I met Chris at a friend’s barbeque, talking, as one does, about music. He happened to mention how much he was looking forward to seeing Godflesh tour Australia as part of the Soundwave festival — or preferably, as a Sidewave show featuring Godflesh, Fear Factory and Ministry. Now that would be a gig if it ever happened.
He also mentioned he was a NIN and Trent Reznor fan. It was a hot day and we were all wearing shorts and t-shirts, so I happened to ask Chris about his tattoos.
No, he said, there was no connection with The Human Centipede, a question he’d clearly been asked on more than one occasion. Rather, much of his work is based off the art of Keith Haring.
Then I noticed he had a Trent Reznor autograph stencilled on the front of his wrist. There had to be a good story in there somewhere.
Just another Trent Reznor autograph tattoo.
It turns out, Chris acquired Trent Reznor’s autograph signature after he bumped into Reznor outside a hotel, prior to a Nine Inch Nails gig soundcheck. Chris asked Trent if he’d mind signing his wrist. Trent obliged and asked him what he’d do next, to which Chris replied with words to the effect of “if I can afford to get it tattooed, I might get it done tomorrow.”
So what do you do when a fan tells you they’re going to get your autograph tattooed onto their body? If you’re Trent Reznor, you pull $50 out of your pocket and give it to the fan to make sure they can get the job done.
Then Trent asked Chris if this was the first time he’d done this.
“No,” said Chris.
“Henry Rollins got to me first,” he said, turning his wrist to reveal a Henry Rollins autograph tattooed on the other side.
“That dirty Henry,” said Trent with a laugh.
"That dirty Henry..."
We all thought this was a great story but then Chris pointed out there was one problem. While he had the signatures of two of his three favourite artists, he was missing the third one: Tom Waites.
Given the elusiveness of Tom Waites, Chris reckons he might have a hard time getting that third autograph tattoo.
But who knows. Maybe Soundwave might bring out Tom Waites one day? Are you reading this AJ Maddah?
This is Chris. Note the Keith Haring work. Also, GOD HATES FACTS. Where can I get that shirt?!