This past year, one of the most legendary bands to ever hit the musical stage turned twenty-five years old. Fishbone put the alternative in alternative music. Back in 1979, and the early 80s, no one performed quite like Fishbone. Countless bands have been influenced by the stage diving antics, head-thumping bass grooves, timeless music videos, eclectic styles that only Los Angeles could iron out and most recently a world big screen movie about their historical journey breaking musical barriers at each turn.
Plenty of bands have had a rollercoaster ride through their infant years as a band dancing within the rebellious teenage years, leading up to their present maturation state. Although, recognition and respect are typically earned during separate time frames. Once again, Fishbone pushed the limits from their ground breaking first release “Party At Ground Zero”, essentially changing the music scene in Southern California. In a vastly different time period, today Fishbone can be seen all across the globe spreading their funky melodies and punk rock enthusiasm with plenty of new material.
It is not a rare sight to see some of the biggest names in the reggae-rock community share the stage with Fishbone, while trading saxophone solos and lyrical mastery with each moment unfolding. Angelo Moore and Norwood Fisher have influenced more acts than the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame can hold. Recent recipients and fellow Angelinos, the Red Hot Chili Peppers were inducted into that sacred fraternity. Seeing Michael “Flea” Balzary and Moore, side-by-side, demonstrated their surgical execution of the live audience.
To this day Flea has that same respect for their comrades: “[Fishbone] is unbelievable, like all the colors and the shapes and the energy–it is godlike intense and beautiful. And out of control.” – Flea, Red Hot Chili Peppers
Another one of the most successful bands from Southern California in the mid 90s was No Doubt. Both Gwen Stefani and Bradley Nowell sampled the rhyming tactics and frontman leadership from relentless Fishbone. With each note that is belted out a live concert, the chances are pretty good Fishbone had a helping hand.
“I just know that anybody that hasn’t seen Fishbone live, if they were to see them live, like I saw them. It’s exactly the same, they haven’t changed one bit, they’re still hanging on the rafter with the most energy. I know that they’re still as good as they’ve ever been.” – Gwen Stefani, No Doubt
No one knows what the reaction would be from other bands that came and went, and are long gone, while Fishbone is still climbing, reaching greatness day by day. 2011 has been a magical year with plenty of entertainment from Fishbone. For the better part of the last three decades, that has been the case. No one can touch Fishbone’s live antics once the lights turn on.
Many bands within the music industry only dream about making it as a musical showcase, yet Fishbone has lived that dream first hand by way of way of large scale tour buses and rambunctious fans at every stop. The original lineup has changed in a singularly odd repetition, yet the heartbeat and soul of Fishbone has never stopped the continuous path of infamy.
Over the pat year, Fishbone has showed no signs of wrapping up the microphone wires for good. In fact, 2011 was a launching pad for Fishbone’s next tale as their latest EP Crazy Glue filled clubs from coast to coast, while simultaneously the band spread awareness for their documentary.
Fishbone is the band that will rock your socks off on any given night, from state to state. The live atmosphere, from day one up until the present day, has never wavered. After all of the longevity and fortunate success through the years, it was the ideal time to honor an iconic musical ensemble that few can rival, in the past, present and future.
It’s with great honor that we at The Pier proudly award FISHBONE with our very first Lifetime Achievement Award. In celebration of this Honor and courtesy of Silverback Management, Fishbone has signed 3 copies of their Crazy Glue EP & DVD Documentary to give out to 3 Lucky Fans who voted in this years Pier Awards. Be sure to check your email because we have already sent 3 Lucky Winners an Email. If you have won, feel free to comment below!
Written By: Kris Siuta
Photos By: Bill Colbridge