by Chris A.
- Senior Photojournalist –
May 17-19, 2013 at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio
ROCK ON THE RANGE 2013 AN AMAZING FESTIVAL OF EPIC PROPORTIONS
“Sold Out, All Three Days… Thank you Rangers” were the words scrawled on the white board in the media tent at Columbus Crew Stadium in the early afternoon on Friday, day one of the 2013 rendition of “Rock On The Range.” It was obvious just walking around the stadium that in excess of 30,000 people were roaming from stage to stage soaking in the rock n’ roll. By the end of three days, some 105,000 people would pass through the gates at Crew Stadium to participate in one of the biggest rock festivals in America.
Now an institution and firmly established as “the big festival in the Midwest,” Rock On The Range has been so successful and so well supported by the fans that its inspired several spinoff festivals including “Carolina Rebellion” and “Rocklahoma”.
For rock fans from the Buckeye state, Rock On The Range is special because it’s the original festival and it’s the big time for Ohio. The citizens of Columbus love the festival and its residents plan vacations and party time around the massive event. The countdown to Rock On The Range starts just after the new year when the promoters start announcing the bands. In the months leading up to the show, local radio and media promote, talk, pitch and extol the virtues of Rock On The Range. While all that’s happening, local bands like Mansfield Ohio-based Error 504 fought it out with 60 other Ohio rock bands for the chance to perform at Rock On The Range.
The 2013 Rock On The Range proved to be the most highly attended show in the franchise’s seven-year history. The concert has been so successful and so well attended that a third day was added to the event giving rock fans a solid weekend of big-time rock n’ roll.
Gates for Friday opened at 3 p.m. giving rock fans a reason to sneak out of work a bit early and get the weekend started. Unlike Saturday and Sunday which would feature three stages, Friday’s venue was slightly more compact, featuring the Jaegermeister Stage and the Monster Main Stage. Opening the show was Columbus favorite, X-Factor-1 who welcomed the crowd to the show and set the bar high for every act that would follow. Over the course of the next 11 hours, Rock on The Range fans were treated to incredible performances.
While the early bands got fans warmed up, crowd favorite and one of America’s best party bands Buckcherry lit it up on the Monster Main Stage as they got the Rock On The Range fans to their feet. It has to be mentioned that Cheap Trick was absolutely brilliant and demonstrated exactly why they have been around for four decades. Rick Nielsen and crew were energetic and had the audience in the palm of their hands. It was an inspired and incredible performance. As darkness fell on the stadium headliners Korn took to the Monster Main stage, drummer Ray Luzier, illuminated by a single spotlight tapped out the opening to “Blind“ on the cymbals as the crowd roared and welcomed the return of Brian “Head” Welch on guitar. Day One of Rock On The Range was in the can.
As the day dawned on the second day of Rock On The Range, a light rain was falling and ominous clouds converged over the gigantic Crew Stadium. Thankfully, the threat of rain passed and the storm clouds diminished as the day progressed. Day two introduced the Pabst Blue Ribbon Stage into the mix joining the Monster Main Stage and the Jager Stage as the showcase for the artists.
While all the bands seemed to be performing at a high level, day two standout performances were given by Michigan based Pop Evil, Grammy winners Halestorm, Welsh heavy metal band Bullet For My Valentine, a pyro-filled Three Days Grace and Iowa’s favorite sons Stone Sour. Stone Sour’s Cory Taylor is one of rock’s most magnetic frontmen in rock as Stone Sour dominated the stage during their dynamic performance as the fans went berserk. Headliners Smashing Pumpkins performed on the main stage closing the show as Rock On The Range day two passed into history.
Before everyone knew it, day three had arrived, the final day of ROTR and like the first two days, the weather Gods smiled down upon the masses and graced the show with ideal weather. Thrilled to have earned the privilege to perform at Rock On The Range was Mansfield, Ohio’s own Error 504. Fresh off their Battle Of The Bands victory, they gave a spirited rousing performance as they welcomed the Sunday crowd to the event.
Just like Friday and Saturday the Rock On The Range crowd was massive, over 30,000 people worked their way from stage to stage to check out the bands. When it came to standout performances it was hard not to have a great time watching the bombastic pomposity of ’80s rock n posers Steel Panther. Over on the PBR stage, blond vixen Maria Brink and her very visual band In This Moment turn up the heat on the fans. A few hours later, drawing a gigantic crowd to the PBR stage was one of heavy metal’s favorite sons Randy Blythe and Lamb of God.
As Alice In Chains wrapped up their set on the Monster Main stage the sun was setting on the Buckeye State and the stadium became shrouded in an orange and gold glow as dusk fell. Soon it was the final band, Soundgarden. Chris Cornell and company sounded amazing as they performed their catalog of great songs for the masses at Rock On The Range.
Then as suddenly as it started, Columbus Ohio’s biggest concert of 2013 was over. The strains of rock n’ roll faded into the dark Ohio night as thousands of people made their way home after a rousing weekend of rock n’ roll.
Rock on the Range Photo Gallery
Rock on the Range Day 1 Photo Gallery
Korn, Cheap Trick, Buckcherry, Hollywood Undead, In Flames, Oleander, Mindset Evolution, XFACTOR1, Love and Death, American Fangs
Rock on the Range Day 2 Photo Gallery
Smashing Pumpkins, Stone Sour, Three Days Grace, Papa Roach, A Day To Remember, Bullet for My Valentine, Halestorm, Asking Alexandria, All That Remains, Black Veil Brides, Pop Evil, Clutch, The Sword, Motionless In White, Otherwise, Young Guns, Red Line Chemistry, Gemini Syndrome, Heaven’s Basement, Scorpion Child
Rock on the Range Day 3 Photo Gallery
Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Bush, Volbeat, Skillet, Lamb Of God, Steel Panther, Device, In This Moment, Sevendust, Sick Puppies, Ghost B.C., Red, Big Wreck, Deuce, Middle Class Rut, Thousand Foot Krutch, Beware Of Darkness, O’Brother
The consensus of the folks who attended Rock On The Range 2013 was almost universal praise. A few fan comments include:
“At Rock On The Range, ROTR brings in people from all across America to be united by music. How amazing is that? I loved every minute of it!” -Tina M.
“My first show ever! It was an amazing array of music, people and rock all in one! -”Pam V
“First time Ranger here and I enjoyed it so much that I may make it a tradition now. I was most impressed with the other Rangers in attendance. Standing in line we got the most helpful advice for dealing with crowd surfers, which side of the stadium to sit on to avoid the sun during various times of day etc. Everyone was so nice and it was obvious that we were now part of one big rock family.” -Cheri D.
From the bands to the overall production and organization of the festival, for the seventh time, Rock On The Range lived up to all its hype and delivered the goods. An amazing festival for anyone who loves to rock.
Here’s to a great time and let’s all hook up and do it again next year! You can see hundreds of photos of Rock On The Range right here at www.hardrockhaven.net
For more information on Rock On The Range visit www.rockontherange.com and interact with them on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/rockontherange
[Photos by www.chrisaphotography.com]
by Chris A.
