My God. Was it really that long ago? If the dateline is to be believed, I interviewed and wrote about the Bad Brains back in 2007. And I dare say, everything there pretty much stands.
"For us to be gone, come back, be gone, come back, that's just the way we roll," Jenifer says. "It's not a nostalgia tip for us. It's a mission. It's the life we're living. In terms of money, in terms of records, you know it's not about that. This is all God's work to us." And so the Brains, with their original lineup of Dr. Know, H.R., Earl Hudson, and Jenifer, continue their lifelong commitments to music and Rastafari.
"Some people got to worry about their success and monetary things, these seemingly important things," explains Jenifer. "But when you're a spiritual cat or a great spirit respecting youth, all things are not what they seem."
Indeed, Darryl Jenifer was a real soul brother. He was out there and fully inspiring. I remember getting off the phone after we somehow ended up talking about my band. He had so much useful and stirring advice. I bolted to practice a new man.
The only thing would add to the piece now, having seen them, is a bit about HR's listlessness on-stage. It's as if someone crushed up an extra prozac into his pre-show joint or something. It worked for the reggae tunes, but not so much during the shred. But, you know, dude's got to be pushing 50, so back-flips are out of the question.
I have one extra-special hope for tonight's Roseland show: that HR witnesses the chaotic trash-spinning cyclone that is Monotonix and feels challenged—that he must rise to the occasion and really break the shit off.
Should be interesting to see.