The Lover of the low end.

April 1, 2012

As glamorous as being on tour seems, it is also about accepting a certain life of solitude. Most of the people I know who commit to a life of travel find this aspect to be the most satisfying and romantic. What other job pays you to sit and reflect on your life from cafes and picturesque street corners all over the world? Distance creates yearning, which is never a bad thing, and the differences in language only bring peace and music to mind when parked in a crowded plaza. I am grateful for my life and all of life, for what I see and what I don’t see, but I have a dog-eared passport to remind me I’ve seen a lot.


Tonight I am grateful for those I currently travel with as much as for those I once traveled with who made it possible for me to be where I am. I was introduced to my manager Bill along with friends Jerry and Justin 13 years ago today. I couldn’t have told you how my life would turn out back then, but I trusted in their warm and inviting friendship and I could see how much potential they saw in me. I knew it wise to stick close to them for they saw my own greatness before I.


A few years later in the coffee shop era, I met a bass player at an open mic, Ian Sheridan. He was playing bass while a DJ spun breaks and beats. I sensed he could use a band and I needed a bass player. I told him I had a stack of songs and a record deal to sway his interest rather quickly. We hit if off and toured together for years; starting in his truck before we could afford to invest in a touring van.


I have seldom taken the time to acknowledge band members outside of a general onstage introduction and I am sorry I have let that slide for so many years. I’ve had the pleasure of playing with many many MANY talented musicians. Dozens in fact, if you include all the different studio session players and touring artists I’ve mixed and mingled with over the past decade. Ian was a soft spoken player who always showed up with a smile, a great attitude, and a willingness to teach whichever new players came to the table who had to learn the catalog fast. He wasn’t much for onstage banter but I occasionally got him to agree with me or laugh at my jokes, calling him “The Lover of the Low End” for hundreds of shows in hundreds of cities. Offstage he had plenty to say and his stories are still cherished by those of us who traveled far and wide with him. His is a style uniquely his own.


That said, Ian recently released a new album with his satirical pseudo-slut-band Richie Aldente; whose name in Italian means “firm, but not hard” is the fitting nomenclature for this all too sexy, but non-threatening act. I had these guys play at a house party a few years ago and they blew everyone away. Since then I’ve seen them many times and it’s always a heart warming good time in the audience. If you like dancing, you’re gonna like this band. If you like making love, you’re gonna love it.


Ian, Thank you for the years of service. Thanks for going the distance and being a key player in the epic.

  • Avatar of roby
    roby said ...

    hello jason

    IM new member here ,, I hope you want except

  • Avatar of MillieD
    MillieD said ...


  • Avatar of Boogie
    Boogie said ...

    Dude, you’re making it harder and harder to pick a favorite song. Seemingly shoved off of the late train…once again, just discovered “93 million miles” and there’s something ethereal about it.
    Saw the live in Holland version with Toca, you two rocked it.

  • Avatar of Leenflower
    Leenflower said ...

    For those of us with gypsy blood, music can speak to who we are and why it is that we can never seem to settle down. Music engenders a desire to see a new place, or to travel simply for the joy of the journey :)

  • Avatar of lovePEAR
    lovePEAR said ...

    I’d LOVE to be considered for the ROOTING PROS ON TOUR!!! and Trust me we’ll get you all feeling grounded and involved with my 2 “get your roots deep” 8 year old and 4&1/2 master rooters ;)

    everybody seems to believe/think that as soon as you have kids then you can’t move /travel or experience new things… like if they need a routine… I ‘d rather Believe that children bring roots to wherever you’re going to , they ground us while traveling along ; isn’t it what life is all about ?

    Being Centered in movement.

    « De quelque façon que les hommes veuillent me voir, ils ne sauraient changer mon être, et malgré leur puissance et malgré toutes leurs sourdes intrigues, je continuerai, quoi qu’ils fassent, d’être en dépit d’eux ce que je suis. »

    — Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Les rêveries du promeneur solitaire, Paris, Flammarion, 1964, p. 147

  • Avatar of gamachan
    gamachan said ...

    Hello Jason!
    How are you today?
    Take a deep breath and start enjoying this new day on Earth.


  • Avatar of shorekimmy
    shorekimmy said ...

    I think you channeled your inner Huell Howser with that invisible mic. Just listened to Richie Aldente’s tunes, dancing was done, but it really made me want to dig out my roller skates.

  • Avatar of KT74
    KT74 said ...

    When I connect my soul with your soul I feel this incredible unconditional love. And you know if you are conected with this love, life will be easier.

  • Avatar of nicolabradley
    nicolabradley said ...

    Keep spreading the light MrAZ

    Special people will always magically come into your life to help you on your way, and they leave when the time is right and someone else steps in. All part of the bigger plan.

  • Avatar of Jean-Canale
    Jean-Canale said ...

