Brandon Ray Henderson is an icon in the Coachella Valley music scene. On top of being a great bass-player, he’s an accomplished guitar-player who has toured Europe with Brant Bjork, and was a founding member of Half Astro. He currently plays guitar in The Pedestrians, as well as a Misfits tribute band called Astro Zombies; finally, he plays bass for Parosella. However, he may be best known locally for his booking talents; he recently finished a stint at The Hood Bar and Pizza, during which time The Hood hosted Jello Biafra and the Guantanamo School of Medicine, Voodoo Glow Skulls, Adolescents, and legendary surf-guitar virtuoso Dick Dale, as well as many others. Brandon will be playing with Parosella on Friday, June 6, and Astro Zombies on Saturday, June 7, at Pappy and Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace for Eagles of Death Metal guitarist Dave Catching’s Birthday Spectacular; get full details and ticket info at pappyandharriets.com. Here are Henderson’s answers to The Lucky 13.
What was the first concert you attended?
I went to a lot of small, random punk shows as a young teenager. My first real concert would be the 1997 Warped Tour where I saw Descendents, blink-182, The Vandals, Strung Out, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Pennywise, and the Aquabats, from what I can remember.
What was the first album you owned?
Beastie Boys, Licensed to Ill. I used to play the cassette in my Teddy Ruxpin that I got for Christmas in 1986.
What bands are you listening to right now?
I always have my favorite go-to bands like Lagwagon, RKL, Bad Religion, Descendents, NOFX, The Vandals, and AFI that I keep in steady rotation. Lately, I’ve been into other artists like Radical Face, Brothers Comatose, Jason Cruz and Howl, the Dresden Dolls, Metric, Sun Kil Moon and Arcade Fire. The most recent Queens of the Stone Age record is very enjoyable. I wish had some Tribesmen recordings; I would listen to the shit out of them.
What artist, genre or musical trend does everyone love, but you don’t get?
What musical act, current or defunct, would you most like to see perform live?
Elliott Smith, or Jimi Hendrix with Band of Gypsys would be super-rad.
What’s your favorite musical guilty pleasure?
“Paparazzi” by Lady Gaga. That song rules! I always look both ways to see who is paying attention before I start singing along.
What’s your favorite music venue?
It’s pretty hard to narrow that down to just one. I love intimate venues like the Troubador in West Hollywood. The Melkweg in Amsterdam and The Arena in Vienna, Austria, are also great to perform at and/or see a show at.
What’s the one song lyric you can’t get out of your head?
“Am I following all of the right leads, or am I about to get lost in space?” “Lost in Space,” The Misfits.
What band or artist changed your life? How?
I heard the record No Control by Bad Religion when I was 9 years old and have never been the same. That sparked my intense passion for punk rock and vocal harmonies.
You have one question to ask one musician. What’s the question, and who are you asking?
I would like to ask Prince: How many pairs of shoes do you own?
What song would you like played at your funeral?
Hopefully after the service, everyone has a big party, and they play “Shout” by Otis Day and the Knights. I’m pretty sure my dear friend Ryan Edgmon will oversee and make that happen.
Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?
What song should everyone listen to right now?
“The Decline” by NOFX. It’s an 18-minute song packed with musical variety and lyrics that make you think. (Scroll down to hear it.)