- Senior Photojournalist –
Grey skies welcomed the attendees to the 2013 Rock On The Range festival in Columbus, Ohio’s Crew Stadium on the opening Friday morning. Now an institution and in its seventh season, Rock On The Range brings some of the best rock n’ roll bands in the world to the capital city of Ohio. For the first six years, the show was a two-day concert event but as the popularity of the event has soared, this year the show was expanded to three days.
Friday’s show featured 10 bands on two stages, the Crew Stadium Main State and the smaller Jager sponsored stage. The diverse lineup included:
Love & Death
Diversity is one of the keystone of Rock On The Range’s success as a festival. Just a quick analysis of four of the bands tells the story:
-Buckcherry; one of America’s best rock n’ roll party bands touring in support of a great new album.
-Cheap Trick, The classic rockers from Rockford, Illinois are known by millions of people around the world.
-In Flames; incredible in your face heavy metal from from Sweden.
-Korn; iconic innovators and one of the genuine heavy weights of the “new metal” movement.
Fans for the show arrived over the afternoon and by six p.m., it was pretty obvious that Rock On The Range’s Friday night event was sold out. You can see a few of the photos here and more at www.chrisaphotography.com. With two more days of amazing rock n’ roll to come, Rock On The Range is more than just a concert, it’s a great musical and social event.
ROCK ON THE RANGE DAILY BAND LINEUP AND DEBUT OF “THE OLD MILWAUKEE COMEDY TENT” ANNOUNCED SINGLE DAY TICKETS ON SALE FRIDAY, APRIL 12
The daily band lineup for the seventh annual Rock On The Range has been announced. America’s premier destination rock festival–Friday, May 17 through Sunday, May 19 at Columbus Crew Stadium in Ohio–will feature performances from some of rock’s biggest names, including: Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Smashing Pumpkins, Korn (reunited with founding guitarist Brian “Head” Welch”), Cheap Trick, Bush, Stone Sour and many more on the Monster Main Stage, Pabst Blue Ribbon Stage, and Jägermeister Stage. The daily performance lineup is as follows: Read more
by Chris A.
- Senior Photojournalist –
A “Classy Bitch” is what Lzzy Hale had in mind with the design of her new Gibson USA Signature Model Explorer guitar. Hardrock Haven’s Chris A. shoots the breeze with Lzzy Hale about winning a Grammy, the band’s upcoming appearance at “Rock on The Range,” her outlook on the “state of women” in Rock ‘n’ Roll, her relationship with the fans and a whole lot more. It’s a relaxed, informative conversation with one of the leading ladies of popular music today.
Official website: http://www.halestormrocks.com/
by Steve Patrick
Staff Writer –
Listen to the interview:
Few young rock bands exemplify the benefits of hard work and determination better than Halestorm. Case in point, at Rock on the Range in 2009, Halestorm were touring in support of their eponymous first album and destroyed the Jägermeister Stage with a blistering set that announced their arrival at the annual rock festival in Central Ohio. Then the band returned to ROTR in 2010 to perform an expanded set on the FYE Second Stage. By this time, in addition to the stage size and set length, Halestorm’s audience had visibly increased.
Flash forward to ROTR 2012 and Halestorm had climbed another rung in the rock festival’s ladder of stage status to perform a set dominated by cuts from Halestorm’s recent release The Strange Case Of… as well as their tried and true anthems like “I Get Off” and “It’s Not You” on the Monster Energy Main Stage. Halestorm truly has become the quintessential ROTR band and they couldn’t be happier about it.
Right after the band’s set, frontwoman Lzzy Hale took some time to speak with Hardrock Haven about the new album, what it’s like to play ROTR, future touring, and dressing up like a zombie Garth Algar…
Halestorm’s sophomore album The Strange Case Of… is available now wherever albums are sold.
by Deb Rao
Staff Writer –
Exclusive Bassist Mike Rodden from Hinder Talks ShipRocked and All American Nightmare
One of the most popular bands in music today, HINDER have been touring non-stop this year. The band’s current single “What Ya Gonna Do” is receiving huge radio airplay from their latest release All American Nightmare. Recently this summer, Hinder performed to a huge audience at Rock On The Range.
Hinder is currently gearing up for ShipRocked, which is slated to take place Nov.14-19. The cruise departs from Ft. Lauderdale and heads to Cozumel and Costa Maya. Bassist Mike Rodden checks in with Hardrock Haven to give the fans exclusive details and also discuss the making of All American Nightmare.
HRH: Mike, Thank you for checking in with Hardrock Haven. Hinder has been on the road touring non-stop all year. How has the tour been going so far?
Mike: It has been going good. We have been playing a lot of festivals and some club dates in between them. It’s good. The turnout is good and the fans are having a good time. It’s a success for us.
HRH: I know that you just recently played one of the biggest festivals all summer Rock On The Range correct? What were some of the highlights from that show? Thousands of people get to hear Hinder. How awesome is that?
MIKE: Yes, back in the summer time. That show is always rad. We played that three or four times now. That is like one of the biggest festivals of the year. The line-ups of all the different bands are crazy. It is always cool to get to share the stage with bands like ZZ Top, Velvet Revolver and countless other bands that played that night. It is always a good feeling to be out there.
HRH: Hinder is gearing for a cruise called ShipRocked. It is going to take place Nov.14-19. Tell us about that event.
Mike: It is something that has been going on a few years now. Our buddies in Lynam have been telling us about it. The past few years we haven’t been able to be a part of it because of scheduling conflicts. This year it worked out. We jumped right on it. There are bands like Queensryche, and Buckcherry. And Lynam. It is going to be great. It leaves from Ft. Lauderdale and goes to Cozumel to Costa Maya. It is going to be a good time for sure.
HRH: How is the schedule going to work? Are you playing every night?
Mike: We haven’t gotten our schedule yet. But from what I understand we play two of the nights. Each night it is a different combination of bands.
HRH: Earlier this year you release your third album All American Nightmare. Tell us about the writing process for this album.
Mike: This writing process was different. The whole album. We went about it different. The last couple of albums we wrote strictly with our producer. This album we went about it different. Austin and Cody kind of traveled around and wrote with some different writers. Some in Nashville and some in LA. To get different feels with other artists and other writers. We wrote about 70 songs and recorded about 50 of them. We narrowed it down with a different process and narrowed it down to eleven or twelve songs. It was definitely a different way to go.
HRH: How did you approach the writing?
Mike: Basically, they would come back to town with a skeleton of a song. We all kind of jam it out. I will get in there and write a bass line for the song that we are recording. Just lay it down and me and the producer will go over it and tweak it out a little bit to where we like it. That is pretty much my part.
HRH: What kind of bass do you use?
Mike: I use Specter basses.
HRH: How did you come up with the title All American Nightmare?
Mike: It was a song before it was the title of the album. We were going to name the album Two Sides Of Me which is another single on the record. Once the record got done and the whole flow with it and it came out, we decided it All American Nightmare would be a better title.
HRH: Do you know what is cool about this album is that is has different styles on it. I can hear a lot of blues riffs. Do you agree?
Mike: Yes, Cody is really into old school blues and you can really see it through his writing. They wrote with some country writers in Nashville. I think the bluesier stuff kind of came through. Blues is the base for rock and roll anyways. I think it kind of shines around this one more because of the circumstances.
