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RX Bandits guitarist Steve Choi reflects on 16 years and one final tour

Photo: Courtesy photo, License: N/A

Courtesy photo

Beyond ska: RX Bandits roar for the last time. Maybe.

For every fan baffled by how many notes they were playing, RX Bandits eventually gained someone else appreciative of their new creative venture. “Thank you, to those people,” Choi said.

After five increasingly eclectic albums and 16 years on tour, RX Bandits announced on April 12 that their 2011 summer tour would be their last. Choi clarified the band’s status as going into “indefinite hiatus.” Strangely, he’s quite casual about it, as if he’s not closing out a legacy.

“I’m having the same anxiety I normally have for any tour, really,” he said. “For leaving your bed. Leaving your home. And your friends and family. It’s not set in stone that it’s our last tour forever. We have some plans to do some last shows overseas, as well. None of that is totally solidified, but there’s a good likelihood that they’ll be happening after this U.S. tour. I’m feeling excited about it, too, because it’s fun to go out there and play some shows.”

Choi extolled the growing experiences of being on the road, of broadening his worldview and building relationships with fans. But the few cons — particularly creating big gaps in his relationships with friends, family, and his “very loving girlfriend”— are enough to make both he and the band look forward to new musical projects at home. He wouldn’t go into specifics, but he told fans to “keep their ear to the ground” because the RX Bandits aren’t quitting music and fading into obscurity.

With all that said, the Current asked him what message he’d like to immortalize in print to his bandmates, looking back on 16 years together.

“[Our career] is a real testament to the connection that we have to each other,” he said. “To have accomplished so much and still have the level of respect that we do for each other. I really appreciate how different everyone is. Everyone else in the band has always helped me grow. We’ve all helped each other grow.” •

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