V Factory, Menudo, NLT
Hosted by Mark & James
Ft. Lauderdale, FL – May 25, 2008
If you’re not into boy bands you might not have known that May 2008 marked the very first Bandemonium Tour created by none other than super manager, Johnny Wright. The tour starting in Las Vegas and ending in Orlando brought together three fresh young groups NLT (Geffen/TUG), V Factory (Warner Bro. Records), and Menudo (Epic) for 16 concert dates. Wright’s newest act, a non-boy band duo by the name of Mark and James, hosted the show. The dynamic duo not only got to showcase their music skills, but their comedy chops as well. The easy-going pair opened the show with their anecdotes of tour antics and friendly one-liners. Mark and James gave the audience a taste of their Acoustic/Pop Rock sound with the heartfelt “Letting Go” followed by the edgier, up-tempo “As You Are,” during which James taps into his inner rock star, drops to his knees and jams on his electric guitar, playing to the group of screaming girls at front of the stage.
Surrounding that stage was a venue more fitting for your weekend-night-out rock show than your summer-pop-boy band concert, but that’s exactly what it was, and one could easily pick out the mega fans from the tag-along friends or the chaperoning parents. The mega fans were the ones down in the mosh pit, screaming at the top of their lungs, reaching for dear life towards the stage, singing the songs, and even doing the choreography with the bands. The venue wasn’t packed by any means but there was certainly no shortage of performance vigor on the part of the bands, who performed as if the crowd was full of several hundred people. Each band performed seven songs.
V Factory took the stage first. During the group’s set the songs “Round and Round,” “These Are the Days” and “She Bad,” (featuring E.40) were the major crowd pleasers. The three songs are featured on the group’s MySpace page and the V Factory EP. The group’s performance of the song “Treat a Lady,” however, was probably the tightest of the night. While choreography and vocals were sketchy at certain points during the set, the group hit a home-run with the tracks themselves. To anyone who wasn’t shaking their booty while V Factory was performing my advice would be to take two fingers, place them on your neck, and make sure that you are still breathing.
NLT was up next, opening their set with the new single “Karma” produced by friend Ryan Tedder (OneRepublic). The group followed up with a medley that included their very first single “That Girl,” “Heartburn,” (Bratz Motion Picture Soundtrack), and the southern hip-hop tinged “Do it Like I love it,” saying to the crowd at the start of the medley “sing along if you know it.” An instruction the fans gladly followed. NLT definitely wins the award for most audience interaction during the show, at one point sectioning off the audience to see which side could scream the loudest, inviting four girls to party with them after the show (a ploy used to hype up the crowd, and it works), and even calling two lucky ladies up on stage to be serenaded during their ballad “Rose.” The guys really played it up during the song, holding the girls’ hands as they sing to them and dancing with them on stage. The group then performed the beat heavy song “Better,” a track unheard by fans prior to the tour, before closing the set with their most popular track “She Said I said,” produced by Timbaland. Vocals were on target and NLT’s choreography was arguably the best of the three bands.
If fans standing in the crowd near the stage thought their ears were ringing during the NLT set, they should have prepared for a busted eardrum when Menudo stepped on stage in their black and metallic hoodies and masks. It seemed most of the fans were there for the Hispanic quintet; after all, this was South Florida (third largest Hispanic market in the country). In the spirit of South Florida Menudo performed an additional song in Spanish. As with all previous shows the band opened their set with the dance track “Move,” which had the crowd doing just that. It could be argued that Menudo had the strongest, most energetic performances of the night. With the group performing tracks like “Echo,” “More Than Words,” and “Midnight,” the audience couldn’t help but dance. Menudo closed the show with their first single “Lost,” undoubtedly the most anticipated song of the evening. Overall, the band performed like old pros and there was no shortage of scream inducing gyration or sensual body rolls. In fact, between V Factory, NLT, and Menudo the stage was covered in sexually suggestive gestures and dance moves that left the girls screaming for more.
The Bandemonium concert was definitely a fan’s dream come true, allowing concert goers the opportunity to meet all of the acts at meet and greets before and after the show. The only disappointment of the night was the lack of a sold out venue worthy of the Bandemonium title. The show was a blast, and did I mention this reporter was one of the mega fans? That’s right, down in the mosh pit, screaming with the best of them.
