Hi Reddit. I’m Joe Kwon and I play the cello for the Avett Brothers. I also write a blog about eating on the road, take a lot of photographs, and have been getting into woodworking.


Thanks to my pal greentide008 for harassing me to do this AMA and helping me navigate around Reddit.

I have a couple of hours today to answer questions and will be checking back in over the next few days to followup.

Ask me anything!

Also, Scott, Seth and Bob are popping in so leave questions for the band as well if you'd like.

pre-AMA I did over at /r/TheAvettBrothers

Comments: 562 • Responses: 88  • Date: 

Joekwon8071 karma

That's it for now. I'll be back in subsequent days to get to questions I didn't get this time around!

Thank you all for being here and asking so many great questions.

Kwon Out

Fantasticdisaster66 karma

Joe! I don't have a question, just wanted to let you know a little preschool in Massachusetts used to regularly rock out to your music (higher tempo pieces for dance parties, slower for nap time).

You guys were a huge hit with the three to five year old set.

Joekwon8040 karma


ashleybb41 karma

You're playing three nights in a row at the opera house in St. Louis. Can we look forward to multi-night runs in other cities? Do you prefer that to the big arena shows?

Joekwon8070 karma

Scott: You can look forward more multi night performances. There are just too many songs to play in one night.

shinyandbright38 karma

I love you guys! Any plans for a Live Vol. 4? And if so, when?

Joekwon8040 karma

Of courses! I would hope there is a Vol. 4 soon but there isn't anything in the works if that's what your asking.

ahsylA34 karma

What made you guys decide to work with Chris Cornell? And most importantly, when does the Avett Death Metal album drop??

Joekwon80124 karma

Scott: Simply put, we are huge fans of each other.

Joe: Avett Death Metal Christmas 2666.

Down-To-Fap33 karma

Are the voice messages in PGFC and If It's the Beaches real? If so, who are they?

Joekwon8045 karma

They are real people.

pertnear28 karma

Favorite song to play live??

Joekwon8062 karma

Hmmmm, toss up between If It's the Beaches and Pretend Love at the moment. It changes all the time.

splenetics27 karma

You've said you were a huge fan of the band before you joined it, and in particular after you joined each new album had a new layer of sound and depth. However, there is a rather large subset of fans who believe that the collaboration with Rick Rubin is taking the sound of the band too far away from the boot stomping roots.

My question is, how do you feel about working with Rubin? Do you feel his input is as significant a driving force in the ever-changing sound of the band, or do you think people are forgetting that all of you all growing up, dealing with families, and the ever-growing responsibilities that go along with leaving your 20's? As for me, I'm just happy that you've never made the same album twice.

You guys have kept me sane through grad school, and are responsible for me picking my guitar back up and learning to play the banjo. I know "Backwards With Time" isn't about grad school - but it's become my unofficial grad school theme song. Perhaps Emily would agree!

Joekwon8044 karma

I deferred this question to scott. Scott: Thank you for the thoughtful question. It needs to be known that Rick is primarily an enabler for us to make the music we want. We have first hand seen comments made about the sounds or instrumentation on records that Seth or I made the decision on and not Rick. Assumptions can run wild, at the end of the day we are very thankful that people react to our music positively or negatively.

You are correct, we are continuously changing and that certainly plays a part in the art we make.

frankie84225 karma

I took this picture of you guys at your show in Halifax, Nova Scotia. How did you like eastern Canada? http://imgur.com/b8sV9r5

Joekwon8022 karma

Canada has always been great to us. It's so amazing how large Canada is but, how when we are there it feels like being welcomed back home. It's odd like that. Such great shows up there!

ManMadeMountains22 karma

Is there any way you can post a video of what your talking voice sounds like?

Joekwon8053 karma

thatguy5220 karma

Hello Joe, I'm a huge fan and it's an honor to ask u some questions.

When will you be getting a mike?

Who smells best in the band? What do they smell like?

Who would win in a fight to the death, Bob or 4 bear cubs?

Once again I truly appreciate your music and I thank u from the bottom of my heart.


Joekwon8046 karma

I have a mic now.

I smell the best! I smell like laundry detergent or hair product.

Bob would win because he would just nurture them to love him.

Pb_Blimp18 karma

Hi Joe, thanks for taking the time do to an AMA.

  1. Do you as an individual, or together as a group, have goals that contribute to the success of the band?

  2. Do you have any stories about fans crossing the line into "creepy" territory?

Joekwon8028 karma

Scott: 1. We all try to be on time and responsible for each other. That may help.

