Live Through Lyrics: A 3eb Ink Journey
Hey, Kara! I’m Brittney, a team member of 3EB Lifestyle. We are on a mission to showcase fans who live a Third Eye Blind Lifestyle. Those with 3EB Ink are a very special part of the community and we love the dedication that a tattoo highlights. I want to preface this interview with a disclaimer. I don’t have a single tattoo! Maybe you can inspire me to get my first!
Let’s get this show started. Your lyric tattoos. What awesome choices! “I spent the last three years setting myself on fire for you” is one of my favorite lines and “Dao of St. Paul” is an overwhelmingly emotional song. It has moved me to tears more than once. “Never look back on all the damage we have done now to each other” is a perfect call for closure. I absolutely love your choices.
B: First and foremost, I want to hear about your love of the band. When did you first become a fan? What does 3eb mean to you?
K: I vividly remember the first time I heard a Third Eye Blind song. I was on vacation with my family in Tennessee, and we were outside swimming in the hotel pool and “Semi Charmed” came on. I was young, but that song instantly became a favorite, and every time I hear it, it takes me back to that childhood memory and the innocence of being young with no cares.
Third Eye Blind plays a tremendous role in my life. For my wedding, I actually had a hard time finding a venue because I had to walk out to “Deep Inside of You” and most venues only allowed the traditional music. I insisted that I walk to that song, and that’s exactly what I did.
B: What’s your favorite album?
K: It’s hard to choose a favorite album, because they all take me on a slightly different journey. I do however find myself listening to Ursa Major more than any other album, and I think that’s because that album came out at a very emotional time in my life.
B: What’s the story behind the tattoos? Which came first? Can you fill us in on what the songs mean to you? And how you chose each specific line? Were you in the throes of a major life event or transition? Was there any significant timing to your tattoo?
K: My first Third Eye Blind tattoo was actually on my foot. It says “Deliver Me” in a banner over a cupcake. Most people think it has to do with the cupcake itself, but it is actually from “Can’t Get Away” and those two words mean a lot to me because they represent freedom. The second one was the “Blinded” lyrics. I got those about 6-7 years ago. I had them tattooed by Mike Fultz at Eternal Ink in Terre Haute, IN. Those lyrics are extremely meaningful to me. I chose that phrase in the song because no matter how much damage anyone has done to me in my life, or vice versa, life is too precious to dwell on the mistakes and hurt we have caused. This is particularly so when speaking of love. Even though someone may have “damaged” me in some way, I still choose to look forward to the greatness they may bring to my life. It is absolutely a call for closure, as it signifies literally never looking back.
[For Dao of St. Paul] I had my husband, Joshua Elkins, who owns Square Rose Tattoo in Sullivan, IN tattoo that one. It was important to me that he be the one to do this tattoo because he is the reason these lyrics mean so much to me. We have been together for 10 years, but when Ursa Major came out, we had hit a very rough patch in our relationship and had been together for a few years at that point. I truly felt as though I had literally spent the last couple of years setting myself on fire for him. I completely knocked down all of my walls, lost friends, gave up a college I was accepted to and so much more for him, only to find out that he had done something behind my back that led me to a dark place. “Never knowing if what you say is true” is another line that sticks out from that song due to what happened. We were kids (18-19 years old) when all of that happened, and have luckily gotten past it, but I got this tattooed on me as a reminder that we have overcome some things I never thought we would, and now we have a beautiful life together.
B: You’ve surrounded your “Dao of St. Paul” lyrics with beautiful flowers. What is the significance of those in connection with the lyrics?
K: The flowers around the lyrics to “Dao of St. Paul” are sunflowers because they are the flower my husband always chooses to give me on special occasions, or really anytime he wants to surprise me.
B: When Stephan wrote the lyrics for you, did you tell him it was for a 3eb tattoo? We know he LOVES and wholeheartedly supports 3eb ink. What was his reaction to your request?
K: For “Dao of St. Paul” I had Stephan write out “I spent the last three years setting myself on fire for you” with every intention of turning the words into a tattoo. I told him what I was going to do, and he thought it was a great idea.
Over the summer, I finally got to show Stephan my tattoos, and I believe he was humbled by them. I could only ever hope to honor their music, as it has had such an intense effect on my life. I actually have a tattoo on my wrist that reads “Live through lyrics” and that is because I find myself literally feeling as though I am living through their music.
B: I love seeing the different ideas and visions that fans with tattoos come up with. Do you plan to get more 3eb ink?
K: Would love to get more 3eb ink, it’s just deciding which lyrics to go with next. There are several others that have gotten me through some tough times, or just make me genuinely happy and make me feel like I’m in another world. I have a few in mind that will probably come in the near future. I could never honestly thank them enough for everything their music has done for me, but permanently marking my body with their words sure does seem like a good place to start. It’s not just about their music pulling me out of tough times, but it’s also about how their music makes me feel alive.
B: Kara, I can’t thank you enough for pouring your heart into these responses. We love your tattoos and your ‘wild dedication’ to the band. Thanks so much for contributing to this feature. Really looking forward to seeing more ink from you in the future!
K: Thank you for this opportunity to share my story with you!!