I flew into Tampa, FL to join up with my friends Sean and Ben who comprise the band Andrew Jackson Jihad. They are from Phoenix, AZ and had been out on tour for close to a month. For the next two weeks I would be opening up for them as we made our way across the south back towards our respective homes. I had never played a solo set outside of San Diego and I really hadn't seen much of the southern US, so I was pretty excited to venture out into the unknown.
Florida is a trip! Here I am in a swamp being eaten alive by mosquitoes. It was so damn humid it was hard to do much else besides sweat. This coupled with the fact that our van had no A/C ensured that we all experienced a profound amount of perspiration.
Here we are in Gainesville, FL. In the last couple years Jihad has had releases an a slew of labels (the largest being Asian Man Records) and have been touring the US heavily. It's really paid off cause there were a ton of kids at all the shows and most of them sang along to every word.
This is my perspective of the crowd at Wonderroot in Atlanta, GA. It was definitely one of my favorite shows of the tour. Wonderroot is a non-profit community center focused on helping youth pursue creative outlets. It has studios for visual art, a recording studio, a kitchen, a library, a meeting room, and a decently sized basement that serves as a venue. The crowd that night was very friendly and attentive.
Fortune smiled upon us after the show in Lexington, KY when we realized that Ben was tall enough to reach the letters on this sign. He didn't really have to do much to make it funny. The "G" became a sort of good luck charm for the rest of the trip.
The show in Louisville, KY was pretty amazing. We played at a venue called Skull Alley. San Diego needs a place like this sooo badly! It's all ages but if you are 21+ you can by beer and wine at the refreshment stand. They also have soda, coffee/tea, and snacks. The sound was awesome and the staff were very hospitable.
This was taken at a big rock club we played in St. Louis, MO called The Firebird. It made me feel very at home to see that there are crazed LOST fans (like myself) everywhere. The Numbers are bad dude! Same thing at this club; all ages at the door and 21+ patrons have access to a full bar. Why don't we have something like this in our fair city?
If you eat meat and ever happen to be in Memphis, TN; you must go to Central BBQ. I had a plate of pork that was so soft it was almost melting in my mouth. There was a line out the door when we got there and it was so worth the wait. They even offer a shipping service! That's right folks, they will send you a meal in the mail and all you have to do is heat it up. What a crazy world we live in.
I'm pretty sure this pic was taken by Sean on the way out of Memphis the next morning. We were not feeling it to say the least. We went to a bar the night before that only had PBR on tap and a few assorted bottled beers in the fridge. It was "Bring Your Own Booze" and the place didn't really seem to close. At some point around 3:30am (TN "stops" selling alcohol the same time CA does) we stumbled out and wandered the streets until we found one of the worst diners I have ever been to. Overall we had a pretty great time and I do like the city, but this bird was definitely warranted.
To sum things up, I had a total blast on this trip. It was great to be back out on the road and it really made me realize how much I missed it. Watching Andrew Jackson Jihad every night was truly inspirational. They are so honest about what they are doing and put absolutely every ounce of their being into their music every time they play. If you have not checked them out I would encourage you to do so immediately!
Jackson and The Vision of a Dying World will be playing Soda Bar Saturday, September 26th to celebrate the release of a new EP.
Here's a sample of the goods.
Mantra / What Is And What Is Not
Click through to the photo gallery for pictures of Jackson flipping the bird to various national monuments.