Feb 222006
Authors: Dominic Graziano

Vinnie Fiorello , better known as the drummer from Less Than Jake, sits in the basement of a cold club in Englewood. This will be his home for the evening.

"The world I come from is the world that you are supposed to tour and build a fan base," he said.

It's this mentality that has kept Less Than Jake on the road and in venues practically year round.

Fiorello has been the backbone, both rhythmically and lyrically, for Less Than Jake's entire existence.

"Fourteen years – I defy any band out there to last 14 years," he said.

And for those 14 years Less Than Jake, the lovable ska/punk band from Gainesville, Fla., has been pumping their brand of music into amps across the globe.

"There's some 13-year-old kid out there (in the crowd) that wasn't even born when we started rocking," he said.

Fiorello said longevity is not the name of the game for most current bands.

"Music [these days] is so disposable, most bands won't last more than 3 years."

Less Than Jake has toured almost the entire globe and Fiorello said the kids are the same all over.

"It doesn't matter (what) culture, race or religion, a kid who likes punk rock and comes to one of our shows is (just about) the same everywhere," he said. "I'm out there rocking to these kids, most of their reactions are the same."

In 2004 Less Than Jake removed themselves from the punk circuit headlining a tour with Linkin Park. He said that he would rather play crowd like that because they're a bit uninterested and it keeps his brain hooked.

Fiorello doesn't want to give the wrong impression, though:

"I love a club tour. Sold out shows, kids that know all the words, walking down the street and getting recognized. That's cool; that's the reason I tour," he said.

"But it's the a**hole in me that likes the aggravated crowd. It's up to me to tell them that they are wrong in hating my music," he expressed.

Fiorello applies that same state of mind to Less Than Jake's music.

"If I don't challenge myself, how can I expect other people to be challenged?"

Less Than Jake's newest CD, slated for a mid-May release, will take a departure from the band's days of old.

"There are some songs on there that people will hear and think 'this is not a Less Than Jake song.' But I want people to realize that it's a good song regardless of what genre it falls in," he said.

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