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No regrets for 21st Century Fugitives

17 Apr
21st Century Fugitives (Photo by Kristen Pierson)

21st Century Fugitives (Photo by Kristen Pierson)

By LEAH ASTORE

Not a lot of bands travel between gigs and high school, but the 21st Century Fugitives do.

Vocalist John Lucas, 15, guitar player Jimmy Bezreh, 15, bass player Jaden Mendola, 16, keyboardist Jackson Kehoe, 15, and drummer Gavin Burke, 14, make up the Boston based band known as the 21st Century Fugitives.

Since their start in 2011, the boys have grown, quite literally. At the time of the band’s creation, the oldest member was only 13 years-old. Now, all the bandmates are in their teens and continuing to prove that age doesn’t matter when it comes to playing pure rock and roll.

For the Fugitives, the difficult balancing act between music and school hasn’t hindered their success. Just in the last month the 21st Century Fugitives opened for the Dropkick Murphys at the House of Blues in Boston and won “Young Performer of the Year” at the 6th Annual Limelight Magazine Music Awards held on March 22 at South Shore Music Hall in Quincy, Mass.

Playing their music at the House of Blues in Boston for the Dropkick Murphys concert was an experience Lucas described as “unreal.” The band also had the opportunity to meet the lead singer of the Dropkick Murphys, Ken Casey, and even used some of the band’s equipment.

“I actually got to use [Casey’s] monitor pack” Lucas said. “I remember thinking to myself, I’m using Ken Casey’s monitor pack at the House of Blues, how can this get any more weird.”

Along with their performance at the House of Blues the 21st Century Fugitives were surprised and elated to win “Young Performer of the Year” on March 22nd.

“Some of the other people nominated were also really good,” Mendola said. “We were the youngest band, so we had that going against us.”

When they won, Lucas said, they didn’t even realize their name was called.

“When they pointed to us that was really a shock,” Lucas said.

Earlier this year, the Fugitives also released a new album aptly titled Regret Nothing. The album, which consists of seven tracks, was released on December 2013 with the help of Taylor Barefoot of Boston, who recorded the album with the Fugitives.

“Recording the album was really fun,” Lucas said. “[Barefoot] let us mess around a bit and experiment.”

Some of their experimentation for the album included playing a 12 string guitar in one of their songs and it seems their experimentation and passion paid off by gaining them national attention for some of their original songs including “Balls to the Wall” and “Epic Fail.”

The Fugitives already plan on releasing a new album sometime around September 2014, Lucas said. In the meantime, they’re spending their free time writing and practicing at their band space in Wakefield, Mass., with their manager and mentor Billy Jenks. The writing process for each song is collaborative and each member brings something unique to the band’s sound. Influenced by each of their individual music tastes, the boys are able to incorporate the best of hard rock, classics, and even the blues.

Bezreh’s inspirations include Stevie Ray Vaughn, Slash, and blues guitar, while Mendola is influenced by the opposite.

“I try to bring an old school vibe and a heaviness to the band,” Mendola said.

Other influences they listed include The Beatles, Lenny Kravitz, and Eddie Vedder.

To learn more about the 21st Century Fugitives, visit http://www.reverbnation.com/21stcenturyfugitives. You can also like them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/21stCenturyFugitives.

 

Tom Rush to perform at The Spire in Plymouth, Mass.

11 Apr
Tom Rush (Photo by Michael Wiseman)

Tom Rush (Photo by Michael Wiseman)

PLYMOUTH – Legendary folk singer/songwriter Tom Rush is coming to the Spire Center for the Performing Arts on Friday, June 6, at 8 p.m. for an intimate performance at Plymouth’s new performance hall.

Mr. Rush’s impact on the American music scene has been profound. He helped shape the folk revival in the ’60s and the renaissance of the ’80s and ’90s, his music having left its stamp on generations of artists. James Taylor told Rolling Stone, “Tom was not only one of my early heroes, but also one of my main influences.” Country music star Garth Brooks has credited Rush with being one of his top five musical influences. Mr. Rush has long championed emerging artists. His early recordings introduced the world to the work of Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne and James Taylor, and in more recent years his Club 47 concerts have brought artists such as Nanci Griffith and Shawn Colvin to wider audiences when they were just beginning to build their own reputations.

Mr. Rush began his musical career in the early ’60s playing the Boston-area clubs while a Harvard student. The Club 47 was the flagship of the coffee house fleet, and he was soon holding down a weekly spot there, learning from the legendary artists who came to play, honing his skills and growing into his talent. He had released two albums by the time he graduated.

Today, Mr. Rush lives in New Hampshire when he’s not touring. His voice has grown even richer and more melodic with training, and his music, like a fine wine, has matured and ripened in the blending of traditional and modern influences. He’s doing what he loves, and what audiences love him for: writing and playing…passionately, tenderly…knitting together the musical traditions and talents of our times.

The Spire is located at 25 ½ Court Street in Plymouth. The venue features superior acoustics, custom state of the art lighting and sound systems and original period architectural details, offering patrons an exceptional performing arts experience.

