Sign of the Fox
Enter The Silent Fox... 'Hi, I'm Johnny Knoxville, and tonight we have a treat for you: four handsome friends of mine from Chicago. They're called Sign of the Fox.' And so started SOTF's explosive burst onto the scene, as that first-ever live show got underway, playing with Phantom Planet at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles in February 2003. Although Sign of the Fox seemingly materialized out of the blue, the group's creation was actually many years in the making-with the idea, for the most part, lying dormant like a bear hibernating through the winter. Over the years in both Chicago and Los Angeles different combinations of the guys had written, recorded and performed together in various situations, thus spreading a sort of musical Mayo (which everyone knows is the 'glue' to any fine sandwich). It wasn't until 2001 did the original SOTF line-up officially surface as a four-piece combo when Burdie (of legendary L.A. punk-pop hit-machine, WAX) assembled Handsome Jack, Mark G., and Choc La Roc on drums to record an early version of 'How Lucky Am I' as a sit-com theme song for their friends' TV show 'in development.' It was that infamous demo which proved not only what was known all along-that they should've formed a group a long time ago-but that it was obviously inevitable at that point. The original living room sessions in the Willoughby apartment sometimes featured the wonderful Jenni-Mac [Red Five] who appears on two songs on the SOTF debut album singing 'Do's and Don'ts' and 'Low-Over Town.' Burdie's former WAX band-mates also got involved as Soda (pre- Million Piece Band) applied a dynamic string arrangement to the tune 'Will Robinson' and Loomis being instrumental in the development of the epic 'I Won't Complain,' both favorites at SOTF live performances. From April to November 2002, recording of the Sign of the Fox debut album took place in various living rooms, dens and rehearsal spaces, mining the material from those original Willoughby sessions and re-working versions of their previous collaborations. The name was eventually chosen when Handsome Jack flashed an intriguing hand-sign and stated 'Sign of the Fox: Ears Open, Mouth Shut.' Shortly after the recording was finished, that first show at the El Rey was booked. With an official name, an official CD and an official opening slot on a high profile gig (and a small batch of official T-shirts), the matter of who was going to play what instruments was officially decided and the full-blown rock unit that SOTF was meant to be was officially official. Since those innocent days of yore, SOTF has performed with local and international favorites at exclusive appearances around L.A., making in-state and out-of-state trips for special engagements and contributing music to the film and TV industry, notably with an ironic, melancholy version of 'How Lucky...' sung by indie-film-favorite Maggie Gyllenhaal appearing in the 2005 Lion's Gate film 'Happy Endings,' directed by Don Roos. SOTF continues to perform and records wherever a makeshift studio can be assembled. VIVA LE FOX!