Blink-182 Talks Teen Angst And The Mysterious Meaning Behind Its Name

“I guess this is growing up,” Mark Hoppus sings with a raspy croon. It’s the catchy, jump-around chorus of “Dammit,” one of Blink-182’s breakout songs, recorded in 1997 for their second studio album, “Dude Ranch.”

Hearing the band play the song this week at a Capital One and Uber-sponsored show in Manhattan, where they performed their old stalwarts plus a few hooky selections from their new album, “California,” is a quick trip back in time. Although much has changed for the band mates in the past 19 years — one member, of times that Al Pacino said the f-word in ‘Scarface,’” he said, turning to Skiba for a hypothesis of his own. “What’s today’s story?” 

Skiba, who listened to the band long before he was invited to join it, posited an alternative explanation. “‘Turk 182!’? That’s what I always thought it was,” he said. “There was a movie in the ’80s that I loved as a kid, there’s a high school hero kind of like ‘Ferris Bueller.’ I first got a Blink record when it was just called Blink. When the 182 came along I thought it was [named after] ‘Turk 182!’”

Skiba isn’t the only Blink-182 fan that gets to run in close circles with Hoppus and drummer Travis Barker. Hoppus’ son, who’s now 14 years old, enjoys listening to “California” at home.

“He really likes this record. I’ll be hearing him in his room and he’s doing homework and he’s singing Blink songs,” Hoppus said. “That makes me happy.”

Although Hoppus has taken his new role as a father in stride, the spirit that contributed to the writing of “Dammit,” a raw take achieving maturity in slow, painful increments, is alive in his approach to making music today.

“I mean, we’re responsible human beings with kids and things like that, but we also get to play music for a living,” Hoppus said. “We’re lucky enough to be in a career where we don’t necessarily have to grow up.”

Watch our full interview with Blink-182 on HuffPost Live below: