"New @bruceleeband coming soon. Even made an [Instagram] page which means this is serious stuff, so please Follow. This photo was taken about 20 [minutes] ago in San Jose in front of @districtrecording I ❤️ San Jose," Mike Park (@mikeparkmusic) mysteriously posted on his Instagram page over the weekend. The Bruce Lee Band has existed in various incarnations since 1995, while the "Bruce Lee" name itself was adopted as a pseudo-nickname by Mike Park during his time spent playing saxophone and singing with Skankin' Pickle from 1989-96. Although, the band is, often, officially known as "The B. Lee Band" because, supposedly, following the release of The Bruce/B. Lee Band's 1995 self-titled debut, "Lee's brother, Robert, who happened to be the manager of the CD manufacturing plant responsible for pressing the album, contacted Park to give him a friendly word of caution that Bruce Lee's name and likeness were copyrighted." Mike "Bruce Lee" Park & The B. Lee Band have, gradually, covered nearly any and all sub-genres of Ska over the years and have released music on Park's own Dill/Asian Man Records, Jeff Rosenstock's Really Records, and Tokyo-based Ska In The World Records.
The earliest iteration of The Bruce Lee Band (I) consisted of Park, as well as Less Than Jake's Chris "Lee" Demakes, Vinnie "Lee" Fiorello, Roger "Lee" Lima, and Derron "Lee" Nuhfer and played across their aforementioned 1995 debut. The Bruce Lee Band (II) re-emerged in 2005 with their Beautiful World EP and featured Mike Park backed by Rx Bandits' then-line-up of Joe Troy, Christopher Tsagakis, Matt Embree, Steve Choi, and Steve Borth. The Bruce Lee Band (III) returned after a 9-year self-imposed sabbatical period with an EP, "COMMUNITY SUPPORT GROUP," and an accompanying full-length titled "EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT, MY FRIEND," this time, consisting of Park, Jeff Rosenstock (Antarctigo Vespucci, Bomb The Music Industry!) Kevin "The Guch" Higuchi (The Chinkees, Whiskey Avengers,) and Mike Huguenor (Kitty Kat Fan Club, Hard Girls.) It appears as though the most recent iteration of The Bruce Lee Band (IV) now consists of Park, Rosenstock, "The Guch," and long-time Asian Man Records affiliate and friend of The Lees, Dan Potthast of Dan P. & The Bricks, MU330, Sharkanoid, etc.
Last night, @asianmanrecords posted, "SKA SKA SKA @bruceleeband is back. New record coming soon. Follow their Instagram. How many Followers can they get with no posts? Who can name all 4 members of this band? Will this album only be keyboards? What is the meaning of life?" to which I (very confidently!) yet, incorrectly Responded. While there's currently no additional news concerning said Bruce Lee Band "record" or "album," there are a few B. Lee-related releases of particular note: Kitty Kat Fan Club—featuring Mike Park and his former Bruce Lee Band bandmate Mike Huguenor—released their full-length debut, "DREAMY LITTLE YOU," on Asian Man Records this past May; Mike Park & Maura Weaver of Ogikubo Station unleashed their latest EP, Okinawan Love Songs, featuring Dan Andriano (Alkaline Trio, The Damned Things) on two of its three tracks. Below, you'll find our recently assembled Bruce Lee Band - Rude Boy A-Go-Go Spotify Playlist, which attempts to re-assemble Ska In The World Records' 2014 Japan-only comp. of the same name. Stay tuned to this space for contained updates concerning The Bruce Lee Band's forthcoming release, which, it sounds like, will likely materialize before Summer's end. It will definitely be interesting to see what sub-genres of Ska/Punk The Bruce Lee Band decide to tackle next!