Rollins Band

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Rollins Band
Henry Rollins 2.jpg
Henry Rollins, founder and frontman with Chris Haskett (background)
Background information
Also known asThe Rollins Band
Origin Van Nuys, California, U.S.
Genres
Years active1987–1997, 1999–2003, 2006
Labels
Associated acts
Website 21361.com
Past members

Rollins Band was an American rock band from 1987 to 2006, formed in Van Nuys, California and led by former Black Flag vocalist Henry Rollins.

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Most of the country is located contiguously in North America between Canada and Mexico.

Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, and developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and later, particularly in the United States and the United Kingdom. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, a style which drew heavily from the genres of blues, rhythm and blues, and from country music. Rock music also drew strongly from a number of other genres such as electric blues and folk, and incorporated influences from jazz, classical and other musical styles. Musically, rock has centered on the electric guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass, drums, and one or more singers. Usually, rock is song-based music usually with a 4/4 time signature using a verse–chorus form, but the genre has become extremely diverse. Like pop music, lyrics often stress romantic love but also address a wide variety of other themes that are frequently social or political.

Black Flag (band) American hardcore punk band

Black Flag is an American punk rock band formed in 1976 in Hermosa Beach, California. Initially called Panic, the band was established by Greg Ginn, the guitarist, primary songwriter, and sole continuous member through multiple personnel changes in the band. They are widely considered to be one of the first hardcore punk bands as well as one of the pioneers of post-hardcore. After breaking up in 1986, Black Flag reunited in 2003 and again in 2013. The second reunion lasted well over a year, during which they released their first studio album in over two decades, What The… (2013). The band announced their third reunion in January 2019. Brandon Pertzborn was replaced by Isaias Gil on drums for the rest of the tour.

Contents

They are best known for the songs "Low Self Opinion" and "Liar", which both earned heavy airplay on MTV in the early-mid 1990s. Critic Steve Huey describes their music as "uncompromising, intense, cathartic fusions of funk, post-punk, noise, and jazz experimentalism, with Rollins shouting angry, biting self-examinations and accusations over the grind." [1]

Low Self Opinion 1992 single by Rollins Band

"Low Self Opinion" is a 1992 single by Rollins Band, from the album The End of Silence.

"Liar" is a song by Rollins Band and the lead single from their fourth full-length album, Weight, released in 1994. It was the album's only charting single and is one of the group's best known songs.

MTV American pay television channel

MTV is an American pay television channel that serves as the flagship property of owner Viacom Media Networks and is headquartered in New York City. The channel was launched on August 1, 1981, and originally aired music videos as guided by television personalities known as "video jockeys" (VJs). At first, MTV's main target demographic was young adults, but today it is primarily teenagers, particularly high school and college students.

In 2000, Rollins Band was included on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock, ranking at No. 47. [2]

History

Precursors (1980–1986)

Rollins was the singer for the Washington, D.C. punk rock band State of Alert from October 1980 to July 1981. Afterwards, he sang with California punk rock band Black Flag from August 1981 to August 1986. Black Flag earned little mainstream attention, but through a demanding touring schedule, came to be regarded as one of the most important punk rock bands of the 1980s.

Washington, D.C. Capital of the United States

Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington or D.C., is the capital of the United States. Founded after the American Revolution as the seat of government of the newly independent country, Washington was named after George Washington, the first president of the United States and a Founding Father. As the seat of the United States federal government and several international organizations, Washington is an important world political capital. The city, located on the Potomac River bordering Maryland and Virginia, is one of the most visited cities in the world, with more than 20 million tourists annually.

Punk rock is a rock music genre that emerged in the mid-1970s in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. Rooted in 1960s garage rock and other forms of what is now known as "proto-punk" music, punk rock bands rejected perceived excesses of mainstream 1970s rock. They typically produced short, fast-paced songs with hard-edged melodies and singing styles, stripped-down instrumentation, and often political, anti-establishment lyrics. Punk embraces a DIY ethic; many bands self-produce recordings and distribute them through independent record labels.

State of Alert was an American hardcore punk group formed in Washington, D.C. in October 1980, and disbanded in July 1981. S.O.A. was fronted by Henry Rollins, then using his original surname Garfield.

Less than a year after Black Flag broke up, Rollins returned to music with guitarist Chris Haskett (a friend from Rollins' teen years in Washington D.C.), bass guitarist Bernie Wandel, and drummer Mick Green.