    Just took a look at your 2012 tour…WOW what a schedule. Your passion will carry you through and of course your green smoothies. So GLAD Merriwether Post in Columbia MD is on the list again!!!!

  • Avatar of Rose
    Rose said ...

    Big Props to the Seattle Boy!! I just listened to some of the tracks….every song makes me smile instantly…the lyrics are so creative…especially “Charlie”…Bow chicka bow wow wow….uh-oh uh-oh..Ian must have had a blast making this.

    I will go see a show for sure!

    Saw the Tour Lost! Really excited to see you at the Gorge(maybe we can hang and exchange hi-fives..have your people call my people)…First time I saw you live was there in 2004 when you opened for DMB…you were such a cute little Geek in the pink:)

    Sweet tribute to Ian…I really can’t wait to see them live!


  • Avatar of pinkguavajuice

    Thank you for sharing and reminding us to be grateful for the friends around us! :)

    Today at work, my supervisor told me that people who came and quit had took up the job because they were too idealistic about the job, they were just trying out to find out what they want and because of passion. Somehow the passion that brought them to the job fails to keep them in the job.

    Instead, he told me, it’s the idea of commitment that made people came and stayed… I guess every job (even the best possible option) has a side of it that sucks, and so we need to be committed to stay.

    Thank you for being committed to what u do! love the songs in your new album! :)

  • Avatar of gamachan
    gamachan said ...

    Al dente, if you are talking about pasta.

    Even the gatto nel poster behind you indossa il cappello.

    Enjoy your week!

    Io invece ho sonno.

  • Avatar of JaneJohnson
    JaneJohnson said ...

    I’m sure you’ve worked really hard to be right where you are today. It’s so refreshing that you can look back through the journey and give thanks to all the others that helped you along the way. You make everything look easy and carefree on stage. I am sure alot of work and effort goes into your concerts, tour, it’s a team effort for sure. Your team must be awesome.
    Alone isn’t so bad. I go through spurts sometimes, where I want to be alone. This doesn’t mean I’m lonely though. Sometimes the world gets crazy, noise, too busy. I need to distance myself from all of it. Thats why I love hiking. I love the forest, seems to put everything into perspective. Back to basics and giving thanks for all the beauty that surrounds me. Even if it’s short lived.
    Hopefully when you get back home after a bit of a rest you’ll let us know what you learned about organic gardening. Like I said I’m a nature nut! Thanks for sharing

  • Avatar of alimckinnster
    alimckinnster said ...

    Ian was always my favorite… Just something about a man that plays upright bass…

  • Avatar of GloriousMe
    GloriousMe said ...

    You can be such a freak, and I appreciate that enormously. Enjoy the times of reflection, I’m betting they’ll make great lyrics in the end:) And you’re never really alone when in solitude, ’cause you got fans, a blog, followers and tones of good thoughts being directed your way:)

  • Avatar of morgane
    morgane said ...

    There is an immense diference in being physically alone and feeling alone. Being physically alone can be boring, but not a negative thing. We should take advantage of those instants, moment or period to get to know ourself better. The result is extremly positive. Feeling alone is from my point of view a much more negative state. We all have the right of feeling this amazing sensation of beeing loved. But I trully doubt you feel alone or at least hope not. With all the love, support and admiration your family, friends and fans try sharing with you in a way or an other. And this is the simple result of your work, your share of positiveness with each of us through your music and reflexions.

    Thank you.

  • Avatar of lovePEAR
    lovePEAR said ...

    there’s always a + and a – to each situation, choices choices… A glamourous tour life seems attractive to the ones tied up to a routine schedule in the same place repeating in cycles of 5 days weekend break and here we go again it’s Monday!!! YoOooOOO ! and then the glamourous tourers could be feeling needy of more rooted moments in their lives … Bring the 9 to 5 on tour & rock stars go plant some trees ;) haha
    Bring your roots on the bus with you :) or ENJOY the loneliness!!! sometimes I dream about having a few hours just for myself… Let’s Love who we are where we are and all our choices :) Crazy Life!

  • Avatar of ColeS
    ColeS said ...

    Ahhhhh that sounds like an awesome existence. To travel, experience, Live. AH! I need to go do something! To my brothers sandbox at nine o’clock at night I flee! Flee! FLEE!

  • Avatar of mrazwordplay
    mrazwordplay said ... Ian Sheridan multi-talented!

    Oh, heck, sorry for the multiple posts, but I (wonderfully) have a free hour to myself!

  • Avatar of mrazwordplay
    mrazwordplay said ...

    okay, that “embed” didn’t work, let’s try this:

  • Avatar of mrazwordplay
    mrazwordplay said ...

    Lover of the low end, Mr. Ian Sheri-dan… Makes me think of bubbles (Highline Ballroom dvd)


    2002 Java Joe’s