HRH: How do you think Hinder has evolved since your debut back in 2006? I know the band opened up for Aerosmith back in 2006 for a couple of dates.
Mike: I think we have definitely matured as songwriters and as a band. I think that goes hand and hand with playing with bands like Aerosmith and old school bands that have been playing for years and years. You take some stuff from what they are doing and kind of learn from them. Apply it to our band how we go about the whole deal. We also have matured in the business. We realize it is a dirty business. You kind of got to look out for your own. There are lots of things that you learn over a six-year period.
HRH: It is hard to believe so much time has past since I have heard “Lips Of An Angel.”
Mike: Yes, that seems like yesterday. When we sit back and look, it has been a long time. It is crazy what that song did. We knew it was the song we wanted to put on our album and one we believed in. We didn’t know it was going to do what it did. That was definitely a pleasant surprise for us in a good way.
HRH: The latest single is,” What Ya Gonna Do.” They have been playing it out in Vegas.
Mike: Yes, we are about to release another one in October. We are really thankful for all the stations that have been playing it. We appreciate all of the support from all of them. We owe it to them and the fans.
HRH: Hinder has ShipRocked coming up in November. What’s the plan? Is the band going to head back into the studio after that?
Mike: Right now we are just trying to see what this next single is going to do. If it takes on and everybody is digging it. Then we can extend our album cycle that much more. We are always writing. We like to be on the road. That is what we like to do. If we can stay out here a little longer that is what we will do. If we need to go back into the studio, we will do that too.
HRH: Awesome. Thank you Mike for checking in with Hardrock Haven.
by Deb Rao
Hardrock Haven is proud to present to present an exclusive interview with one of the breakthrough bands of 2011 Crossfade. Hot off the heels of performing at Rock On The Range, Crossfade has just released on Eleven Seven Music, We All Bleed. The band has a very unique sound and writes inspiring lyrics that deal with real life situations.
Guitarist Les Hall gives Hardrock Haven readers an in-depth look at the making of We All Bleed. Don’t miss Crossfade on the Rock Allegiance Tour that kicks off on August 24th.
HRH: Les, how are you doing? Tell us about the writing process for your new album,We All Bleed.
LES: Hi Debby. Well, it was 2 and 1/2 years of hell. (Laughter)
HRH: But you got a good pay off with the release. It was well worth all the hard work. The final product is awesome. I know the band had been off the road for five years.
LES: It is all worth it. I will tell you that.
HRH: Tell us about the new video and single, “Killing Me Inside.”
LES: Is a song that is about around nightmares that you have. The ultra vivid nightmares. That pretty much lives with you throughout the day that kind of affects your reality. It is the message behind the song. I used to have a lot of fucked up dreams. I would look at people differently when I actually woke up. The dreams are so real. The video was to make you feel catastrophic like you are in nightmares. We were in a box. The four of us were in there. There was a cameraman in the middle the fifth guy sitting on a stool spinning around. We were all wearing tight leather jackets and all. The wardrobe gear was provided to make us look cool. It was hot as hell in there.
HRH: You are currently on a great label Eleven Seven Music. Then us about the recording difference this time around from your previous release.
LES: This time the majority was recorded in our own studio. We realized we had a seven thousand dollar credit at Sweetwater when we called up to get a credit card from them. They are like oh yeah by the way you guys have seven thousand dollars credit. We are like thanks for telling us. So we ordered a bunch of gear. Eddie and I would sit around and we did the right as we record all in one process. We document everything we did. Whether it was me sitting with an acoustic guitar with my iphone out which having an idea and tracking it is always documented. All the ideas we had, we would go with whatever was inspiring at the time. So the majority of the recording process, I would program the drums for the rest of the album. We did the bass and guitars and the keyboards at our own studio. Then we went to LA and actually track the real drums and mixed the album. The majority of it was our studio. We spent the budget on what counts, which is a big, drum sound and great mix.
HRH: What does the title We All Bleed denote to you? I really love the concept for that.
LES: Thank you for saying that. Because I was reading some review and somebody said just that name alone makes me not want to listen to the record.
HRH: I think the title makes me more want to listen to it. Because we are all the same. We do all bleed. I disagree.
LES: I disagree with that comment as well. Make you for saying that. It makes me feel a little bit better.
HRH: What was it like performing at Rock On The Range this year? That must have been a great opportunity for you.
LES: We did. There was a huge turnout there. There were cameras out there filming. We look forward to getting on some bigger tours and getting a bigger audience.
HRH: Are you exciting about performing on the Rock Allegiance Tour with Buckcherry, Papa Roach and Puddle of Mudd?
LES: That starts August 24. We will probably do 10 warm-up dates heading into that. There are a bunch of great bands on that bill. It is bands that we all played with before. So I think it is going to be a nice large family and a lot of fun. It will be a great thing for us to get out of the clubs and get back into the arenas.
HRH: I think Crossfade could really be the new breakthrough band of the year. How do you think the band has evolved? I know the band has been together a long time.
LES: The band has evolved from the changing of the members. The writing process being a little bit different. With me writing a lot of the material and songs with Eddie. Also, Eddie being inspired and writing a lot of stuff. We went back and forth. I think having different heads with people that write differently. I write a lot of dark music naturally. I write a lot of stuff on piano and acoustic guitar oddly enough considering it is a pretty heavy record. Writing with Eddie to me was almost like sitting in the room like I was writing with my double. I had to look around and see if I was delusional right now or is he actually here. We work way to well together. We over analyze every little detail. Anything I am not thinking about. He is thinking about and vice versa. I think the collaboration is what has made it what it is today.
HRH: What I like about this album is the heartfelt lyrics. Did you write, “I Am Not Holding On To Dead Memories?”
LES: Those lyrics are all Eddie’s. I wrote the music for that one. But that is Eddie’s his ode to the past and it is time to move on and get off my ass. Do you know what I mean? Eddie had a long dark time. He traveled the universe of a year and a half. I was writing a lot of music at that time. Very inspired. He was going through a different phrase in life of what he had and what had gone away. For me it was a different thing. It was joining a new band. I was excited about writing music. I wasn’t a part of Columbia records. So we had two different head spaces going on there. That song was one of the last ones that we wrote. Every song we would write would be so dark. We kept saying to ourselves after three of four songs it is a really dark record, we need to write something a little bit lighter. Finally, towards the end, I think the last three tracks we finished were “Dead Memories”, “Open Up Your Eyes”, and “Make Me A Believer.” We sequenced the album in that way just to say we are grabbing life by the balls. Forgot about what happened in the past. Let’s move on. That made the start of the album. The rest of the album sort of flowing in through the darkness that we had all gone through. Ending with a little positive of light.
HRH: That is awesome. We are really excited to promote Crossfade at Hardrock Haven. Hope to see you on the Rock Allegiance Tour this summer.
LES: Thank you so much. We are really excited about this record. The feedback has been amazing from all the fans. Which I think is really cool. I think it is a really different sounding record for Crossfade. To get all the support and the love from the fans because it does have a different sound to it is amazing.
HRH: How would you describe the sound of Crossfade to the fans for the people just turning on to the band with this new release?
