Seminal San Diego rockers Drive Like Jehu announced Tuesday that they would reunite for a show later this month.
Some music fans who saw Rocket From the Crypt rise from the dead last year wondered if it was only a matter of time till Drive Like Jehu also emerged from the ashes, too. On Tuesday, those fans finally got good news: Drive Like Jehu will play a free show at Spreckles Organ Pavilion on Aug. 31 in conjunction with San Diego civic organist Carol Williams.
The show announcement was confirmed by a post on the band's Facebook page and also by local promoter Dang Nguyen, who will be producing the show (in addition to being a manager of North Park's Bar Pink, of which Drive Like Jehu's John Reis is a co-owner).
"I got elected to the board of trustees for the Spreckels Organ Society this year. We manage and promote and program that the organ itself, not the pavilion," Nguyen said. "We rent out the space for events – the park does. So John and I were talking back in February or March, and he was asking about doing shows at the organ, with the organ, you know the possibility of it."
Nguyen, who had been brought in by the society to try to expand an aging audience, talked to the other trustees, who embraced the idea.
"John had to take it to Rick -- they turned down a hefty offer from Coachella a couple years ago because it wasn't the right thing, but being doing at the organ pavilion with the organ was the catalyst for it, was what made it worth doing," Nguyen said.
Incredibly, the show will be free and open to all ages, kicking off at 7 p.m. The event will also serve as a fundraiser for the organ, as all its weekly shows are.
“Basically, John and I and the band's management are making it happen – we have to pay for the organist and curator, and there will be a table for donations for the organ society itself," Nguyen said. "It’s being run as one of the organ-society events, so they will have their usual donation boxes out as they do every Sunday."
Nguyen said the performance will be one hour, with Williams opening with a 30-minutes solo set, then the band will come out and will play five songs with the organ.
"They’ll be new arrangements for the organ -- it's going to be Jehu songs but it will be a little different," Nguyen said.
After forming in the early 1990s, Drive Like Jehu broke nationally after signing with Interscope Records but disbanded in the mid-'90s. The group is led by Rocket From the Crypt lead guitarist/vocalist Reis, who also performs in another San Diego band, Hot Snakes, with Drive Like Jehu rhythm guitarist Rick Froberg. That band has also dabbled in reunion shows, since 2010. The duo also performed with the band Pitchfork. The Reis/Froberg bands have influenced decades of other artists coming up through the San Diego ranks.
In an interesting coincidence, SoundDiego included Drive Like Jehu in a July post on 9 SD Bands That Need to Reunite. Fortunately for us, we were wrong in our prediction that "it doesn't look like we'll be seeing these guys together anytime soon."