– Shakeitta McCord
Shakeitta, one of the lucky girls called on stage during NLT’s “Rose”.
We know you love ’em, and just can’t get enough. Which is why when NLT hit the road on the Bandemonium Tour in May, Fanvasion stopped by to get the 411 on the tour — including some details on the now infamous airsoft/water war! Plus, we got the scoop on ‘the swoop’!
FV: Tell us, how has the tour been going so far?
JJ: Great, great.
Kevin: We’re fortunate enough to have Menudo and VFactory who are completely nice down-to-earth guys
Travis: I’m totally bummed it’s half over.
V: I know I’m kid of sad!
Travis: I don’t wanna go home…I want it to go through the summer.
JJ: It’s really.. it’s really exciting because like having like all these guys
it’s fun. It’s almost like being in a school.
Kevin: Camp. [Laughs]
JJ: Camp, right; always having fun.
Travis: Plus, the performing is fun too. I love the guys too they’re great, but performing is awesome.
V: We get to meet the best people; like our fans that come to the show are the coolest, coolest people.
Kevin: The die hard fans that wait outside. Like you guys, they were in the rain.
Travis: People were lined up since 8 in the morning.
V: Oh my God.
FV: Yeah, we saw a group of girls out there.
Travis: Yeah! I wanted to bring them hot chocolate or something.
Kevin: That’s the best part. We have meet and greets after and get to meet all the fans.
FV: Has there been any “Boy Band Bonding”?
Kevin: Oh yeah!
Travis: Oh yeah, it’s funny. I’m actually in Menudo now.
Kevin: I am too!
JJ: The other night we actually were in Chicago for the show; Mark & James got on the acoustic guitar, we all like sat around singing. What were we doing? Just singing…
V: Free styling songs.
Kevin: We were free styling songs and rapping.
V: Songs about Taco Bell and McDonalds.
JJ: Singing like John Mayer songs and stuff.
Kevin: Justin Timberlake and all three bands together it was really, really dope.
FV: You should have made a YouTube video out of that.
V: I think they did.
Kevin: You know what there’s gonna be a video coming out.
FV: Oh there is?
Kevin: Yeah, we need to finish it today.
FV: JJ and V are from Cali and you’ve done a lot of shows in the Los Angeles area but, Kevin and Travis – you’re from Texas! What was it like to come home to your old stomping grounds and perform?
Kevin: We got on YouTube … I don’t know what came over me but as V said, Tupac was resurrected in me. I got real ghetto, I was just … [Laughs]
Travis: “This is my home state. This is my first show back in Texas!”
Kevin: I was so hyped. I .. I.. I don’t know what it was.
V: You made us hyped though.
Travis: I know I got excited because he was like…
V: I was like “yeah, we’re in Kevin’s home state right now”!
Kevin: I was so excited ‘cause, you know it was fans and then all my family and friends were there.
Travis: Yeah, we had so much family and friends.
Kevin: It was a blast, it was so fun.
V: And they took us out the night before.
V: …and showed us around.
Kevin: Mmhmm we took him to…there’s a big Gavin DeGraw concert outside.
JJ: Yeah, we went to that.
Kevin: With like 10,000 people and we took them to that.
Travis: Oh yeah.
Kevin: It was a really fun time.
FV: His new album is awesome.
Travis: Oh I love it! It’s so good; V is actually in love with him now.
V: Yeah, I am. He’s like my favorite artist.
FV: What’s your favorite song off the new album?
V: Uh, “I’m In Love With A Girl”.
Travis: I like “Young Love”.
V: And umm, uh what’s number two?
FV: “Next to Me.”
V: “Next to Me”!
Travis: “Next to You”. Yeah, yeah.
FV: “Next to You”, yeah.
V: Yeah, I love that one.
FV: Many people say Bandemonium is “Boy Bands Gone Wild!” Have there been any wild and crazy times so far that you want to tell us about?
Travis: Silly string fights, water gun fights…
V: We purchased air soft guns.
Travis: C02 guns…
V: And we’ve been shooting each other, like us and the other boy bands.