LES: Can I just make a noise? (Laughter) This new album I would say is an experience and journey. It is an album that you listen to the top to the bottom all the way through. It was definitely sequenced to be listened to in full. I think I have seen the word dark in every single review. Clearly, it is a darker record. It is a very moody record. I think it is an album that you listen to from the beginning and it takes you on a journey.
For more info on the band visit: www.myspace.com/crossfad.
Watch “Killing Me Inside” Video here: http://youtu.be/qhf59O0ASx8.
by Chris A.
Energy, Great Vocals and Stage Vibe Make These Bands Worth Shelling Out the Bucks To See Live
Now with its fifth year behind it, “Rock On The Range” has become a real-deal rock and roll concert institution. Held each year in Columbus, Ohio, at Crew Stadium, fans, bands and media agree it’s one of the best run high- value for money rock festivals in North America. The success of the Rock on the Range franchise has inspired a Canadian variant and similar festivals including the 2011 “Carolina Rebellion.”
The 2011 Rock on the Range featured 40 bands and added a free Friday night party for ticket holders. With three stages and that many bands it impossible to see every act. Headliners for the event included Avenged Sevenfold, A Perfect Circle, Disturbed, Korn, Stained and many more.
As the summer schedule heats up, here are a few suggestions for bands to consider going to see based on their performance at Rock On The Range:
Korn: Okay, the bands been through several members and has been around the block, but this train just keeps on rolling. From the moment they walked onto the main stage at ROTR it was pandemonium on the stadium main floor. Jonathan Davis is a presence behind the microphone, with his often constrained, hypnotic vocals adding credibility to the insanity of Korn’s musical world. A genuine must-see band that never fails to deliver live!
Black Label Society: Zakk and the boys in BLS are back and putting more “brutal”into the old-school “brewtality” the band originally built its reputation on. After several tumultuous years and two ho-hum albums, Wylde’s ejection from Ozzy Osbourne’s band was perhaps what the iconic metal shredder needed to help him find his way back to reality. The now-healthy Zakk Wylde took the stage donning a full indian war bonnet Ala-Ted Nugent and for the next 30 minutes treated the crowd to inspired wailing.
Pop Evil: Wow! An absolutely explosive band with a frontman who has it all. I like bands that are “frenetic” and that’s one way to describe the energy expelled by the rockers in Pop Evil. With great guitar tone and a vocalist who instantly seems to connect with the fans, Pop Evil is one of those bands that deserves serious consideration. There’s no standing still when this band is on stage.
Trust Company: While these guys hail from Alabama, they’re not “good ole boys” by any means. Mixing tight guitar grooves with big soaring vocals in a melodic metal mix of head-banging inducing tunes, this band has great potential. Radio friendly with tunes that should appeal to a broad range of rock fan. The band is absolutely crazy onstage with youthful enthusiasm and high-powered rock-star appeal.
Asking Alexandria: This is a kick ass metal band. I’d never heard of them before ROTR but I’m gonna be keeping an eye on them. With steam-roller precision this British quintet of guitars match perfectly with the incredibly diverse capabilities of the vocalist. If you like it brutal these guys deliver.
Day 1 (Saturday, May 21)
Monster Energy Stage:
|Day 2 (Sunday, May 22)
Monster Energy Stage:
A Perfect Circle
The Damned Things
2011 Rock on the Range Photo Gallery
by Steve Black
Guest Staff Writer
Steve Black from Chop Shop Radio has a friendly interview with legendary guitar slinger Zakk Wylde at Rock on the Range 2011.
Exclusive Video Interview with Zakk Wylde
by Deb Rao
SEVENDUST has just released one of their most anticipated, passionate, and personal albums of the year, Cold Day Memory. The Atlanta, Georgia rock band is currently on tour in support of their latest release and looking forward to performing at one of the biggest U.S. Festivals this Summer, Rock On The Range on May 22. To add to all of the excitement of this whirlwind year, Sevendust will be joining The Carnival Of Madness Tour this summer. Sevendust’s features original lineup – Lajon Witherspoon (vocals), Morgan Rose (drums/vocals), Clint Lowery (guitar/vocals), Vince Hornsby (bass/vocals) and John Connolly (guitar/vocals).
One of the reasons of the success of Sevendust’s latest release Cold Day Memory is due to the return of guitarist Clint Lowery. Clint, who re-joined the band two years ago makes his mark with vocals and with guitar arrangements that are passionate, and spellbinding textured around the melodically aggressive vocals of Lajon Witherspoon, Every song stands on its own personal and up-close inflicting lyrics that everyone can identify with at some point of our lives. From the hauntingly love gone wrong song “Forever Dead” to their new hit single “Unraveling.” Cold Day Memory touches upon every aspect of life. The good, the bad, the trials and tribulations that we endure are all exposed in an album this is well crafted from start to finish. Sevendust return to the scene energized with a sound that is larger than life.
Guitarist Clint Lowery gives us an up close and personal look of his track-by-track account of Cold Day Memory. Clint also discusses the current Sevendust tour, Rock On The Range, and upcoming Carnival of Madness Tour at Hardrock Haven. Clint Lowery of Sevendust on Rock On The Range,”Yes, it is going to be awesome. It is always nice to be part of that thing. That festival has taken on some legs. It is a huge deal. It is probably of the biggest ones in the U.S. right now. It feels good to be part of it, playing there with our piers. To play in that competitive atmosphere is great.”
HRH: Sevendust is currently on tour. I know the band is playing your hometown of Atlanta on Friday. How is the tour going so far?
CLINT: The tour is going good so far. We have been out for a long time so this is just like another day in the office. We are excited on the new record being out and playing new material. So that is good.
HRH: I have heard the new album. It is fantastic. Tell us about the writing process.
CLINT: It usually starts with John and I. We have the seeds of the music. Then we get together and play through it. On this record the guys let me do a lot of the writing. I have been gone for three records. I got involved a lot on the vocals and lyrics and everything. It is always a group effort in the end. It takes all of us to do it. I have a lot of drive on this record. I really wanted to put my two cents in. I had a good time doing it.
HRH: Do you think the band has come full circle now that you returned to the mix?
CLINT: Yes, in a way it made me appreciate the band a lot more. The guys are my brothers. It is our lively hood and we take it real serious.
HRH: What prompted you to return to the band? I know you said you were gone five years and recently returned two years ago to the band.
CLINT: Just the fact that it is family. It was all down to being happy the way you want to live. Those guys I am comfortable with them. They are my family. It was a creative decision that I thought would be the best thing. It was an emotional, personal decision as well.
HRH: The new single is called “Unraveling.” Is there a new video out for the single too?
CLINT: There is a collage of the making of the record. It is just us in the studio. But the video is on MTV 2 or you can watch it on our official website.
HRH: Sevendust is going to be performing at Rock On The Range on May 22. Are you looking forward to performing the new material to the masses at one of the most anticipated festivals of the year?
CLINT: Yes, it is going to be awesome. It is always nice to be part of that thing. That festival has taken on some legs. It is a huge deal. It is probably of the biggest ones in the U.S. right now. It feels good to be part of it, playing there with our piers. To play in that competitive atmosphere is great.
