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Jimmy Eat World at Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre, 5 Things to Know

By Gary Graff
ggraff@medianewsgroup.com, @GraffonMusic on Twitte

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It's been 25 years since Jimmy Eat World released its first album, and a lot has gone on since.

The modern rock troupe from Mesa, Ariz., has logged nine studio albums and had its peak moment with 2001's "Bleed American," a platinum set that launched "The Middle," a hit so enduring that Apple Music debuted its service in April 2016 with an ad featuring Taylor Swift dancing and lip-syncing to the song. With three-quarters of its original lineup still intact -- bassist Rick Burch joined two years in -- Jimmy Eat World has never stopped being active and productive and, according to frontman Jim Adkins, happy to still be going for this long...

Adkins, 43, says by phone that Jimmy Eat World's career "fees like all of" 25 years, though he adds that "I still identify as that 18-year-old f***up, sometimes, who has no business, really, doing this. I still don't feel entirely like an adult sometimes, kinda like 'You're gonna let me drive this thing? Really? There's no one else more qualified?' I still feel like that sometimes, and it helps me take in and experience everything as fresh and now. In that, it's exciting."

Adkins does say his experience has given him confidence "in being able to execute some things I may not have understood before. I waste a whole lot less time with having an idea and getting it to a place where I can hear what it sounds like, because I know what paths will lead to that. With some age comes, I guess, wisdom. I hope I have some now, at least."

Another lesson, for Adkins and the band, has been learning how to define success. "You can only ever have control over being proud of what you put into it, of challenging yourself and receiving some kind of reward from trying to meet that challenge. That's it. So much of the music industry distracts you from that fact, and once you accept that, it's liberating. But you have to accept that you might not rule the world, and that's OK. You've got to let the small victories of hearing an idea exist that was once just a thought -- that has to be something that you can accept as good enough, because that's all you really have."

Jimmy Eat World is currently on the road for a summer tour with Third Eye Blind, who Adkins calls "kind of friends of friends. They've done lots of gigs with people that we're buddies with. We have a lot of crew we use who have done stuff with them before, and their crew. It's one of those things that makes sense right now; They asked us, and we said, 'Yeah.'"

Jimmy Eat World's last album, "Integrity Blues," came out during 2016, and Adkins says the group has been "working on something new" and hopes to have a new album out by fall. "I'm still kind of waiting on a release date to get told to me before I get into it. But we've recorded something. We're kind of always recording something. Since 'Bleed American' we've been taking a portion of our album budgets and buying recording equipment, and now we have a space of our own that we can cut full records in, which really helps."

Jimmy Eat World performs with Third Eye Blind and Ra Ra Riot at 7 p.m. Friday, June 28, at the Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill, 14900 Metropolitan Parkway, Sterling Heights. $29.50 and up. 313-471-7000 or 313Presents.com.

Web Site: www.313Presents.com

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