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(hed) pe and White Trash Night

Scratch â€Ë"N’ Sniff Tour parks it inside the South Sound Garage Saturday night

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Wanna hear something crazy?

Of course you do.

About three weeks ago, in an act of extreme preparedness and preplanning (something I’m not exactly known for), I spoke with Jahred Shane, who co-created and still fronts (hed) pe.  (hed) pe, originally scheduled to play The 54, will bring its “Scratch ‘N’ Sniff” Tour to the South Sound Garage Saturday, June 2. Mower, Authority Zero, The Villebillies, and Danny Diablo are also on the bill.

If you didn’t catch it, the crazy part is (hed) pe still exists.

If I remember correctly, and I’m pretty sure I do, in 2000-2001 I was growing more and more frustrated with radio stations in the area I’d grown up loving. In a matter of years, they’d gone from playing music I associated with to shoving boatloads of corporate glam rap rock down my throat. All of a sudden, it seemed, people became dim-witted, and bands like the Insane Clown Posse gained followings.

These are my memories from the early part of this decade. Somewhere in there, (hed) pe has a place.

(hed) pe emerged, on  a large scale at least, with its 2000 record Broke. The musical climate was perfect for the band’s mix of punk and hip-hop.  That’s what people wanted in ’00, and that’s what (hed) pe is best at dishing out. “Bartender” was the record’s first single, and at the time Melody Maker gave Broke four out of five stars, writing “Brilliant, about as black as this pimp-rock is gonna get, hip-hop credible in a way no one in the field has been since Urban Dance Squad ... it’s a great album”.

Urban Dance Squad?

While I’m somewhat tempted to spend the rest of the column bagging on (hed) pe, I’ve done stuff like that before, and I’ve never come away feeling good about it. As I’ve said many, many times, my musical taste is MY musical taste. Not yours. Not your brothers. Just because I have a column in the Weekly Volcano doesn’t make me some sort of expert, and it certainly doesn’t make my opinion any more valid than yours. If you like (hed) pe, that’s fucking awesome, because they’re coming to town.

The fact that they’re still around suggests a number of people do still like (hed) pe. While, at a glance, it would seem (hed) pe’s status in the world of popular music has decreased since they blew up in ’00, that doesn’t seem to be entirely true. In ’06 the band released its sixth full-length album, Back 2 Base X, a greatest hits record on Jive, and they plan to release their eighth record (counting the greatest hits) on June 26 of this year. Back 2 Base X was released on Suburban Noize, as (hed) pe’s upcoming release, Insomnia, will be. By name alone, this writer can’t think of a more appropriate outfit to distribute the sounds of (hed) pe.

“It’s a beautiful time for bands,” offers Shane by phone from the East Coast.

“I’m making way more money now than I ever did back in the day. We’ve got an underground following that’s very strong.”

That would seem to make sense. If you do a bit of research and a bit of listening, you’ll find that (hed) pe has made a habit out of constantly reinventing itself. One album will highlight the hip-hop side of (hed) pe, and the next will sound like a punk record. On one record Shane’s lyrics seem lighthearted, almost goof-bally, and on the next he’ll be delving into the eternal questions of humanity. One overriding theme for Shane, as of late, has been the search for truth.

“I love to be honest,” says Shane.

“We have an eclectic fan base that represents the world we live in. I want to spread it all over the planet, and empower the youth.

“Life is more magical than the way reality TV portrays it.”

While I might not agree with everything (hed) pe does musically, Shane and I can absolutely agree on that … the reality TV part. I’ve never felt comfortable empowering the youth, even when I was young.

(hed) pe, and the whole Scratch ‘N’ Sniff Tour for that matter, featuring Mower, Authority Zero, The Villebillies, and Danny Diablo, will hit the South Sound Garage on Saturday, June 2. Because I know you’ve taken a number of whip-its since ’01, I’ll mention again that the show is no longer at The 54. It’s been moved to the Garage. Now it’s your own damn fault if you go to the wrong place. 

[South Sound Garage, Saturday, June 2, 7 p.m., 18+, $15-$18, 933 Market St., Tacoma,]

White Trash Night

So, I know this month’s White Trash Night at Hell’s Kitchen doesn’t happen until Thursday, June 7 and that probably seems like a long time from now. In some ways June 7 is a long way away. In other ways it’s right around the corner.

But that’s neither here nor there.

What is here and there is, first of all, the White Trash Night lineup for June that features Who Cares, Neatrulboy, Instant Asshole, and Japanda.

Second of all, I happen to be privy to some rather embarrassing information for Camp Who Cares, which I’ve sat on long enough. Though I do believe I promised them I wouldn’t, I’d like to take this opportunity to divulge a secret of Dave and Paul’s.

At this very moment, unless either one of them has gotten canned since the last time we spoke, Blue-haired Dave and Chief Paul are both employed.

At real jobs.

You heard it here first.

[Hell’s Kitchen, Thursday, June 7, 9 p.m., no cover, 3829 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.759.6003]

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