HRH: Also, it was just announced that Sevendust is going out on the road with Shinedown on the Carnival of Madness Tour. Are you looking forward to this tour?
CLINT: Yes, that is going to be awesome.
HRH: How do you think Sevendust has evolved since back in the day?
CLINT: It is just natural things. We get older, we get more experience. We find a shortcut to do things. You kind of have to challenge yourself to get out of your comfort zone. You just grow. Things change. The things that you like change. I think the music kind of reflects that.
HRH: I noticed on this album too that Cold Day Memory is full of melody. How difficult was it to go through all the guitar structure and tones? Did you have anything specifically in mind when writing the album?
CLINT: No, we just kind of wanted to do what was natural to us. That always seemed to work. Sometimes it ends up a little melodic and sometimes it ends up really aggresive. We just wanted to have all of those flavors. Because we can do it. We have a lot of different singers. A lot of different textures that we can add to our music that some bands don’t. We utilized it all.
HRH: Clint, is there anything else that you want to say about the new album?
CLINT: I want to thank everyone for the great response for it. We appreciate every bit of it.
Sevendust Clint Lowery Track By Track of Cold Day Memory
l. “Splinter”- “That is the one we wanted to re-capture our childhood with an Iron Maiden metal type of thing. There was a lot of high energy when we did that. We knew that was going to be the first one on the record.”
2. “Forever Dead”- “Is kind of a dysfunctional kind of love song. Are you going to be stuck with me forever? That is what the topic of it. It is a great love song.”
3. “Unraveling”- I wrote with Dave Bassette. Basically, we wanted to talk about the exposing of either a parent or a authority figure of some kind that is fake and let you down when you rally needed them.
4. “Last Breath” -”Is kind of a last I will to go my grave kind of saying. I will keep trying to get through hard times until I am gone.”
5. “Karma” – “Karma is basically self explanatory. It is about calling yourself out on the things that you do. When you make mistakes you are going to pay for them. When you do good you are going to be rewarded.”
6. “Ride Insane” – “Trying to get lost riding motorcycles.”
7. “Confessions (Without Faith)” – “Confessions is our band’s story. Our situation as brothers and what we go through as a band together.”
8. “Nowhere” – “This is one of the funniest songs we had doing. It is just a song about the way the world is. How we all kind of follow the media and all that stuff like a cattle kind of things.”
9. “Here And Now” – “That is about I am in desperate need of support or help. It is kind of like having run ins waking up the next day after you exerted yourself a lot. You’re just in.”
10. “The End Is Coming” – “It is just the basic truth that the end comes for everyone. No matter what.”
11. “Better Place” -”Is about my personal fight with drugs and alcohol. My years of struggle with that. I thought I would write a song about it.”
12. “Strong Arm Broken” – “That is about an ex or someone you just want to beat the hell of.” (Laughter)
Visit Sevendust on the web: www.myspace.com/sevendust
by Deb Rao
One of the top acts in music today Puddle Of Mudd is gearing up for an exciting appearance at Rock On The Range at 2:55P.M on Saturday May 22. Puddle Of Mudd is currently burning up the airwaves with their second hit single “Stoned” off their fourth studio album, Volume 4: Songs In The Key Of Love And Hate.
The band just stormed through New England with near capacity crowds at the Webster Theatre in Connecticut, Hampton Beach Casino, and Higher Ground in Burlington, Vt. Part of the success of the new album and tour is due to the return of guitarist Paul Phillips. I recently had the opportunity to discuss the new Puddle Of Mudd album in-depth with Paul Phillips with a special Track By Track. Plus we discussed the band’s upcoming appearance at Rock On The Range, Carnival Of Madness Tour, guitars, and the passing of the legendary Ronnie James Dio.
HRH: Paul, Thank you so much for checking in with Hardrock Haven. Puddle Of Mudd is currently on the road in support of your latest release Volume 4: Songs In the Key Of Love And Hate. What have some of the highlights of the tour been so far? I know the band performed to great shows this past weekend in New England.
PAUL: I don’t know if there is any one particular one. I just love to play live. Any show has the potential to be the highlight of the tour when you have a good crowd and energy going back and forth. We just had a few in a row that were really good. I just enjoy playing live and having people out there singing the words and having a good time. .
HRH: I was at the show in Hampton Beach and the crowd was very enthusiastic about the new material. I noticed a whole new generation of younger fans at the show. How inspiring is this for you as an artist to see the fan base of the band grow since the Come Clean era?
PAUL: Yes, it is crazy. This year is the tenth Anniversary of Come Clean. So we have people that have kind of grown up with us throughout the years. Luckily, we came to having success with radio with our songs. This brings in a new audience. You will see these younger kids as well. And there are these families. We see people now bringing their kids. Older people bringing their kids. It is kind of cool that we can reach across that whole generation gap. It is pretty neat to have that happen.
HRH: The new single “Stoned” is burning up the airwaves in Boston on radio station WAAF. It also marks the return of you to the band. Do you think the album returns back to your early roots?
PAUL: I think a little more so than the last record. When I left, I left during the writing of the Famous record. We weren’t getting along. We weren’t working together well. Not a whole lot of things were happening. After I left, they kind of went the route of going with different songwriters to kind of help out with the record. It is a good record. But I think it went a little poppy and a little polished than what we have done before. I don’t know if we made a conscious effort to try to strip it down a little bit and be more of ourselves. That is just what happens when we get into a room together. I don’t know if it is anything that we ever discuss. We are not a band that writes in the same room together. We always write separate. We bring our ideas in. This time I was staying up in Wes’s house during the writing and recording. By proximity we had a lot of writing sessions together. We would bring them in to the band the next day and hash them out. Doug wrote some stuff on his own. It was definitely the most collaborative and friendly good vibe that we have had making a record. Which was great compared to what it was before.
HRH: I can see what you mean. Because on the Famous album too, I got that. Maybe it was just a bit too over-polished for then band. But this record has the right amount of elements from the Come Clean era including acoustic and electric. As a guitarist what kind of sounds were you looking to achieve on the new album.
PAUL: Thank you very much I appreciate that. I always wanted to rock. When this nu-metal was going on I tried to lean somewhere between that and a little classic rock. I tried to give it as much punch and clarity out of this as you can. Like you said, the acoustics we have always kind of use a lot of live acoustics a lot on some of the slower melody things. It is a constant battle. I am always trying to find that perfect tone. I think it is something that you can never reach. You always say I can do better if I do this.
HRH: I have seen both tours your headlining one and the recent one with Shinedown. I noticed the band is doing an acoustic portion of at the show. Are you enjoying this part of the show?
PAUL: I enjoy part of it. Because it is just Wes. I get to jump off the stage for a bit and cool down. I get like a little intermission in the middle. I jump around like a monkey so I get to catch my breath, and have a drink and come back up. It is cool to do that. I have always seen bands to that. I have enjoyed it. I have seen bands that actually have a whole change in scenery with a backdrop and all that and do a whole acoustic set. Zeppelin did that back in the day. They’re a lot of bands that have done it. It is just like taking a journey. We come out and rock and then you chill off a bit and bring a different vibe and bring it back up and finish off the show. It is something different to add to the show.