Advance tickets for the Tom Rush show are only available online through brownpapertickets.com by clicking HERE. Tickets will also be available on the day of the show at the venue. A limited number of VIP tickets that includes a private meet and greet, photo op and signing with Mr. Rush are also available.

2014 Limelight Magazine Music Award Winners

23 Mar

It was a fun time at South Shore Music Hall in Quincy, Mass., last night! Once again, we increased our attendance over the previous year, making it the most attended music awards show ever! If you weren’t there, you missed some really cool performances from Krista Baroni, Brian Carroll and Ian Fitzgerald, Brianna Grace, Jilly Martin, Jay Psaros, Ten Foot Polecats, 21st Century Fugitives, and Weld Square. We’d like to thank all of the nominees, the staff of South Shore Music Hall, the radio DJs who helped promote the event, and everyone who attended. We’d also like to offer an extra special thanks to Theresa Andrewski and Matthew Almquist, of Beautiful Tuesday, for co-hosting the awards ceremony. You are two amazing people! It means so much to us that you took time out of your schedules to make it such a special night for everyone!

~ Jay & Katie, Co-Owners, Limelight Magazine/JKB Entertainment Group

Theresa Andrewski and Matt Almquist

Theresa Andrewski and Matt Almquist of Beautiful Tuesday

Here’s the final run down of all the nominees, including the winners and runner ups. Congratulations to everyone listed on this ballot!

Legend Award

EXTREME

Statement from Gary Cherone:

“On behalf of EXTREME, we are honored to receive the Legend Award from Limelight Magazine. We are a bunch of local boys who slugged it out in the clubs, doing what we loved doing. When we started out, the labels were focusing on bands from L.A. but Boston had their own special scene going on with a lot of great bands that got overlooked. It took a while to make some noise but the labels finally came knocking. The rest is history. It’s been years of hard work and dedication, but the most important thing has always been the fans for us. We are so lucky and fortunate to do what we love doing and being recognized for our efforts really makes it all worthwhile. Thanks again to Limelight Magazine for recognizing our efforts and for bestowing this honor for us.”

Extreme

Extreme

Unsung Hero Award

Ayla Brown

IMG_1989

Ayla Brown (center) with Jay and Katie

Service Award

Jessica Botelho

Jessica Botelho

Jessica Botelho

Young Performer of the Year

Jessie Chris

Closer Than We Appear

Four Noble Truths

Emily Hodges (Runner Up)

Nolan Leite

Esmeree Skye

21st Century Fugitives (Winner)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Tribute Band of the Year

All Heart (Heart)

The American Who Sensation (The Who)

Beatles for Sale (The Beatles) (Runner Up)

Clock Strikes Ten (Cheap Trick)

Fire Lake (Bob Seger)

Forever Young (Neil Young) (Winner)

Power of Love (Huey Lewis & the News)

Young Rust (Neil Young)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Live Act of the Year

The Aldous Collins Band (Runner Up)

Bigtalkahh (Winner)

Daddie Long Legs

Patrick DeCoste

Freevolt

Richard James and The Name Changers

A Simple Complex

Weld Square

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Female Vocalist of the Year

Susan Cattaneo        

Brianna Grace (Winner)     

Dorian Havers

Lisa Markovich

Amanda McCarthy  

Ilene Springer (Runner Up – tie)

Natalie Turgeon (Runner Up – tie)

Eva Walsh

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Male Vocalist of the Year

Daniel Byrnes

Jeff Conley

Greg Lato (Runner Up)

Joe Merrick (Winner)

Sean O’Loughlin

Andrew Smith

Jonah Tolchin

Kevin Williams

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Song of the Year

Dalton and the Sheriffs – “Cheap Guitars”

Shaun England – “Tied to the Tracks”

Kiley Evans & Joe Merrick – “We’d Be Lying” (Winner)

The McGunks – “Working On A Hangover”

Christian McNeill & Sea Monsters – “If You Need Some (Come and Get Some)” (Runner Up)

Fil Pacino – “Death By Lions”

Jessica Prouty Band – “Set Me Free”

Brian Sances Band – “Driving Home”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Album of the Year (Group)

Sam Bowen and Blue Cat Groove – Self-Titled

Beyond Blonde – Purple Rose (Winner)

The Cranks – Orange (Runner Up)

Elcodrive – The Long Way Home

For The Love of Sloane – Curses, Spells & Charms

Propergander – Wide Open

21st Century Fugitives – Regret Nothing

Glenn Yoder & the Western States – Javelina

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Album of the Year (Solo)

Rich Antonelli – Voiceless

Sarah Blacker – Precious Little Things

Lisa Couto – Not Going Under (Runner Up)

Julie Dougherty – In This Place

Ian Fitzgerald – No Time To Be Tender

Jamie Lynn Hart – Live At Tupelo (Winner)

Adam Jensen – Behold the Man

Ashley Jordan – Nothing In Doubt

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Hard Rock, Metal, Hardcore Act of the Year

Along Came the Flood

BlackLight SunRise (Runner Up)

Centerlink

Carnivora

Hellspeak (Winner)

Matalon

Red Equals Meltdown

We Stand In Awe

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Country Artist of the Year

Houseton Bernard

Country Mile Band

Brianna Grace

Britt Hill (Winner)