JJ: That’s pretty cool.
Kevin: And I heard VFactory was going around having shirtless fights.
V: Shirtless battles with the air soft guns.
Kevin: Yeah, and they have like marks all over. Yeah.
FV: That sounds dangerous.
V: It’s pretty dangerous.
Travis: Almost like a … like a..
V: I shot JJ in the forehead the other day.
JJ: We were in the hotel and he’s got a gun at me, and the ones we have like hurt really bad when you get shot with them. So I’m like under the covers…
V: Don’t try it at home, please. [Laughs]
JJ: …but I peek my head over and he shoots the ball and it ricochets off and hits my forehead.
FV: Coming off the tour with battle wounds. [Laughs]
FV: When we talked back in February, you mentioned how you had to get back into studio to re-record some songs. Fans are no buzzing about the new version of “Do It Like I Love It” that you’ve been performing on the tour. …Next single?
Travis: I don’t think we’ve gotten that far yet as to what the next single is. Karma’s the single.
V: We’re pushing “Karma”.
Travis: “Do It Like I Love It” is one of the songs that we did re-record and we did new versions of like ‘Yesterday.’ I don’t know if you know ‘Yesterday,’ it’s a ballad we recorded. It’s also on our EP which we’re selling after the show.
Travis: It’s like a new version and everything. So, we’re excited about all the new stuff we did.
Kevin: And we’re real excited to perform ‘Do It Like I Love It’ on tour because…
JJ: We know a lot of the fans already know it.
Kevin: Yeah, the leaked version is one of our biggest videos on YouTube, that we didn’t put up. So when we do it in concert, everybody goes nuts because everybody knows it.
FV: Do you think the male vocal groups of the past should’ve all had a joint tour like this one? Or do you think despite the tour, there’s always going to be the fan created battles of ‘who’s the better band’?
JJ: I think it’ll always be there. You know, it’s like…
Kevin: Cause with like yeah ‘N Sync..
JJ: Back with like Britney and Christina and everyone was going at… at either one or the other. But, they were best friends. It’s like…
Travis: Yeah, I think people are always gonna create like that hype.
V: I think amongst us..
JJ: Amongst us..
V: Amongst us we won’t ever have that.
Kevin: No, no like we’re cool with everybody.
V: But, I think fans will always have that.
Travis: Oh, the media; people always want to create beef. It’s like Kanye and 50 … this or that let’s go.
JJ: And it makes it exciting. Like it’s cool, but as long as everyone’s enjoying everyone’s music that’s what it’s all about.
Kevin: But I do think that you raise a good point though. Like if there was a tour like this back in the days of ‘NSync and Backstreet Boys, 98 Degrees all on one tour?
V: That would have been really good.
Travis: Do you know how big that tour would have been? ‘NSync and Backstreet on the same tour.
Kevin: It would have squashed probably a lot of rumors. But you know what? I mean… media is gonna say what they want to say so. But, we have a great time with all these guys, so…
JJ: At the end of the day there’s enough room for everyone. So, there’s no reason to, you know … fight.
FV: So we won’t see you facing off on the cover of Rolling Stone right?
Kevin: Hey, it was good press.
FV: Kevin…how’s the swoop?
Kevin: [Laughs] That was all JJ!
FV: Can you explain what your swoop is?
Kevin: No, I don’t think I’ve ever said that.
Travis: It’s a good swoop.
V: It’s a pretty good swoop.
Kevin: I.. I don’t remember.
JJ: Yeah, it‘s a good swoop. [Imitates swoop] It’s just a swoop.
Kevin: [Points at his hair] It’s this thing…
Travis: Cheryl’s swoop got nothing on this.
V: It’s a good swoop, I like the swoop.
Kevin: but I… Cheryl’s swoop wow. Um, ‘cause I’m not good at fixing my hair…
JJ: [Nods in agreement]
Kevin: …and I’m real insecure about it.
JJ: [Nods again]
Kevin: So I’ll ask JJ ‘cause he has like perfect hair, you know?
JJ: Not right now, but… [Fixes hair]
Kevin: So, I’ll ask him if the hair is alright. But for comedic effect, he said I asked how my swoop is. [Laughs]
Travis: Nice swoop.
