He left Florida agit-punks Against Me! for a reason that is understandable and completely proletarian: He wanted to sell burritos. We talked about the AM! situation, and Oakes wanted it to be known that he wasn't fired, but rather, his leaving the band "was really a mutual decision … it was really amicable." He said he still considers the guys in the band to be "more than friends -- they're family," and added that Boca is already carrying Against Me! guitarist James Bowman's homemade hot sauce on the menu.
That Oakes did it does not make him a hero, it makes him like the rest of us. And perhaps that's his lasting legacy … the everyman former drummer who ditched the dream and walked headlong into the rest of his life with grace and joy.
I was feeling a little burnt-out on traveling all the time. It's a full commitment being in Against Me! I mean, it's 365 days a year, touring and working on new songs, and I always wanted to give 110 percent. Being in the band was a full-time job," he said. "But it came to the point where I did have to face facts and realize I was starting to express interest in having some other things going on, and trying to split my time and energy just wasn't going to cut it. So that was it. It was really sad -- I was really bummed at first -- but then the peace came. It felt really natural and it was a great run.