Shanna Jackman

Erin Ollis and the Whiskey Rye Band (Runner Up)

Joe Macey

Jilly Martin

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Breakthrough Artist of the Year

Blocks of Seven

Sam Bowen and Blue Cat Groove

Closer Than We Appear (Winner)

Empire Street (Runner Up)

Jesse Hanson

House On Cliff

One Time Mountain

Michael Spaulding

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Video of the Year (Group)

Aurora – “Little Traps”

Blocks of Seven – “I Can’t Take It Anymore”

Centerlink – “Distant Voices”

Mostly Commons – “Let It Go By”

The Devil’s Twins – “Love and War” (Winner)

Paryah – “Stay Away” (Runner Up)

Red Equals Meltdown – “What is Dead May Never Die”

Stay Seventeen – “On My Mind”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Video of the Year (Solo)

Krista Angelucci – “Like You”

Tiffani Dawn – “Fever”

Katlyn Evans – “Royals”

Jamie Lynn Hart – “Down” (Winner)

Ashley Jordan – “If I Had You”

Jilly Martin – “I’m Getting There” (Runner Up)

Jay Psaros – “The Orphan”

Will Evans – “Wishin’ Well”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Singer-Songwriter of the Year

Krista Baroni (Winner)

Brian Carroll

Jesse Hanson (Runner Up)

Adam Jensen

Alastair Moock

Kevin G. Moore

Dietrich Strause

Joe Young

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Band of the Year

The Can’t Nots

The Field Effect

Mean Creek

Grace Morrison and the RSO (Winner)

Nemes

A Simple Complex (Runner Up)

The Ten Foot Polecats

Torn Shorts

Former YES vocalist to perform in Woonsocket

8 Mar
Photo - JonAnderson

Jon Anderson

WOONSOCKET, R.I. – Legendary vocalist Jon Anderson, singer/songwriter of progressive rock band YES for 35 years, along with Vangelis, Kitaro, and Milton Nascimento, will be performing at Stadium Theatre on April 22at 8 p.m.

The show promises to deliver an exciting mixture of material from Anderson’s prolific career, including classic YES songs and collaborations with Vangelis, along with new compositions, highlighted by humorous and enlightening stories told by Anderson.

As the former lead vocalist and creative force behind YES, Anderson was the author and a major creative influence behind the ground-breaking album Fragile as well as the series of epic, complex pieces such as “Awaken,” “Gates of Delirium” and especially “Close to the Edge” which were central to the band’s success. Additionally, Anderson co-authored the group’s biggest hits, including “I’ve Seen All Good People,” “Roundabout,” and “Owner Of A Lonely Heart.” In addition, Anderson had great success with a series of albums he did with Vangelis, and most recently released the critically-acclaimed solo album entitled Survival and Other Stories.

Stadium Theatre is located at 28 Monument Square in Woonsocket. Tickets are $45 and $40. They can be purchased online at http://www.stadiumtheatre.com/Event/377, by telephone at 401-762-4545, or in person at the box office.

Extreme to receive Legend Award

2 Mar
Extreme

Extreme

Limelight Magazine is pleased to announce that Extreme will receive the Legend Award at this year’s sixth annual Limelight Magazine Music Awards ceremony that will take place at South Shore Music Hall in Quincy, Mass, on Saturday, March 22, 2014.

Founded in Malden, Mass., in 1985, Extreme has released five groundbreaking studio albums and have sold over 10 million albums worldwide. The band had their greatest success with their 1990 album Pornograffitti, which peaked at number 10 on the Billboard 200, and was certified multi-platinum. The album featured the acoustic ballad “More Than Words” that reached #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 in the United States. The subsequent single, “Hole Hearted”, another acoustic track, was also successful, rising to #4 on the same popular music chart.

The band’s current lineup consists of lead vocalist Gary Cherone, guitarist Nuno Bettencourt, bassist Pat Badger, and drummer Kevin Figueiredo. They released their latest studio album, Saudades de Rock, in 2008. They are currently gearing up for a tour of Europe where they will play Pornograffitti in its entirety plus some of their biggest hits.

“We’re very pleased to present this award to Extreme this year,” said Jay Kenney, who co-founded Limelight Magazine in October 2006. “Their music isn’t easy to classify since it transcends genres, but that’s what makes them such a groundbreaking band. They have definitely left their mark on the New England music scene and beyond.”

The Legend Award is presented annually to a band or musician from New England who has been around for at least 25 years and is still going strong today. Past recipients of this award include BOSTON (2013), The Fools (2012) and MASS (2011).

The Limelight Magazine Music Awards honors bands and musicians from New England who were selected by readers of the magazine in an online poll. This year’s event will be hosted by Matthew Almquist and Theresa Andrewski of the Cape Cod-based band Beautiful Tuesday. Performers scheduled to appear include Krista Baroni, Brian Carroll, Brianna Grace, Jilly Martin, Jay Psaros, Ten Foot Polecats, 21st Century Fugitives, and Weld Square.

