Tuesday, April 23, 2024

The Bronx’s Matt Caughthran Talks Sailor Jerry’s Partnership, Favorite Vegas Spots And Musical Influences

The Bronx is a punk rock band, formed in Los Angeles in 2003. They also have their own mariachi band, Mariachi El Bronx, which has released 3 albums alongside the bands original 6 studio albums. They played the entire punk music festival, Warped Tour in 2008 to get started with life on the road. The band most recently performed at Riot Fest, Aftershock, and the Louder Than Life music festivals in 2023. They just wrapped touring in Australia, celebrating their 20th anniversary together.

In the summer of 2024, the band will be playing festivals across the country including No Values Festival, Camp Punksylvania, and Punk in Drublic.

Matt Caughthran, the bands lead vocalist, is in a partnership with Sailor Jerry, a company created to honor Norman Collins, the father of old school tattoos. The brand also has its own line of spiced rum, which can be paired with some amazing recipes found on their website

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

We spoke with Matt Caughthran at the Louder Than Life Music Festival. We got to talk about his partnership with Sailor Jerry, the best places to visit in Vegas, and how Hispanic culture in LA has influenced the group’s mariachi band. 

I also went all in with Sailor Jerry’s at Louder Than Life and got a tattoo onsite with local Louisville tattoo artist Christopher Waugh. I love the results that pay homage to Kentucky with the classic Sailor Jerry horseshoe design. I have very few tattoos and they all have special memories associated with bands and this one is no exception.

Photo Credit: The Travel Addict
Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

Tell me about the Sailor Jerry partnership and how it came about.

The band started in 2003. We have probably been working with Sailor Jerry since maybe 2005 or 6. We started doing some of their Sailor Jerry Prevents gigs, little cool kinds of underplays in bars in Vegas, played in Philly and a couple of other places.  

When the pandemic hit and Sailor Jerry was looking for something to do to kind of pivot, we came up with a podcast idea and we started The Sailor Jerry Podcast, and that’s on year three now. It’s just an extension of our relationship. It’s very rock and roll based, very art based, and we have a lot of fun doing it.

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

What’s your favorite Sailor Jerry podcast moment? 

The cool thing about it for me, musically speaking, is a lot of times when you’re on tour and you have friends and other bands or artists that you respect, you may run across all the time in the touring world, but you’d be surprised at how many conversations are just at a very surface level. You don’t really ask your friends what their creative process is or stuff like that. 

Having those opportunities on the podcast to kind of really talk to other musicians, about what drives them, about their work ethic, what inspires them creatively, personally, all that stuff. It’s really cool because that’s the stuff that I want to know. But when you see them on the road, it’s just like, “Yo, what’s up?”

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

Has there been any moments on the podcast that surprised you? Tell me about Brian Fallon from The Gaslight Anthem.

Awesome band, awesome guy. We just saw him at the Chicago Riot Fest. And you know that New Jersey connection, It never ceases to amaze me. Like Jon Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, and Brian Fallon actually all hang out together. Blows my mind. You know what I mean?

Tell me about “Breaking News.” What’s the story behind it?

Well, “Breaking News” is like a classic. You know, that’s classic punk rock. Don’t pay attention to the TV, don’t pay attention to the media, live your own life. The whole world is going to hell, you might as well buy a concert ticket and get in the mosh pit, spray paint something on the wall. Live your life, that type of attitude. 

A lot of people think that song was written during the pandemic, because we wrote our sixth album before the pandemic. We waited to release it until after 2021, because we saw so many bands releasing records and it was so sad. It just got annihilated. But that song was written before all of that, it ended up just ringing more true in the kind of chaotic political circus and everything that happened.

We actually released a seven inch for that song on vinyl. Tim Armstrong from Rancid did the artwork for it, and we recorded a live version of that song at Tim’s studio in LA for the B-side. So, side A is the album version and side B is live at Tim’s spot.

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

I know you love Vegas. Tell me your favorite spots in Vegas to hit up.

I’m going to Vegas in mid-October when I get home. I’m looking forward to going back. We have a mariachi band as well, and we did a residency for a couple of years at the Cosmo, and fell in love with that place. Love the Cosmo, love going to the Peppermill. I like going to Fremont Street as well. Punk rock bowling at the Golden Nugget is always a classic experience. New circuit casinos, awesome. 

I think I’ll be getting married in Vegas next year. I think I’m going to do the Elvis wedding. I love all the little spots you can find for food. I’m a social guy, so I love cocktails and beer. I love playing video poker. You can just sit me down at a bar and I’m good to go. I like being able to go someplace where all of the experiences you could ever hope to imagine are possible. 

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

Any favorite restaurants you like to go to?