  1. Not that I can think of.

Ascf3317 karma

How does it feel to have the whole crowd sing along to your cello during 'Go To Sleep'?

Joekwon8023 karma

Amazing of course. It is a joy to play that song and feel like everyone is in it together.

Sixteen_Down17 karma


Joekwon8020 karma

Of course. But, nothing is on the books that I know of. That would be spectacular!

dacadac16 karma

first off, joe, which album would you say is your favorite album to play tracks off of?

then, which song is the hardest to play and dance to?

have you been vying for a chance to sing with a mic for awhile?

how has the band changed, personally, with the passing years?

thanks! and have a great show in green bay! with 5+ shows under my belt i know ya'll can't have a bad one, but unfortunately i can't afford it this time around. hopefully i can give you a hug sometime, though!

Joekwon8031 karma

I can't say I have a favorite album because I love so many of the songs for different reasons.

Probably the hardest to play is Hard Worker. I tend to want to sit that one out because I have a mental block on it.

I never wanted a mic. They needed an extra backing vocal so I got one. I'm glad to have it though.

The band has changed of course. We are older, seen more, done more, everything changes with the things that life throws at you.

I'll take a hug any day!

splenetics15 karma

One more question - as a big fan of the Crackerfarm videos, are there any plans to put out a collection of those songs as an album or some kind of digital release?

Joekwon8016 karma

If there are that's something cracker would know. You should ask him on twitter @crackerfarm

BrainsontheMind15 karma

From a fellow cellist, how hard was the transition from classical training to what you do now?

Joekwon8031 karma

Once I gave up on feeling like a fool, it became easier. After all it's just a feeling!

midnightoilbrah12 karma

Hey Joe, really enjoyed Magpie and all the other albums. I have to ask, any hope of the metal songs from your stint on Jimmy Fallon ever going to make it to the live stage? I think it would be awesome to hear you guys do a full song or two like that.

Joekwon8022 karma

Probably not. But wouldn't it be great if just one of them made it to a setlist?

bobbiness12 karma

Firstly, I want to thank you for your wonderful music and the emotions put into your work. There is not a day that goes by where I don't listen to your songs ranging from Mignonette to Four Thieves Gone to Carpenter to Magpie all in one session. You are all musical masters and have changed my life. You have inspired me to be better musically and personally. Your music has also created a very strong connection between me and the love of my life. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

My question(s)...How do you stay energized physically and emotionally during the tour? Your shows are wonderfully long, well rehearsed, and energetic. When the show is over and you're in route to the next town, how do you avoid getting "burnt out" so to speak? I can imagine that during this time of touring everyone's energy is low and families are greatly missed.

Joekwon8012 karma

There is a lot that goes in to staying physically fit and healthy. Diet, rest, exercise, and strength training. On top of that we need to eat well. These things also affect our emotional stamina as well. It's all quite related if you think about it.

As for being "burnt out" it really comes down to realizing how good it is to play for people. We always say that we come alive on stage, and as long as we are performing, being burned out doesn't even come in to play.

And yes, we miss our families the most. It is what makes this life difficult, more than anything it's our responsibilities to our families that has to be at the forefront of our minds.

jboulas080812 karma

I know this is a long shot but do you have any plans to sneak through the midwest on your next tour? So many of us Omahans/Lincolnites LOVE you guys and would be so supportive of a show in town.

Joekwon8020 karma

There just isn't a chance that any more shows will be added. It's time to wrap things up for the tour year. Our health is dwindling and our families miss us. It's time to get home and spend some time with them.

But I be you we'll be back next year.

burkilla11 karma

Hi guys! I was fortunate enough to meet you backstage in Rochester in 2008, and I really want to thank you both Joe and Scott for being so warm and kind and actually talking to me like you were interested. It was for sure a top 3 moment in my life, and also my favorite show of yours yet. So my question...

I used to see you play for around 100-200 people, do you miss those intimate shows now that you are playing to thousands?? Even though you guys can somehow make a stadium feel intimate...

Joekwon8017 karma

Of course, I miss those shows! The thing is, we still play those shows when we go to Europe, so I don't have to miss them too much. There is something a lot scarier playing to 100 people than playing for 3000. Just the fact that the crowd can hear your breath makes you that much tighter, but in a good way.

smellybigfoot11 karma

I follow you on Twitter, so I know you're a huge foodie. What was the best dish you have eaten, and where? (not your cooking)

Joekwon8019 karma

There are a couple that stick out. Sous Vide venison at Fearrington House, and the Omelet at Per Se. Both of them revolutionized flavors in my mouth.

theyseemErockin9 karma

Joe, in a wood working show down with Nick Offerman, who would win?