South Shore Music Hall is located at 1515 Hancock Street in Quincy. The venue has a full bar with a limited food menu. Parking is free.

Tickets for the awards show are $10 in advance and $13 day of show. They can be purchased online at this link: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/555722.

Limelight Magazine started out as a quarterly print publication, but has since moved its operations online, with the exception of an annual summer issue. Visit their website at www.limelightmagazine.com. You can also like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/limelightmagazine.

Ayla Brown to receive Unsung Hero Award

16 Feb
Ayla Brown (Photo by Amanda Van-Sandt)

Ayla Brown (Photo by Amanda Van-Sandt)

Limelight Magazine is pleased to announce that singer-songwriter, Ayla Brown, will receive the Unsung Hero Award at this year’s sixth annual Limelight Magazine Music Awards Ceremony that will take place at South Shore Music Hall in Quincy, MA, on March 22nd.

Brown, who placed among the top 16 finalists on season five of American Idol, has supported a number of charitable causes over the years. Most recently, she released a country music, patriotic-inspired solo album titled, “Heroes & Hometowns,” and donated a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the first 2,000 CD’s sold to a military non-profit based out of Massachusetts called, Hugs for Heroes, Inc. This past Veteran’s Day, Brown presented Hugs for Heroes, Inc. with $5,000.00 live on FOX25. Still to this day, it is the largest one-time donation made to the organization. 

Furthermore, Brown has appeared in concert at Fenway Park on multiple occasions to help the Boston Red Sox and the players with their charitable endeavors including “Life Is Good At Fenway,” “Hot Stove, Cool Music,” “Jimmy Fund” with WEEI radio, and the “Beckett Bowl.” She also offers her vocal talents and time to the organization, “Songs of Love,” where she is currently a spokesperson, as well as singing and recording songs for ill-stricken children. 

The Unsung Hero award is given to a musician from New England who has made a significant contribution to the lives of others without asking for anything in return. Brown is the second recipient of this award. Last year, it was presented to Lisa Guyer who founded the Lisa Guyer Music Empowerment Program.

Katie Botelho, co-owner of Limelight Magazine, said it’s an honor to present this award to Brown this year.

“If anyone deserves this award it’s her,” said Botelho. “Her generosity and kindness is something that shouldn’t go unnoticed.”

The Limelight Magazine Music Awards honors bands and musicians from New England who were selected by readers of the magazine in an online poll. This year’s event will be hosted by Matthew Almquist and Theresa Andreski of the Cape Cod-based band Beautiful Tuesday. Performers scheduled to appear include Krista Baroni, Brian Carroll, Brianna Grace, Jilly Martin, Jay Psaros, Ten Foot Polecats, 21st Century Fugitives, and Weld Square.

South Shore Music Hall is located at 1515 Hancock Street in Quincy. The venue has a full bar with a limited food menu. Parking is free.

Tickets for the awards show are $10 in advance and $13 day of show. They can be purchased online at this link: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/555722.

Limelight Magazine started out as a quarterly print publication, but has since moved its operations online, with the exception of an annual summer issue. Visit their website at www.limelightmagazine.com. You can also like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/limelightmagazine.

The complete list of nominees:

Young Performer of the Year

Jessie Chris

Closer Than We Appear

Four Noble Truths

Emily Hodges

Nolan Leite

Esmeree Skye

21st Century Fugitives

 Tribute Band of the Year

All Heart: Tribute to Heart

The American Who Sensation: Tribute to The Who

Beatles for Sale: Tribute to The Beatles

Clock Strikes Ten: Tribute to Cheap Trick

Fire Lake: Tribute to Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band

Forever Young: Tribute to Neil Young

Power of Love: Tribute to Huey Lewis & the News

Young Rust: Tribute to Neil Young

Live Act of the Year

The Aldous Collins Band

Bigtalkahh

Daddie Long Legs

            Patrick DeCoste

Freevolt

Richard James and The Name Changers

A Simple Complex

Weld Square

Female Vocalist of the Year

Susan Cattaneo          

Brianna Grace

Dorian Havers

Lisa Markovich

Amanda McCarthy    

Ilene Springer

Natalie Turgeon

Eva Walsh

Male Vocalist of the Year

Daniel Byrnes

Jeff Conley

Greg Lato

Joe Merrick

Sean O’Loughlin

Andrew Smith

Jonah Tolchin

Kevin Williams

Song of the Year

            Dalton and the Sheriffs – “Cheap Guitars”

Shaun England – “Tied to the Tracks”

            Kiley Evans & Joe Merrick – “We’d Be Lying”

The McGunks – “Working On A Hangover”

Christian McNeill & Sea Monsters – “If You Need Some (Come and Get Some)”

Fil Pacino – “Death By Lions”

Jessica Prouty Band – “Set Me Free”

            Brian Sances Band – “Driving Home”

Album of the Year (Group)

Sam Bowen and Blue Cat Groove – Self-Titled

Beyond Blonde – Purple Rose

The Cranks – Orange

Elcodrive – The Long Way Home

For The Love of Sloane – Curses, Spells & Charms

Propergander – Wide Open

21st Century Fugitives – Regret Nothing

            Glenn Yoder & the Western States – Javelina

Album of the Year (Solo)

