311 Fan Spotlight – 9/18/17 – Alisha Eckman!

Welcome again Excitable 311 nation! It’s time for the new 311 fan spotlight. This week we feature the lovely Alisha Eckman!

Fourteen years old was the age when 311 first came into Alisha’s life. It was 1995 and she was in junior high. She has a very distinct memory of her friend Megan saying she liked this song “Down” by this band, “three, one, one, or however you say it.” Alisha went out and bought the blue album and as she said, it was love at first listen. “Instant connection to the music and lyrics, which I studied and quickly memorized. This then brought me to BullMoose Music in Brunswick, Maine because I had to hear more! So bought Music, Grassroots and eventually Omaha Sessions – which would quickly become my favorite albums of all-time.”

Alisha never really kept track of shows she went to until recently, so she is unsure of her number, but believes it’s somewhere in the mid 20’s. Her favorite event so far was 311 Day 2016 in New Orleans. “I’d never been to 311 Day before that – it always seemed too tough to make it while I was raising my little ones. It wasn’t until www.thepier.org had an email contest How I discovered 311 that I actually won, that actually made this dream a reality for me! The experience was the most amazing ever and I’m forever grateful! I’d never even gotten the rail before, so to be able to see 2 nights of 311’s live music and get the pit for a photo pass, I’d struck gold. This totally rekindled my love for 311. Not that I ever lost that love, but I guess I lost my enthusiasm for most things in my life for a while, due to some pretty tough years. In 2006,​ ​my dad died unexpectedly in an accident and an ex cheated on me while I grieved… all simultaneously. My heart was completely broken and so was my sense of self. It took me many years to go to any shows again. I met my awesome husband Eric and we started going to shows together and that part of me was reborn. When I finally gathered up the courage to read his death certificate, I saw his time of passing was actually 3:11 p.m. Turns out that 311 is the bridge to my dad in spirit. 🙂 I see the clock at 3:11, sometimes out of a deep sleep and I just know it’s my dad telling me he loves me and is with me. 311 is so much deeper to me than ‘just a band.’ They have so much spiritual meaning to me. Following this band is a lifestyle and it’s brought me to meet so many beautiful souls. http://www.thepier.org/311-day-contest-how-i-discovered-311/

It was tough for Alisha to think of a song that means the most to her because she said there is literally not a song that she doesn’t like. Two songs that did come to mind that stands out as favorites are “Hydroponic” and “Omaha Stylee.” Song lyric that keeps her motivated is, “The fish who keeps on swimming, is the first to swim upstream.” She also loves the lyric, “I’m truly grateful, I’m going back to the Earth, I’m not gonna waste life being hateful.”

Maine is where Alisha grew up and has been there the majority of her life. She lived in Kansas for a little over a year, as well as Maryland, and even spent a couple of years in England. “I just moved to a little country town in New Hampshire with my family and have seen 311 in every state I’ve ever lived in but no other countries.” Funny tidbit about Alisha is that she has NEVER been able to watch scary movies! “I would literally still have nightmares… I avoid them and anything super violent. I couldn’t do Game of Thrones. I stick to lighter / feel-good stuff.”

Something cool that Alisha does is that she using her artistic ability to create pointillism art and mehndi (henna). You can find some samples of her work on her Instagram: stylemyday311. Some other bands that Alisha loves are Iration, Rebelution, and Stick Figure. “I’ve really gotten into reggae more in the past couple years. This music makes me feel so good!” Guilty pleasure? “Chocolate pie… I can eat the entire pie in one sitting. Done it… haha!!”

To 311 Alisha’s message is this: “Thank you! Thank you! Thank YOU, from the bottom of my heart. You all mean so much more to me than ‘just a band’ that I’ve loved for nearly 23 years. You’ve helped me through the most difficult times of my life and I feel so grateful to have this connection with you.”

Now to all the other amazing fans:

“It’s just been such a blast and such a blessing to meet so many other awesome and passionate people who share a common love! I love seeing you all again each summer and look forward to many more years ahead of getting together and rocking out together. ;)​”


Now you know the story of Alisha Eckman! I can say I’ve met her in person and she’s awesome! I hope you all get to meet her in person one day. Thanks for reading again this week! Now go kick some butt and spread that positivity!

Much Love – The Runt

311 Fan Spotlight – 9/11/17 – Morgan Surkin!

Hello again Excitable nation! Are you ready to read about the next amazing 311 fan? Then let’s get to it. Meet Morgan Surkin!

The story of Morgan begins with her seeing the music video for “Down” on MTV and was there that she just fell in love with the music. “The mix of rock music and positive lyrics had me hooked from the get-go.”

Morgan hasn’t really kept track of show count over the years but believes it’s somewhere in the 20’s range. The shows she has attended include 311 Day 2010, Pow Wow, and two of the cruises. “My first show was when I was 16; August 21, 1997 with De La Soul and Rustic Overtones in Old Orchard Beach, Maine. I remember it was pouring rain and nothing but mud. Ever since then I have seen them as much as I could because there is nothing like a 311 live show!”

