Rolling Stone


New "Switchfoot - Live in San Diego"
DVD in stores now!



September 15. 2004 - San Diego rock group Switchfoot will embark on their fifth nationwide tour in support of the platinum-plus breakthrough CD The Beautiful Letdown. The two month trek will hit mostly theatre size venues and is set to kick-off at The Grove in Anaheim, CA on October 7.

Photo credit: Justin Stephens
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The Beautiful Letdown is Switchfoot's debut release for Columbia Records and is the band's fastest selling record to date passing the 1,000,000 mark and being certified platinum by the RIAA in May. The album is currently #16 on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart after a year and a half of being released. The Beautiful Letdown features the crossover smash rock hits "Meant To Live" and "Dare You To Move." As did "Meant To Live," "Dare You To Move" hit the top 10 on the Alternative & Rock charts this past summer and is now crossing over to Top 40 radio. The single is #28 this week.

Switchfoot also have a brand new DVD in-stores titled Live in San Diego. Live in San Diego was recorded at San Diego's fabled punk rock venue Soma and features a scorching set of tunes from The Beautiful Letdown as well as some of their earlier recordings. The DVD takes fans behind-the-scenes of the "Meant To Live" video shoot and features exclusive & candid interviews with the entire band, as well as exclusive photo galleries.

Switchfoot has experienced astonishing success on both radio and other media this past year. The band has toured the country four times to sold-out crowds since early 2003 and they've been featured in Rolling Stone, USA Today and have performed on NBC's The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Conan O'Brien Show, Last Call With Carson Daly, CBS's The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn, and ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live.

Tour dates

October –

7 The Grove of Anaheim Anaheim, CA
8 Warfield Theatre San Francisco, CA
9 Paul Paul Theatre Fresno, CA
11 Moore Theatre Seattle, WA
12 Crystal Ballroom Portland, OR
13 The Big Easy Boise, ID
14 Dee Glen Smith Spectrum Logan, UT
15 Paramount Theatre Denver, CO
16 DC 101 Chili Cookoff Washington DC
19 The Quest Minneapolis, MN
20 The Rave Milwaukee, WI
21 Riviera Theatre Chicago, IL
22 State Theatre Detroit, MI
23 Desert Breeze Park Las Vegas, NV
24 Dallas, TX
25 The Pageant St. Louis, MO
27 Agora Theatre Cleveland, OH
28 Electric Factory Philadelphia, PA
29 Hammerstein Ballroom New York, NY
30 The Palladium Worcester, MA

November –

4 House of Blues Orlando, FL
5 House of Blues Myrtle Beach, SC
6 Norva Theatre Norfolk, VA
8 Tabernacle Atlanta, GA
9 Wright Center Birmingham, AL



September 15, 2004

May 31, 2004

March 31, 2004

February 17, 2004

January 16, 2004



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Music Samples

Meant to Live

Dare You To Move


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Jon Foreman - vocals, guitar
Tim Foreman - bass
Jerome Fontamillas - keyboards
Chad Butler - drums

Photo credit: Matthew Welch
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Rarely does a rock band combine explosive guitars with an intense longing for meaning. Jon Foreman and Switchfoot, however, yearn for something more than what pop-culture is selling. “If I’m content as an artist to write a hit song or have a platinum record, then I’ll have failed a lot of my fellow human beings,” says Foreman. “we have the best jobs in the world because we play music for a living and love doing it, but we didn’t get into this to try and sell something. For us, it’s about communicating and connecting with people on a different level.”

That stance earned the Switchfoot vocalist/guitarist and his bandmates (brother/bassist Tim Foreman, keyboardist Jerome Fontamillas and drummer Chad Butler) an invitation to attend last December’s Nashville summit for DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade for Africa), the charity organization founded by U2’s main man Bono to promote AIDS awareness and debt relief for developing nations. “It was incredible,” says Foreman, who’s worked with Sudanese refugees in the band’s hometown of San Diego. “Here’s a guy who has all the money, fame and notoriety that anyone could ever want, and he’s passionately talking to us about a bunch of poor people in Africa who will never buy his records. Listening to him speak was definitely a life-changing experience.”