Also, who's got the best follicular density (beardwise) in the band?

As a fun bonus fact, both myself and my brother have Avett's tattoo's, massive fans!

Joekwon8010 karma

Nick I'm a newby.

snakesandstuff8 karma

Hey! I saw you guys in Little Rock last night! Awesome show!

Where's your favorite spot to eat in Little Rock?

I saw you guys at Mud Island in Memphis last year as well (or was it this year?). Both shows were great. Do you prefer indoor shows or outdoor shows?

I also wanted to thank all of you guys for the great evening(s)!

Joekwon805 karma

I haven't had the chance to explore Little Rock for food sadly. What do you recommend?

I don't think I prefer indoor over outdoor or outdoor over indoor.

Bennettfl17 karma

Does the band attend any kind of worship service during the week?

Joekwon8030 karma

We do not. There generally isn't much time to do anything while we are touring. Most of our time is spent working up a song, or trying to stay healthy.

Time for reverence has to be something that one seeks out on their own.

THAT_GIRL167 karma

What was it like working with Rick Rubin? I like to think he is like a giant teddy bear when you meet him in person.
How is Bobs daughter doing? That video he shared of her time at St. Jude's was heart breaking.

Joekwon8017 karma

Working with Rick at first, as you could imagine, was nerve racking. He's been in the business for as long as I've been alive probably and has made some amazing music and has a knowledge that I will never touch. But, at the end of the day, he's just a big music lover. He also gives great hugs.

blevinshl7 karma

As someone who has seen the band play live 7-8 times I have always noticed that you sing with every song, but never have a mic so my theory is you have the most beautiful voice in the world

Joekwon8015 karma

I have a mic now, but I truly don't have a great voice. That, and I tend to lose my intonation even more on the cello when I try to sing and play. It takes a while for me to learn the songs by pitch and play the songs at the same time.

Ry___Guy7 karma

Hi Joe.

I've been a long time fan of the Avett Brothers. My wife and I just saw yall in Boise for the first time since I joined the military a few years ago. Yall rocked.

My question is: which one of yalls song means the most to you and why?

Mine is If its the beaches. There is so much desperation and raw hope all in one song. I just got back from a deployment and I would listen to all of yalls songs. It reminded me of home and kept me going. So for that, I want to say thank you for the music and inspiration you create.

Keep rocking.

Joekwon8018 karma

That is a tough one.

I'd have to say that it's currently Down With the Shine, because it's a battle that I see myself dealing with on a daily basis. Always wanting the newest, latest and greatest, and falling to commercialism. It's a tough one to come to terms with. But, there really isn't just one song that I relate to whole heartedly.

Thank you for your service and what you do for all of us.

LupeVCarroll6 karma

Hey Joe! I was wondering if Seth has been doodling or anything in the small red notepad I gave him on the plane to LA. I didn't think I'd ever get a chance to ask so thank you so much for doing this. Also, my wife plays cello. She's a phenomenal player and I was very curious for her, what kind of strings do you use? Good luck to you and the fellas in all you guys do. Much love. -Lupe

Joekwon807 karma

Sorry Lupe, lost your comment among these great questions. Thank you all by the way. This is fun!

I use Larsen A&D strings and Thomastic Spirocore Tungsten G&Cs. It's a classic combination of brightness and darkness. The only draw back is that they are so expensive.

Tajiri6 karma

The show posters are highly anticipated and are like the gravy for each show. I may or may not own a significant amount of these beauties. How do you find the artists and do they get free reign of the design?

Joekwon8010 karma

I don't know exactly how they are selected, but I know that Travis our Merchandise Manager knows how it all goes down. And, thank you for liking the posters. I have a few of them myself. Though, I don't have a lot of the ones you would think I should have.

knate6 karma

Question you, and the whole band: it seems like there is a complicated relationship between spreading your art and the issue of celebrity and pressures to perform. (I feel like this is touched on in some of your music as well)

How do you manage that balance in a way that's healthy and productive?

How do you cope with the isolating nature of celebrity?

Joekwon8011 karma

I don't know if any of us feels a pressure to perform, rather, we are chomping at the bit to get on stage TO perform. I honestly believe that everyone on stage is a born performer and just loves to be out there and playing for everyone and interfacing.

The balance between art and celebrity is a really tough balance, and the way that I deal with it is by believing that I'm not a celebrity and not doing anything differently from how I would do them if I weren't in the Avett Brothers. I don't hide myself or try to disguise myself when I go out. I just go and 99% of the time, most people just pass and say hello and go on their way. What people don't realize is that I WANT to talk to you. :)

smussyolay6 karma

from the previous Avett thread:

Jocelyn from Chicago here. Just want to say thanks for all the wonderful music you guys have created. I truly believe with all of my heart that it's a divine gift from Spirit, and I am so grateful for all the lovely songs.

