Switchfoot

Switchfoot is an alternative rock band from San Diego, California. The band’s members are Jon Foreman (vocals, guitar), Tim Foreman (bass guitar, backing vocals), Chad Butler (drums, percussion), Jerome Fontamillas (guitar, keyboards, backing vocals), and Drew Shirley (guitar, backing vocals).

They are known for their energetic live shows, the three guitarists in the line-up often operate simultaneously, building on the pop sensibilities of Foreman’s songwriting, rounded out by Fontamillas’s work on the synthesizer, bringing his industrial roots to the sound, the band works up “the Switchfoot sound” – a melodic crunch of densely layered sound featuring some electronic experimentation, and often driven by hard-charging guitar riffs, while throwing in a few softer ballads as well.

After early successes in the Christian rock scene, Switchfoot first gained mainstream recognition with the inclusion of four of their songs in the 2002 movie A Walk to Remember. This recognition led to their major label debut, The Beautiful Letdown, which was released in 2003. It went on to sell over 2.6 million copies and produced the band’s best-known singles, “Meant to Live” and “Dare You to Move”.

According to Jon Foreman, the name “Switchfoot” is a surfing term. “We all love to surf and have been surfing all our lives so to us, the name made sense. To switch your feet means to take a new stance facing the opposite direction. It’s about change and movement, a different way of approaching life and music”.

The band has completed their seventh studio album, Hello Hurricane, which released in North America on November 10, 2009.

Other projects

Switchfoot has been involved in a number of humanitarian causes, including DATA, the ONE Campaign, the Keep A Breast Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, Invisible Children, and To Write Love on Her Arms.

In addition to supporting those causes, they founded the Switchfoot Bro-Am Surf Contest, a benefit contest and concert to raise money for various organizations serving homeless kids in the band’s hometown of San Diego.  Also, before recording Nothing Is Sound, the band made a trip to several South African villages, which inspired the album’s song “The Shadow Proves the Sunshine”. Seeing an orphanage filled with infants who all lost their parents to AIDS, befriending orphans in the streets, and getting involved with a children’s choir called the “Kuyasa Kids” moved them to start an organization called lowercase people. The organization originally published a quarterly online magazine for music, arts and social justice. They have also produced a CD by the Kuyasa Kids to help raise money for the children’s communities.

In 2008, Switchfoot also got involved in the musical movement to spread awareness about 21st century slavery and human trafficking, performing “Awakening” for the documentary film Call + Response.

Jon Foreman has also released several solo projects, and is also involved in a musical collaboration called Fiction Family with Sean Watkins of the band Nickel Creek.

 Discography

Awards

Orville H. Gibson Guitar Awards
  • 2001: Les Paul Horizon Award for the most promising up-and-coming guitarist — Jon Foreman
ASCAP Awards
  • 1997: Best New Artist
  • 2006: Impact Award awarded “to celebrate the success and influence of his songs in mainstream rock music” Jon Foreman
  • 2006: Top 50 list of Most Performed Song of 2005 — “Dare You to Move”
GMA Dove Awards
  • 2004: Rock Recorded Song of the Year — “Ammunition”
  • 2004: Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year — The Beautiful Letdown
  • 2004: Rock/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year — “Meant to Live”
  • 2005: Artist of the Year
  • 2005: Short Form Music Video of the Year — “Dare You to Move”
  • 2005: Long Form Music Video of the Year — Live In San Diego
  • 2005: Rock/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year — “Dare You to Move”
  • 2006: Short Form Music Video of the Year — “Stars”
San Diego Music Awards
  • 1997: Best New Artist
  • 2001: Best Pop Artist
  • 2001: Best Pop Album — Learning to Breathe
  • 2002: Best Adult Alternative Artist
  • 2003: Best Pop Album — The Beautiful Letdown
  • 2003: Album of the Year — The Beautiful Letdown
  • 2004: Song of the Year — “Dare You to Move”
  • 2006: Artist of the Year
  • 2007: Album of the Year — Oh! Gravity

Leave a Reply