When the meeting ended, Foreman walked over and handed the U2 frontman $40. “I told him I owed it to him for sneaking into a U2 show in London a couple of years ago,” he says. “He laughed and told me he did the same thing when he was younger. We spoke for a while and then he gave the money back, saying he felt he had already been compensated. To be honest, I was relieved because it was my last $40 and I needed the money to get home.”

Photo credit: Chapman Baehler
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As for his involvement with DATA and its cause, Foreman says, “I talk about it quite a bit in interviews and from the stage, but I’m careful not to be annoying about it. We’ve never really been a political band. Our songs are more about the politics of the heart than they are about foreign politics. I don’t think we can solve the outside problems until we solve the ones within.”

On the Columbia/RED Ink debut The Beautiful Letdown, Foreman opens up with self-revelatory songs about hope, love, faith and the desire to be more than what he’s been sold. In spacious settings, the singer connects with subtle emotional power, surveying a landscape of mediocrity in “More Than Fine,” digging for painful truths in title track “Beautiful Letdown” and stepping on a distortion pedal to scream about the dissonance of the modern age in “Ammunition.” On lead single “Meant To Live,” inspired by TS Elliot’s “The Hollow Men,” he strives to survive in a world where love and hate breathe the same air.

“It’s not a dark album, but it talks about dark things that have happened to me,” says Foreman. “A lot of the songs are about the hope that’s deeper than the wound and how that’s something that we can really hold onto. I think that’s something that kids are picking up on and taking with them.” He pauses and adds, “Don’t misunderstand—I have no delusions of grandeur thinking that our songs will single-handedly change the world. But change is possible and I definitely want to be a part of that. We always make it a point to talk to people outside after the shows, and I recently had a kid come up to me and give me a big hug because he was so affected by ‘Dare You To Move’ (from The Beautiful Letdown). Apparently, he was going through some really rough times and wasn’t sure if he wanted to live anymore, but heard the song and was inspired. That’s incredible. On days when you’re wondering what you’re doing playing a show in some small town in the middle of nowhere, you think about moments like that and realize that you’re part of a bigger story than your own.”

Photo credit: Chapman Baehler
Click photo for hi-res download

Musically, Switchfoot draws as much from the Police and James Taylor as from the Beatles and Stevie Wonder to create swirling guitar pop, full of effortlessly arching melodies and textures that shift in continual, sensual motion. “We’ve never fit in any of the genre boxes,” says Foreman. “I think that diversity is our strength.”

Produced by John Fields (Andrew W.K.) and mixed by Chris Lord-Alge (Goo Goo Dolls, Michelle Branch), Tom Lord-Alge (blink-182, Rolling Stones) and Jack Joseph Puig (John Mayer, No Doubt), The Beautiful Letdown entered the Billboard Top 200 this past spring at #85. The album, which The Orange County Register described as “…a rousing rock testament of hope, dreams and inspiration,” can attribute its early success to lead single and Modern Rock radio hit “Meant To Live.” The song’s companion video was directed by Laurent Briet (Radiohead).

Foreman credits the album’s raw, live edge to the band’s DIY attitude. “We didn’t want to waste time screwing around in a $1000 a day studio,” he laughs. “So we did all the pre-production in my bedroom. When we finally recorded the album, we did the whole thing in two weeks. John (Fields) works fast and so do we. There were no lunch or dinner breaks—we worked straight through and it turned out great. You can ruin things if you spend too much time in the studio.”

The Beautiful Letdown comes three years after Switchfoot’s third independently-released and critically acclaimed album Learning To Breathe. In between the two discs, the band won the 2001 ASCAP San Diego Music Award for “Best Pop Album” and “Best Pop Artist,” won the 2002 ASCAP San Diego Music Award for “Best Adult Alternative” and contributed five songs to the gold-certified soundtrack for the Mandy Moore film A Walk To Remember (including a duet with Foreman and Moore). “We were at the movie premiere,” recalls Foreman, “And David Hasselhoff was sitting behind us bawling his eyes out with his daughter. It was a bit surreal.”