Couple of questions -- 1. How do the setlists get decided on as far as deep cuts/catalog songs go? It seems like there's some improv/flexibility/in the moment-ness, which is rad. Do you all sit and chat and say, "I'd like to put this in there?" Seems like there's some room for fan requests? Are there some songs that you just don't really ever play live so much? I heard there was a great feeling of love that allowed for "Greatest Sum" last night, for instance.

  1. To that end ... what determines when you'll come out after/before a show to meet/greet/chat up with all of the fans/people who like to hang out and hope? Mood/schedule/physicality, etc?

  2. Buzzie (the vulture)?? The white rat? Discuss. :)

Joekwon8019 karma

So each night's setlist is different as you all know. Before the show, sometimes as close to a half hour before show time, S, S, & B sit down and start talking through the setlist. Often times deep cuts get fleshed out in sound check just so they aren't sprung on the rest of us. However, sometimes, deep cuts make it to an audible on stage. That's when you really start to sweat. There isn't so much room for fan requests as there is just being smitten by a good request from a fan or one that might fit so perfectly in the set.

There are so many songs that don't get played much, and I think that if we had some time to rehearse we could work some of them out. However, due to our tour schedule it's not always possible to take time out from our time home to practice.

Interestingly enough, greatest sum was performed during sound check and if it was requested it was fate.

So, here's a great question about our decision to talk to fans. Understand that if we had limitless health and strength and time we would talk to everyone if possible. It's just not the case most of the time. For instance if we are just starting of a 5 day run it may not be wise to go out in below freezing weather to talk to fans at the risk of getting sick. That being said, there is no decision that is made on the bus. If anyone can go out they will. And trust me, it's tough to keep Scott from wanting to talk to people. We've just learned it's just not always the best decision for the sake of our shows.

prince_habibu6 karma

Hey Joe! After seeing you guys perform numerous times at numerous venues, for some reason my two favorite sets are from Newport Folk Festival in 2011 and this past summer. Is there a different atmosphere when you play at festivals such as Newport due to the rich history and “folkier” attitude?

Joekwon8017 karma

Scott: We're pretty sure that has something to do with it but we've also noticed patterns in relation to towns and seasons, where we are at in the year, how fresh or tired we are. We've noticed that our band reacts to that, and Newport seems to be where we adapt to well from our perspective as well!

Holyfallen6 karma

How do the Avett's make their hair so beautiful? What are their secrets?

Joekwon8018 karma

Not showering and hair products. Gross, I know!

trevorbolliger6 karma

Hi Joe! Thanks for your and the rest of the band's hard work to make such beautiful and important music.

How did you get introduced to Seth, Scott, and Bob? And what lead to you becoming a full time member of The Avett Brothers?

What song made you fall in love with The Brother’s music? (Mine was “The Weight of Lies”)

Joekwon8016 karma

Brief History

It was actually their energy on stage that made me fall in love with their music. Hearing tender songs like that was new to me!

magneticquaker6 karma

Joe! I'm so glad you're on Reddit!

The songs that you play with The Avett Brothers are so meaningful and beautiful.

How did you become part of the band and how can I send you guys some fan mail?

I can't wait to see y'all in March on tour!

peted18846 karma

Cool - nice of you to do this. Sorry, no questions.

Joekwon8040 karma

No problem. I'll just give you an answer.

My favorite color is green.

Fitznoozly5 karma

As I just got engaged, and am a huge fan of the band as a whole ( I have 3 Avett related tattoos, as well as all the albums and recordings I can find of course), what song do you think should be my soon to be bride and I's wedding song? (Out of the Avett Bros catalog?)

Also question for Joe, how do you swing around a cello like that? You must be ripped at this point! Keep on being amazing!

Last edit: Is there a good version of the recording of kick drum heart that was on the Paris part 2 video that crackerfarm released? It's a slowed down version and it is beautiful.

Joekwon8011 karma

This is Joe by the way because I'm here alone.

I think Murder in the City makes for a hilarious wedding song.

I'm so ripped you can't believe it. NOT!

I had to have at least one NOT joke in there to show my age.

And, that version of kick drum I doubt is recorded anywhere other than crackers camera.