Rich Antonelli – Voiceless

Sarah Blacker – Precious Little Things

Lisa Couto – Not Going Under

Julie Dougherty – In This Place

Ian Fitzgerald – No Time To Be Tender

Jamie Lynn Hart – Live At Tupelo

Adam Jensen – Behold the Man

Ashley Jordan – Nothing In Doubt

Hard Rock, Metal, Hardcore Act of the Year

Along Came the Flood

BlackLight SunRise

Centerlink

Carnivora

Hellspeak

Matalon

Red Equals Meltdown

We Stand in Awe

Country Artist of the Year

Houston Bernard

Country Mile Band

Brianna Grace

Britt Hill

Shanna Jackman

Erin Ollis and the Whiskey Rye Band

Joe Macey

            Jilly Martin     

Breakthrough Artist of the Year

Blocks of Seven

Sam Bowen and Blue Cat Groove

Closer Than We Appear

Empire Street

Jesse Hanson

House On Cliff

One Time Mountain

Michael Spaulding 

Video of the Year (Group)

Aurora – “Little Traps”

Blocks of Seven – “I Can’t Take It Anymore”

Centerlink – “Distant Voices”

Mostly Commons – “Let It Go By”

The Devil’s Twins – “Love and War”

Paryah – “Stay Away”

Red Equals Meltdown – “What is Dead May Never Die”

Stay Seventeen – “On My Mind”

Video of the Year (Solo)

Krista Angelucci – “Like You”

Tiffani Dawn – “Fever”

Katlyn Evans – “Royals”

Jamie Lynn Hart – “Down”

Ashley Jordan – “If I Had You”

Jilly Martin – “I’m Getting There”

Jay Psaros – “The Orphan”

Will Evans – “Wishin’ Well”

Singer-Songwriter of the Year

Krista Baroni

Brian Carroll

Jesse Hanson

Adam Jensen

Alastair Moock

Kevin G. Moore

Dietrich Strause

Joe Young

Band of the Year

The Can’t Nots

The Field Effect

Mean Creek

Grace Morrison and the RSO

Nemes

A Simple Complex

The Ten Foot Polecats

Torn Shorts

Metal Church ‘ready to bring it’

10 Feb
Metal Church

Metal Church

By JAY KENNEY

After seemingly calling it quits forever in 2009, veteran heavy metal band Metal Church reunited last year and released their 10th studio album Generation Nothing. The album marked a return to the classic metal sound of the band’s first two studio albums, Metal Church (1984) and The Dark (1986), while still sounding contemporary. We recently caught up with vocalist Ronny Munroe just days before their month long tour of the United States.

Limelight Magazine (LM): In 2009, Metal Church announced on its website that they were “calling it quits” due to a number of industry-related factors. What was the chain of events that brought the band back together again?

Ronny Munroe (RM): Basically [Metal Church founder and lead guitarist] Kurdt [Vanderhoff] called and said we had an offer from 70000 Tons of Metal (a heavy metal festival that takes place annually aboard the cruise ship the MS Majesty of the Seas] and what did I think about putting the band back together and I said, “of course, let’s do it.”

LM: Did you ever expect to be working with Metal Church again?

RM: Yes, I knew it would happen when it was supposed to happen and it did.

LM: You’re now the longest serving vocalist for Metal Church with four studio albums under your belt. How did you end up getting the position a decade ago?

RM: I went to audition for Kurdt’s “Vanderhoof” project actually and then I mentioned “hey why don’t we do Metal Church?” And after a lot of thought on Kurdt’s part he finally called me and said, “so you wanna do Metal Chuch, let’s do it.”

LM: Metal Church could have easily rested on its laurels and went out on the road playing material from their previous studio albums, but the band decided to record a new album. Was that always the plan when the band reformed?

RM: Yes, it was. We figured if we were to do the cruise show and have all that exposure that it would be a good time to do a new record. But more importantly, we wanted to give the fans the best possible record we could and I think we did that with Generation Nothing

LM: Reaction to Generation Nothing has been nothing short of stellar. We didn’t think it could get any better than your last studio album This Present Wasteland but it did. Are you pleased with the reaction to it?

RM: I am very pleased with the outcome and the reaction of the true fans of the band, but I am eager to do the next one.

LM: Can you share with us a little about the recording process for the album?

RM: It starts with Kurdt writing and recording demos and then sending them to me to listen too and then write too. We work out the harmony lines and collaborate on the lyrics. But it has always started with Kurdt. He’s a great writer.

LM: What’s your favorite song off Generation Nothing and why?

RM: I dig the whole record which is odd for me to say because I usually don’t listen to my own recordings, but this one I do. I’ll pick ‘Bulletproof’ because it’s about growing thick skin so the B.S. just bounces off.

LM: Metal Church is about to embark on a month long tour of the U.S. Are you looking forward to being on the road again?

RM: It’s going to be great to get out there and see and play for the fans again. It’s been a few years but we have the metal burning in our veins and were ready to bring it!

LM: What can your fans expect from this tour?

RM: A great night of music first off and just a bunch of guys having a great time playing and singing their asses off.

