Sunday, July 31, 2016

Nothing More... but there truly is a whole lot more to say. More from Chicago Open Air, plus #iamjenny

Jonny Hawkins and Ben Anderson, Nothing More
Nothing More, Chicago Open Air
I had actually forgotten that I'd seen Nothing More, once before, back in 2013. Seeing them at Chicago Open Air was like discovering a band for the first time... and they blew me away.

Daniel Oliver, bass, Nothing More
Daniel Oliver, Nothing More, and creator of the Bassinator
Not only the music, and the songs--familiar from metal and rock radio--but the entire band's stage presence, Jonny Hawkins' occasional and uncanny resemblence to Jim Morrison, the genius bass solo involving three members of the band and a metal contraption, the Bassinator, which allowed playing the bass with picks, slide, and drumsticks...

The Bassinator, Nothing More
Nothing More, Chicago Open Air
The set opens with extra drums, front and centre, wound with rusty bike chains and other recycled metal. Jonny Hawkins, barechested, attacks them; Ben Anderson on regular drums, Mark Vollelunga on guitar, Daniel Oliver on bass, and the band is complete.

Jonny Hawkins, vocals and additional drums, Nothing More
Nothing More, at Chicago Open Air, 2016
Opening with Christ Copyright, then Mr. MTV, right through to Salem (Burn the Witch), and I'm hooked.

Jonny Hawkins, vocals and additional drums, Nothing More
Nothing More, Chicago Open Air
I had seen people wearing #IamJenny t-shirts. It wasn't until I'd returned home and worked on the Nothing More photo gallery, doing what I usually do--listening to a band while I work on the photos I've taken--that the story, and the meaning, became very clear. If you haven't already seen it, watch the official video for Jenny all the way through, right to the end. Every one of us--and I mean, each and every one of us--knows someone who has struggled with, who is struggling with, who lives with mental illness, addiction, depression, any or all of the above, or who has someone in their lives who are struggling with mental health... the song describes the turmoil, the hope, the love, the despair. At the end of the video, there are organizations who might be able to help, such as Bring Change 2 Mind, The Jed Foundation, The International Bipolar Foundation, Young Minds (UK), and To Write Love on her Arms, with whom the band have partnered to raise awareness. (There is always, always someone to talk to, no matter how bad today is... if sharing this video, and these organizations, and #iamjenny, makes a difference to one person, one family, one person's friend, sister, child, brother, parent, lover... it's worth so very much. You can check out and share #iamjenny stories on instagram and other social media. Let's keep this message going.)

Here's Jenny:

Nothing More's self-titled album is available at all your usual places, plus there is a PledgeMusic campaign running, right now, for their next album. Check it out here!

Nothing More are heading off across the pond to the UK for the Reading and Leeds festivals, and then return to the USA for an extensive tour. Find all the dates here--including dates with Disturbed--and put one or more into your plans. Not to be missed! (Personally hoping that a Northern California date or three will be added...)

All the photos are in the Toon's Tunes/Cameras and Cargos photo gallery: Nothing More at Chicago Open Air, click here!

Jonny Hawkins, vocals and additional drums, Nothing More
Jonny Hawkins, Nothing More, Chicago Open Air

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