JFA (band)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

OriginPhoenix, Arizona;
Southern California, U.S.
GenresSkate punk, hardcore punk
Years active1981 (1981)–present
LabelsDC-Jam Records
MembersBrian Brannon
Don Pendleton
Corey Stretz
Jamie Reidling
Past membersMichael Cornelius
Mike "Bam-Bam" Sversvold
Alan Bishop
Scott Chazan
Bob Cox
Brian Damage
Joel DuBois
Trace Element
Matt Etheridge
Jim Moore
Al Penzone
Jaime Reidling
Bruce Taylor
Mike Tracy
Todd Barnes (deceased)

JFA (Jodie Foster's Army) is an American hardcore punk band formed in 1981, with roots in Arizona and in Southern California skateboard culture. The original members include Brian Brannon (vocals), Don "Redondo" Pendleton (guitar), Michael Cornelius (bass), and Mike "Bam-Bam" Sversvold (drums). Alan Bishop of Sun City Girls also played bass for a time. The band was pivotal in the development of the skate punk and Skate Rock scenes. Over the years, the lineup has included many bass players and drummers but the core of Brannon and Redondo has remained constant.[1]



JFA was formed in April 1981, 19 days after the failed attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan by John Hinckley Jr.[2] Hinckley, an obsessed fan of Jodie Foster and her portrayal of a teen prostitute in the 1976 Martin Scorsese film Taxi Driver, reportedly attempted to kill the President as a means of impressing the actress.[3] The band's name was thus a dark play on Hinckley's attempt at murdering Reagan — a hated figure in the early 1980s punk rock scene.

Don Pendleton, then in the band The Deez, and Cornelius, then in the band Jr. Chemists, knew each other from shows around Phoenix, Arizona and from skateboarding. They began playing together after a D.O.A. concert during the band's Hardcore 81 tour. Bam-Bam later joined after meeting Pendleton at an "Industrial Dance" in Phoenix. Brian Brannon was pulled into the band by Cornelius who met him skateboarding and at punk shows.

The band's first show was opening for Black Flag at an Industrial Dance which was one of a series of early Phoenix punk shows. Their first song of the night was "Pipetruck", which combined elements of "Police Truck" by The Dead Kennedys and "Pipeline" by The Chantays.[citation needed]

As of 1984 all members of the band were from Arizona, except Pendleton (Huntington Beach, CA) and Cornelius (Bethesda, MD).[4]

Recording history[edit]

Placebo Records released their debut EP Blatant Localism in late 1981. The band toured the west extensively and played many local shows. Their first national tour was in the summer of 1983 following the release of their first album Valley of the Yakes.[5]

The original bassist, Michael Cornelius, left the band in the summer of 1984 prior to the nine-week summer '84 tour. Alan Bishop of labelmates Sun City Girls played bass until Cornelius returned for the 1986 release Nowhere Blossoms.[citation needed]

The band received continuing coverage in the influential skateboard magazine Thrasher during the 1980s. Brannon appeared on the April 1987 cover of Thrasher riding backside at the Love Bowl in Phoenix, Arizona.[6] He also appeared on the cover of the April 1989 issue grinding a fakie layback thruster on the edge of the pipe at Thrasherland Skatepark in Glendale, Arizona.[7] In 1990, Brannon took a full-time position as staff writer at Thrasher and eventually became music editor and art director of the magazine until he left in 1997. Throughout the 1980s, Brannon, Pendleton and Cornelius were Thrasher freelance contributors of articles and photographs.

