Earlier this month, when No Doubt announced a six-night stand at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles, there was much rejoicing throughout the Tragic Kingdom.
And while No Doubt themselves certainly appeared chipper when they made the announcement — joking “Do you guys want to play some shows?” — in the days since, harsh reality has set in. Now, they realize they have to find a way to fit 25 years of material (including songs from their upcoming Push and Shove album) into the set.
Deciding which tunes make the cut has proven to be about as difficult as you’d imagine.
“Trying to put together the set list for these shows might be one of the toughest things we’ve ever done as a band,” bassist Tony Kanal said. “It’s going to be really tricky; there’s lots of songs we want to do from the new album, but there’s obviously lots of songs we want to play from the other albums, so there’s going to be a long band meeting to try and figure that one out.”
Of course, gearing up for the Gibson shows is nothing compared to the years that went into making Push and Shove. Playing live has always been what No Doubt do best; writing and recording, not so much.
“We always take a long time to make records; it’s just not easy for us,” Gwen Stefani laughed. “Playing live is way more natural and easy and the chemistry is just so great. You don’t even think about it. But writing is so emotional. There’s not a button to press. It’s all magic that happens, and it’s really time-consuming.”
And though their Gibson residency — which kicks off November 24 and runs through December 4 — are the only shows No Doubt have currently announced, fear not, fans: They’re using the gigs to shake off the rust and prepare for bigger things on the horizon.
“We’re really excited about the Los Angeles residency. Those shows are going to be so much fun,” drummer Adrian Young said. “But we’re also getting ready, because we’re going to tour around the world with this record.”