Click for hi-res downloadable image
Photo credit:Chapman Baehler

Over the course of the past several years, more than 40 Switchfoot songs have been used for several nationally televised shows, including “Dawson’s Creek” (five songs), “Regis and Kelly,” “Felicity,” and many more. “The context in which the songs are used can be pretty funny,” says Foreman. “I remember writing a song about spiritual longing and then seeing it played back during a hot tub scene on some show. The songs can wind up very far from the edge of the bed where they were originally written.”

Switchfoot’s roots can be traced back to the beaches of San Diego in the mid-‘90s, when the Foremans and Butler connected as surfers (Fontamillas joined in September of 2000). Though they competed in national surf championships on weekends and earned product endorsements from equipment companies, the real bond came from a common love of music. They decided to form a band, chose the name Switchfoot (a surfing term), put themselves through months of sweaty garage band workouts, and then hit the road. After just 20 gigs, they signed with re:Think records and released Legend of Chin in 1997. They’ve averaged 150 shows a year ever since, while selling more than 400,000 copies of their first three albums (Legend of Chin, New Way to Be Human and Learning to Breathe) combined. Shortly after recording The Beautiful Letdown, Switchfoot signed with Columbia. The album has since become the band’s fastest-selling record to date.

Photo credit: Chapman Baehler
Click image for hi-res download

“Tim, Chad, Jerome and I have seen pretty much everything over the past six years,” says Foreman. “We’ve been at this ever since Tim graduated from high school. But this all feels like a new chapter. I think this album is where our future begins.”







Photo credit: Chapman Baehler
Click image for hi-res download
“Switchfoot’s The Beautiful Letdown is a collection of punchy rockers with all the potential in the sea to shoot the curl and ride rock radio’s waves to the top.” - Guitar One magazine

The Beautiful Letdown is a rousing rock testament of hope, dreams and inspiration.” - Orange County Register

“Angsty emo kids could use a dose of Switchfoot’s feel-good attitude and thoughful introspection.” - Los Angeles Times

“Switchfoot’s The Beautiful Letdown is filled with uplifting rock tunes that recall early U2 with a distinctly modern guitar crunch.”
Orange County Weekly

“The music is catchy, lyrically thoughtful and rocks with a cross of sounds that are part Nirvana, part REM and plenty of Radiohead.”
Santa Cruz Sentinel



Photo credit: Matthew Welch
Click image for hi-res download



-September 2004: Band perform “Dare You To Move” on Late Show with David Letterman

“Dare You To Move” enters Top 20 and wins San Diego Music Award for “Single of The Year.”

-June 2004 - Band perform on Pepsi Smash TV show. “Meant To Live” enters Top 10 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.

-June 2004 - Band make third video for "Meant To
Live." This version will be for the international
release of the Spiderman 2 movie and features clips
of Spiderman, etc.

-May 2004 - Switchfoot featured in Rolling Stone's "Sports & Music" issue

-May 2004 - Band perform "Meant To Live" on Late Night with Conan O'Brien

-April 2004 - "The Beautiful Letdown" certified Platinum by RIAA

-April 2004: Switchfoot perform "Meant To Live" on MTV's TRL show live from Times Square!

-March 2004: Switchfoot perform "Meant To Live" on On Air with Ryan Seacrest tv show.

