Five reasons to see “We Shot the Moon”

1. Their lead singer Jonathan Jones is one of the most passionate guys you’ll meet:

Growing up in San Diego, Jonathan was already into music by the age of seven.

“My mom thought it would be a good idea for me to play guitar,” Jones said. “Unfortunately, I failed at that. We decided to try again with the piano and it stuck.”

Jones jokingly recalls now that he and the guitar “just weren’t meant to be” but the piano, specifically a synthesizer he got when he was 16, “changed everything.” He had mainly been playing classical music up until then, and when he got the synthesizer, “it opened up a new world.”

After high school, Jones studied music at Cal State Northridge for three years, all while trying to put together his first major band to go out on tour. With influences from “Coldplay” to “Joe Jackson,” the result was “Waking Ashland.”

He looks back at “Ashland” as great experience, but still wishes things didn’t end on such negative terms.

“I kind of got burned at the end of ‘Waking Ashland.’ There was some money stuff that went down, and I really didn’t like how we all treated each other at the end. I learned a lot though”

2. They love having their fans be as involved as possible:

The band does everything they can to stay connected with their fan-base. For instance, the album cover for their first LP was chosen from designs that the band asked fans to submit.

“We wanted more fan interaction and just wanted to see what happened, you know?” Jones said about the experience. “They did a really good job.”

3. The group has continued to survive through line-up changes and a serious accident:

Many bands have inner conflicts that the public doesn’t see. They have to deal with fighting over everything from money to lyrics. A revolving door of group members is nothing uncommon these days, and “We Shot the Moon” is no exception.

They’ve had over a dozen different guys in their lineup over the course of four years. However, only a few years back, something much more serious than bickering threatened to break up the band.

While touring in Idaho, the group’s trailer tire blew out on the highway, and they lost control of the van. It tumbled to the bottom of an embankment, landing upside down. The van and trailer were completely totaled, but miraculously no one was hurt.

“We were ok…somehow,” Jones said. “I remember being upside down and there was just a lot of yelling going on, trying to make sure everyone was still there.”

4. They stay committed to the cause:

When it comes to making music, Jones and the guys really go all out. Take the band’s name for example- “We Shot the Moon.” The phrase isn’t only the name of the band, it’s the way they live life.

It derived from the card game “Hearts” wherein “Shooting the moon” is a risky strategy that can either payoff in a huge way and lead to a certain victory or leave you dead to rights. For Jones, it’s music to the bitter end.

“I quickly realized when my high school band broke up that my passion was a lot different than the other people. I couldn’t really picture myself doing anything else. I looked at life through that lens. There was no other option. I knew I was born to play music, for better or worse.”

5. They’re coming to Whitewater Sept. 15 and the show is free:

Performing at 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept.  15 at the Down Under, “We Shot the Moon” brings their indie pop/rock set to the stage following a performance by Madison-based band “Juneau” at 8 p.m. It’s a new genre for SEAL, the organization that books the bands, as they try and reach a larger audience.

“They have a good crowd atmosphere and engage the crowd in a way that makes people want to watch them,” said Jacqueline Olson, the music coordinator for SEAL. “They’ll be meeting fans before and after the show, signing autographs, and selling some merchandise. They really want to interact with the fans as much as possible. It’s pretty cool.”

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