A full ride with Chad Sexton of 311. Taking us inside the hive and behind the scenes of “From Chaos”, which will be performed in full on Friday May 14th. 

Prior to 311’s first full album live stream (of their debut record Music), frontman Nick Hexum explained on AW Live how the band planned to let loose with their fans with this unique performance. Grassroots, the self-titled blue album, Transistor and Soundsystem would all follow suit with enthralling full album shows via 311StreamSystem, live from the hive. 

This past Monday on the 50th episode of AW Live, we were thrilled to have drummer Chad Sexton as our guest ahead of 311’s From Chaos performance on Friday. This record holds a special place amongst the streamsystem efforts as 2021 also marks its 20th anniversary. 

Sexton, from literally inside the hive, took us on a deep From Chaos dive, detailing how it was the first record to be worked on from the band’s Los Angeles headquarters, The Hive. For example, “Amber”, the album and band’s biggest hit to date was not only the last song to be added to From Chaos, it was also the first song to be recorded at The Hive.

So, in preperation for 311 nation popping some Champagne with Caliornia on the brain Friday eveing and kicking back for an Uncalm show, Sexton kindly woke up our minds to all the Sick Tight From Chaos elements that You Wouldn’t Believe. 

311, while always pioneering messages of optimism and unity, is not afraid to acknowledge the hard times that you have to endure as well. I feel like From Chaos is a great example of that. 

That’s not something that was a calculated decision. It’s actually how we all have been living even since we were teenagers. We were out enjoying ourselves trying to think of the most positive thing so that we can have the best time possible. It’s easy for people to focus on negative things or things that are not going right. But there’s always the other side of the coin. That’s what we’ve tried to show people through the music. You just balance it out and move forward. If you make good choices and are positive, life has no option but to grant you the benefit of those choices. It’s that simple.

Did you know “Amber” was something special after recording it, and what does the song mean to you now?

When we recorded it, it was almost like, “Damn it, I just recorded all the drum tracks over at Sound City.” I wanted all the drum tracks to be consistent. I wished we hadn’t added another song. We ended up recording “Amber” at the Hive with Ron Saint Germain, he had great technical tools even though we were limited on gear. We had some great compression techniques on that song. It set it apart. None of us knew it would be successful on the radio. It was like the blue record, where it was the third song that was released off the record and that was the one that kind of went big. Nobody knew that it would be a hit. It was a surprise in our camp that it had success in radio.

Now, we know we have to include it in a live show. We know we will get all different types of fans at our shows. We obviously try and balance the show to give something to everyone. We keep every fan in mind. We’ve played “Amber” a lot, but the lucky thing about our music is that I always look forward to playing it the best that I can. And there’s always some sort of challenge. I enjoy the musical challenge. We’re still so happy that “Amber” was successful and it remains our most successful song.


Don’t miss 311 performing From Chaos in its entirety, live from the hive. Friday, May 14th at 8pm. For tickets and more info visit 311StreamSystem.com.

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