Portugal. The Man took 2017 by the horns after a considerably long gap, especially for a band that has dropped roughly an album a year since 2006. They spent years working on an album called Gloomin + Doomin before later developing what would become known as their eighth studio album WOODSTOCK. Fate struck lead singer, John Gourley, twice. First, John got some parental tough love from his old man. “What’s taking so long to finish the album?,” John’s dad asked. “Isn’t that what bands do? Write songs and then put them out?” The whole thing got John thinking about why the band seemed to be stuck on a musical elliptical machine from hell and more importantly, about how to get off of it. Second, John found his dad’s ticket stub from the original 1969 Woodstock music festival, which ultimately knocked something loose in his head. He realized that, in the same tradition of bands from that era, Portugal. The Man needed to speak out about the world crumbling around them.
With these two ideas converging, the band made a seemingly bat-shit-crazy decision: they took all of the work they had done for the three years prior and threw it out. The band went back to the studio – working with John Hill, Danger Mouse and longtime collaborator Casey Bates. In this new-found creative territory, the album that became WOODSTOCK rolled out naturally from there. Fast forward to present day and it was impossible to escape the album’s first single “Feel It Still,” which dominated the charts and radio airwaves in 2017. The multi-platinum certified hit reigned at #1 at nearly all radio formats, including Top 40, as well as Alternative, where the song held the chart’s top spot for a mind-blowing 20 weeks, breaking the record for most weeks at #1. Yes, you read that right. 5 guys from Wasilla, Alaska who have played nearly 1,500 shows in their career broke Alternative radio records and had a #1 song at Pop radio. Billboard Magazine even went as far as to call the song, “the unexpected rock crossover hit of 2017,” while Rolling Stone listed it as “one of the best songs of 2017.”
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