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Less Than Jake


Less Than Jake Biography

Formed in 1992 as a power pop trio with a heavy punk influence, a sense of humor, and a fixation with Pez candy, Less Than Jake metamorphosed into a ska-inspired punk band with the addition of several members from 1993 to 1995. Vocalist and guitarist Chris, ba**ist Shaun, and drummer Vinnie were the first incarnation of the group, based in Gainesville, FL; after Shaun became the group's roadie, however, he was eventually replaced by Roger, who picked up ba** just to join the band. During 1993-1994, the group added their first horn player, Jessica, and soon after came trombone player Buddy. Right before their first tour, however, Buddy went to Europe with friends, so saxophonist Derron filled in for shows during his absence.br /br /With various 7" releases under their belt, Less than Jake debuted in 1994 with the album Pezcore, on Dill Records. Losers, Kings & Things We Don't Understand and Greased followed on No Idea until the group signed with Capitol for their major-label debut, 1996's Losing Streak. The album was full of the band's wry, fast-paced brand of ska-punk anthems, producing such fan favorites as "Johnny Quest Thinks We're Sellouts" and "Jen Doesn't Like Me Anymore." Upon the album's completion, Jessica left to pursue teaching, and (ex-Slapstick trombonist) Pete came on board. Around this time, Vinnie also started his own record label, Fueled by Ramen, with friend John Janick. Hello Rockview followed in 1998, and spawned a minor college radio hit with "History of a Boring Town." In fall 2000, the band released Borders & Boundaries on Fat Wreck, as well as landing the opening spot on Bon Jovi's North American tour. br /br /Derron left the band after the album's recording (and later went on to join Gunmoll), and Less Than Jake found his replacement in ex-Spring Heel Jack horn player Pete -- though to avoid any name confusion within the band, the second Pete was dubbed JR, and he is still called JR even after the first Pete decided to leave soon after the 2001 Warped Tour. Over the years, Less Than Jake has issued more 7" and limited-edition vinyl releases than most people can keep track of, so the bandmembers compiled some of their favorite tracks on one record for 2002's Goodbye Blue and White, named in honor of their original tour van. Anthem followed in 2003 for Sire; B Is for B-Sides was issued a year later, comprised of tracks that did not make it to Anthem's final cut. The DVD retrospective People's History of Less Than Jake appeared a month later. The four-song EP Absolution for Idiots and Addicts was released in April 2006, with their next full-length, In with the Out Crowd, following a month later. The latter album was also issued in a limited edition that came in a leather-bound case complete with bonus multimedia discs that contained a plethora of music videos, bonus tracks, and an elaborate photo gallery. ~ John Bush, All Music Guide


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