Descendents Announce “9th & Walnut” Featuring Original Bassist Tony Lombardo
A new piece of punk rock history is coming to light as Descendents have announced 9th & Walnut, an album recorded in 2002 by the band’s founding lineup. That includes vocalist Milo Aukerman, drummer Bill Stevenson, guitarist Frank Navetta (who passed in 2008), and bassist Tony Lombardo.
The 18-track set is named after their Long Beach practice space from the band’s fledgling years and contains songs written from 1977 to 1980. This marks the original lineup’s only recordings besides 1981’s Fat EP and 1982’s Milo Goes to College.
9th & Walnut will be released on July 23rd, but they’ve released a first track called “Baby Doncha Know”.
“‘Baby Doncha Know’ was maybe the 5th song we learned,” recalls drummer Bill Stevenson. “We would go out to 9th & Walnut every weekend and practice all day. I mainly just remember being in awe of how ‘a kid my age, who goes to my high school’ could have written all these cool songs. Frank seemed to have a maturity beyond his years. I never asked him who or what it was about. I was just happy to be there with him and Tony.”
In an in-depth interview with Rolling Stone, Lombardo explained how his distinct bass style came about. “It’s a philosophical thing,” he said. “When I started playing bass, [I noticed], some bands you hardly hear the bass’ they’re just playing the root notes and they’re standing in the back behind the drums. This is older bands even, that aren’t punk at all – classic rock from the Seventies and Sixties. I said, ‘Why is the bass instrument relegated to that position?’ I believe that it should be an active part of the band, especially when you’ve got a three-piece going. Maybe I was a frustrated guitar player; I’ve considered that over the years. But I made a concerted effort to create melodic, really interesting bass lines that conveyed the angst of punk and the urgency.”
9th & Walnut Track List:
- Sailor’s Choice
- Crepe Suzette
- You Make Me Sick
- Baby Doncha Know
- Tired of Being Tired
- I’m Shaky
- Like the Way I Know
- It’s A Hectic World
- To Remember
- Yore Disgusting
- It’s My Hair
- I Need Some
- Ride the Wild
- Glad All Over (Dave Clark Five cover)