Being In A Band During The COVID-19 Pandemic Catching Up With California's 'Them Evils' June 8th, 2020 • Pandemic Band Interview #19
Metal Pulp And Paper: Hello Jordan. Thank you for taking the time to answer some questions for Metal Pulp And Paper. We appreciate it. So, how have you been holding up during this global pandemic and lockdown?
Jordan Griffin: You know, it hasn’t been so bad. As a band, we’ve gotten a ton of ground covered as far as new music and figuring out how to release new music. I’ve discovered a plethora of new music and have gotten to know my guitars a lot more.
MPAP: 2020, the year when almost every concert or music festival has been postponed or canceled until 2021. And 2020 was supposed to be the year of some big reunions. Everyone was excited to see the Rage Against The Machine and the My Chemical Romance tours. So, let’s back up and go over the first five months of 2020, the beginning of a new decade. There was the possibility of World War III happening. There were deadly bushfires in Australia. Then we had the acquittals in the Trump impeachment trials. Prince Harry and Meghan decided to step away from the royal family, and NBA legend Kobe Bryant, and his daughter, along with seven others, unfortunately, died in a helicopter crash in California. The deadly worldwide COVID-19 virus. And then, get this, we even had the Pentagon officially releasing UFO videos. So, what did you have planned for the year before all this madness began? Before all the toilet paper hoarding?
Jordan: To tour and release music, what we’ve been doing the last five years. This year has been unfortunate, but I know for a fact we’ll bounce back. Hoarding toilet paper will be a thing of the past. It’s important to take these times and learn from them, not repeat them, and teach our generations to come this is how and not how to do it… and I have always firmly believed in extraterrestrial life.
MPAP: This coronavirus has been devastating to everyone around the globe. By mid-March, the coronavirus pandemic had brought the multibillion-dollar concert industry to a screeching halt. Now two months later, Sammy Hagar, from The Circle, ex Van Halen, says concerts can’t wait for a COVID-19 vaccine. Of course, every band wants their fans to be safe, but when your only source of a major income is concerts, it hurts when you have to postpone or cancel a tour. A vaccine could take 12 to 18 months. Do you think he’s right for saying concerts can’t wait any longer?
Jordan: Yeah, he’s right. If you think you’re safe and the people you’re around are safe from dying, then it's party time – let's Rock! There is absolutely no reason to postpone concerts anymore. If you have pre-existing conditions and are paranoid about getting sick – then stay home – no one will blame you for that. But please don’t ruin the fun for those of us that are healthy and want to get back out and be with people again.
MPAP: The experts warn there will be no moshing or crowd surfing when concerts finally return. (Laughing) Who are these experts, and obviously they have never attended a metal music show, right? They say moshing and crowd surfing are violations of social distancing and must be absolutely prohibited during this pandemic. What are your thoughts? Can you have a metal show with no moshing and crowd surfing? Do you think the fans will even follow those rules?
Jordan: I love breaking rules. That’s part of the whole concert experience. I don’t think people are going to be able contain themselves after being home for so long - they need a release. Bang your head and break stuff! (Your own stuff, that is.)
MPAP: With the exception of a megaband like Metallica, or even Iron Maiden, the coronavirus is hitting most musicians pretty hard. What have Them Evils been doing to get through this crisis?
Jordan: Fortunately, there’s been some unemployment money because we have jobs when we’re home. And whiskey, no shortage of that around here! We’ve maintained. There’s practice to be done and plenty of business aspects we can tackle while at home.
MPAP: Lzzy Hale, frontwoman for the American rock band Halestorm, recently posted on her social media, saying, 'most bands won’t make it out of this.' Do you agree with this? Do you think some bands will go out of business like a lot of restaurants are during this pandemic?
Jordan: For our band, I disagree. But then again, a lot of bands have this as their only source of income. I’m hoping bands survive this. We were at a break through point in music - Rock N' Roll was being revived! Don’t give up… we aren’t, and we won’t let you!
MPAP: Other than not being able to play live music and go out on tour, how else has the coronavirus affected you?
Jordan: I’ve looked at the situation as a positive. More time playing guitar, more music, more time with my fiancée, less eating out, and overall living a healthy lifestyle. I wake up to an electric balls-out rock n' roll album, usually AC/DC, make a pot of coffee, pick up my guitar and go! We live right near the beach in Huntington Beach, California - so bike rides have been keeping me sane as well. There’s something therapeutic about the ocean.
MPAP: Well, that wraps things up. We hope this all ends soon, and we can all get back to a venue and watch some good live music while having an overpriced beer. We hope you stay safe and stay healthy. On behalf of myself, and Metal Pulp And Paper, thank you, Jordan, for doing this interview. One last question before we bring this to a close. Are you prepared for the murder hornets that have recently entered the U.S.? Geez, we are only halfway through the year, so far, can only imagine what’s next, right?
Jordan: I’m ready for anything mother nature throws at me!