Brian Brannon holds the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer in the United States Navy Reserve.[citation needed]

Current lineup[edit]

  • Brian Brannon – vocals, piano, organ
  • Don "Redondo" Pendleton – guitar
  • Corey Stretz – bass
  • Jamie Reidling – drums


  • Blatant Localism 7", Placebo (1981)
  • Valley of the Yakes LP, Placebo (1983)
  • Untitled LP, Placebo (1984)
  • Mad Gardens 12", Placebo (1984)
  • Live 1984 Tour LP, Placebo (1985)
  • My Movie 7", Placebo (1986)
  • Nowhere Blossoms LP, Placebo (1988)
  • Lightnin' Storm/People's Revolutionary Party 7", Buzzkill (1991)
  • Camp Out/Travels With Charlie 7", Spontaneous Combustion (1995)
  • Secret Agent Man Split 7" with Jack Killed Jill, NRA (1996)
  • Only Live Once CD, Hurricane (1999)
  • We Know You Suck CD, Alternative Tentacles (2003)
  • Live in Chicago 7" with the Faction, Spontaneous Combustion (2003)
  • To All Our Friends LP, DC-Jam (2009)
  • Speed of Sound CD, DC-Jam (2012)

UK releases[edit]

  • Untitled 12", Fundamental UK
  • Valley of the Yakes 12", Fundamental UK

Music videos[edit]

  • Live at CBGB's (1984)
  • Pipetruck (1984)
  • Wilson (2010)
  • Danny Sargent's Trucks (2010)
  • Skateboard Anarchy (2014)


  • 16 Hi-Fi Hits, vinyl, DC-Jam
  • All the Rage, Volume 2, GMD
  • All the Rage 2000, GMD
  • Amuck, Placebo
  • Best of Flipside, Flipside
  • Best of Rodney on the ROQ, Poshboy
  • Best of Smoke 7, Bomp
  • Bite the Bullet, Know
  • Blazing Wheels & Barking Trucks, Skate Rock No. 2, High Speed
  • Born to Skate, Skate Rock No. 4, High Speed
  • Buried Alive, Smoke 7
  • Concrete Waves, Disaster Records
  • Eastern Front, Enigma/Eastern Front
  • Explicit Skate Rock, Skate Rock No. 10, High Speed
  • Flipside Vinyl Fanzine, Flipside
  • For the Kids, Together
  • High Rollers, AZPX
  • Meathouse, cassette-only, Version Sound
  • More Coffee for the Politicians, Placebo
  • Old Skars & Upstarts, Disaster
  • Phenis, Phenis Fanzine
  • Pogo Strut Slam Swivel & Mosh, Devil Doll
  • Rat Music for Rat People, Vol. 2 (CD Presents, 1984)
  • Rodney on the ROQ, Volume 2, Poshboy
  • Scene Killer, Outsider
  • Sudden Death, Smoke 7
  • This is Phoenix, Not the Circle Jerks, Placebo
  • Thrasher Magazine Skate Rock No. 1, High Speed
  • VMLive, Series 2/Volume 2, VML
  • We Got Power, Mystic
  • Workers Comp, Recess
  • Hardcore Breakout USA 1,2,3,..., (New Red Archives 2004)


  • Damage, Think Skateboards Video (Phil Shao and Tim McKenney parts)
  • Griptape and Gasoline, Duke Video
  • High Rollers, AZPX
  • Hitting the Streets, Thrasher Magazine Video
  • Label Live!, Black Label Skateboards Video
  • Mt. Baldy Pipe segment, Bluetorch TV
  • Nude Bowl segment, Bluetorch TV
  • Pow Wow at Powell II, NSA Skate Video
  • Risk It, Santa Cruz Skate Video
  • Skatopia, Speed-Line Productions
  • Speed Freaks, Santa Cruz Speed Wheels Video
  • Strange Notes - Son! Get Down From There!, Santa Cruz Skateboards
  • Wheels of Fire, Santa Cruz Speed Wheels Video

Video games[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Vincent Jeffries, "JFA Biography" AllMusic.
  2. ^ "JFA," Flip Side Fanzine, whole no. 31 (April 1982), p. 28.
  3. ^ Douglas O. Linder, "The Trial of John Hinckley: Taxi Driver," University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law, 2002.
  4. ^ Eager, Wendy (1984). "J.F.A." Guillotine (8) – via Internet Archive.
  5. ^ Tom Reardon, "Placebo Records and the Story of Phoenix's Wild Early Punk Scene: An Oral History" Phoenix New Times Weekly.
  6. ^ Thrasher Magazine, April 1987
  7. ^ Thrasher Magazine, April 1989

External links[edit]