I recently had the pleasure to talk with 3 Doors Down guitarist, Chris Henderson about the band’s upcoming acoustic tour. This family friendly event promises to be a memorable night with one of America’s most loved rock bands performing all your favorite hits in an intimate setting.
Thank you for taking the time out to talk to me, I’m sure you guys are quite busy.
Henderson: Oh it’s my pleasure. It’s what we do. We’re looking forward to getting out on this tour!
Last year I covered your show in Boston with Daughtry and Halestorm. It was an emotional year for the city after the Marathon bombing. Brad was sporting a “Boston Strong” t-shirt. After my three songs in the pit, I was in the crowd with the rest of the fans. Trust me, fans noticed it and appreciated the sincerity of the gesture. For them, it was a time to reflect for a brief moment, and then enjoy the things in life that are pleasurable.
Henderson: It was an emotional night for us too. Our friend had been running in the marathon that day and was near the finish line when the bomb went off. He wasn’t directly hit or anything, but he wasn’t able to finish the race until later in the day when they allowed him to do so. But it affected him just lie any other participant. So when we got to Boston to play that show, he, Brad and myself went out and finished that race with him, which was cool. Then he bought Brad that shirt and we thought it would be cool if Brad wore it on stage.
Trust me, fans took notice and really appreciated the gesture.
So, this acoustic tour...I love the idea. I totally get it because if there’s one thing that sets 3 Doors Down from most other rock bands is the guitars. There’s no shortage of acoustic guitars when listening to a 3DD album which gives them a sense of realism. “Here’ Without You” first comes to mind. Why now?
Henderson: Why not? We wanted to do this for a while now and we’re finally able to put everything together. We wanted to give fans something different from what they’ve seen before.
What can fans expect on this acoustic show that they haven’t seen in previous 3DD shows?
Henderson: This is going to be a totally relaxing atmosphere, were families can come and enjoy a special night with us. It is a family-oriented event, you will not hear any cussing or anything like that. We just want fans to relax and enjoy themselves and sing along with us. Plus we’ve got a few new songs that we think people will really enjoy.
There are rumors that fans can sit on a couch on stage with the band during the set. Is that true? Henderson: Oh yeah, there’s an experience that fans can be with us on stage and sit on a couch with us for the set. It’s a unique perspective because they get to see what we get to see; fans singing along to our songs and having a great time.
Looking through a HUGE list of dates and cities, what cities are you most looking forward to playing?Henderson: Hmmm. I’d say the South: Texas, Louisiana, Georgia and Florida. We’ve been playing on the east coast as well as some west coast cities, but mostly we’re looking to take things to our fans in the south.
Judging by this tour list, I’m instantly reminded of my favorite 3DD video, “When I’m Gone” where you filmed the departure of the USS George Washington deploying their home port, then playing for the crew on deck. How well do you remember making that video? Henderson: It’s funny, we were’t there to make a video that day, we were just there to head out with the troops and play a show on the ship. It was filmed by one man, and he didn’t even know he was making a video. He was just there filming the emotional departure. But the footage was so good, it just made for a powerful piece for the song.
How touching was it for you guys to witness these people leaving their families?
Henderson: It was heart-wrenching to see such emotion and at the same time we can relate from being without our families for periods of time. But you have to give these service members credit; they leave for six months to up to a year at a time. For us it’s only a few weeks to a month at a time. I can relate because I spent four years on a ship doing that very same thing. Yet, you can relate to the same situation each time you go on tour. We can totally relate.
“Here Without You” was released on the same album, Away From The Sun. Is it any easier now to leave your families behind as you head out for such an extended time? Henderson: Oh yeah, it’s much easier now after we’ve been doing it for 20 years. It’s not so much the long drawn out emotional goodbyes ad it was before. Now, it’s just a kiss and hug and we’re on our way.
How many of you got to go up in a jet?
Henderson: Just Brad did, I had pneumonia, so I wasn’t able to go up.
I hear the Blue Angels are back up flying in air shows, perhaps something can be arranged? Henderson: That would be really cool!
“Kryptonite” was your first single and made 3 Doors Down a household name. I’ve seen a few of your shows before, it’s still the fan favorite. In fact, 3 Doors Down has a catalogue of hits larger than most people realize until they actually start listening to it. Your shows are like one giant sing-a-long. It seems like your fans are so passionate about you guys, they know EVERY word to EVERY song! How does that make the band feel while you’re up there playing?
Henderson: It’s a dream come true, it really is. You know when you’re growing up and dream of becoming a rock star, one thing that you think about is standing up there playing for a crowd and them singing your words back to you. It’s a really cool feeling to have an entire audience sing back to you something that you wrote.
As far as new material, what do you guys have going on?
Henderson: We’ve got 3 or 4 songs going for the new album that we can’t wait to play for people on this tour. I think people will really like the new stuff.
Be sure to get your tickets early for this special tour as they are sure to sell out quickly. A list of dates and cities can be found on the band’s website. There are a limited number of VIP options available at each venue as well, including on how to score one of those sofa seats on the stage for the ultimate 3 Doors Down experience!