South America Eats Jane's Addiction Pt. 2: JA @...
After all the anticipation, all the hype, all the hard work, all the travel, the day is here. 20 years after Lollapalooza numero uno, the first international Lolla has arrived in Santiago, Chile.
Jane's played the first Lolla, in what was supposed to be their farewell tour, yet here they are, still soldiering on. What a privilege it's been to peer behind the curtain of the Jane's Addiction circus. The day starts out with the ring master himself, Perry Farrell, giving a press conference.
Someone asked how Perry found his way to Chile of all places to do the first international Lollapalooza. The answer was simple, it was the feeling for the people, and technology. Perry had been to Santiago, Chile to see a show by The Pixies. The crowd was amazing and the city was inviting. When you are in a place like Santiago where many American bands have never been in their entire careers, bands that the fan's have memorized their lyrics, youtubed their videos and bought their merch, all from afar, when that band finally comes to this town, they give them their all. Perry's famous instinct, the same one that helped him create the modern American festival movement, the same one that helped break acts from NIN to Pearl Jam to Lady Gaga, was activated. He also met some great partners from Lotus productions, a local company, who's young energy and rising skill reminded him of the friends who surrounded him when he first started putting on shows. Parallel to that, the technology had finally gotten to the point where he felt comfortable the people here in Chile could have the same level of quality in the experience as they have in Chicago. Thus Lolla in Chile was born.
Dave Navarro and Stephen Perkins doing an interview with MTV Latin America. Dave couldn't help but flirt with the hot host and her little silver shorts. Stephen couldn't help but head bang to Sublime, who was playing on the stage behind them LoL.
After they finished playing, Stephen aka Perk aka Mr. Communicator chills w Eric Wilson, bassist & founding member of Sublime.
Here's one half of the Jane's dancer duo aka "The Twins" Etty Farrell (And star of "Married to Rock") hanging out backstage with a tasty drank. This woman can drink the band under the table and still dance for hours in stilettos!
Here's both the twins (Stephanie Spanski being the other) with Nadia our wardrobe person.
Actor David Arquette shows up with his buddy Tall Mike. David's a huge Jane's Addiction fan and rescheduled his whole trip to Chile so he could watch them today. That's Mr. Peter Katsis, Jane's manager and one of the legendary behind the scenes figures of the rock world (And also the worlds second tallest manager behind Led Zepplin's manager and ex-wrestler Peter Grant.)
David hears about our suicide suspension artists and is fascinated by what they do, so we head over to check them out and their process. When artists say they shed blood, sweat and tears for their art, no one means it as literally as these grrrls.
David get's a little "suicide" workout in before the show.
The set list is typed up. Jane's is so unpredictable that this might change while they are onstage, but fuck it, it's rock and roll!
A thunderous barrage begins to literally shake the trailer next to me. It's none other than Perk's drums, Chris Chaney's bass and Dave's Ibanez RG beginning the sonic assault known as "band practice". Before every show these three start off practicing Jane's tunes, but invariably end up "Stray"ing into everything from "Warpigs" to Sly & The Family Stone covers. One of the great things about this band, is that through all the tumult, Dave, Perk and Chaney have found a way to play together in many incarnations. The music never dies. I eventually hear Perry's wail begin to soar over the riffage. It's almost showtime. I quietly open the door and sneak my way into the small room these rock god's have positioned themselves in.
I almost feel like a child in a cage with lions. Weather they bite, or just nuzzle, one paw swipe can still send you across the room. Instead they thankfully ignore me and continue to rock out. Having blasted out "Whores" & "Superhero" (Theme song from the HBO show "Entourage") they are now ready for the stage. It's time!
I follow them as fast as I can, catching a random David Arquette interview on the way, an MTV crew interviewing Perry blocking my path as we walk up the stairs to backstage.
We reach the front stage and Chris "Captain" Roberts our production manager shoos them away. At the end of the above video you can hear Dave chasing me off stage as well LoL. The men position themselves, drums, bass, guitar and voice. The grrrls are hooked up to their harnesses, their back flesh stretching into small wings as they are hoisted into the air and swung.
Through the opaque Kabuki screen, the audience see's movement and cheers. The force of 50,000 people, focusing their joy directly at you is a powerful thing indeed. I feel their energy in waves, as they begin to sing soccer chants in unison, stamping their feet and clapping. Perry shakes out his hands, Perkins stretches his neck. The girls swing ominously over head, dark angels ready to commence their spell. Chaney begins the bass line to "Whore's" and the kabuki drops, the crowd roaring in approval!
Dusk turns to night, as the crowd continues to chant, singing "Ain't No Right" word for word.
Perry grabs his bottle of wine as they launch into "Ted, Just Admit It". The gorgeous dancer's Etty & Stephanie make their first appearance as "The Twins". A fevered dream Perry had many years ago when he created the artwork for "Nothing's Shocking" come to life. They grab a video camera and begin filming each other as a sexual cinema verite. The feed goes out to the crowd onto the jumbotrons.
Like a freight train out of control, the momentum keeps rolling. They go into their new single "End To The Lies". Produced by Rich Costey w Dave Sitek of TV on The Radio playing bass, it also features the music of the Jajouka, master musicians from a small town in the Rif Mountains of N. Africa. They celebrate a unique religion that has existed for 1,000's of years.
The dancers come out once again for "3 Days", a story of 3 lovers who spend a long weekend submerging themselves in the taboo. The song ends with the lovers together now bound through time.
Perry asks the crowd if they are ready. The epic "Mountain Song" riff begins, as Jane's rips through one of their favorites. According to Perk, they have never played a show without playing this tune. The crowd in their hands, they then leave the stage, the audience not sure if it's the end. They begin chanting "Juanes Addiction, Juanes Addiction!", stamping their feet and chanting so loud I'm sure you could hear it in the mountains. The band reappears with a flourish, jumping right into "Stop", giant confetti cannons going off on stage and in the crowd. It was like a hurricane of gold and white, with Jane's rocking out in the eye. Fucking magical!
They end the show with everyone's favorite song "Jane's Say's", based on a prostitute they knew back in the early days who was one of their first fan's.
Having played an amazing performance, the original members all come out and thank the crowd one more time. Chile, you were everything they expected and more.
Stay tuned for the next adventure, as the band goes to Lima, Peru and faces troubles they never expected! Keep it locked!