HRH: Tell us about the upcoming Carnival Of Madness Tour with Shinedown. What can the fans expect to see on this tour?
PAUL: Well, it is a little shorter set for us. Because there are so many bands on the bill. Basically, we are going to go out there and rock the hits. Throw in a few songs off of the new record and go out there and do our thing. The whole tour is all great friends of great bands and ours. It is a win win for us, as well for the fans who are buying the ticket. It is a cheap ticket price. It is going to be a great tour.
HRH: I know a lot of fans are really happy that you have returned to the band. There is a really definite impact on this album. What prompted your return to Puddle Of Mudd?
PAUL: I hadn’t talked to the guys since I had quit. I have seen Doug a couple of times. I hadn’t talked to Wes since the day I quit. I live in Jacksonville, Florida and they were part of a big radio show there. It is something like me and my friends go to every year. It is an all day hangout. They were telling me go. I was like I don’t want to go. I don’t want to see Puddle and have to be around all that. But I went to it and ran into everybody. We just hung out and started talking. Wes and me went to a bar later. Oddly, enough we were getting along and not fighting. We just started talking on the phone. It wasn’t even about me coming back to the band. It was like,”Hey how are you doing man?” One day I got a phone call and they said we are playing a show down and we want you to play. Come on back. I was like under those circumstances it would be under a much better vibe. So that is the only way I would have come back. I didn’t want to come back and be miserable again. So it was a much cooler vibe and I came right back in.
HRH: How do you think the band has evolved since the Come Clean release?
PAUL: Everybody is trying to become a better player and songwriter. I think as far as the song writing I don’t think we try to re-invent the wheel. There is a sound that we make and a sound that people like. We are not trying to go in and make some crazy concert record with like 13-minute songs. We keep our lyrics to everyday stuff. Keep it real and stuff like that. I mean hopefully we are evolving as players and in writing great songs. I don’t know if we are really trying to take our song writing somewhere else.
HRH: Tell us about the making of the new video “Stoned.” It is a really fun video to watch.
PAUL: It was fun to make. Sometimes you get those videos that just last all day long. We did this one really quick. We were on a tight schedule. We had a show the day before and after, so we had to cram it in all in one day. They said you got to smash some stuff in our office. I was like cool. I got there and they had a sledgehammer and I was like I definitely have to have that. That has to be mine. I have to use that. They had all the actors do their stuff first. We got in and smashed some stuff and played the song a few times and we were out. It was quick and easy.
HRH: Are you endorsed by PRS guitars?
PAUL: Yes, I am. They have been with me from the very beginning. They came basically the time the first single “Control” came out. I have been with them ever since. They have been good to me.
HRH: Puddle Of Mudd is getting ready for a very important show on Saturday May 22. The band goes on at 2:55 P.M. How important is it for the band to play to the masses your new material at ROTR?
PAUL: It is great when you get to play when you have that many good bands. When you get to play in front of more people than you normally do. You definitely want to have your A game on and put the best show on possible. There may be a lot of fans that haven’t bought the record. It is always an opportunity to get new fans. Our good buddy is the promoter of the show. He started Rock On The Range, so we always want to impress him. He is a hard critic.
HRH: Any bands that you are looking forward to seeing perform at ROTR?
PAUL: It is kind of bittersweet. I am really excited to see The Deftones. You may or may not know their bass player who is a friend of ours that was the first tour that we did with The Deftones got in a car accident. He has been in a coma for over a year now. They went ahead and got another bass player. They are back together. They have been gone for a while. I am super excited because I am a huge fan. They are good friends of mine. It is going to be weird without the original bass player knowing his circumstances. They had to continue on but it is a little weird with him being in a coma. He is on life support and the whole deal. It is terrible.
HRH: What are your thoughts on the passing of Ronnie James Dio? The Metal world was so saddened by this news.
PAUL: It is crazy when you lose anybody like that. Like an icon. It is like when you lost Michael Jackson. Regardless of what your opinions are or what not. I mean he was an icon. He is regarded as one of the best metal singers of all time. He had success with Dio and Rainbow and Black Sabbath. It is just weird when you know he is not doing the Heaven And Hell tour one day and one day he is dying of cancer. When he was doing the Heaven And Hell tour he was out there rocking. It is a sad day anytime when you lose anybody who put great music and art out to the world. He put some great music out in the world and it will live forever.
HRH: What are the future touring plans of the band? I know you have the Carnival Of Madness Tour this summer. Will the band remain on the road throughout the year?
PAUL: I think so. I think we will probably go the end of the year. Depending on the demand at that point, maybe start thinking about another record. I am pretty sure we will definitely be going at least to the end of the year.
HRH: Paul, do you have any advice for aspiring guitarists?
PAUL: Practice, practice, practice! It goes without saying. Practice with a metronome. Get your timing together. If you got friends or whatever that play guitar or drums you got to get out there and jam with them too. It is one thing to sit around and practice scales every day. If you don’t have your feel and your groove locked in that is the most important thing when you get into a band. There are a lot of people that aren’t that technically advanced. When they deal with people and start jamming they just get it. They do it. Most of the best guitar players are just all feel and they don’t know a note. They just know a note and know it sounds good and what feels good.
Hardrock Haven is proud to present a Track By Track Of Volume 4: Songs In The Key Of Love And Hate by Puddle Of Mudd Guitarist Paul Phillips:
l. Stoned -”That is basically a F*U* song. It has a lot to do with major labels. And other bands dealing with major labels. Anybody who is stuck in that corporate world and having to do something that they don’t always want to do. Unfortunately you get pressured into doing some things that you don’t want to do in the music industry as well. So basically it is like hey instead of looking up to you I like to be doing what I like to do. You can probably kind of figure that one out.”
2. Spaceship -”That was one that was at least 3 quarters of the way done when I came back to the band. We added a few extra parts in there to just spice it up a bit. We pretty much knew all of the time it was going to be the first single. It just had kind of that novelty feel that we do a lot. We went up to Vancouver and recorded that with Brian Howes. I am happy with it too. I think the guitars are slammin’ on it.”
3. Keep It Together – “This song is probably the one I am most proud of. That was one that I actually wrote when I was away from the band. It is something that I had sitting around. It was actually a lot slower when I originally wrote it. Then there was a way more difficult more guitar part in just the result of the way Wes was trying to sing and play the guitar. He started playing the way it is now. He played it faster instead of picking out all the crazy notes I had in there. He stripped it down. So that is the way it ended up. It got stripped down a lot and sped up a lot. To me that is our credit achievement on the record. I am really proud of that song.”
4. Out Of My Way -”Me and Wes have a habit of staying up late and drinking and writing songs. We have these little hand held recorders. That is one we wrote on the recorder in Vancouver in a hotel room and listened back to it three months later. Wes is like,” Do you remember writing that?” I am like I don’t remember writing that one either. That was funny. If I didn’t have that little hand held recorder that song would have been lost and it wouldn’t have made it.”
