We have interviewed some incredible bands over the last couple of years, and more often than not, we always speak with the drummer! Maybe its just our luck, since we named AJ Pero (Twisted Sister) our National Spokesperson, but we have been fortunate to meet and speak with some truly unique drumkit masters. Well, we can also add Down's, Jimmy Bower, to that mix. Jimmy is one of the most laid back musicians in the business, and just a great guy to speak with. Armed with his wooden hammers, Jimmy can be seen behind the kits of not only Down, but Eyehategod, Crowbar, and Superjoint Ritual. In our interview, we discussed everything from the bands appearance at this year's Rock On The Range, the status of Down's new album, and how he is able to balance all the different styles of music he plays.
With this year at least, the Rock On The Range festival, held in Columbus, Ohio, on May 18-20, looks like it will be throwing some old school rock and metal to the masses. With acts like Megadeth, Anthrax, and Down, Jimmy couldn't be even more excited to share the stage with not only those legends, but some of the newer bands as well. "You know, its going to be a great weekend. We love to play festivals and shows that have a great mixture of hard rock and metal, as the fans get to see and hear some pretty cool stuff. When Down hits the stage, our ultimate goal will be to destroy anything in our path. There are some great bands playing at the show, so everyone should leave with their ears ringing!"
If you have followed Down through the years, you know that the band likes to take their time between albums. So it comes of no surprise, that the band's latest album will be dropping sometime in the Fall, which is about a four year gap. There has been some songs mentioned in an EP that will be released later this year, to include Levitation, Witchtripper, and Open Coffins. When asked what the plans were for the new album and touring, Jimmy said that "as a band we like to take our time. There is no rush to write or record. We all have our own little side projects that keep us focused. Forcing yourself to make music is never a good thing, however, we plan on forcing this record down everyone's throats! This is no doubt a fresh sound for the band, and our goal is to really hit the road with it [Album] and play it for the fans! My favorite song is Witchtripper, which just sounds so sweet live. We have some dates leading up to and after Rock On The Range, so it should be a great time."
Jimmy is well respected in the music community, not only for his genuine persona and work ethic, but for his ability to infuse and balance all of his playing styles into the music is playing for that show. With nicknames like "Bower Power" and 'Godfather Of Southern Metal", Jimmy must be doing something great: "I love to play as many styles as possible. It could be jazz, metal, blues, it doesn't matter because it keeps me fresh, and I always love to learn. I think that new Down album will really blow some people away with how musically diverse it really is."
As we wrapped up the interview, we talked about why we started Fallen Blue, and Jimmy said he fully endorses what we are doing. "We often meet cops at shows which is great thing, seeing them rock to our music, but let me tell you...it is a scary thing when some of them board our bus when we come back over the Mexican Border, from playing shows. We don't do anything too crazy, but when they are on there, its intimitating as hell. At the end of the day, we respect them for what they are doing and have to do on a daily basis."