Junkstar5 karma

Just bought some of your bands music a couple of weeks ago. I know you guys have been at it a long time and I'm late to the party, but wanted to say how much I like your recent albums. My question: Is the squirrelly front guy (the shorter brother) nothing but trouble? He kinda looks like trouble to me.

Joekwon806 karma

Scott, he's a lot of trouble, but he also wrangles us in. We all like to keep tabs on each other, and keep each other in check.

xHayz5 karma

Long time fan here, I love you guys! What are some of y'all's favorite modern bands and influences in music today? Also, I'm seeing you guys okay in St Francisville tomorrow, and if I could score an autograph, I could die happy. <3

Joekwon8030 karma

Scott & Joe: Ryan Adams, Dr. Dog, Sufjan Stevens, Regina Spektor, Felice Brothers, Bombadil, Brett Dennen, Band of Horses, Bon Iver, Langhorn Slim, Michael Kiwanuka, Ben Sollee, Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, Mark Lannigan(sp?), Shovels and Rope, Lake Street Dive, Queens of the Stone Age, Evan Dando, so many that we are forgetting.

Come find us and we'll sign it.

Linzeyluu5 karma

Buckley is the cutest---what's his favorite pastime? :)

Also, do you find it difficult to transition between folk/bluegrass/country and classical music? Do you dabble in both?

Joekwon8015 karma

Oh I dabble in whatever people will let me dabble in! I'm not music genius so I need to learn how to play it all. Too bad I just can't play much of it well!

Buckley favorite past time is eating. Of course!

Coffeeoverdose5 karma

Joe! I just wanted to say that you're wonderful and I look forward to seeing you on Friday in St. Augustine!

Joekwon807 karma

Thank you!

happyincle5 karma

Wondering after your most recent show and visit in Cleveland did Scott make it to the Barking Spider and why did you choose Cleveland to spend a day off? How do you continue to connect so well with the audience despite the show venues getting larger? I still am not quite sure what happened the first time I saw you live. I was captivated in a way I never expected. I believed and felt every single word. My husband and I plan our road trips around where the Avett Brothers will be. We still get so invested every show and become these bumbling embarrassing emotional dancing fools we don't know ourselves. As far as I know, it happens to almost everyone who sees you which is why we see the same people at the shows. Does it ever get old and/or pathetic hearing this? Love that you are headlining Nelsonville Fest! Love love love everything about you guys. Life would look so much different without your music.

Joekwon808 karma

We decided on Cleveland because of the museum.

I like to think our connection with the audience comes with the songs that are sung. The songs are intimate even if delivered in a raucous manner. The songs mean something to someone out there listening and to us on stage. When there is that common ground it's easy to feel connected.

It's never bad to hear that people enjoy what you do. It fuels us to keep doing it!

Scott didn't make it to the Barking Spider.

MisterDemz5 karma

Whats your favorite venue? Has to be Red Rocks, right?

Joekwon808 karma

It's a toss up. Radio City was pretty darn cool you see. But of course I love Red Rocks for it's historic natural feel, and the Gorge. I have loved so many venues across the states though. Some of them just feel right as soon as you walk through the loading doors.

prettygirlfrom4 karma

You spent a fair amount of time in NYC this year. What was the best experience off the stage while you were there?

Joekwon8011 karma

Scott and I both agree that our dining experiences at the Collichio & Sons and Craft, both were amazing meals and their hospitality exceeds expectations. If any of you have a chance to go to either restaurant, it is worth it!

ashleybb4 karma

Thank you so much for answering my other question! While I have your ear, I would regret not asking this... I've seen you guys 60+ times over the past several years, and have somehow have never been at a show where you've played New Love Song (I've heard so many of my other favorite songs, and I'm so grateful!). Is there any chance you would play it in Lexington on the 23rd?

And a bonus thank you for always being so awesome to your fans! You guys have always been so generous with your time and it means a lot to all of us.

Joekwon808 karma

Oof, that's a deep cut. I can't say that it'll make it, but if S,S,or B read this AMA maybe they'll put it in.

frankie8424 karma

Do you play live without your glasses because you would probably rock them off if you wore them?

Joekwon805 karma

Exactly, however, recently I'm having to wear them because I ran out of contacts.

CountZachula4 karma

Hi Joe, thanks for doing this AMA. Seeing you rock with a cello has made me want to learn how to play as well. I was wondering if you play any other instruments. Also is there an instrument that you wish you could play?

Joekwon8019 karma

I wish I could play the piano and the guitar. In fact, anyone out there who is a budding musician of any age, learn how to play the piano. I don't care what your excuse is, LEARN HOW TO PLAY PIANO!

Gemini44 karma

Top three all time favorite day time talk show hosts?