FV: Trust me; you have it so much easier than girls.
Kevin: No…yeah. [Nods]
V: This is what we hear.
JJ: Yeah, we…we know this.
WATCH our interview with NLT below, then take a look at more photos in the gallery.
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MENUDO! We’re trippin’ over these boys at the moment because they’re that awesome, so we made it a point to check in with them on the Bandemonium Tour to get the details on their music, new video for their single “Lost” and everything else in-between. Yup, including Menudo DOLLS!
FV: What is the typical day out on the road like for Menudo?
Monti: A typical day… [Points towards Chris & Carlos]
Chris: Typical day on the road is driving, driving, driving, sleep, and more driving.
Chris: And then performing and then we go back on the road.
FV: With three other bands on the tour, is there any competitiveness?
Monti: Not at all, not at all. You know actually, you know, going into this tour we talked about it. Is there going to be fighting? We don’t know we’ve never been on tour like this. Um, but we’re like best friends, you know. We learn our choreographies, we learn each other’s songs, we support each other. We buy our own and each other’s songs on iTunes. So, like we support each other and I mean it’s just fun. We’re new friends, you know? There’s no competition at all, whatsoever.
FV: Travis from NLT told us he’s the new “Unofficial member of Menudo”!
Carlos: Actually, me and Travis…we traded places. He’s in Menudo and now I’m in NLT. See, NLT guys wear this. [Shows bracelet] So, I don’t know you. [Walks away then walks back – All laugh]
FV: So, it’s safe to assume there’s been a lot of bonding on the tour.
FV: Out of all the groups on the tour, Menudo is the only one that carries a history with it. Was there a lot of pressure to have this group live up to the name or the previous members?
Jose: I don’t think it was pressure, I think it’s more – I mean…I can talk for myself, I don’t know about you guys. Uh, I think like for the most part it was more of a learning experience; it was something that was fun for us. ‘Cause we … it was a lot of excitement knowing that all these people were gonna, you know, watch us and follow us the way they followed the old Menudo and all that type of stuff. So it was more of a learning experience for us, more than pressure.
FV: Ricky Martin hosted “Making Menudo”, but other than him – have you met any of the original members?
Emma: Original members, we met Charlie Masso from the show. He came to the studio and gave us pointers. He told us, like; he only went home four days in the whole year. So yeah, it’s hard work … but he was basically just cool.
FV: Have they influenced or advised you either in the studio or with touring?
Monti: We haven’t known them. I mean, we only met Charlie during the reality show. We haven’t really bonded with any of ‘em. But, I mean, we even haven’t met Ricky Martin yet.
Emma: We saw Ricky!
Monti: …we saw Ricky!
Emma: And we were like “ahhh!”
Monti: “Woo!” But, we’re big fans of his, of his music and everything. He’s big role model but no, aside of Charlie, we haven’t met any other members yet. We like to though.
FV: Menudo’s follow is a huge Latin fan base, but has the “new” Menudo maintained that? Or would you say its split between both Latin and Pop?
Chris: I think we’re pretty much trying to reach out to the whole world with our music, you know? We’re not really going just for the American market or just for the Latin market. We want to branch off to everyone in the world. Right? Yea, we want to reach out to everyone.
FV: We saw you guys in NYC and noticed how wild the crowd got during “Move”! Did you expect that song to be such a crowd pleaser when you were recording it?
Carlos: I mean when we first heard the song we knew it was something different ‘cause the chorus alone…its sick, it’s crazy, it’s like so fast. When we first actually recorded it, it was harder to sing. Like there’s so many words pushed in there … it’s like a tongue twister. And uh, we knew that it was different from a lot of songs we ever had, but we’re like “you know I think this is going to be the one”.
FV: Yeah, the crowd was moving with you in the same beat; it was great.
Emma: Oh yeah. [nods]
FV: A lot of fans actually brought along their moms who were big fans of Menudo from way back and they were REALLY getting into it! Do you hear a lot from the “original fans”?
Jose: We’ve gotten that a lot. It’s so cool to see that we can … we have the power as Menudo to reach out to everybody you know? It’s a great feeling.
