It was a real pleasure to have Jonny “2 Bags” Wickersham on Down The Highway. There are many interesting things about Jonny as a player and a person, but what I find the most interesting is how our lives are very similar. Jonny’s solo record that has been finished recently reflects how all types of music have influenced his song writing. There’s a definite Americana and roots feel to the record along with rock-n-roll. Those are forms of American music that I seem to have gravitated toward as my music matures. We have in common growing up in the same basic area of Orange County, CA and share a similar start to life. We both grew up in very musical households with our fathers being musicians. This made it very easy for both of us to start playing music.
This similar background made it easy for me to talk with him about his start in music and the role that Orange County may or may not have had in his path with music. Jonny has been in several of my favorite Orange County bands, big and small. On one hand we’ve played on the same bill here and there over the years and on the other hand I’ve seen him play on huge stages in front of staggering amounts of people. That right there is something that I find most interesting about a musical career in general.
There are several bands from Orange County that defined my buddies and I growing up and defined our home. Social Distortion is definitely at the top of that list. That band has been there from the start of punk rock in southern California and is still absolutely relevant today. Jonny landing that gig is something that most of us could only dream of. He deserves it and is doing a great job! I remember thinking how great it was for someone that I used to play shows with in small clubs landing the Social Distortion gig. It kind of makes you feel that YOU may have a shot at something great in music as well. Maybe that things are possible to you that once seemed impossible. Jonny put in his time with music and some great bands prior to Social Distortion, but being that I’m a guy from Orange County, so is Jonny, and so is Social Distortion, it becomes a union that I am very proud of and I can’t wait to see what’s next for the band and for Jonny!
Ian & Jonny 2 Bags