Knocking It Out with Knock Out

Knock Out are from Riverside County. Knock Out currently have two albums Another Wasted Night and Let Go. Both of are currently available from Itunes. The band plays a mix of ska, punk and reggae. They are currently signed to Kung Fu Records. The current line-up of the band is Jared Palazzolo – Vocals/Guitar, Logan Barton – Bass, Danny Soto – Lead Guitar and Hoss Scholz – Drums. I got the chance to talk to Jared about the band.

How did the band originally get started?
Jared
: I and the bass player Logan got together. We had a mutual desire to writing some songs. Not doing the typical usual high school kids stuff like going to go see movies and going to all of those amusement parks. We wanted to start a band. We wanted to make our own Friday nights with our own shows.

Do you remember when your first show was?
Jared
: Our first show ever was in a bar called Tremors in Riverside California. I was supposed to be playing an acoustic set. I chickened out the night of. So our base player came along. We were actually open for The Aggrolites. At the same time for The Aggrolites it was their fourth show ever. So there is a cool little history with that.

You have been very well supported by one of California’s surviving bands in the ska scene The Voodoo Glow Skulls. How did they find you to help you out as much as they have been doing for you?
Jared
: The Voodoo Glow Skulls guitarist Eddie Casillas I approached him. I was at the time playing guitar with the band called The Skelletones an old ska band who I originally learned to play guitar with. So I had met The Voodoo Glow Skulls. Always being a fan and growing up in Riverside I took pride to those bands in that area. So Eddie checked us out. Eddie told us that he wanted to record a demo with us. We went in and paid. From what I remember is that he was a little shocked that we were semi ok for being a high school band. After a while he approached us about doing a full CD. After that we went into the studio with him to record our first CD release with him. From then on Frank Casillas wanted to help manage us and get us to the next level meaning to get out of Riverside. The ended up putting us on our first ever tour with Voodoo Glow Skulls and Suburban Legends. From then on it went from there to a full USA tour. Then a full west coast tour. Then any person I have ever met from the music industry now, like with Kung Fu Records, has been through Voodoo Glow Skulls. With the work and the money they have put in without making any money with us shows a lot of care for a local band like us that they cared about us and the local scene. I would give everything to that band. Even in the bigger picture we are not the headliners at Warped Tour. Someday maybe we all will be. If it wasn’t for everything that has been happening up to this point I would if been working a construction job which I am not doggin’ about doing. But I wouldn’t love what I am doing if it wasn’t for that band.

So now you have done two albums. Was one an independent or were both of them released with Kung Fu Records?
Jared
: Actually, yeah we have done two up to this point. We released one DIY (Did It Ourselves). We sold a few thousand copies of that one out of the back of a van. The second record Frank Casillas from Voodoo Glow Skulls started his own record label called Cal Street Music and he released the record. What happened is within the last year and a half we met up with Joe from Kung Fu Records. He then digitally re-released that last two records. So he took our two old products and has re-released them back for the first time ever world wide. It had never been on Itunes before now or been available thought Amazon till now. Now those records are available world wide and so we are now looking into the future.

So if you had any reason to even Knock Out any one who would it be and for what reason?
Jared
: Recently being a big ocean lover, maybe it would be BP in general. That’s the first thing that comes to mind. I am avid fisherman and love the ocean. And it’s depressing to seeing what they have done. We were in New Orleans at the time when a lot of that stuff was happening. It was dis heartening that some of my favorite stuff to eat with the things it supports were taken a big down fall. It has nothing to do with eating it or what not. Im a fisherman but not a commercial fisherman. Fishing is my way of release. It’s my way of relaxing. Seeing that. And seeing it on the news with how everything is going to be suffering from what they did there really saddens me. So if there was anybody I could Knock out it would be BP as a whole right now.

The first song you ever wrote? What was it about?
Jared
: Underground Junkie. It is one our first record. It is about growing up in the Riverside area watching The Voodoo Glow Skulls, The Skelletones, The Debonairs and Align Ant Farm come from out of that area wanting to be like those bands growing up. Then starting a band to write songs that I have influenced by those bands.

What has been the last song currently you have written?
Jared
: The last song I have written is more or less for a solo project that I a working on. The song is called Home Sick. It is about going over to The United Kingdom on tour for the first time. So for the first time of growing up with the usage of cell phones with constant communications with the world and not having a lap top, for the first time I have felt disconnected from my mother, my brother, my sister and my girl friend being disconnected for the first time and finally feeling home sick. I worte the song mostly towards the girlfriend. But it was about being disconnected in general. And with the choice in life that I have made that I want to tour realizing that this is going to be the hard part of it having to miss out on a lot of things. Likeloving going out with my nieces and nephews and going to the beach with them and taking them fishing and stuff. And with touring you don’t get to do that stuff with them. and that was what I was writing about that situation. Just missing out on all kinds of stuff.

Do you play both electric and acoustic guitars? Which do you write songs with?
Jared
: Every song I have written has been with an acoustic guitar. It feels more comforting. I usually write in a quiet environment just wit me myself. So it really isn’t likely to turn on the half stack and start whaling away. Everything I write starts with an acoustic weather it’s a ska, punk or a reggae song. They start with simple Johnny Cash type cords or something that transforms into an electric song.

The ska band Reel Big Fish have out an acoustic CD out now what do you think of that?
Jared
: Funny you mention that. We were on tour with a band called Sonic Boom Six from The United Kingdom who’s singer was recording vocals for the track called Girl Friend Now. It’s the song I have head on Reel Big Fish new acoustic CD and I think it is going to be really cool for fans to check it out. I am a big fan of acoustic versions of songs that came out differently that what was the major record label released. I would actually be really interested n hearing the release. To hear how those songs were originally written. In that case where I am written all of my songs acoustic. So to hear if those songs sound different at all to see if they sound the same or what the case may be.

What is your next band goal?
Jared
: we have been supporting these two albums for the past few years. It’s time to sit for a while and to write a record with good songs tha people will want to sing along to. Most of all I want the song to be something that they can relate to. Weather it’s a 14 year old kid going through problems or someone wants to hear a happy song to take them out of something that is going on. Our goal is to put out a new record and get it released on a big level. To be able to get out to see older fans and to get newer fans. To play possibly on the whole entire Warped Tour too. Being able to be a little more personal with it or what not. But we want to get the songs and the new record going. Simplify them. Not to impress people with big riffs. The best songs are the simplest songs. As longs as there is good meaning and good heart with something good behind it

Currently the band is still on tour and will be playing on December 12th at The Cobalt Café in Canoga Park CA in The San Fernando Valley all ages show with 6 more ska band, plus the have an additional show on December 17 at The Vibe in Riverside. They might be doing some Christmas tunes ska style as well too.

(Interview and Photos by Jonathan D. Wright)

Knock Out on Myspace

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