"Our band members have a varied range of influences, from punk to metal to classic ’70s hard rock,” says drummer Brock Scott of power trio Los Santos. “I like to classify our music as straight-up rock and roll, with that classic ’70s feel.”
It’s not easy to create new music that plays like classic radio rock, not to mention the challenge of finding bars that pay you to do so. However, the group has now logged just over a year’s worth of gigs, breaking in their boozing, brawling originals at venues such as Navajo Live, the Rook Bar, the Merrow, and the Library Bar.
Specializing in Bachman Turner Overdrive–style anthems, the band’s tracks (like “Viva Los Santos”) are decidedly local-centric, with an accompanying video shot around town as they show increasing enthusiasm for “flyin’ down the 805, with a bottle of Beam and a gun in the glovebox.” George Thorogood would approve of both that song’s bluesy backbeat and the hometown rebel sentiments expressed in lyrics like “Muscle cars built to last, drinkin’ hard, loving fast, life is short, not meant to last.”
"Viva Los Santos"
...by Los Santos
Other original tunes like “She Was Sentimental” seem more informed by punk-leaning acts like Fishbone than the FM arena rock that supplies their usual go-to construct. All three members take on vocals at various times, which appears a factor in the style of each song. “Ferris Wheel” (with bassist John “JC” Cox singing) sounds for all the world like a lost track from a vintage UFO concert album. “In My World,” with drummer Scott on gravelly lead vocals, leads into some Clapton-esque solos from Trenton, NJ–born guitarist Jeff “JT” Thomas (who used to play with Scott in Harbinger) that seem concocted to get bar patrons on their feet and dancing up a thirst.
Los Santos is preparing 14 original tracks at Scott’s home studio. “Once that’s completed,” he says, “we’ll head into a proper studio to record either an EP or full-length album.”
Los Santos plays April 8 at the Library Tavern, with StraitJacket, and on May 27 at the El Cajon Grand.
WHAT’S IN YOUR MUSIC PLAYER?
Brock Scott: “Deep Purple, Abandon, an amazing rock album that not a lot people have heard, with Steve Morse on guitar and the rest of the Purple ones doing their thing.”
Jeff Thomas: “Band of Gypsys, by Jimi Hendrix. Because it’s Hendrix.”
John Cox: “Moon Shaped Pool. The latest release from Radiohead is as creatively crafted as any of their albums.”
ANYTHING YOU WERE EMBARRASSED TO MENTION?
Scott: “Avril Lavigne, ‘Skater Boy.’”
Thomas: “‘Witch Doctor,’ by the Chipmunks.”
Cox: “The Humpty Dance.”
WHO DO PEOPLE SAY YOU LOOK LIKE?
Scott: “Unfortunately, they say I have an uncanny resemblance to Ron Jeremy. But only from the waist up.”
USELESS (BUT FASCINATING) TRIVIA?
Thomas: “More women watch porn than men.”
Cox: “The weight of all the ants in the world is equal to, and possibly greater than, the weight of all humans in the world.”
Scott: “Queen, The Game tour. July 1980 at San Diego Sports Arena. It was the very first concert I ever saw, I was 13 years old...it was big, loud, bright, and full of all kinds of wonderful smells.”
Thomas: “Eric Clapton at the Sports Arena in 1992. He definitely came to play that night.”
Cox: “Motörhead at Coachella. Slash got onstage for the last few songs.”
FEARS OR PHOBIAS?
Scott: “I have a fear of tight spaces, please don’t ever let me get stuck anywhere.”
Thomas: “Fear of water, even though I can swim.”
- Saturday, April 8, 2017, 7:30 p.m.
7459 Mission Gorge Road,
- Saturday, May 27, 2017, 8 p.m.
El Cajon Grand,
351 W. Main Street,
Thomas: “Broke all my fingers in a rollover truck accident in the mountains. While upside-down, Mötley Crüe’s ‘Shout at the Devil’ was blaring on the radio.”
Cox: “I was smashed into rocks in La Jolla in my early 20s. A current came out of nowhere. Luckily, some people were hanging out at the edge of the rocks. I was able to swim to them, and they helped my bloody body out of the water.”
WHERE DO YOU TAKE OUT-OF-TOWN GUESTS?
Scott: “Hash House a Go Go.”
Thomas: “The nearest dive bar.”
Cox: “Ocean Beach.”
BRUSH WITH FAME?
Scott: “Me and a friend snuck backstage at the San Diego State Open Air Amphitheatre after the Stevie Ray Vaughan concert.... We hung and drank Budweisers with Stevie’s backing band Double Trouble. We didn’t get to meet Stevie, but his manager did get us personalized autographs and guitar picks from Stevie.”
Thomas: “Told Marcus Allen to fuck off.”
Cox: “I met Ace Frehley of Kiss at the Casbah in 2013. He was kind enough to take a photo with me.”
SOMETHING YOU NEVER RUN OUT OF?
Scott: “Toilet paper.”
Thomas: “Jack Daniel’s.”
Cox: “Chocolate anything.”
IDEAL SUPERPOWER (AND WHAT WOULD YOU DO WITH IT)?
Thomas: “X-ray vision. Take a wild guess.”
Cox: “Teleportation. I would see the world at my leisure.”
SOMETHING ABOUT YOU FEW WOULD KNOW OR GUESS?
Scott: “I take both yoga and Zumba classes.”
Thomas: “I hate raisins.”
Cox: “I graduated from SDSU with degrees in English lit and Spanish.”