Chris Haskett is an American guitarist. He was a member of the Rollins Band from 1986 to 1997 and again for the band's reunion in 2006. He has also recorded or performed with David Bowie, Foetus, Pigface, The Cassandra Complex, Tool and others.

Bernie Wandel is an American musician best known as the bass guitarist for two Henry Rollins albums, Hot Animal Machine and Drive By Shooting.

This line-up released two records: Hot Animal Machine (credited as a Rollins solo record and featuring cover art drawings by Devo leader Mark Mothersbaugh) and Drive by Shooting (credited to "Henrietta Collins and the Wifebeating Childhaters"). The music was similar to Black Flag's, though it flirted more with heavy metal and funk.

<i>Hot Animal Machine</i> 1987 studio album by Henry Rollins

Hot Animal Machine is a hardcore punk solo album by Henry Rollins which served as a precursor to the Rollins Band. It is only available now in the same 2-in-one package as Drive by Shooting. Notable for a number of cover songs; Suicide's "Ghost Rider", Richard Berry's "Crazy Lover" and The Velvet Underground's "I'm Gonna Move Right In". The cover was drawn by Mark Mothersbaugh, the frontman of the popular 1980s group Devo.

Devo American rock band

Devo is an American rock band from Akron, Ohio formed in 1973. Their classic lineup consisted of two sets of brothers, the Mothersbaughs and the Casales, along with Alan Myers. The band had a No. 14 Billboard chart hit in 1980 with the single "Whip It", the song that gave the band mainstream popularity.

Mark Mothersbaugh American musician

Mark Allen Mothersbaugh is an American singer, songwriter, composer, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, author and visual artist.

First edition (1987–1994)

Soon after, Rollins formed Rollins Band with Haskett, bassist Andrew Weiss, and drummer Sim Cain (Weiss and Cain had previously played with Gone, an instrumental rock group led by guitarist and Black Flag founder Greg Ginn). Live sound engineer Theo Van Rock was usually credited as a band member.

Critics Ira Robbins and Regina Joskow described this line-up as a "brilliant, strong ensemble ... the band doesn't play punk (more a jazzy, thrashy, swing take on the many moods of Jimi Hendrix), but what they do together has the strengths of both. The group's loud guitar rock with a strong, inventive rhythmic clock borrows only the better attributes of metal, ensuring that noise is never a substitute for purpose." [3]

Second edition (1994–1997)

Gibbs in a July 19, 1980 performance in Paris, France Melvin Gibbs.jpg
Gibbs in a July 19, 1980 performance in Paris, France

Rollins's tour diaries from this era (published as See A Grown Man Cry and "Now Watch Him Die") details the personal and creative tensions that led to Weiss being fired following the End of Silence tour. The band's new bassist was jazz and funk veteran Melvin Gibbs, who'd been highly recommended by guitarist Vernon Reid of Living Colour, a friend of the Rollins Band since the first Lollapalooza tour. Cain and Gibbs had also both played in different versions of guitarist Marc Ribot's band (with Gibbs performing on Ribot's album Rootless Cosmopolitans and Cain on Requiem for What's-His-Name).

The first video from 1994's Weight, "Liar", was a huge hit on MTV, with Rollins sporting numerous costumes (including a cop and a nun). The band appeared at Woodstock '94, and Rollins was a guest-host for several MTV programs, including 120 Minutes.

This version of Rollins Band had some of the most overt jazz leanings of the band's history: Gibbs had begun his career with Reid in the 1980s jazz fusion group of drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson, and worked with Sonny Sharrock on albums like 1987's Seize The Rainbow . These influences, along with Rollins' obsession with the late '60s/early '70s electric/fusion era of iconic trumpeter Miles Davis, shaped this version of the band's music. During the sessions for Weight, Rollins Band recorded with free jazz saxophonist Charles Gayle, though these sessions remained unreleased for ten years at Gayle's request to avoid conflicts with his contractual obligations. The Gayle sessions were released in 2003 as Weighting.

In 1996, there was a legal battle with the band's former label Imago Records. Rollins claimed "fraud, deceit, undue influence and economic coercion" on the labels' part. [4] They signed with the then new major label DreamWorks Records, who released 1997's Come In And Burn. The album had a minor hit with the single "Starve" and the band appeared on Saturday Night Live to promote the album (season 22, episode 18). However, Come In and Burn was not as successful as Weight and, after touring for Burn, Rollins dissolved the group, citing creative stagnation.

