The meaning of the San Clemente band Tunnel Vision’s name was partly inspired by the love of surf. All members of the band surf and have an appreciation for the view one gets while being in the tube of a wave. The name also reflects the importance of maintaining focus in order to achieve a goal.
A few members of the punk/reggae band had played together in high school, but they went separate ways for a few years. Circa 2013, lead singer and guitarist Hayden Hanson, drummer and back-up vocalist Tanner Payan and bass player Jacob Hernandez regrouped and started playing with more focus. All three young men were also working for Lost, which is how they met keyboard player Matt Risley and saxophone player Doug Alani.
Tunnel Vision started playing different venues in Orange County and San Diego County. They were eventually picked up by WhiskeyBarrel Records through manager, Anthony Levato. Through Levato and WhiskeyBarrel Records, the band was then connected to San Diego band, Slightly Stoopid. It was in Slightly Stoopid’s studio, “The Lab” where Tunnel Vision recorded their first album. The self- titled album came out in July 2015.
The band has continued to have tunnel vision over the last few years, both in and out of the water. In February of this year, along with DELA of Slightly Stoopid, Tunnel Vision summited Mount Kilimanjaro and played a concert at the peak. The summit was sponsored by WhiskeyBarrel Records and guided by world-renowned expeditionist, Johan Ernst Nilson. The band set a world record for the highest live-streamed concert ever. The ultimate goal was to raise awareness around elephant poaching and support the efforts of WildLife First Foundation and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. You can find out more about the concert at TunnelVisionSC.com and if you would like to contribute to this important cause, visit Tunnel Vision’s Facebook Page at Facebook.com/TunnelVisionSC/.
The band is currently on a national tour with The Expendables and Reel Big Fish. We caught up with Hanson while he was enjoying a day off in New Hampshire and asked him a few questions:
What was the highlight of playing on the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro? It was pretty surreal to be up above the clouds playing music for a good cause. It was pretty gnarly. We were up there for two and a half hours and we were only supposed to be up there for 20 minutes. Everyone was showing signs of altitude wear. The climb took five days. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.
What’s your favorite part about being on tour? Being in a new place every night and meeting new people. My least favorite part is the driving. Sometimes we have to drive 18 hours at a time.
What do you miss most about San Clemente when you’re out on tour? There’s nothing like our beaches anywhere in the country. We have the perfect climate and the best waves. Also, burritos from La Tiendita.
The band returns home to San Clemente at the end of July. You can catch them playing on the main stage at Fiesta on Sunday, August 13th at 1 pm.