Every so often, we take a little time on Mondays to pay tribute to the Muthas! That is, reprinting the adorable metal/maternal Q&As that run in the magazine. Today, enjoy Justin Norton’s chat with Patricia Strehl Adler, mother of Chris and Willie Adler (Lamb of God).
Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I was born during World War II, and grew up with bread lines and ration stamps. I decided to enter the convent, Benedictine nuns (same as my high school teachers) and got a major in French from Seton Hall University. I decided to leave after 11 years, and six months later met Jim Adler. We married in 1968. Chris was born in 1972 and Willie was born in 1976—a bicentennial baby.
What were the boys like growing up?
Chris was one of those pen-clickers that a lot of teachers find annoying. He was always tapping his fingers or feet. Always moving and usually in a chair that was leaned back on two back legs. Willie went to acoustic guitar for a very short time and then on to electric—where he has lived ever since.
Did you have a lot of earplugs around the house?
I found out a lot of musicians have a hard time finding practice spaces—especially when they have to pay rent. So, our home became a practice space. We did not have a lot of earplugs. I usually left to do grocery shopping when practice began. More often than not, the police had been called by annoyed neighbors—who also did not have earplugs—and had given the group a warning.
When Willie and Chris were playing local clubs in Richmond did you ever think they would get to this level?
I really didn’t follow their successes. I knew they were doing what they loved. I don’t know if they thought I wasn’t interested or if they just didn’t put a lot of importance on what they considered passing success. I’ve made it pretty clear by now that I am interested and want to know the ups and downs. I’ve only gone to one of their shows in Richmond. I was seriously blown away with the noise and the vibrations. It took me a couple of days to recover.
I imagine they both get noticed a lot around Richmond. That must feel pretty good.
I’m very impressed with the polite distance their fans take whenever they are recognized. I am very proud of my sons.