One of our best known bands Shihad is celebrating the release of the double CD 'The Meanest' with a nationwide tour. We caught up with drummer Tom Larkin to ask him the questions we ask everyone.
1. What's your favourite restaurant to eat at?
Thy Thy, a Vietnamese food hall, it's fantastic, it's cheap, it's awesome. There's a place in Auckland called the Jervois Steakhouse which is super expensive but the food there is just banging - and any decent, cheap taco shop in the United States as long as it's close to the Mexican border.
2. If you could pick anywhere in the world to travel to, where would you pick and why?
Ummm it's an interesting one, that one. I have a deep fascination with Russia. I'd like to spend some time in Russia. I think that'll be fascinating.
3. What is your most prized possession?
Well, I don't really have one. I suppose the fact that I breathe oxygen. I could tell you my daughter and my wife but they're not my possessions. But really if it's about physical things, I would say my recording studio.
4. Who do you admire most in the world and why?
For me that's impossible, I don't really have someone I hold above everyone else. I think everyone's fallible even people with great sides to them and who do great things often have massive downsides so it's hard to kinda go "someone's my favourite". I am a fan of a lot of people's work and what they've brought to the table but I don't have someone I hold above everyone else.
5. Who or what inspires you?
I suppose I'm inspired by music... it's very important to inspiration. I think people who are energised to make the most of things in any circumstance, they inspire me. That's a broad sweep but it's true, I find that is a commonality. It's about being realistically positive. It's about being able to see a situation properly without rose-coloured glasses and then being able to draw the best possible course of action out of it. That, to me, is the way to live and people who operate like that I find engaging and I want to listen to people like that.
The other thing that's inspiring is my daughter. She's nearly three years old. My wife's inspiring because she puts up with me every day and I think she's beautiful. My father's 94 years old, an ex World War II vet and is in a wheel chair; I find him inspiring.
6. How did you get into the field you're in?
It's been so long now, it's like, well, I just picked up drumsticks and that was it.
7. What has been your greatest challenge in life?
That's hard... to be honest? I don't think I've really, really been challenged by anything that's been too difficult to overcome. So I'm grateful for that.
You know there's obviously been deaths of people close to me but until this point the people in my very immediate circle, my direct family, no one has actually died or suffered a major illness so I count myself as not really ... jumped any of those hurdles.
I mean I've had worries and concerns, and we've had struggles in our career and all that kind of stuff but I don't see any of it as being something that was unfair or something that couldn't make you go on. It wasn't anything really too difficult, something insurmountable that you had to deal with. I don't feel that I've confronted anything like that. I consider myself as being lucky and got nothing to really cry about.
8. What is number one on your bucket list?
I'd really like to learn how to fly helicopters. Yeah, they're bad ass.
9. What book are you reading at this moment?
It's called 'The Cost of Living' by Arundhati Roy. It's basically a series of essays.
10. What advice would you give to young people interested in getting into your industry?
Just do it. I mean basically if you're not meant to do it, you'll get knocked off your bike. Simple as that. Don't expect it's going to be anything but a whole bunch of punches while you're riding. It's not an industry for people with a delicate personality or a delicate disposition, it's just not. You've got to have tough skin.