A rainstorm's been hammering their van for two straight days — but like everything, the Jacuzzi Boys take it all in stride. When they play behind Texas Theatre’s screen in Dallas on Saturday night, they’ll show Texas the easy energy that’s made them hometown heroes in Miami.
Since breaking out with their low-fi, psychedelic first album, No Seasons, the trio quickly did what few other South Florida bands have been able to do: get heard on a national scale. Jack White brought them to Nashville and captured their vibe in a live recording on Third Man Records.
Now, the Boys have started their own label, Mag Mag. Beholden to nobody, they’re doing things their way. They’ve made an EP and an LP. They remixed the latter for a second digital helping with a who’s who catalog of other wonderful South Florida weirdos, like Otto Von Schirach, Kramer and noise icon Rat Bastard. They’ve even put out their first release by another artist, a flexi disc single of friend Iggy Pop.
Bassist Danny Gonzalez says the group's music is evolving.
“There’s no reason to have to stick to any sort of thing," he says. "If there’s a song that we all three agree is cool, and it doesn’t seem to fit into whatever idea of what somebody might expect, it doesn’t really matter.”
In larger music markets, bands can get pigeonholed, constantly paired with other like-sounding acts. In South Florida, everything is cross-pollinated, from the creatures slithering through your mango trees to the plants breaking through the stucco to the music crashing down on the stage. B-boys, noise musicians and rock and rollers all play together and absorb each others' influences. It’s an experimental playground.
“I think maybe it throws some people off,” Gonzalez says. “But … [the music] has always kind of changed, so in some ways it’s always stayed the same, so it’s not surprising to me.”
Now that they have their own label, the Jacuzzi Boys are even less tethered, so they can be as spontaneous as they like.
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“You don’t have to wait on anyone or get approval for anything or submit it to anyone. Whatever we do, if we’re happy with it, it gets done,” Gonzalez says.
The Jacuzzi Boys are excited to showcase the sounds they love. The Ping Pong LP remix jags a dozen directions, from sci-fi dance tunes to bass and beachy dreamscapes, all sourced from their sticky hometown.
“It kinda paints a cool picture of the current, past, future of the scene,” Gonzalez says, “of what people might not expect to be coming from South Florida.”
And since Iggy Pop started showing up at their shows and bringing them along to play his, releasing work by the former Stooges frontman seemed like another natural progression.
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“We just asked him to do whatever he wanted,” Gonzalez says. “It wasn’t like, ‘Hey, give us a song.’ It was like, ‘If you wanna tell a story, read a poem, sing a song, do an a cappella thing — whatever.’” And he did, opting for an acoustic train-track tune he wrote called "Asshole Blues."
They’re still figuring out the business end of things, the distribution market and managing, but for the Jacuzzi Boys, that’s just another part of digging into the adventure. Right now, they want to keep evolving and making music that feels right to share with the world, their way.
“It kind of slowly but surely becomes a little bit more legit. It’s fun; we’re just taking it step by step,” Gonzalez says.
The Jacuzzi Boys play behind the screen at Texas Theatre (231 W. Jefferson Blvd.) following a screening of Reservoir Dogs. Sets start at 11 p.m. with opener The Loafers. Jacuzzi Boys go on around midnight. Tickets are $10 for show only or $18 for a movie/show combo. Get tickets through Ticketfly.