Flotsam and Jetsam is a band from Phoenix, Arizona with a legacy that goes back well over 30 years. Originally signed to Metal Blade records in the mid 80’s, Flotsam and Jetsam released their highly acclaimed debut “Doomsday for The Deceiver” in July of 1986. At this time the band consisted of Eric AK Knutson (Vox), guitarists Michael Gilbert and Edward Carlson, and founding members Kelly David Smith (Dr) and bassist Jason Newsted. Soon after the release of DFTD, Newsted left the group to join Metallica shortly after the passing of their bassist cliff Burton.
Over the next three decades, Flotsam and Jetsam would go on to tour the world numerous times, release over a dozen albums/dvds and build a worldwide fanbase that exists to this day. Members came and went as the years went by, however the band’s vocalist Eric AK Knutson would be the one member always present for every version of the band.
In theory, the band FLOTSAM AND JETSAM started in January 2015 when Eric AK, guitarists Mike Gilbert and Steve Conley, bassist Michael Spencer, and drummer Jason Bittner got in a room together to start rehearsing for upcoming 2015 European tour dates, and to commence writing for the band’s next record. Initially the band concentrated on the back catalog and most recent setlists to make sure the touring obligations would be fulfilled, and the band was comfortable playing together. Soon after, the band focused on it’s writing and started pre-production for the new songs that were taking shape. After a 5 month initial writing process, the band completed 18 rough ideas to start having Bittner track drums to. At first the band thought about a double release, but realized it would be better to concentrate on an album’s worth of killer material by what essentially is a new band with a 30-year history.
The end result is the self- titled effort FLOTSAM AND JETSAM which is the culmination of a year of hard work which shows five very distinct personalities and influences come together for the common goal of creating another soon to be metal classic, as well as another pillar in the foundation of a band that has managed to stay alive and current amongst an ever-changing music scene.
In 2017, Ken Mary came in to replace Jason, when Jason left to join up with fellow East coast thrashers, Overkill. And with the release of the band’s 13th studio album in 2019, ‘The End of Chaos’, the band continues to bring new music to the metal fans of the world.