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Jeff Fisher, Adam Goldstein, Chris Fry, and Bull Gervasi of Policy of 3/December 28, 2013
Joseph A. Gervasi interviews Jeff Fisher, Chris Fry, Bull Gervasi, and Adam Goldstein of the band Policy of 3. Policy of 3 began as Matter of Fact in South Jersey in the late 1980s. By the early ’90s, they formalized their line-up, changed their name to Po3, and began developing their unique sound. While often categorized as an emo band (as in “emotional hardcore,” not the pseudo-sensitive boy music that was erroneously and pervasively termed emo a few years ago) both then and now, the band members have always been reluctant to embrace that categorization. Policy of 3 was a band that confronted political and social issues, unlike many bands termed emo. While the band’s presentation of these concerns was sometimes seen through the prism of personal and inward-looking lyrics, they sidestepped navel-gazing and made materials on social and political issues (including vegan/vegetarianism and animal rights) available at their gigs. As well, Po3 played many shows benefitting a variety of social/political activist groups. Over the course of their existence as a band, they did two full U.S. tours (once being paid an impressive $8.20 for playing a show) and a European tour on totally DIY and ethical terms. As well, they released two 7″s, an LP, and a CD collecting all of their material. As individuals, the four members of the band have retained a tremendously positive view of both their time in the band and the international hardcore punk scene they were active participants in. They remain friends and cherish what they did in the time they had together. Policy of 3 broke up in 1995, but the lessons learned, friends made, and experiences had while they were together played a significant role in shaping these four men into who they are today. This interview marked the first time the members of Po3 ever publicly or privately discussed their break-up, which each respective band member had ruminated over for nineteen years. For anyone who’s familiar with the band or who may be friends with any of the members, you may find the latter part of this interview to be very emotional. The air was very thick with feeling as each member talked about the band’s demise and what it meant to them. I’ve wanted to interview the Po3 since I started this project, but I didn’t think it would be possible to get all four members in the place due to where Jeff and Adam now live. The four had not been in the same place at the same time since 2005. I was thrilled to be able to talk to them and I’m very happy with the lengthy interview we achieved. For me, Policy of 3 personified what I loved (and still love) about the DIY punk scene. They were, and remain, inspiring and terribly earnest individuals.