Mustard and Mr. Substitute had the pleasure of speaking with Jim Hofer, trombone player of Mustard Plug, Together we discussed their deep cuts, favorite places to play, being interviewed by a condiment, and so much more! Check it out below!


Hello! Mustard is grateful to have you join them. How is everyone?

We’re doing well. Thanks for inviting us!

From one condiment to another, what made you decide on Mustard rather than Ketchup or Ranch? What about Mustard is best for plugging? Does a human need a certificate to mustard plug?

Well we all know Mustard is the superior condiment. Also the healthiest. How about that! A mustard plug is the crusty thing on top of a mustard bottle. Is there another condiment with a plug? Sriracha maybe?

What are some Mustard Plug deep cuts you believe are overlooked? 

Two of our favorite songs are never ever requested at shows. Both are Rocket From the Crypt inspired – Get it Goin’ On and Running Out of Time. They’re really rock with horns. Maybe we like them because they’re so different than the usual Mustard Plug song.

Has the idea of doing a show at a grocery store ever come up? If you could perform in any shopping market where it would be? Why? What section of the grocery store would you lay claim too?

We’ve played an 18th century jail, a Catholic high school in Canada, a squat in Slovenia, a horse racing track, and a nudist campground. Never played a grocery store though. Don’t think I’d want to, the lighting is just never good. Plus it’s always cold. If we had to play one, I’d rather it be at a health food grocery though. People are nicer there. And of course it would have to be in the international food section.

Could you share the craft of putting together a Mustard Plug song? What ingredients are included in the process?

Someone (usually our guitarist Colin) writes a song and then we all stir in our own parts. It’s usually fairly formed by the time it gets to us, but then it’s very much a collaborative effort.

Mustard Plug has traveled all over the world. Does Mustard Plug have a favorite place to perform at and travel too?

We’ve been lucky enough to tour in Japan a handful of times. The people are super nice and the food is amazing. It’s also a great learning experience to immerse yourself in a different culture. And besides, it’s like going 3 years into the future!

What’s next for Mustard Plug? What has the band been preserving? 

We’ve been working on a new album since the start of the pandemic. Looks like we’ll be recording soon! We also have some tours coming up with friends like Buck-O-Nine, Planet Smashers, Big D & the Kids Table, and a ton more.

What aisle can readers find your music in? 

We play both kinds of music. Ska and Punk.

From Mr. Substitute:

Hello, I am Mr. Substitute, both human and an actual substitute teacher. Mustard Plug has been a staple in the ska scene since the early 90s and is still kicking ass all over the world. My question is simple: in 30+ years of existence, did you ever think you would be approached by a bottle of Mustard for an interview?

Never thought that would happen. Although it feels somehow appropriate and necessary.

My favorite part of all ska shows is the pit: it’s almost this primal and communal ceremony that connects so many minds through movement. I know you have started a few circle pits in your day but I want to ask if there was any memorable circle pit you all have skanked around in as a fan instead of a performer? What show and who was playing?

My very first punk show was Murphy’s Law and was in the circle pit. It changed my life and I later started playing in a ska punk band. Now I’m a 52 year old trombone player still in a ska band (who never goes in pits anymore).

I see y’all are probably out on the road when these questions reach you and I know you’ll be headlining the In Defense of Ska tour (that’s gonna be a blast, Aaron and Adam and THE coolest) come September. As a band, you get to play with a lot of other bands both new and old but I’m curious who MUSTARD PLUG thinks this world should be checking out right now?

We did a bunch of shows with Catbite this year. And they’re already on to opening for much bigger bands than us. Go check them out now before they’re huge!!

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