The band 311 has been bringing an intense combination of Rock and Hip Hop music to audiences for 20 years. The group last released an album in 2011, Universal Pulse, which was 311’s 10th studio offering. They are known for their high-energy, marathon shows, sometimes with set lists reaching over 60 songs. Catch the band this Friday night as they bring their annual Unity Tour with Cypress Hill and G. Love and Special Sauce to Cincinnati's Riverbend.
CityBeat recently conducted a rapid-fire Q&A session with the 311’s lead singer, Nick Hexum.
CityBeat: You guys have been playing shows in Cincinnati for over 10 years. Any crazy or fond Cincinnati memories from the past?
NH: Always great crowds in Cincy! There seems to often be a heat wave when we play there. Which is great for us because people take their clothes off and rock out.
CB: Who would you like to trade places with for one month?
NH: No one!
CB: What fear would you like to conquer?
NH: (Fear of) burning Jazz solos with the heavy hitters.
That started with 311 Day. Playing shows on the high seas and on a private island was a perfect fit for us!
CB: What are some of your favorite cruise memories?
NH: I dressed up as a ninja and blended with the fans on costume night. I entered the costume contest and didn't even make the first cut! It was great to experience the 311 scene from the other side for a night.
CB: Last year you launched Live311. Why was it important for you to make live shows available for fans?
NH: People have been trading our shows (with our blessing) for years. We just wanted to make it more convenient and better quality.
CB: You have a huge fan following of all ages. How do you maintain and continue to grow your fan base?
NH: We do our best keep the albums creative and exciting and we put a ton of energy into our shows. The crowds keep us energized.
CB: How do you choose acts to go on the Unity tour each summer?
NH: We pick acts who are going to get the party started right. Cypress Hill and G. Love will be great this year!
CB: What is the secret to keeping the band together for over 20 years?
NH: Be ready to not get your way.
CB: What does your perfect day look like?
NH: Music, family, sunshine.
CB: What can fans expect with the show in Cincinnati?