Third edition (1999–2003)

Rollins replaced the Haskett-Gibbs-Cain lineup with the Los Angeles rock band Mother Superior, retaining the name Rollins Band, and released Get Some Go Again (2000) and Nice (2001). They also released a two-disc live album, The Only Way to Know for Sure . This line-up was a more straightforward hard rock group: their first album featured "Are You Ready?" a cover of a Thin Lizzy song, featuring Lizzy guitarist Scott Gorham; Rollins has often expressed fondness for Thin Lizzy and its founder, Phil Lynott.

Fourth edition (2006)

In between other commitments (his radio show Harmony In My Head, his cable/satellite TV show The Henry Rollins Show, and his spoken word tours), Rollins also reunited the Haskett-Gibbs-Cain lineup. [5] In a blog entry on henryrollins.com, Rollins admitted, "Actually we have been practicing on and off for months now, slowly getting it together ... It's been really cool being back in the practice room with these guys after all these years." [6]

The band opened some concerts for X, and played on the first-season finale of The Henry Rollins Show on August 12, 2006. [7]

Indefinite hiatus (2007–present)

Rollins told Alan Sculley of The Daily Herald that this reunion with Haskett, Gibbs and Cain would not become long-term unless the group decided to write new songs: "Let's put it this way. I don't want to go out and hit America again without a new record, or at least a new album's worth of material. Otherwise the thing will lack legitimacy ... Miles Davis would never do that. And I'm not into a greatest-hits thing. I think a band, if you're going to be around, you should be moving forward and putting in the time and working for it, getting after the art. Otherwise you're just playing retreads. ... Imagine a tree that grows canned peaches. It's nothing I want to do." [8]

In 2014, Rollins admitted a disdain for rehashing old music for the sake of it – "I don't want to play old music. To me, it is fighting battles that are already over and calling yourself a warrior. For me, I see no courage or adventure in doing the old thing over again. If others want to, that's for them. For myself, I have to move on. Life is too short to live in the past. There is a lot to be done." [9]

Former member Jason Mackenroth died on January 3, 2016, in Nevada from prostate cancer. [10]

Musical style and influences

The band have been categorized under the alternative metal, hard rock, funk metal and post-hardcore genres. [11] [12] [13] [14] Mid-career albums such as Weight also had a pronounced jazz influence. [15] [16] They were part of the early '90s LA alternative metal scene, alongside Tool, Jane's Addiction, Rage Against the Machine and Green Jellÿ. [13] Their influences include '70s metal and rock bands, including Black Sabbath, The Velvet Underground, Pink Fairies and Thin Lizzy, [11] as well as progressive rock and jazz fusion bands like King Crimson and Mahavishnu Orchestra. [17] [18] Rollins' shout-singing style proved influential to later alternative and nu metal artists, such as Coal Chamber, Korn, Chevelle, Godsmack and System of a Down. [11] The Rollins Band songs "Tearing" and "Shine" have been covered by Pearl Jam. [19]

Band members

Last line-up
Former members

Timeline

Rollins Band

Discography

Studio albums

Outtakes and demos collections

Live albums

EPs and 7" singles

Miscellaneous

Other appearances

YearSongAlbum
1994"Ghost Rider" Crow soundtrack
1995"Four Sticks" Encomium: A Tribute to Led Zeppelin
1995"Fall Guy" Demon Knight (soundtrack)
1995"I See Through"Johnny Mnemonic soundtrack
2001"What's the Matter Man" Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 soundtrack

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References

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  6. 21361.com Archived February 17, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  7. Roadrunnerrecords.com Archived June 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  8. Hearld Extra Archived February 15, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
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  12. Bradley, Stephen (September 22, 2010). "Concert review: Kevin Seconds". The Washington Times Communities – Riffs. Retrieved October 27, 2011. [...] Where most punks from the '80s hardcore scene made the transition into hard rock or post hardcore outfits like Rollins Band and Fugazi, it still seems natural that he would make the jump into the acoustic side of things. [...]
  13. 1 2 Grow, Kory (March 20, 2013). "Not a Downer: Tool's Adam Jones Talks 'Opiate' Reissue, New Material | SPIN | Q & A". SPIN. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
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  18. "INTERVIEW. 041 - Chris Haskett (Rollins Band)". Thisisfubarproductions.tumblr.com. Retrieved March 4, 2017. [...] the biggest ones that influenced the playing I did in the Rollins Band would have to be the “Red/Starless & Bible Black/Lark’s Tongue”-era King Crimson work of Fripp and the Mahavishnu Orchestra McLaughlin.
  19. "Pearl Jam Music". Pearljam.com. Retrieved January 6, 2016.
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