that. Or I see there’s matte on there, however there’s additionally shiny black.

Once I first got here to Myles [Kovacs], who I’ve recognized from DUB and is a pricey pal of mine, he was like, ‘Oh I’m considering we go together with this burgundy/maroon.’ And I used to be like, ‘No man, that’s not me. However we are able to homicide it out.’

It needed to seem like a villain’s automotive.

MJ: Inform us about a few your favourite options that you just custom-made in your Slingshot? 

There’s some aftermarket audio system on it and we redid the inside. We shaved elements of the physique off and added locations for audio system on the physique. We completed the inside to the place all the things wraps round and customised it with my “F” badge (Barker’s clothes model, Well-known Stars and Straps). We made it type of luxurious inside.

We additionally put the most important tires and rims we might probably match on there––I believe they’re 22s. And likewise an air trip suspension, simply so you could possibly dump it once you’re parked.

When it comes to rims––the bigger, the better.
On the subject of rims––the larger, the higher. Courtesy of Polaris

We additionally wished to be artistic with the kind of sample used. I believe I proposed like a cheetah sample and there was one other sample I proposed. However this gun shell print was onerous and it simply caught out. We’ve by no means seen that on one other car.

Vote for Travis HERE.

MJ: Is that Slingshot ultimately headed to your automotive assortment?

Yeah, that’s positively getting into my assortment.

MJ: How massive is your assortment these days?

Proper now I’ve eight [cars] however I used to have 16. I had 16 firstly of final 12 months and I used to be simply in a spot the place a number of the automobiles––I felt I already had my time with them. I’ve skilled all the things I might with this automotive and I’ve had the best occasions, however it’s time to maneuver on and, you recognize, let another person get pleasure from it.

I don’t actually have what’s referred to as, trailer queens––the place you simply trailer it to reveals. I drive all the things.

MJ: Which is your favourite automotive to drive now?

One automotive that’s a number of enjoyable is the Mercedes G-Wagon 4×4 Squared. They solely made it for 2 years, however folks come as much as me on a regular basis at gasoline stations like, ‘Whoa, man, what elevate equipment is that?’ However it’s not really, it comes inventory from Mercedes. I didn’t do any aftermarket suspension on it myself.

That’s certainly one of my favorites and I’ll most likely by no means surrender. It’s a particular car.

MJ: What does West Coast fashion, by way of automotive tradition, imply to you?

I really feel like West Coast, we get to have just a little bit extra enjoyable with automobiles. Like I’ve frolicked in New York and lots of people don’t have custom-made automobiles or personal their automobiles in any respect, for that matter. You’re normally pushed round otherwise you take taxis.

Whereas West Coast life-style is low-riders, Ferrari’s, Lamborghini’s, Jeep’s. You realize, we like to drive in Southern California. It doesn’t get so chilly that we might by no means whip out our convertible and go down Sundown with the highest down.

So I simply actually really feel like West Coast is automotive tradition.

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