The band 311 celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2020, but the band’s formation is an annual celebration even on non-milestone years. This March 11 — 3/11 — was no different, with the band seeing a 23% uptick in radio play (compared to the previous week) in the alternative and active rock formats, according to Mediabase.
Reaching a listening audience of 3.7 million, the group’s most played songs on March 11 were recurrents like “Down,” “All Mixed Up” and “Amber” and a cover of the Cure’s “Love Song.”
The rap-rock-reggae hybrid, known for its dynamic live concerts, has a dedicated fanbase that has kept up with the group through 13 studio albums, a pair of live and greatest hits collections and some 2,000 shows in 27 countries.
What makes the group so enduring? “They are one of those bands that cross barriers of many generations,” says Matt Pinfield, a radio veteran and the author of the book “All These Things That I’ve Done: My Insane, Improbable Rock Life.” “They have fans in their 50s to young kids who are 10 and 11 years old.”
Still featuring its original lineup — guitarist and vocalist Nick Hexum, singer SA Martinez, guitarist Tim Mahoney, bassist P-Nut and drummer Chad Sexton — 311 kicked off its 50 Dates in 50 States Tour in February at Mardi Gras in New Orleans. A sold-out three-night run in Las Vegas, Nevada is one show in but further dates may be halted due to the promoter Live Nation’s coronavirus precaution which has emptied many large venues through the end of March.
In July, 311 is slated to perform a special summer tribute concert in its hometown of Omaha, Nebraska. The tour continues, with Incubus opening, throughout the summer and into September.
The band’s long-lasting relationship with its fans was the subject of a documentary on the band, “Enlarged to Show Detail 3,” which was shown in 240 theaters nationwide on March 11, 2019.
Musically, adds Pinfield: “They fused all the styles of music that they loved together to make their own sound and they are creating this lifestyle following of people that will follow them everywhere — like Pearl Jam and the Grateful Dead. There are not too many bands like that. Their fans are that rabid. They are truly one of those American bands, and are also the nicest people in the world. They are humble, hard-working musicians and they never take it for granted.”