LM: Given the bands extensive catalog of music with three different singers, how does the band decide on a set list?

RM: We just pick what has always worked best and then throw in a couple different ones just to change it up a bit.

LM: Every member of the band is involved with a lot of different side projects. Will the band members continue with their side projects now that Metal Church is back together?

RM: Metal Church is a main priority for each and every one of us, but let’s be real. We’re not big enough to just survive on what this band makes. It’s more for the love of music. So yes we will continue doing our side stuff.

LM: One thing that really stands out about this band is that you are actively engaged with your fans, especially on your personal Facebook pages. What do you like most about engaging with your fans?

RM: The fans are everything to me/us. If we don’t have the fans then we’re just playing to ourselves. More importantly, it’s good to talk with people and find out what they’re about and how our music has touched or helped them.

LM: What’s the best part about being in this band for you personally?

RM: Getting to sing such thrash metal classics and having the opportunity to spread the metal love around the world and do some good.

LM: Apart from music, what do you do in your free time?

RM: Spend time with the kids and take wildlife pictures. When I’m not devouring the stage, I like to relax.

LM: Any final thoughts or comments?

RM: Thank you for the time and I hope to see all of you on the road one day soon!

For more information about Metal Church and to view their current tour schedule, please visit www.metalchurchmusic.com or www.facebook.com/officialmetalchurch.

Nominees revealed for sixth annual music awards

1 Feb

We are pleased to announce the nominees for this year’s sixth annual Limelight Magazine Music Awards. Like prior years, the nominating process was completely fan driven, with the exception of “Song of the Year” which was nominated by radio DJs who support the local music scene. We received so many nominations for “Video of the Year” that we were able to break down the category into two separate ones, “Video of the Year” (Solo) and “Video of the Year” (Group). Furthermore, we added one new category: “Young Performer of the Year.”

As to how the nominees were selected, we simply took the top eight artists who received the most nominations by e-mail and placed them in each category. Some bands received as many as 40 nominations. Anyone who won an award in a specific category last year is ineligible to be nominated for that same award this year, unless it’s for new music being released (such as a song, album, or video). Public voting begins today and ends at 11:45 PM on Friday, Feb. 7.

An all-ages awards ceremony will be held at South Shore Music Hall in Quincy, Mass., on Saturday, March 22, 2014, at 7:30 p.m., where the winners will be revealed. Advanced tickets can be purchased online HERE. Tickets will also be available at the door on the day of show.

Like last year, eight artists will be randomly selected from all the nominees and asked to perform at the awards show. Performing at the ceremony does not mean that artist has won an award.

Check out the list of nominees below and be sure to vote in our poll HERE.

Young Performer of the Year

Jessie Chris

Closer Than We Appear

Four Noble Truths

Emily Hodges

Nolan Leite

Esmeree Skye

21st Century Fugitives

 Tribute Band of the Year

All Heart: Tribute to Heart

The American Who Sensation: Tribute to The Who

Beatles for Sale: Tribute to The Beatles

Clock Strikes Ten: Tribute to Cheap Trick

Fire Lake: Tribute to Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band

Forever Young: Tribute to Neil Young

Power of Love: Tribute to Huey Lewis & the News

Young Rust: Tribute to Neil Young

Live Act of the Year (complete)

The Aldous Collins Band

Bigtalkahh

Daddie Long Legs

            Patrick DeCoste

Freevolt

Richard James and The Name Changers

A Simple Complex

Weld Square

Female Vocalist of the Year

Susan Cattaneo         

Brianna Grace           

Dorian Havers

Lisa Markovich

Amanda McCarthy   

Ilene Springer

Natalie Turgeon

Eva Walsh

Male Vocalist of the Year

Daniel Byrnes

Jeff Conley

Greg Lato

Joe Merrick

Sean O’Loughlin

Andrew Smith

Jonah Tolchin

Kevin Williams 

Song of the Year

            Dalton and the Sheriffs – “Cheap Guitars”

Shaun England – “Tied to the Tracks”

            Kiley Evans & Joe Merrick – “We’d Be Lying”

The McGunks – “Working On A Hangover”

Christian McNeill & Sea Monsters – “If You Need Some (Come and Get Some)”

Fil Pacino – “Death By Lions”

Jessica Prouty Band – “Set Me Free”

            Brian Sances Band – “Driving Home”

Album of the Year (Group)

Sam Bowen and Blue Cat Groove – Self-Titled

Beyond Blonde – Purple Rose

The Cranks – Orange

Elcodrive – The Long Way Home

For The Love of Sloane – Curses, Spells & Charms

Propergander – Wide Open

21st Century Fugitives – Regret Nothing

            Glenn Yoder & the Western States – Javelina           

Album of the Year (Solo)