Picking her favorite show was difficult. Pow Wow was her first taste of just how big the 311 community is and the power that 311’s music has bringing people together. “We brought our son and road-tripped down from Maine with another couple and a sitter. While the heat was ridiculous, my son played on the bouncy slide with Nick’s daughter and it was a chill, family-friendly and reasonably priced event for a vacation.” Then there was 311 Day 2010 where she and her husband splurged on VIP to get to meet and play Blackjack with the band. “The dealer even called me out for being star struck and having a huge dumb smile on my face the whole time. Ha! The Cruises are next level though – everyone stuck in a small area, there for the same fun loving reason, no internet, running into your favorite bands and comedians while walking around the boat (or beach) is pretty surreal. Any time the 311 community gets together for a big event, it is a fabulous experience.”

“Speak Easy” is one of the songs that mean the most to her, she says it makes her cry almost every time she hears it live. “I even have it woven into the grassroots tattooed on my wrist. When I heard it on the cruise with that beautiful backdrop, surrounded by so much love and positivity, it was like a dream.” Favorite lyrics are “Stay positive and love your life.” “Another lyric I have tattooed on my forearm. It is a motto I strive to live by daily.”

Falmouth, Maine, is where Morgan grew up and she currently lives in the same state in the city of Portland. She lives there with her husband, son, and their dog. By day she is a paralegal/legal assistant and by night she teaches Pilates and runs a sport and social club with her husband that they founded back in 2008. “We started PortSports with the ideal of promoting unity and positivity even within recreational adult sports. A big part of our mission is to give back to charities and over the years we’ve donated over $30,000 to local and national nonprofit organizations.”

Uniqueness comes from Morgan’s 311 tattoo sleeve. “All I knew when I started this project was that I wanted a sleeve, I wanted it all 311-related, with the overarching theme of ‘head in the clouds, feet on the ground’ from shoulder to wrist. From there I went through the lyric books I had created (because I’m a nerd), pulled my favorite quotes and imagery from their music and started my list to bring to my artist. We worked on the design for over four months to take the ideas and make them a cohesive piece of art that I will have for a lifetime. It took about 24 hours total ink time from start to finish. Inspiration: SPLYL, Jupiter, Hive, Pow Wow Fest/dreamcatcher, BTGS/Sun Comes Through, Transistor, Speak Easy, Grassroots, Ballyhoo!’s Earl to name a few].”

Something you may not know about Morgan is that in her sophomore year of college she went to Egypt to study the “Coral Reed Preservation in the Red Sea.” “We spent one week in Cairo and two weeks scuba diving in Sharm el Sheikh. And yes, I got to ride a camel!” Guilty pleasure for Morgan is the reality show “Big Brother.” When not listening to 311 she jams out to Dirty Heads, Ballyhoo!, RDGLDGRN and Major Lazer.

Morgan has this message to 311: “Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for spreading your message of unity and positivity since the beginning and staying true to yourselves throughout the years. Keep on being the 311est!”

Her message to all the other awesome 311 fans:

“Enjoy the ride and keep an open heart. Even after 20+ years of being a fan, I still love rediscovering their music and finding a new appreciation each and every show.”


Morgan, thanks for being awesome and sharing your story with everyone! It was my pleasure being able to write about an amazing person. Thanks to all who stopped by to read this and keep on reading each week. You are all wonderful! Now go out and spread that positivity.

Much love – The Runt

311 Fan Spotlight – 9/4/17 – Steve Young!

Hello again excitable friends! Can you guess the time? It’s new fan spotlight time! This week we meet Steve Young!

The year was 1994 and it was a close friend at school that introduced Steve to 311. His friend had the Music album on tape and they would listen to it in between classes. “I remember saying wow these guys are freaking awesome. I went to Tower Records after class and bought it, I wore that tape out, till it broke, and then bought it again.”

Show count for Steve is at 54. He’s been on three cruises and thinks they are absolutely amazing. “I even got to play basketball against p-nut on two of them.. he won one and I won one, so  I need a grudge match! every show since then Pnut always pretends to shoot a basketball at me when he see’s me on his side at the shows..so cool!!!” Steve’s first show was at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City back in 1995. “They played with Korn that night and I danced and moshed my ass off all night, instantly hooked on the energy of their live shows!” His favorite show so far though was the beach show from the second cruise. “Nothing can compare to watching 311 do their thing on a pirate ship stage while swimming in the ocean. I remember it so well I had a blue floating matt with 2 buckets of beer my close friends and a ear full of awesome…that memory will never leave me.”