Joekwon8010 karma

Day time?!?! I don't know if I know any? Ellen, Ellen, and Ellen. I dunno any others.

Sixteen_Down4 karma


Joekwon8014 karma

I guess in all the obvious ways. In order to stay current you have to understand, at least at the surface level, how emerging technologies effect the world around us. Just as you would imagine, knowing how to tweet, like, post, reddit, are all things that are just supplements to what is already going on.

Excuse me if my answers start getting incoherent. I'm feeling a little under the weather today.

pginthecurve4 karma

Hi Guys. Thanks for participating in this Joe. I love how involved you are with social media. I'll be at the Cheerwine Giveback show Thursday. You all give so much back to many charities and I really appreciate that. The music of The Avett Brothers speaks to me in many ways. I feel a kinship with you all and the other fans of the band. I feel free and happy enjoying the moment when I'm at one if your shows. I'm nothing short of thankful. Joe I know you are a foodie but I believe you also like craft beers. What's your favorite beer?

Joekwon803 karma

Well, my favorite beer is probably something light and crisp. I'm a bit over heavy beers at the moment. I find them a bit overwhelming. I like Kolschs, or since it's entering fall, I'm back on wine.

lollikaken4 karma

Has anyone fallen off the stage while performing?

Joekwon808 karma

Seth has come close. He's fallen back ON to the stage before.

JennyLenore4 karma

Hey Joe! Thanks so much for doing this AMA - one of the many things I love about The Avett Brothers is that you guys seem to really care and appreciate your fans! I have loved seeing you guys live over the past few years. Some of my best memories include road trips, camping out in line, meeting new people, dancing, laughing and singing before/during/after your shows. They're like one big adventure for me. I just want to thank you all for making such incredible music that draws people together like I haven't seen before.

Anyways, do you have a favorite tour memory?

Joekwon805 karma

I guess one of my favorite tour memories was waking up at 4am to wait for the breakfast buffet to open at 530am in Sydney Australia. It is a favorite memory because I remember everyone slowing showing up because everyone was so jet lagged and having a good laugh about who slept the least.

Mcmac723 karma

If someone were making you a homemade special dinner, what would you ask for? Would love to hear responses from any/all of you

Joekwon8013 karma

If someone was making me a home made dinner I wouldn't ask for anything. I love being surprised and to be honest, I've never had a bad home made dinner.

TheLandmine3 karma

Is there a song that you are tired of playing? There has to be one...

Joekwon806 karma

In fact there isn't one. We aren't really known for performing songs the same way every night.

pagetreyfishmike3 karma

joe, been a fan of the boys for 10 years now (i even remember your BUS days!) watching you find your niche in this band has been exciting from your first days on stage way back in '07. i love this band so much and it has shown from the beginning that you are a such a fan too.

So...are the Avett Bros. your favorite band too?

Joekwon806 karma

Yep! I just can't admit it to them since it would embarrass them too much.

Pb_Blimp3 karma

I've been to 60ish shows, but my all time favorite was the Syracuse NY show because you opened with all the Pretty Girl songs.

Can you tell me what compelled you guys to do that?

Joekwon8011 karma

I believe, that was Bob's idea. That was quite some time ago, funny thing is, I remember there being a burrito shop next door right? They have really good habanero salsa.

RmUK3 karma

What kind of shampoo/conditioner do you use?

Joekwon809 karma

Haha, do you really want to know? Aveda, Dry Remedy, Morrocan Oil, Aveda Pommade.

InvalidLetterDepot3 karma

Huge AB fan, i wondering since you guys put on such an energetic show have there been any injuries sustained due on stage shenanigans (jumping around aimlessly, standing on kick drums, etc.). Also im curious on what the process is for picking the setlist every night because I feel each setlist is pretty much perfect and tailored for that specific audience. are there any song that you guys will never play again ( i ask because i see a lot of bands avoiding there most comercial songs or olders songs for various reasons). lastly, how did you guys hook up with chad smith from the chili peppers?

Joekwon808 karma

Injuries are pretty common as you get older I think. My shoulder chronically hurts, scott is turning into a hunch front, seth has bad knees, bob is fine though. He's strong :)

Chad Smith recorded on The Carpenter and we had the pleasure of chatting with him a few times since then.

fuckyaju3 karma

I have seen you guys 2 times in the past couple months. Once at Newport Folk Festival and again in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I don't really have a question but just wanted to thank you all SO much for the music you make and for continuing to be so grateful every time you take the stage. I love you all!

Joekwon806 karma

Thank you too!

dhb33683 karma

What was your most memorable live show?

