California based band, Dirty Heads, perform in CoMo

MOVE talks to Dirty Heads about their journey before their concert in CoMo on Sept. 3.


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We met outside of their tour bus, which was around the corner from The Blue Note and parked in front of Room 38. As I approached the bus the door flung open and the team manager, Christian, stepped out followed by the lead singer of Dirty Heads, Jared Watson.

Before we could even enter Room 38 a fan came up to Watson asking to take a selfie with him and stating “I’m a huge fan and so is my brother!” Watson took the photo and then we were led inside to a front room with red suede couches where we talked about the Dirty Heads journey.

The five-piece group is from Huntington Beach, California and consists of lead singer Jared Watson (Dirty J), vocalist and guitarist Dustin Bushnell (Duddy B), percussionist Jon Olazabal, drummer Matt Ochoa and bassist David Foral.

Watson claims he never had an interest in being in a band and he never even thought he was musically inclined until he met Bushnell in high school. Bushnell was already in a punk band, and he and Watson would joke around and create rap beats that Watson describes as “absolutely terrible fake gangster rap mixtapes.”

Since Bushnell was already trying to be a serious musician he told Watson that they should try and make some real music and that is when Watson caught the bug. Later on they met Olazabal, Ochoa and Foral through mutual friends and the band was complete.

They were signed to Warner Brothers in 2002 and toured in a van for about five years, but they hit a speed bump in their musical career when the label decided not to release their album.

“We were sitting stagnant for three years,” Watson says.

Once “Lay Me Down,” one of the band’s most popular songs, was released in 2008, it gave the band the push they needed.

The song hit No. 1 on the Billboard charts and became an instant hit. It embodies the sound of the Dirty Heads.

“I do think we have our own unique sound,” Watson says. “We’re an alternative band with reggae and hip-hop influences.”

Now the band is on a headlining tour again and made a stop at The Blue Note. The Dirty Heads had an exhilarating performance with a set list that lasted about an hour.

They performed 16 songs from four different albums. They started the show with “Franco Eyed” and ended it with “My Sweet Summer.”

Although Watson admits that touring can be grueling sometimes he says it is all about your perspective. “You’re traveling around the world playing music for your fans with good people,” Watson says. “That’s what you have to remember. So if you ever do get down and sad or kind of burned out you just gotta put it into perspective and realize how lucky you are.”

He also says that the band should get a sign for their tour bus that reads, “The worst day on the road is better than the best day in a cubicle in an office.”

Watson says he can feel the energy the crowd gives off. In order to have a great show you have to have a great audience. The show in CoMo was so lively and everyone was having a blast rocking out with the Dirty Heads.

“Everyone there paid their hard earned money to get into the show,” Watson says. “Just be a nice respectful person and look out for each other and have a good time.”

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