-March 2004: Switchfoot perform on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno

-December 2003: "The Beautiful Letdown" certified Gold by RIAA

-December 2003: "Meant To Live" goes Top 5 on Billboard's Modern Rock chart

- October/November 2003: Switchfoot perform “Meant To Live” on Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn and Jimmy Kimmel Live

-2003 San Diego Music Award for Album of the Year - Switchfoot "The Beautiful Letdown"

-2003 San Diego Music Award for Best Pop Album - Switchfoot - "The Beautiful Letdown"

- 2002 ASCAP San Diego Music Award for “Best Adult Alternative”

- 2001 ASCAP San Diego Music Awards for "Best Pop Album,” and "Best Pop Artist"

- 2001 Grammy Nomination for album "Learning To Breathe"

- 1997 ASCAP San Diego Music Award for "Best New Artist"

- 5 songs included on the Gold cerified soundtrack - "A Walk to Remember"

- Over 40 songs usages on major TV (WB, FOX , CBS, Columbia, MTV, ABC, and Disney) including: "Dawson's Creek" (5 songs), "Party of Five" (4 songs), "Popular," "Jack and Jill" (2 songs), "Time of Your Life (music video used)," "Felicity," MTV's "Tough Enough" (15 songs), "Ring Of Endless Light," "Gross Point" (2 songs), "Grapevine," "Regis and Kelly," the Disney movie "Model Behavior," and an appearance in a 2000 FOX TV film with Jason Priestly called "Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye," (2 songs and a live performance).

- Gibson Guitars' 2001 Les Paul Horizon Award (awarded to guitarist/lead singer Jon Foreman)

For further information on Switchfoot contact: Ken Phillips Publicity Group, Inc.
323 845-9997 or kpgroup@yahoo.com


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I always felt a little strange talking about our songs... seems a little like telling someone why a joke is funny after you’ve told it! Even so, I feel that the joke is worth getting so here goes: this is what the songs mean to me...

meant to live
A while back I read a TS Elliot poem called The Hollow Men. The imagery in the poem continues to haunt me: “we are the hollow men/ we are the stuffed men...” I look at our planet and I see a horrible, beautiful world... where love and hate breathe the same air. This is where we wake up everyday; this is where we live. Maybe the kid in the song is me, hoping that I’m bent for more than arguments and failed attempts to fly. Something deep inside of me yearns for the beautiful, the true. I want more than what I’ve been sold; I want to live life.

this is your life
Music holds her cards close to her chest; she always maintains the element of mystery. Sometimes everything feels so right and you can’t explain why. This album felt that way for us. We only spent around two weeks in the studio but I wouldn’t have spent another minute. This tune is a good example of the mystery of sound. We started messing around at my house with different low-end synths and lo-fi beats and this mellow acoustic song became transformed. I’m not quite sure how we got here but I’m glad that the song arrived.
I flew out to South Beach in Florida, (where Tom Lord-Alge’s studio is) to be a part of the mixing process for this track. We could only afford one ticket so I went solo. Stayed at a funky hotel a few blocks from the beach, delirious from red eye flying (and a crazy conversation with the cab driver), watching a guy I’ve never met mix our song... I remember thinking, “this is crazy. This is my life!?” Sometimes the simplest questions are the hardest to answer; kind of like the way the night sky can still shake me up.

more than fine
I spent much of my childhood watching surf videos, fixing dings, and looking for waves. Taylor Steele’s videos were always supercharged with a punk rock soundtrack that would fuel your next surf, becoming the background music of my high school years. Several of the short-lived garage bands that I was in wanted to play only punk covers. But I never really wanted to be punk rock; I just liked the energy in the music. I think part of what attracted me to bands like op ivy and minor threat was their commitment to change. But so much of what I hear today is content with things the way they are. I feel like contentment can be a dangerous thing in the wrong hands. Now is the time to change. If punk is dead (and I’m not talking about whether it sells!), maybe this is a punk tune disguised as pop.