5. Blood On The Table -”This song is fun. I like to turn that into a driving song. When you speed you put on an up tempo song like that. That was a riff and vocals that Wes had sitting around for a while. He started playing. I am like,” What is that?” Wes said I wrote that a long time ago. I like that it is cool. I wrote a chorus to it. It is basically about fighting with people in close proximities. It has a lot to do with band frustrations. Sometimes you give everything you got to each other and you bleed for each other on a daily basis. Sometimes it can get frustrating if it is not returned in the same matter. If you feel like you are doing it more than somebody else. It can apply to any kind of relationship that you have. There has to be that equal thing. ”
6. The Only Reason – That was actually a song that I had nothing to do with. That one was written for Famous. It was recorded for Famous. It ended up not making Famous. But we always thought it was a good song. So we insisted on this record that it get put on the record. I always thought it should have been on the Famous record even though I wasn’t around. I always thought it was a really good song. It has got a cool time change in it. It goes from 3/4 to 4/4 which is pretty cool. So we just re-mixed it, so it is kind of cohesive with this record. So we put it on there.”
7. Pitchin’ A Fit – “That was fun. That is pretty much about me and Wes being up late and doing our thing.”
8. Uno Mas -”That is a Doug track that Doug brought in. It is a little punk rock jammer. When I first came back to play and listened to the demo at his house, I was like that is cool I like that. It has a good up-tempo beat. It never really backs down. It took Wes a while to write lyrics to it. We knocked that one out too.”
9. Better Place -”That about Wes’s cousin who overdosed on drugs. That was basically a letter to him. You are in a better place now. I miss ya. It was a heartfelt goodbye to him.”
10. Hooky -”That was a lot of fun to write. That riff was actually written by Wes’s son who was in the “Blurry” video. He is twelve now. He has started to rock the guitar pretty well. He was staying with Wes for the summer. We were hanging out. He started playing that riff. We were like we should write a song to it. So we started asking him,” What would you rather do today than go to school?” He is like,” I rather do this. I rather so that.” We ended up writing this whole song around him with his guitar riff and vocals. Then Wes changed some of the vocals. Some of the more risqué’ vocals came from Wes and not the twelve year old kid. A lot of them are the exact same thing that he came up with. It was kind of a joke. But then we thought it would totally make his life, if we went in and recorded this song. So we waited till he left and went into the studio and recorded it. Once we got the disc and played it for him, I have never seen anybody smile that way. He couldn’t believe something that he did was on record and we recorded it.”
May 15, 2010 at Hampton Beach Casino, Hampton Beach, NH.
by Deb Rao
The summer concert series at Hampton Beach Casino is kicking into full gear featuring some of the hottest acts in music today. Gracing the stage with a near capacity crowd on May 15 was one of rock’s top acts Puddle Of Mudd. Riding high on the success of current album Volume 4:Songs In The Key Of Love And Hate, Puddle of Mudd is currently burning up the radio airwaves with their second hit single” Stoned and headlining tour.”
Part of the success of the new hit Puddle Of Mudd release is due to the return of guitarist Paul Phillips and his catchy pop riffs. Not since their release of Come Clean in 2001 has the band enjoyed the success that is now flourishing with their current release Volume 4:Songs In The Key Of Love And Hate.
Puddle Of Mudd hit the stage at 10:15 P.M. and performed a 90-minute set that featured songs that spanned their extensive career. Opening with:” Control” lead singer Wes Scantlin took full command of the stage. The band then launched into their first hit single from their current release, “Spaceship.” The all ages’ audience could not get enough of the band as Puddle Of Mudd cranked out hit after hit.
One interesting aspect of the headlining show compared to the recent tour with Shinedown is the longer set in which the band put into great use with an added acoustic portion. Wes Scantlin performed on acoustic guitar on the song “Thinking About You” and a few other songs this evening in which the band showcased their melodic side. The slower part of the set really infused the Nirvana ambiance and strong song structure that has made the band famous. It was very refreshing.
The rhythm section featuring bassist Doug Ardito and drummer Ryan Yerdon was pulverizing. One great aspect of attending a Puddle Of Mudd concert is the impromptu sing-along in which were very strong tonight including on the AC/DC cover “TNT” and “Blurry.” Highlight of the night was the medley of “She Hates Me”, and the Grease hit “Summer Lovin.” That song was perfect for the boardwalk crowd attending tonight’s show.
After the show, the band did a meet and greet and stayed into the wee hours of the morning signing autographs. It was great to see the great repoire between the band and fans. Puddle Of Mudd is all about the music and it in for the long haul. Be sure to check out the band on tour this summer and pick up a copy of Volume 4: Songs In The Key Of Love And Hate today.
Puddle Of Mudd is gearing up for an extremely busy summer. Kicking things off with an appearance at one of the most anticipated festivals of the summer Rock On The Range on May 22. Be advised the band is performing at 2:55 P.M. on the main stage at ROTR.
Also, Puddle of Mudd will be appearing on the Carnival Of Madness Tour this summer .For up to the minute news visit sites listed below. See Press Release in News Section at Hardrock Haven.
Puddle Of Mudd Set List:
Thinking About You
Livin’ On Borrowed Time
Blood on the Table
Away From Me
Out Of My Head
TNT (AC/DC cover)
She Hates Me/Summer Lovin’/The Joker (Steve Miller Band)
Puddle of Mudd on Tour:
518 S. Burlington, VT @Higher Ground
5/19 Watertown, NY @Exhibition Hall
5/21 Buffalo, NY @Town Ballroom
5/22 Columbus, OH Columbus Crew Stadium “Rock on the Range”
5/24 Aberdeen, SD @Ramkota Exhibit Hall
5/25 Minot, ND @Minot Municipal Auditorium
5/26 Sioux Falls, SD @Ramkota Exhibit Hall
5/28 Davenport, IA @Capitol Theatre
5/29 Noblesville, IN Verizon Wireless Center for “X103 Presents May Day”
5/31 Richmond, VA @The National
6/3 Atlanta, GA @The Masquerade
6/30 Milwaukee, WI @Summerfest Grounds for “Summerfest”
Puddle of Mudd on the Carnival of Madness Tour:
7/16 Jacksonville, FL @Jacksonville Arena
7/17 Simpsonville, SC @Heritage Park
7/18 Huntsville, AL @Von Braun Amphitheatre
7/20 Tampa, FL @St. Pete Times Forum
7/ 21 Estero, FL @Germain Arena
7/23 Knoxville, TN @Civic Coliseum
7/24 Charlotte, NC @Verizon Amphitheatre
7/25 Raleigh, NC @Raleigh Boutique Amphitheatre
7/26 Virginia Beach, VA @Virginia Beach Amphitheatre
7/28 Columbia, MD @Merriweather Pavillion
7/30 Philadelphia, PA @Penn’s Landing
8/1 Boston, MA @Comcast Amphitheatre
8/4 Uncasville, CT @Mohegan Sun Arena
8/5 Holmdel, NJ @PNC Amphitheatre
8/6 Canadaguiga, NY @CMAC
8/7 Detroit, MI @DTE Amphitheatre
8/9 Cleveland, OH @Time Warner Amphitheatre
8/10 Pikeville, KY @Eastern Kentucky Expo
8/11 Chicago, IL @Charter One Pavillion
8/17 Southhaven, MS @Snowden Grove Amphitheatre
8/18 Lafayette, LA @Cajun Dome
8/20 Oklahoma City, OK @Zoo Amphitheatre
8/21 Houston, TX @Woodlands Amphitheatre
8/22 Dallas, TX @Nokia Theater
8/24 Casper, WY @Casper Event Center
8/25 Billings, MT @Metropark Center
by Deb Rao
As thousands of rock fans get ready to descend on Columbus, Ohio for one of the most anticipated festivals of the summer, Rock On The Range, stay tuned to Hardrock Haven for special preview interviews of artists performing at the event. Rock On The Range features established acts plus new artists on the rise. One artist catching the attention of the public eye is Richy Nix. He will be performing at ROTR on May 22 on the Kicker stage. So be sure to arrive early.
