FAIRBANKS — For the past couple of years, Common Kings have been performing on huge stages in front of tens of thousands of people as an opening act for pop juggernauts such as Justin Timberlake and Meghan Trainor.
This summer, the stages are smaller but Common Kings couldn’t be happier. With a new album that’s been hanging out near the top of the Billboard charts for months, the four-man band is headlining its own stages, taking its upbeat island-inspired rock and reggae vibe all over the country. They will be in Fairbanks Saturday for a show at The Blue Loon.
“The venues are just a tad bit smaller,” lead singer JR King said, laughing. “But there’s nothing like performing your own music. And as long as at least one person is singing back, I’m stoked. There’s really no comparing the two, the amount of people and everything. We’re just stoked to still be doing this.”
King, bassist Ivan Kirimaua and drummer Jerome Taito talked about their full-length debut album, “Lost in Paradise,” which came out in February, earlier this week as they headed back into a Los Angeles studio to record the followup. Guitarist Taumata Grey is the fourth member of the group, who formed about six years ago after a jam session at “Uncle Lui” Kirimaua’s house. The four musicians have Pacific island roots, but grew up in Orange County, California. Musical influences from Van Morrison and Stevie Wonder to Michael Jackson, Led Zeppelin and Bob Marley infuse their music, which is a laid-back mix of reggae, R&B,…
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