As soon as I found out that my pal Adam Pfahler was in a new band that was starting to play shows, I asked him if they would play our next Save Music in Chinatown benefit. And then they said yes. Wow. The group not only features Adam (who was in Jawbreaker, J Church, Whysall Lane, all among my favorite bands) but Jason White (from Monsula, Pinhead Gunpowder, Green Day, and a bunch of other favorite bands) and Dustin Clark (The Insides, who I’m guessing that I’ll love). So cool of them to book their first SoCal tour around our punk matinee/benefit show for music education at Castelar Elementary that will take place on Sunday, May 18.
How could I not ask him some questions about playing in Chinatown, the new band, some old bands, and an old friend…
Most people think of you as a Bay Area guy but you grew up in L.A. Did you ever get to see any punk shows in Chinatown?
I remember going to the Hong Kong Cafe after shows to drink coffee and listen to the jukebox but never saw a show there. Maybe it was a bit before my time. I’m sure I’ve been to shows at Madame Wong’s in the mid-eighties but I couldn’t tell you who I saw!
Jawbreaker had a band meeting there once around the time we were practicing in Highland Park before recording our first album. It wasn’t a venue at that point and was just a bar and restaurant. So we’re having a beer and bao there one afternoon and out of nowhere a fight breaks out between these two really tough Chinese girls. They’re full-on punching each other in the face. Like, shit’s falling off tables and everything. It’s so gnarly that everyone in the restaurant pretends that it isn’t happening. One of the girls screams, “Fuck you, you two-bit Jawbreaker!” Blake says, “Hey, that’s our band!” I say, “That’s it–the name stays.”