HRH: Richy, Congratulations on your upcoming appearance at Rock On The Range on May 22. Tell us what time and stage will you appear and about your set?
RICHY: 12 PM on the Kicker Stage. My Set will be energetic and in your face. There’s no gimmicks or themes. Just me being myself and spillin’ my guts out on stage. Be ready for a handful of heavy breakdowns and some crowd participation! It’s going to be a great time!
HRH: Rock On The Range has many different acts on the bill. Are you looking forward to representing the Hip-Hop sound? Actually, I listened to your music and you have quite the interesting sound. It reminds me of hip-hop meets metal.
RICHY: I’m really pumped to be the underdog for this event. It makes me want to prove something. Since I come from both worlds rock and hip-hop, I want everybody to realize that I am the real deal this is not falsely fabricated music. It’s real!
HRH: What other bands are you looking forward to checking out at Rock On The Range?
RICHY: Deftones, LimpBizkit, Papa Roach and Killswitch Engage to name a few.
HRH: You recently appeared at Bamboozle Festival. What were some of the highlights from that show?
RICHY: Hanging out with all the bands was awesome but during my performance I climbed up this light tower on stage and scared the shit out of all the security guys and stage techs. Def got the crowd hype!
HRH: Also, this will be the year of outdoor festivals for you. You will also be appearing at Rocklahoma on May 28.
RICHY: Hell yea man I’m enjoying every minute of it!
HRH: You hail from the Windsor, Canada area. How did you get involved in music?
RICHY: Being 5 minutes away from downtown Detroit I was heavy in the hip-hop scene. I started working as a hip-hop producer at the age of 14. Grew into writing rhymes and recording songs. Then joined a metal/screamo/alternative band than eventually fused all the elements together into the sound I have today.
HRH: Who are some of your influences? I can hear some Eminem?
RICHY: Most white rappers like myself hate that comparison and also avoid mentioning Eminem as a main influence. I say F*ck it! Lets be honest I probably wouldn’t even be rapping if it wasn’t for Eminem! He’s a huge influence. So is Tupac, Andre 3000 from Outkast, 50cent, Lil Wayne, Pharoah Monch, Mobb Deep. I can go on for days with rappers that influenced me.
HRH: Your new single “In Your Head” is receiving a great response. Tell us about the meaning behind that song.
RICHY: It’s about my life, things I’ve been through. Heartbreaks, cheaters, backstabbing friends, depression, anti depressant medication and getting in fights.
HRH: Do you write songs from your own personal experiences?
HRH: Any news when your new album Note To Self will be released?
RICHY: I’m working on a bunch of new material. Some of it is Heavy as hell; some of it is more pop. I’m all over the map but at the same time always remaining true to myself. Never will I do something I don’t feel is real. Sit tight will be tons of new material coming out this year!
HRH: Is there a special message behind your music?
RICHY: Life can and always will be difficult at times. Sometimes worse for others, but there’s always going to be better days as long as you continue to better yourself as a person.
HRH: I see you just performed in Hartford at the Webster. That is a great venue to see a band.
RICHY: The Webster is located in “the hood.” (Laughter) The venue is amazing and the people that come out to the shows are even more amazing love it!
HRH: Richy, Best of Luck at ROTR. Thank you for checking in with us.
RICHY: Thank you guys! Check me out www.myspace.com/richynix and Come Rock the F*CKOUT with me at ROTR!
May 16 – 17, 2009 Columbus Crew Stadium, Columbus, Ohio
by Chris A.
In its third year in Columbus, Ohio, Rock On The Range continues to grow and evolve. So far the formula of merging up-coming metal bands with older, established draws seems to be doing well. This year the lineup included newbies like Early Pearl, and Royal Bliss with the iconic ’80′s glam band Motley Crue and the metal mayhem of Slipknot. Early estimates put the crowd in Columbus at pushing 60,000 attendees over the course of the two-day event.
With 38 bands, three stages, tons of vendors and decent weather both days, there was plenty to and see at the show. In addition, with two-day ticket prices between $99 and $114.00, there appeared to be no indication of an economic slow down among both new and vintage metal-heads in attendance. The merch tents and food vendors also seemed to be doing brisk business as well.
Held in the home stadium of the professional soccer team, and current league champions, Columbus Crew, the sheer size of the venue and the amount of bands made it impossible to see every act . Again, to the credit of the organizers, the schedule seemed thought out and was very organized. Amazingly, over the two days of controlled chaos of managing a multi-stage rock concert, everything stayed on schedule. In addition, security at these large concert events can be overbearing but despite a very visible presence of venue security and Columbus police officers, everyone was cool, polite and professional. If there were any incidents they were all dealt with very low key manner.
Day one of the event kicked off with the first bands at noon. With storm clouds brewing southwest of Columbus, there was a concern that part of the next dozen hours could be wet. Thankfully, with the exception of a 15 minute burst of light rain, the weather cooperated. By 6 p.m. the sun was out making the evening simply beautiful. The bands on the bill for day one were: Early Pearl, Leo Project, Veer Union, X Factor 1, Black Stone Cherry, Crooked X, Halestorm, Saliva, Loaded, Hurt, Flyleaf, Rev Theory, Static X, Chevelle, All That Remains, Korn, Atreyu, Alice In Chains, Slipknot. Standout performances and audience response on day one for the bands that I photographed included Rev Theory, Flyleaf, Korn and Early Pearl.
Day two started at noon as well with Drive A. Taking the second stage and Royal Bliss rocking the Jager Stage. Also performing on this day would be: Framing Hanley, Burn Halo, Hoobastank, Cavo, Adelita’s Way, Saving Abel, Pop Evil, Charm City Devils, Blue October, Sick Puppies, Clutch, Shinedown, Billy Talent, Buckcherry, The Used, and headliners, Avenged Sevenfold and Motley Crue.
Standout performances and audience response for this day included Royal Bliss, Burn Halo, Shinedown and Buckcherry.
Overall a very well done festival with an impressive list of big established names and quality future prospects. With Rock On The Range expanding to Canada later this year, one can only speculate how big this event may become in Columbus.
The word from the festival organizers is that the 2010 Rock On The Range lineup is already being planned. For more information on Rock On The Range, visit www.rockontherange.com
Here are a look at some of the newer bands plus a few established bands that performed at the 2009 Rock On The Range. You can see more photos of Rock On The Range by visiting www.chrisa.us