311 has always tried to keep a close relationship with their fans, pressing the flesh when most popular groups would keep their distance. Nothing exemplifies it more then the 311 cruise they hosted in 2011 where the band performed and met all their fans over the 3 day trip (set to repeat in 2013).

Singer/guitarist Nick Hexum explained to Live 105, San Francisco, “It’s really great to spend time with all the fans. We actually take a picture with every cabin that is on board. We literally sit in our cabin for 5 hours while everyone on board comes through. We take a picture with them and it’s just great to share the love with the people who support us.”

The fact that some of these fans may be a bit obsessive doesn’t faze Hexum as he also an obsessive music fan.

“I’ve met several fans that will show me pictures of their bedrooms that are wall to wall 311.” Hexum commented, “It doesn’t creep me out because I was that way with The Clash. Every inch of bedroom when I was younger was covered in Clash stuff.”

Hexum had the chance to meet and eventually work with the late Joe Strummer of the Clash after a chance meeting at party of a mutual friend.

Hexum described the meeting, “There was this boom box playing this crazy Cuban music and I was looking at it … and I was like, ‘Hey, that’s a 311 sticker on that boom box.’ So I asked my friend whose boom box it was and he goes, ‘It’s Joe’s!’ My entire musical life was validated right there! The fact that Joe Strummer had a 311 sticker on his boom box!”

The iconic punk rocker and Hexum started a friendship that led to Hexum joining Flea and Tom Morello on Strummer’s track “It’s A Rockin’ World” from Chef Aid: The South Park Album.

311 is currently touring North America with Slightly Stoopid promoting their latest record Universal Pulse. Get details on both at 311.com.

— Bradford Hornsby, Live105 San Francisco


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