Dejan Knezevic - Lead Vocals/Acoustic Guitar
Dejan was born in Chicago, Illinois a year after his parents immigrated to the United States from Yugoslavia. He spent most his childhood in the Chicago area and lived in Texas including Galveston, Houston and Dallas until finally settling down in Arizona as a teenager.
He spent the majority of his life playing in metal bands in the Phoenix area. As a kid, Dejan always took a strong interest in music but didn't pick up the guitar until he was 15yrs old. After taking guitar lessons and eventually going to a local college in pursuit of a music degree, he began studying classical guitar. However, his passion for heavy music lead him away from his music studies as he immersed himself in the local metal scene. As a teenager, he joined a band named "Silent Hatred" playing rhythm guitar. However, the band disbanded after several years leading Dejan to start a new band named "Core".
Core was a 3 piece band with Dejan playing guitar and lead vocals. The band had a decent run from 1994 through 1999 opening for notable acts such as Corrosion of Conformity, Morbid Angel, Max Cavalera (Sepultura/Soulfy), Clutch, Stephen Pearcy (Ratt), Machine Head, Sacred Reich and others. Core released an album independently titled "Machine". The band was doing well and the future seemed promising however, during the recording of their 2nd album, Dejan suffered vocal damage and couldn't continue doing the lead vocals for the band. They eventually hired a new vocalist but unfortunately, due to issues with the new vocalist the band decided to throw the towel in and call it a day in late 1999.
During this time, Dejan was also attending ASU pursuing a business degree. Upon graduation, he took a very long break from music while he pursued his business endeavors and raised a family. It wasn't until 2011 that he was offered a position to play guitar for a local metal band named "Pelvic Meatloaf". He joined the band as they were completing their album "Stronger Than You". While he wasn't part of the overall recording process for that album, he did contribute the acoustic rendition of "Number of the Beast" originally by Iron Maiden and he contributed some lyrical content for several songs. They are currently working on releasing a new album which will feature much more of Dejan's contributions.
While Dejan was and is still playing with Pelvic Meatloaf, he formed Last Train to Juarez in 2018. Country music is not something Dejan was raised on and he will be the first to tell you that he is a convert to the genre. This was influenced heavily by the music that he was listening to for the past decade including artists such as Cody Jinks, Ward Davis, Kill Devil Hills. Hank 3, Matt Mason, White Buffalo, Jamey Johnson, Billy Don Burns. Dallas Moore and others. Once introduced to this genre of music. it was obvious which direction he was heading.
Originally, Dejan was going to treat the project as a solo artist operating under his given name but "Dejan Knezevic" simply doesn't work well for a country artist. Therefore, he decided to play under the name "Last Train to Juarez".
So while the band plays under the name "Last Train to Juarez", it is still very much a solo project spearheaded by Dejan. With that in mind, his goal from the start was to create a "band" that is very much a "brotherhood" which isn't surprising considering he is the Vice President of Metalheads Motorcycle Club out of Tempe, Arizona. The path forward for Dejan is clear. He plans on taking Last Train to Juarez as far as it can go. He has put aside his other entrepreneurial ambitions and is focusing all his efforts moving forward on being a full time musician with the band.