Rich Antonelli – Voiceless

Sarah Blacker – Precious Little Things

Lisa Couto – Not Going Under

Julie Dougherty – In This Place

Ian Fitzgerald – No Time To Be Tender

Jamie Lynn Hart – Live At Tupelo

Adam Jenson – Behold the Man

Ashley Jordan – Nothing In Doubt

Hard Rock, Metal, Hardcore Act of the Year

Along Came the Flood

BlackLight SunRise

Centerlink

Carnivora

Hellspeak

Matalon

Red Equals Meltdown

We Stand in Awe 

Country Artist of the Year

Houston Bernard

Country Mile Band

Brianna Grace

Britt Hill

Shanna Jackman

Erin Ollis and the Whiskey Rye Band

Joe Macey

            Jilly Martin

Breakthrough Artist of the Year

Blocks of Seven

Sam Bowen and Blue Cat Groove

Closer Than We Appear

Empire Street

Jesse Hanson

House On Cliff

One Time Mountain

Michael Spaulding 

Video of the Year (Group)

Aurora – “Little Traps”

Blocks of Seven – “I Can’t Take It Anymore”

Centerlink – “Distant Voices”

Mostly Commons – “Let It Go By”

The Devil’s Twins – “Love and War”

Paryah – “Stay Away”

Red Equals Meltdown – “What is Dead May Never Die”

Stay Seventeen – “On My Mind”

Video of the Year (Solo)

Krista Angelucci – “Like You”

Tiffani Dawn – “Fever”

Katlyn Evans – “Royals”

Jamie Lynn Hart – “Down”

Ashley Jordan – “If I Had You”

Jilly Martin – “I’m Getting There”

Jay Psaros – “The Orphan”

Will Evans – “Wishin’ Well”

Singer-Songwriter of the Year

Krista Baroni

Brian Carroll

Jesse Hanson

Adam Jensen

Alastair Moock

Kevin G. Moore

Dietrich Strause

Joe Young

Band of the Year

The Can’t Nots

The Field Effect

Mean Creek

Grace Morrison and the RSO

Nemes

A Simple Complex

The Ten Foot Polecats

Torn Shorts

Music photographer gearing up for exhibit at the Narrows

27 Jan
Among the photos appearing in the exhibit are (clockwise, from left) Slash, Lacey Sturm of Flyleaf, Herman Li of Dragonforce and Dave Matthews.

Among the photos appearing in the exhibit are (clockwise, from left) Slash, Lacey Sturm of Flyleaf, Herman Li of Dragonforce and Dave Matthews.

Beginning February 1, 2014, the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River, Mass., is showcasing a new exhibition of pictures by photographer Kristen Pierson that capture some of rock and roll’s most notable musicians performing live on different stages across North America. Entitled “Driven by Music: A Collective Work by Kristen Pierson,” the exhibit is free and open to the public during normal box office hours and showtimes.

 

A special reception with Pierson will be held on Saturday, February 8, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Light refreshments will be served.

 

Pierson, whose work has appeared in multiple publications, including Rolling Stone, Kerrang! Magazine, and Limelight Magazine of New England, took all of the photos over the past decade. She said the exhibit will allow the viewer to experience the fast pace of music photography.

 

“The viewer will feel as if they are part of a particular moment at the show,” said Pierson.

 

Among the musicians featured are Aerosmith, Black Eyed Peas, Grace Potter, Green Day, Dave Matthews, Tim Reynolds, Heart, and many more.

 

Pierson’s photography career began at the Locobazooka festival in Mansfield, Mass. With nothing but a point-and-shoot camera, Pierson took shots of the bands from two rows back in the center section. When she got home, she looked at the photographs and something clicked inside her head. She knew music photography was her calling. So she invested in some professional camera equipment, and spent several months learning as much about concert photography as possible.

 

Pierson said it took a lot of work just to get credentials to photograph an Alice in Chains concert at Lupo’s in Providence, R.I., on Halloween in 2006. She was nervous that night as Alice in Chains was also shooting footage of the concert for a DVD. She stood by the side of the stage as she got ready to take pictures, not for a publication, but for herself.

 

“To me, that was a big way for me to prove to myself that this was definitely something I could do,” Pierson recalled.

 

Over the years, she recalls some of her favorite bands to photograph have been Shinedown, Mumford and Sons, Heart, and Grace Potter and the Nocturnals.

 

“Every show I shoot gives me an adrenaline rush, whether it’s a local band playing in front of 50 people to a venue filled with 15,000 people,” she said. “Each show is unique in its own way.”

 

Pierson continued, “I guess I could say I’ve always been ambitious anyway. If you devote yourself, you can do whatever you want to do.”

 

Pierson said photographers Annie Leibowitz and the late Jim Marshall are some of her influences.

 

“People like them, that’s what gives others the ambition to want to do this,” she said.

 

Pierson said there is a lot of competition among photographers and while anyone can take photographs, not everyone has the eye for it.

 

“I’ve been told by some people, that I captured the musician’s soul,” she said. “Sometimes you only get one shot at it, then the moment passes you by.”

 

Bands usually don’t pose for the camera at concerts, so Pierson said she always has to have her camera ready and never has her back to the stage.

 

“The best part is the adrenaline rush I get when I shoot, I love that feeling.” Pierson said. “It’s also great when I get a positive response from fans who enjoy the pictures, or when an artist contacts me to license the pictures I took of them. It makes the hard work that goes into this craft even more worthwhile.”

