A scandalous tell-all by vocalist Cory Brent
9/23 Amityville, New York
We first set our sails for a place called Amityville Music Hall. We were excited to play, and learn more about the history of the town. By history I really just mean that ended up asking everyone about the Amityville Horror house- which looking back now I’m sure everyone in that town is sick of talking about. Whoops.
Anyway, the show was a solid time, there was a girl who tore it up on solo guitar and vocals and played a sick cover that blended The Killers with a Modern Baseball song. The sound guy was super chill and ended up being a former member of Bomb the Music Industry, which we all thought was quite sick. All in all it was a good first show to get our tour sea legs!
Highlight of the night- The bar had a killer drink called a Fire Cracker- it was iced coffee with cinnamon and whiskey. Very worth it. 10/10 wet whistles.
9/24 Hamden, Connecticut
Our second show of the tour was at The Space in Hamden, Connecticut. Wemet the two other touring bands, 7 Minutes In Heaven and Boy Meets World here. This would be our first of three shows with them and we were glad to have met them! (Our ice breaker was accidentally hitting their van’s trailer with our frisbee- proved to be super effective.) We got to play with our dudes in Salitter, and had a great night of Taco Bell and popped punk.
9/25 Fredericksburg, Virginia
Fredericksburg was a cool spot called KC’s music alley. It was a very large bar with a bunch of pool tables and a solid stage. The only thing this place was lacking was bands. Unfortunately two of the three locals dropped the day of the show, which for a traveling band, is never a good thing to hear when pulling up to the venue. The dudes in the band that did show up were cool guys, in a band called Red Version, which I dug cause I always have my Red Version in the van (never know when the need to catch Scyther in the safari zone arises.) We had some pizza, played and got out pretty early! Overall not a bad night at the office.
9/26 Cumming, Georgia
Cumming, Georgia is an actual town that exists on earth… Moving on, it was a great show! We played a place called His Rock with our friends in Sunnycide, an art rock band from around Atlanta. This was our second time playing in Cumming and we really loved all the kids we met. Everyone was super into the set and more than willing to stay the whole show to watch us play!
The real high light of the night was hitting a Steak and Shake after the show. We’re all a couple of Steak and Shake greenhorns so it was a great surprise to find out that Steak and Shake is the dankest place on earth. We ended up taking some world class milkshakes to the dome and blowing upwards of 5 bucks worth of quarters on a claw machine. At the end of the day I think it’s safe to say we just really love Cumming!
9/27 Greensboro, North Carolina
Greensboro was an awesome little city. To be perfectly honest I thought we were going to enter a small sort of rural town, but I think we were all stoked to see a solid piece of civilization. It was a young city, with a large college crowd, all of whom were more than willing to take the time to talk and hang out with us before the show.
The night began strangely enough with an anonymous band member Icing me (someone hides a Smirnoff Ice and if you happen to see it you have to stop what you’re doing, drop down to one knee and drink it to completion. The more you know.) Once that was through I got to check out the venue, Green Street. It’s a big venue/ night club with a bunch of different rooms to play in/ get down in with bae.
The show was fun and we really dug all of the bands that played! All in all it was v tight show and we got out right before the crazy dance party started. Thank god.
9/29 Jacksonville, Florida
Jacksonville was tight! We had an off day between Greensboro and Florida, so we were able to take our time with the drive. One of the best parts of touring is just being and able to observe the world around you while you’re driving down to a state you’ve never even been to. You just never know what is out there unless you explore a bit. We played at a place called Jack Rabbits. A sick little bar with a popping sound system. We got to the venue early, so we were able to load in and then break out the grill before the other bands arrived. There is nothing better than a pre-show burger made by our grill master Mark.
Opening up the show was an incredible jazzy guitar player and singer named Jesse Montoya. Her voice was that of a buttered up angel and her whole style was that of an old jazz singer. She was followed by a band called The Argonauts, a folk rock, Dave Matthews type which was refreshing to hear.
The show was a great time, we got to meet a few people who already knew our music and came out to see us- which, for our first ever show in Florida, was a very good feeling. We then packed it up and proceeded to head to an insanely beautiful beach. Wandering around a beach with your friends at 2 in the morning is a surreal and intensely serene experience. The tide was super low and we were pretty much the only ones out! It was a great night and not something we will forget anytime soon.
9/30 Orlando, Florida
Orlando was a great city to play! There’s pretty much cool shit to see wherever you turn, which really appealed to my short New York attention span. We played at Back Booth, a beautiful venue with a killer sound system and a small balcony to chill in. We loved hanging with the bands we met there, hitting up a sick Mexican food place, and just chilling mad hard before our set! It was a fun show and we got to have a great night of grilling and chilling outside our van afterwords!
10/1 Statesboro Georgia
Southern Not State! Apparently that’s the cool thing to say while in Statesboro. Something about college football.
This was our second time playing at Big Shows Bar and Grille. The first show was a bit under whelming because it was move out day for the college in town- this show was way better. We played to a lot of great and supportive kids! The food was great, and the beer flowed like water. All in all a wild show.
We ended up chilling with The Flats, a local band that closed out the show. They were awesome dudes who opened their house to us. Mark whips out the trusty Brinkman grill and starts cooking up straight fire for all the boys and girls at this party.