There are many songs that Steve holds near and dear. “With each release of a new album there would be a song or three, that felt like it was just for me in the now, something I was going thru or experiencing that just was in sync with my life, a song like all mixed up saying trust your instincts and let go of regret, at the time its just what I needed or song like speak easy when it came out I was living in the Bahamas I was away from the city, away from the ears that bug us and judge us, indeed it was liberating to be free…. all along their path and mine they would have song come out that touched me, encouraged me or lifted my spirit up. I can’t name just one, its a collective of lyrics, songs and moments in time that stir my soul.” There are also many lyrics that have touched his heart, but right now he said his favorite comes from “Wake Your Mind Up” – The streets that we walk on are dark and jaded, a wandering soul that’s filled with hatred. In it is poison the youth is tainted, social engineering keeps us separated. Media control is highly overrated, ignorance is bliss to those uneducated. Listen to the message cuz it’s time we faced it.”

Northern New Jersey is the area that Steve was raised but his journey through life has taken him quite a few places including Southern Florida, a small island in the Bahamas, New York, and Pennsylvania. His career path has been kind of crazy he said. “I just followed the road in front of me and surfed the wave, after college I was a bartender for many years, one summer I was hired to do a flair gig in the Hamptons, it was a party for a really wealthy family, that party I worked changed everything, I got to know the owner of the estate and he asked me to come back for other parties  I did, after one party he asked if I wanted to work for him, I said jokingly yeah sure you need a personal bartender full time? he laughed and said no I need a sharp guy like you to help me set up a new house I bought in the Bahamas,  I said yes and two weeks later I was on a private jet moving to harbor island in the Bahamas, I lived on a billionaires private estate and looked over his house, I managed that property, and also oversaw construction of a 4 unit guest apartment.  It was crazy I didn’t know anyone there but I was in paradise, I loved island life those 3 years I can remember dancing to golden sunlight on the beach at night and I could see the stars under my feet from the calm waters rolling up on the sand, the sky was so clear and the stars so bright it looked like a disco under my toes.  That was in 2008 I stayed working for that family for 6 years working my way up his private staff to finally becoming the head of estates. I was brushing elbows with so many cool people from Presidents of the United States to famous actors and singers, the stories I could tell, would fill up this entire blog.  But while working for that family we did a number of construction projects and I got to know a architect very well, he got me to leave that job and work for him, so now I work for a Architecture firm in nyc as a Owners Rep and I help families build their dream homes. It’s been I wild ride I wouldn’t change a minute.  If you meet me in person ask me to tell you a dirty joke Bill Clinton told me and Chevy Chase over cocktails one night at a fundraiser.”

Interesting fact about Steve is that he loves to dance! He was his older sisters dance partner growing up and he still loves it. “All forms, from lindy hop, to swing, to ballroom styles, electro and dance hall. I Love slinging my little lady around the dance floor. The ways different music moves you is always something I’ve enjoyed. Pants off dance off…yes please!” Unique attribute for Steve is his laugh! “Friends of mine always comment on my laugh, that it’s infectious, and I do love to be silly. I also really like to make others laugh, I don’t try to be a funny guy, but it’s more of something I always have done infused humor into everything, lighten the mood, try to get people to laugh, which in turns gets me laughing. They say it adds years to your life. Don’t be so serious it’s just a ride.”

Guilty pleasure for Steve is that he loves his Sunday Fun day! “Golf with the guys and Game of Thrones in the eve…Sunday fun days are the best!” Other bands Steve listens to, it changes from time to time, but for the most part its Bob Marley, Beastie Boys, The Dirty Heads, The Movement, Stick Figure, and CC Roots, a great local band in New Jersey/NYC.

To 311, Steve’s message is this: “I would first like to thank them for all the uplifting moments on my journey, my positive outlook on life that fuels me, they have been a major part in my life.. Then I would like to encourage them to say more in between songs!! I know that down is for the “old school fans’ lol Say something uplifting, or about the song, it makes the connection even better, and it feels personal for that crowd in that moment in time! I feel so blessed to have them in my life for 23 years!”

To all the other awesome 311 fans:

“I would really like to stress to all the fans and friends the power of unity. There is a reason chad has the symbol of the flower of life on his drum sticks and I have it tattooed on me as well,. The flower of life is the sacred geometry of creation that shapes all living things and is the visual expression of the connections of life that run through all sentient beings. Basically we are all connected, we are all one!  When realizing this, everyone becomes your brother or sister, everyone is part of you, this promotes peace and love and unity, as why would anyone want to do harm to a loved one or themselves. You can hear “one” in the lyrics of many 311 songs, and yes I do believe we are in fact all one, all coming from one source spirit.    Just try to take that out into the world with you. BE kinder to one another, be patient, be love, Try to affect your little universe in a positive way. We can all shape this world into a better place,. We need this now! You can easily see that the powers that be and the media push and try to divide us, by race, color, political views and religion. It’s all around us every day, fear and hate on every news channel. WE all need to be beacons of light and fill this world with the one thing we all know is a huge part of being a 311 fan Peace Love and Unity! ……Respect!!”


Steve thanks for sharing your story and being a part of this 311 fan community! Such a pleasure to write this up and I love sharing all your tales of how you fell in love with 311. Like I always say, I’ll keep writing as long you keep reading!

Much love – The Runt