You know what’s become a classic, this isn’t a specific Vegas thing, but I love going to Nobu at Caesars. That’s a f***ing great, great spot. Then also there’s the Taco Bell Cantina that’s right next to Planet Hollywood. That’s also a life saver when it comes down to it. 

What’s your favorite Sailor Jerry cocktail?

I’m a big Jerry Loves Ginger guy. I’m not like a super complicated cocktail guy. So, Sailor Jerry, some ginger soda, a little bit of ice, that hits the spot for me because it’s refreshing. That’s probably my favorite one. Other than that, there’s been some mixologists, bartenders, whatever you want to call it, the people that can make the fancy drinks, when they’re done right I can get behind those too.

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

I always ask people, what’s your perfect day in LA?

A perfect day for me is waking up at home because I’ve been traveling a lot. I got an awesome lady and a Chihuahua at home. I live by the beach. I was born in East LA, so I lived in the city for a long time, especially when the band was taking off. But I’m on the beach now and I’ve always loved the beach too. Waking up at home, going for a walk on the beach, maybe jumping in the ocean.

Do you have a favorite beach?

I live in Huntington Beach right now in Orange County, so I dig it. The water’s beautiful and clean and, honestly, you can’t go wrong with any beach. 

What are some of your favorite Mexican food spots?

There’s a spot called Super Mex that I go to that I love. A spot called Lola’s, on Long Beach, it’s really good. Or I’ll make some breakfast burritos at home with my lady or something like that. Hang out, do some writing, hopefully some creative stuff, podcasting or music. Get a little bit of work done so you don’t feel like a complete pile of sh*t. Then have a cocktail, have a drink and see where the night takes you.

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

How did the mariachi band come about?

It just came from being in an LA band. Our old rehearsal spot was right next to a Mexican car wash. They were always blasting mariachi music, banda music, all that stuff. Hispanic culture is just everywhere in LA. Where I grew up, Pico Rivera, it was just completely surrounded. It’s such a beautiful culture.

It’s a family first culture. The music is unbelievable. We grew up with friends outside of the Bronx that play music that are connected with Mexican bands, bands like Los Lobos, stuff like that. It’s just always been around. When we had the opportunity to maybe try and branch out a little bit and do something a little outside the box, that felt like the natural move to us.

Latest

311 Caribbean Cruise Returns March 2025

311 and Sixthman have announced the 311 Caribbean Cruise...

Country Thunder Brings The Heat To Arizona With Lainey Wilson, Jelly Roll And More

Country Thunder (CT) hosts festivals in Arizona, Wisconsin, Florida,...

BARK Launches BARK Air to Offer Premium Flights for Dogs

BARK, a leading global brand dedicated to keeping dogs...

Coachella 2024 Day 3: Doja Cat Wins It All And J Balvin Is Abducted By Aliens

Coachella Sunday’s are always when it starts to feel...

Newsletter

Don't miss

311 Caribbean Cruise Returns March 2025

311 and Sixthman have announced the 311 Caribbean Cruise...

Country Thunder Brings The Heat To Arizona With Lainey Wilson, Jelly Roll And More

Country Thunder (CT) hosts festivals in Arizona, Wisconsin, Florida,...

BARK Launches BARK Air to Offer Premium Flights for Dogs

BARK, a leading global brand dedicated to keeping dogs...

Coachella 2024 Day 3: Doja Cat Wins It All And J Balvin Is Abducted By Aliens

Coachella Sunday’s are always when it starts to feel...

Dollywood’s Flower & Food Festival Kicks off April 19th

Over one million blooms will be on display when...
Amy Harris
Amy Harris is a writer and photographer who has been traveling for 20 years and flown over 2 million miles to visit over 80 countries on 6 continents. She is a freelance photographer for Invision by Associated Press, AP Images and Rex/Shutterstock. Her work can be seen in various publications and websites including: Rolling Stone, AP Images, National Geographic Books, Fodor’s Travel Guides, Forbes.com, Lonely Planet Travel Guides, JetStar magazine, and Delta Sky Magazine.

311 Caribbean Cruise Returns March 2025

311 and Sixthman have announced the 311 Caribbean Cruise is returning for its eighth sailing March 26-31, 2025 aboard the Norwegian Gem. The voyage...

Country Thunder Brings The Heat To Arizona With Lainey Wilson, Jelly Roll And More

Country Thunder (CT) hosts festivals in Arizona, Wisconsin, Florida, Bristol, Alberta, and Saskatchewan during the year. Country music has hit a momentous popularity throughout...

BARK Launches BARK Air to Offer Premium Flights for Dogs

BARK, a leading global brand dedicated to keeping dogs happy, has partnered with a jet charter to launch BARK Air. BARK Air addresses the...