Einstein said, “without belief in the inner harmony of the world there would be no science.” Maybe. I say without the dissonance of our modern age there would be no rock and roll. There lies the tension: between the harmony and the dissonance. We’re the problem, we’re the issue. I can pin the blame on whoever I want but the mirror still points my direction. This is a tune that really feels great to play live: step on a distortion pedal and scream about the dissonance.

dare you to move
I love to write songs; I’ve been at it since I could reach the piano. It’s one of my favorite ways to pass the time. Music helps me sort out who I am so my songs usually end up being somewhat autobiographical. I’ve always felt the deepest connection with honest songs so I try to write with sincerity. This song is an attempt to honestly face the gap between who I am and who I want to be; between the way the world spins and the way it should be. I’ve heard that we only use a small part of our brain. Maybe our soul is the same way. And maybe we’re half asleep most of our lives, simply reacting to the stimulus our brain receives. Action, true action is rare indeed.

4 AM is a great time of night. The day before is long dead but the morning is yet to come. All the commotion from the night before has died down and every sane upstanding citizen is asleep. It’s a great time to go for a walk. You’ve got the planet to yourself for an hour or so, so peaceful... even the stars look different: waiting for the dawn. I feel the same way that the stars do sometimes. Anticipating... the night is nearly over, the day is almost here.

beautiful letdown
Physics tells us that everything on this planet will fail us eventually. Trust someone, fall in love: your scars will tell the same story. Entropy, pain, beauty, love, hope... mix them together and call it living. The choice that remains is where we go to find meaning and truth. The biggest failures and disappointments in my life have led me to look beyond what money or power or friends can buy. When you’re face down at the very bottom of who you are, and there is no formality or pretence to cling to, all your masks fall off. In this broken place, our lives can be seen for what they are, no more no less; we are ourselves. The question is this: What happens after the twin towers in our lives fall? Do we become bitter and hateful or does redemption come into focus? I’ve been on both sides...only one is beautiful.

When we’re not on the road, we spend a lot of time working on the next batch. After the song is written, we try and figure it out: fooling around with different arrangements, different sounds... messing around with electricity so to speak. The voice at the beginning of the song is off of my answering machine, (which by the way, can be a great thing to record; I record my answering machine often) We chopped up the message and threw it in. Actually, come to think of it, I don’t think my friend has heard the tune yet! Anyways, to sum up what the song is about: its a fun, catchy tune about how we’re all going to die someday! Life is so short, live well.

on fire
Daniel Heavenward, a friend of mine from Canada came out to California and stayed at my place for a day. We went out for pizza, wrote a couple Remy Zero-ish songs, and called it a night. In the morning, about an hour before I was going to drop him off at the train station this song flew out. We threw it down, I burned a cd for Dan and we raced to the station. This song is so personal- it feels great to play live. On a good night, I feel like I can just throw myself into this song and drift off over the crowd through the PA.

adding to the noise
Being on tour is totally different speed. Hurry up and wait... lots of time in planes, trains, and automobiles You find yourself leaving cities that you never really saw. The funniest part is that we rarely get to play as a band on the road. You spend all your time getting there, setting up, and tearing down. So the show and the sound check, (if you get one) become your only chances to practice and work on new ideas as a band. The rest of the time you find yourself waiting around looking at cold pizza and an accoustic guitar that’s got 4 strings, which is a great time to write a song. I think I wrote this one somewhere near Dallas. Four strings is enough for rock and roll...

Twenty Four
I wrote this song near the end of my 24th year on this planet. Wherever we run, wherever the sun finds us when he rises, we remain stuck with ourselves. That can be overwhelming. Sometimes I feel like my soul is polluted with politicians, each with a different point of view. With all 24 of them in disagreement, each voice is yelling to be heard. And so I am divided against myself. I feel that I am a hypocrite until I am one, when all of the yelling inside of me dies down. I’ve heard that the truth will set you free. That’s what I’m living for: freedom of spirit. I find unity and peace in none of the diversions that this world offers. But I’ve seen glimpses of truth and that’s where I want to run.

Even though I wrote them, these 12 songs are not mine anymore. When we play live, I sometimes feel like the audience owns the songs more than I do. So the song becomes much more than my world and my ideas. These thoughts on the songs are just a jumping point, not a place to land. Please feel free to make these songs your own. Thanks for reading, jon