Now I feel the need to say that Mark has always been a self-proclaimed grill master, and while he has an innate feel and instinct for his craft he had never truly been challenged before. That changed this night when we met one of burliest woodsmen we have ever encountered- a lumberjack type with a pension for some barbecue. This guy comes up to Mark and starts talking about grilling, how he had entered grill offs before and that he was truly no light weight in the grilling game. This guy straight up had a sign that said “Grill Master”. Where some men may have crumbled under the pressure of hearing this news, Mark stood firm, offering this burly gentleman a burger and requesting a review of his work. This Goliath of a man accepted this offer, taking the burger into his den to eat in quiet. (Silence often helps to cleanse the palette.) With in five minutes the door reopens, this giant man walks out slowly to Mark. He stops at about an arms length away from him and slowly bows, tipping his imaginary cap. It was at this point that Mark really solidified himself as the grill master. We packed our things and headed back to the hotel in what can only be described as a ride basked in jubilant victory.
10/3 Birmingham, Alabama
Our first Alabama encounter was more stereotypical than I think any of us were really planning for. Stopping off for some gas, the boys got out of the van to play some good old gas station football. As soon as the pigskin started to get tossed around these two vehicles roll up with HUGE Confederate flags waving triumphantly on top of them. The drivers get out and they’re both wearing confederate flag shirts. Talk about butt hurt. Definitely classic.
We arrived shortly after to the venue. The Nick has been around for seemingly forever. You can sort of tell by the millions of band stickers on the walls and ceilings. I got to meet my first ever cock roach here, I’ve since decided to name him Jarrod. He ran over to Rob and I and we both sort of shrieked. A poor welcoming party for sure.
We played a fun show, played with some cool jam bands and we even met our first heckler, an incoherently drunk fellow sitting at the bar who seemed to not be enjoying himself one bit. When we were asking the crowd about Alabama he said something along the lines of “there’s a bunch of cities ya god damn idiots, now get back to playing your dumb songs and get off the god damn stage.” Mark seemed to get a kick out of that and dedicated our Uptown Funk cover to our drunk boy at the bar. Hard to say if he enjoyed it, but we like to think it brightened up his night.
10/4 Atlanta, Georgia
Under the couch was a cool spot in the student center on Georgia Tech’s campus. We played with Boy Meets Weorld and Seven Minutes in Heaven again (first played with those dudes up in Hamden) and a couple other Georgia locals. A couple of our friends from Sunnycide showed up so good times were had and high fives were thrown around. We fired up the ol’ Brinkman and everyone was feeling pretty good.
After the show we got back to the hotel, a Ramada with a sick view of Turner Field, and chilled hard. Beer pong, Billy Madison and overall debauchery.
It was around 2 in the morning and Mark was in bed fast asleep when the band stomachs started gurgling. We woke up the grill master and, without hesitation, he jumped out of bed and we all headed down into the parking lot to fire up the Brinkman for what would become a legendary late night grill session.
But, as the tide doth ebb and flow so did our night ebb and flow from the light to the darkness when we realized something that would change us all forever. Sometimes when traveling around you end up leaving a few good men behind. Unfortunately for us, we left the grease pan for our grill behind here. Our rescue mission didn’t go as well as we had hoped in that we were unable to extract our dear old friend from behind enemy lines. We can only hope it’s in grease pan heaven, or something of the sort. This show will forever be known as the Great Grease Pan Debacle of 2015. (GGPD15 for short)
10/6 Nashville Tennessee
Nashville, Tennessee pulls harder than probably any other city on planet earth. We got here a day early so we could throw some high fives around with the locals. We went out, got some dank nachos from Soul Shine and ubered our way to Broadway. (The uber driver was sick, had a light show in his van AND showed up to the show the next day- Roddy if you’re reading this you’re the man.)
Broadway is like the main touristy strip, and there’s about a million bars with a million live acts playing. It was straight up packed in every single place we wandered into (on a Monday no less!) We even ran into our boys in Boy Meets World, in a sick bar called Robert’s. A couple of shots were had here and there and we even met a nice older group who bought us some jäger shots! All the people we were lucky enough to meet in Nashville were amazing and chilled harder than any other place we’ve ever played in. It was a great night all around and I think we all spent much more money on drinks than we were hoping to, but it was very worth it.
We awoke the next morning quite sore from the previous night’s endeavors, but we were all stoked to put on a fun show for the good folks at Rocketown. Rocketown was an incredible teen center with a skate park, cafe, and ping pong tables connected to several different rooms for shows.
The turn out was great and we met a bunch of very sweet people! It was sick to chill with 7 Minutes in Heaven and Boy Meets World for one last show, we wish them the best with everything! They were very tight performers and overall good dudes.
We finally said our goodbyes and went back to the hotel for a late night grill session when we met a real life witch! Well probably not, but she was definitely an incoherent crazy psychopath. She pulls into the parking lot (a public, hotel parking lot) and starts screaming that we stole her spot and that we better move. She finally stumbled into her room after verbally accosting us some more (while her husband warlock left her in his whimsical dust.) We thought the worst of it was over when she came out to walk her two small dogs, and just continued to tear into us while we were grilling. She was daring us to touch her dogs, calling us hoodlums, and screaming at us to trade spots with her until she tuckered herself and stormed back into the room. From there we can only really guess as to what sort of dark magic would be taking place in the few short moments before the witching hour started.
TLDR: fun show, cool kids, crazy witch.
Tour Diary: Epilogue
All in all this tour has been our best yet, and we are so thankful to all of the great bands we got to play with and all of the people we were lucky enough to meet. We hope you enjoyed our tour diary, and that it gave you all a small window into the day to day lives of us dudes in Reckless Serenade.
Be good, have fun, and never be afraid to grill at weird hours in the morning.
– Cory Brent
Vocalist, Reckless Serenade