 

The Narrows Center for the Arts is located at 16 Anawan Street in Fall River. Box office hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 12 noon to 5 p.m. The exhibit runs through March 15.

Gundriver delivers the hard rock goods

19 Jan

Tom Potter of Gundriver (Photo by John Endow)

Tom Potter of Gundriver (Photo by John Endow)

Consisting of four talented musicians who joined forces in Los Angeles, California, Gundriver is a rip-roaring, all gas-no brakes rock ‘n’ roll band who are influenced by Black Sabbath and AC/DC. The band recently released their debut album No. 1, which was recorded in less than three weeks. The album features nine tracks, comprised of the four basic elements that make up all great rock music: riffs, grooves, thunderous beats and soaring vocals. They are currently on the road supporting Michael Schenker on most dates of his Bridge the Gap tour. We recently checked in with Tom Potter, the band’s founder and guitarist, who was gracious enough to answer our questions while on the road.

Limelight Magazine (LM): You’re currently on the road supporting the legendary Michael Schenker. How’s the tour going so far?

Tom Potter (TP):  The tour’s going great!  It’s a real pleasure to be out on the road with such a great group of professionals, and we’re enjoying watching Michael Schenker perform every night.  Can’t say enough about the experience.     

LM: Were you fans of Michael Schenker prior to going on this tour?

TP: Definitely! But, I can personally say that I really enjoy live music and getting to watch one of rock’s great guitar players perform every night has been one heck of an experience. We’re all bigger fans now! Michael’s playing is brilliant and [vocalist] Doogie [White] sounds like a million dollars – those guys are the real deal! 

LM: You’ve received a lot of positive feedback on several social media sites about your live performances. What do you like most about performing live on stage?

TP: That’s great to hear!  Rock ‘n’ roll is a real organic thing and the connection with fans live is what we’re after.  Even though we’re all very proud of our first album, we think that our music translates live even better than in the studio and we love being able to bring it to people who love rock.

LM: Who came up with the name of the band? Why was Gundriver selected?

TP: I came up with the name, or actually took it from my time in the Army flying apaches. It’s a term used for people who fly gunships – and after going through the trademarking/domain name search it fit best. 

LM: You’re music is heavily influenced by bands such as AC/DC and Black Sabbath. What are some of the other bands that inspire you?

TP: Zeppelin, Pantera, Metallica, Megadeth, Guns N’ Roses – Jimmy Page had a huge impact on me with regards to song structure and the concept of tension and release so that’s evident in some of the songs. Stevie Ray Vaughn basically taught me to play the guitar, even though it was only through his music I learned how really digging into the guitar can bring out the various colors the instrument has to offer – the growls and screams if you will. 

LM: Your debut album Gundriver No. 1 was released a couple of months ago. How long did it take you to make the record? Are you pleased with the finished product?

TP: It took us six weeks of writing, rehearsing and recording to get it completed.  Those sessions took place in February and June of 2013 in Los Angeles. It was a really cool experience, basically to start things out [vocalist] Scott [Siegel], [bassist/vocalist Crazy] Tomes [and I would work out the basic song sections and vocal arrangements in Scott’s living room. After that, the songs got the final treatment when Alex [Rivas] brought drums into the mix – which usually included some final arrangements; for instance, the bass/drum solo section in “Nothing to Lose” was developed by Alex and Tomes in rehearsals only several days before we went into the studio and it came out great.

We’re pleased with it – obviously your first album teaches you quite a bit from the writing, arranging, recording and producing perspective, so, even though we love it, I would just expect things to get better as we progress. 

LM: Do you have any favorite songs off of it? What makes them your favorite?

TP: [We] all [like] “Against the Darkness.” There’s a funny story attached to that one. Tomes, Scott and I were writing at his house and I had recorded the main riff and we were listening to it.  Scott fell asleep on the couch and, while he was racked out, Tomes came up with that amazing vocal line and I wrote the lyrics while listening to the basic vocal line.  As the song went through the rehearsal/recording process it just got better.  We all are really proud of it. 

LM: The song “Outta My Head” from this album was picked up by the Local MusiCafe on WMVY radio that airs on Tuesday nights from 9 – 10 p.m. Since you’re a California band, how do you feel about it being picked up by a Massachusetts station located across the country?

TP: It’s great that anyone would play our music and we’re appreciative of that anywhere it occurs.  Scott’s the only Californian in the band, I’m a Virginian, Alex is from Illinois and Crazy Tomes is from Israel.  L.A. is great place to make a rock record and it’s where we all met, and since we travel so much it’s what we’re currently claiming as home. 

LM: What are your plans after the tour ends?

TP: Sleep, and then get back to writing songs.  We have a few in the can for our next album and want to push forward towards a strong follow up to No.1.

LM: How can fans purchase your music?

TP: It’s available on a wide variety of digital platforms such as iTunes, Amazon.com, etc., or you can pick up a CD at one of the shows! 

LM: Is there anything you’d like to add for anyone reading this?

TP: We’re really glad to see firsthand that the rock n roll public is still very supportive of the genre and we’re having a blast supporting Michael Schenker on this tour – don’t miss it! 

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