Thanks for doing this AMA, huge fan of the band!

Joekwon808 karma

One of my most memorable in recent memory was performing vanity with Chris Cornell. I got chills!

TummyDrums3 karma

I love all of you guys and all the music you've made! Thank you all so much! You've inspired me musically in so many ways, and I've decided to pick up the banjo (thanks Scott!) and start learning how to play. I love the sounds you can put together. You've got such a unique sound, but what are some artists you listen to that have influenced the way you play?

Also, I can't wait to see you in Springfield, MO on Valentine's Day!

Joekwon808 karma

Oh I just thought of a band that has influenced my stage show quite a bit and that's Red Hot Chili Peppers. They are an amazing force on stage.

DylanTaylor13 karma

I just kind of have a question for all of you guys:

What are you thankful for on this journey of love and music and creation?

And to follow that up I am thankful for good people like you spreading good words full of love. Thank you for being you.

Joekwon8015 karma

Love and Music and Creation. :)

Youre_Government3 karma

Hello there, Mr. Kwon. I have no question. I just wanted to say that I love your music so fucking much and I still sing along at the top of my lungs, despite the fact that I've listened to most of your songs hundreds of times.

Joekwon807 karma


dat_doe_doe3 karma

you did amazing last night in lr!

Joekwon805 karma

Thank You!!

Ridkidjory3 karma

What kind of wild shenanigans do you boys get into?

Joekwon807 karma

Oh we are a bit too old to survive shenanigans. We generally stay pretty low key.

madisonrickard3 karma

Hi Joe! HUGE fan, btw. Seriously this band enriches my life every single day. ♥ Anywhoooo, I was just wondering when you started playing cello? And are your parents musicians or did they influence you to get into music?

Joekwon809 karma

Both my parents, and both of my sisters, as well as 10 of my cousins I think, at some point played an instrument. I grew up in a very musical family. There were two areas of concentration growing up, math, and music. I was 9 when I started playing.

argonauts3 karma

What's your favorite song to perform live?

Joekwon807 karma

That's a nightly changing song. Each night it could easily be a new song or an old song. It all depends on how the crowd reacts. It's amazing how much the audience affects the mood of a show for me.

thecolorado3 karma

I want to know more about crackerfarm videos. Do you create a lot of videos while you're hanging out with Mike and then he chooses which ones he wants to release and when, or are they strategically planned by both the band and crackerfarm to be released at certain times?

Joekwon806 karma

Cracker does what cracker wants. :) He makes a lot of videos and has creative ideas about them. Sometimes the guys ask to film one of they have a song they have to sing. It's all very much between artist and artist.

mawimberley2 karma

Joe! Thanks for doing an AMA. Two things: What's your favorite coffee? Also I'm from the mtns. in NC but am finishing up an MFA in poetry at NYU & have a manuscript ready to go. The Avett Brothers music has been so influential to my writing, & to keeping me close to home here in Brooklyn. I use an Avett Brothers lyric as an epigraph of the mss. & I'd love to get y'all an early copy sometime. Hope all is well.

Joekwon809 karma

Please do send it along to our management with my name on it. I'd love to read it and pass it around.

I answered the coffee question up top.

jchazu2 karma

Thank you guys for making the music you do - you all have moved me in more ways than I thought possible more times than I can count.

Anywho: Who in the music industry would you like to collaborate with on a song/album? Is there any particular genre or subgenre of music that you would like to experiment with?

Joekwon809 karma

I would love to work with Andrew Bird. I've said it many many times and I'm hoping it'll happen one day. Also, Ben Sollee and I have discussed doing a collaboration at some point, I just don't know when both of our schedules will permit it.

We got to watch Seun Kuti in Malmö, Sweden this past summer and his music and performance blew me away.

I_Like_Special_K2 karma

Joe Kwon you beautiful man, can i have your autograph! Saw you guys in albany two years ago and it was amazing!

Joekwon805 karma

Thank you and of course you can have my autograph!

emilefrey2 karma


Joekwon804 karma

Answered somewhere up there. Dane or Paul.

Untitledprject2 karma

Hey Joe! Just want to say you guys were my first concert and I really appreciate that you and Scott actually took the time to shake my hands after your show in Ybor.

What's day to day life on tour like?

Also is your preferred environment in the studio or playing in front if hundreds of people?

Joekwon804 karma

I love both performing and recording. They are totally different scenarios and I don't think there is any reason to not love both.

