The long-awaited review of the Swahili Blonde show at Echoplex by Grimy Goods is finally up. It was long-awaited because they stated that they have spoken to John at some point, to ask him to clarify whether he was a part of the project or not. While this is not an actual interview, just a reference to a brief chat, it should clear up things that were never clearly stated. Or, more likely, never updated. Before you continue reading all this, just one little disclaimer: this website was always supporting the band. And yes, it was because of John (which is absolutely normal coming from a website about him!) and because of the wonderful giddy feeling of assuming he was doing something out of love and love for music. Let’s not forget the awesome guitar work laid down for the album, too. All logical & normal.
Sandra Burciaga of Grimy Goods sums up the little chat she had with John:
So what’s the deal? Isn’t Frusciante a standing member of Swahili Blonde? Well that’s what I along with many other fans thought upon arrival to the show. After talking one-on-one to Frusciante during a brief intermission of the next act We Are The World, he shared that he is no longer with Swahili Blonde. He recorded with them but later quit the band. He doesn’t understand why she (Nicole) was advertising him as being in the band, because he’s not. He also felt bad that many die-hard fans came from as far as Arizona to see him rock that guitar.
However, as everyone else said previously, he ROCKED!
After about four songs, the crowd was to be blessed with an epic closing jam by none other than John Frusciante. Although it was all but one song lasting a good six minutes or so, the man jammed out to some wild shit and closed up the show proper. I can honestly say the whole crowd was pleased with his brief appearance; even the chatty-Cathy morons stopped their incessant blabber for a bit.
To read the whole review, which is somewhat more favourable towards the two other bands of the night ( We Are The World and Weave!, the later being Nicole Turley’s former band), but most favourable to John’s cameo appearance and to see some awesome photos taken by Grimy Goods’ photographer Matt Fisher, proceed this way. Many thanks to Sandra and Matt for sharing this with us and having been bold enough to ask that question!
Also, to correct John/Sandra, all in good spirits, people were coming from Berlin (Germany) and Lyon (France) as well. They had a good time, regardless and they loved the band. It’s just that…we all inevitably yearn for something like 2001 or those odd dates in 2004 and 2005; there’s always wishful thinking going on when there’s a tight community dedicated to one person’s beautiful music.
To remind you all – when the project surfaced, it was stated that its members were Nicole on a quite impressive number of instruments and John on “fancy trick guitar”. This was the situation each time I (less often) or one of Invisible Movement’s contributors (more often) checked on the Myspace profile. More people were added, but album’s cover art and credits, all featuring John didn’t help that much either.
When the live shows were first announced, it was stated that John was on the guitar for live performances. Mass-media’s articles likely stealing contents from websites like this one and making it sound more flashy so they could get more clicks with their “wonderful” titles such as “John Frusciante ditches Red Hot Chili Peppers for his girlfriend’s band Swahili Blonde” weren’t helping much and wow, they were mean, libelous and rude. And they might be the ones to blame for all this most, too, as they even went as far as to call John a swahili blonde?! In the meantime, the list of band members got even more unclear.
From what this website has been told by a couple of various sources, John was originally scheduled to play that one song (some of band members confirmed that) and he was present at the rehearsal. Given that nobody is a psychic here, the assumptions about whether he would’ve played more or not are pretty wild and there’s no reason to get into them.
For those who are interested in Swahili Blonde, no strings attached regarding John possibly appearing or not, three more shows have been scheduled for August-October 2010, all in the Los Angeles area. Do enjoy them and support a band that’s still shaping up, they need all the love they can get, they’re so much fun and they’re all so young! Admit you all danced to the video from Saturday! ^_^
To sum this up – once again we learn after the fact that John is not a full time member of a band. One day it would be nice to actually know the true information without fans having to speculate and potentially be disappointed.