One day in my life. Wake up, coffee, breakfast, coffee, answer emails, coffee, answer social media fan mail, talk to the guys, drink more coffee, get in to the venue, play some songs, eat dinner, play a couple more songs, get ready for the show, perform, get on the bus, wind down, go to sleep.

greeneyes832 karma

I saw you in Utrecht last August. I've been trying to come up with a question for a while now, and I just can't come up with, but I really enjoyed Pretty Girl from Chile and wanted to tell you what a great time I had at the concert! I guess if I have to ask a question, what type of chocolate do you like? Dark or milk, any brand?

Joekwon806 karma

I'm a fan of semi-sweet dark with sea salt. What about you?

TheRealGhoulBoastly2 karma

Hey joe! I was wondering if you knew anything about the brothers releasing a third gleam also if Seth will do anything else as Darling. Keep up the great work and please come to Toronto next tour!

Joekwon806 karma

I'm sure Seth will continue the Darling repertoire, and as far as a Gleam 3 is involved, you'd have to ask one of them.

H0pelessWanderer2 karma

You guys seem to be producing music at an unstoppable rate! Do you write all your songs for an album just before it's produced, or are some that we're hearing now oldies that are just now coming to fruition? Thank you all so much for making incredible music with such enthusiasm and genuine heart- you are the best!

Joekwon805 karma

The bulk of the songs are newer, but some older ones get a new life with new life experience that are lived. It's interesting that way how a song can change meaning for any one person in the band.

jaylikesdominos2 karma

How did you meet the brothers? Would you say you three are close? I appreciate your music so much. Never stop!

Joekwon804 karma


We are all very close down to our crew guys.

dhb33682 karma

Who is the most high maintenance member of the band? You guys rock, thanks for making wonderful music!

Joekwon804 karma

That's obviously me. But at least I maintain myself!

smellybigfoot2 karma

This will get buried, I'm sure but what the heck. I'm going to see you in Pittsburgh with Old Crow. I'm so excited I can't stand it. Please tell me you guys will play together for the encore. Please!

Joekwon806 karma

I sure hope we do. I love those guys!

Eensquatch2 karma

I really dislike huge Arena shows, they just seem so impersonal and they lose a lot of heart. I know as you get bigger it's unavoidable, but it there anything the band is doing to keep that folk show feel when they're stuck up in the stands?

I'm a huge Avett Brothers fan, and seeing you at the North Charleston Coliseum verses a smaller venue or the Newport Folk festival (which I've been to a few times) is something I'm really on the fence about.

Joekwon8012 karma

That's on us then. We need to work harder to bring you in to the show to make it feel more like we are connecting with you. It is no fault of your own and I'm glad you bring this up. It IS a challenge to perform in a large arena and keep that small feel. But, for that reason, the condenser songs are built in to bring the crowd in at least to a smaller point of focus. Limited lights, limited mics, just concentrating efforts on a small part of the show. It's important for us to know that our fans are feeling disconnected!

fredrickthegreat2 karma

How much are you involved with planning new songs?

Joekwon806 karma

I'm not sure what you're asking. Lyrically or musically?

Lyrically I have no input, because I don't really have much to say. Musically, I get to put my own twists on songs mostly. I'm given very much creative liberty.

Heath_y_book2 karma

When playing festivals, do y'all get to get out and enjoy the food and other bands too or just sit back and patiently wait for your time to perform?

Joekwon807 karma

We rarely get to get out and walk around. Most festivals are great times for press to get their face time with us. SO, we spend a lot of time talking and meeting folks.

epidemiologist2 karma

Just discovered you guys the other day when I heard Another is Waiting. Thanks for the great song. Which other songs should I listen to in order to get a feel for your sound?

Joekwon808 karma

Indolence, Down With The Shine, If It's The Beaches, Head Full of Doubt, Go To Sleep, Black Blue, Murder in the City, 40 East, Color Show, Famous Flower of Manhattan, Pretty Girl From Cedar Lane, Hard Worker, Morning Song, just to name a few.

animalcriminal2 karma

Let's talk Tabata kettle bell swings! How much do you love/hate those?

Joekwon809 karma

Love love love. No hate here. I'm tough...GRRRR

Claire5551 karma

Hi Joe, Can I just say how I love u guys!!! I live in Ireland and only heard of u guys a couple of months ago, yous have so many gd songs it took me weeks to be able to get any work done or sleep rite! Don't think that theres been anytime since I first heard yous that I havn't had some sort of avett bros lyrics in my head!!! I love that you have a mike now, are you going to be bringing it to Europe anytime soon??? Plz come to Ireland soon! xx

Joekwon804 karma

I'm sure we will be back to Europe before you know it. We won't stop touring as long as you keep listening.