FV: Menudo is more than a “boy band” – it is now a “household name.” Will you guys be marketed as a “total package”? Can we anticipate more, such as Menudo dolls like the New Kids [on the Block] did or a cartoon series much like the Jackson 5?
Monti: You never know.
Emma: Yeah, right now we’re just focusing on getting to the fans, you know, bringing them good music, for them to have fun. What happens in the future, I hope there’s like ‘N Sync dolls they had, the ones that dangle.
Monti: We would like to have those.
Emma: We hope.
Monti: Yeah. [Laughs]
Emma: And Menudo had all the merchandise…
Monti: They actually have their own show too.
Emma: Yeah, their own show.
Monti: It was once a week type thing…
Emma: [agrees] Movie.
Monti: They had a movie out.
Emma: We hope we have that, if we don’t cool.
Monti: Yeah, but right now we’re just focusing on the tour. Then the album is gonna come out soon, the single is gonna come out soon, the video. That’s our main focus right now.
FV: Yes! You actually just shot the video for “Lost”! — Can you tell us about the concept?
Monti: Well the concept, we’re like undercover. We’re hiding undercover like normal citizens. I’m a taxi driver and each one of us has their little role and we’re trying to save this girl which is Victoria Justice. And then, it’s…I’m not gonna give it away; but it’s a big action video.
Emma: You have to see it, it’s cool. It’s a surprise.
FV: When will fans be able to see it?
Monti: The fans? Yeah, they’ll be able to see it.
FV: Do you know when?
Chris: First week of June.
Monti: Yeah, early June.
WATCH our interview with Menudo below, then take a look at more photos in the gallery.
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FV LOVES VF — and you will too! VFactory is the hottest new group on the scene and we can’t get enough of their fly moves, addictive songs and poster boy looks. We caught up with VFactory on the Bandemonium stop in NYC to talk about the tour — plus, we got into the nitty-gritty about their music (their debut album is dropping later this year) and their dedicated fan base. Check out what the guys had to say!
FV: This is V Factory’s first time out on tour! How has it been so far?
Asher: It’s going really well actually.
Nathaniel: So much fun.
Asher: It’s a different experience for us…
Wesley: It’s a great learning experience.
Asher: … but we’re waking up in a new city everyday.
Nathaniel: You go to sleep and you wake up and you’re in a different state.
Jared: Not knowing where you are. [Laughs]
Wesley: Just having a good time.
Asher: Yeah this is fun.
FV: Have you had any out of control fan encounters yet?
Wesley: We had fans cry … we’ve had some cry. That was really sweet, like they got to us and just started crying. I was like [shocked face]; I didn’t know what to do so I was like [hug].
Asher: Just … just give hugs.
Nicky T: We had some fans find out what hotel we stayed at…
Asher: Oh that was crazy! We saw this car pull up and they’re all looking at us, “like oh no wonder what they’re here for?”. No joke, maybe like two hours later, they come knocking up on our door and they’re like “we searched every hotel in the area for you guys!” and we’re like wow.
FV: So, did they bombard you guys?
Wesley: It was great.
Nicky T: It was pretty wild.
Asher: They were nice though.
FV: Do you think the male vocal groups of the past should’ve all had a joint tour like this one?
Asher: It’s a good experience for everyone.
FV: Or do you think despite the tour, there’s always going to be the fan created battles of who’s ‘the better band’ … V Factory vs. Menudo?
Wesley: I don’t think that’s it at all. I think fans come and they love music; they’re gonna love all three bands on the tour, including Mark & James. So I mean, I don’t think it’s “Oh, I’m a Menudo fan so I’m not gonna like V Factory.” I don’t think that’s it..
Asher: We don’t really have that competition in anyway.
Wesley: Yeah, exactly.
Asher: If anything we’re all gaining experience from this tour. We’re all learning, we’re all here for the same thing, same reason.
Nathaniel: It’s definitely cut out the drama you might have among groups, because we’ve all been traveling with the other guys and we all hang out with each other.
Wesley: We all get along, it’s crazy.
FV: Well, I think maybe the difference then with you and past groups is that fans see that you guys are tight and get along.
Wesley: Yea, that’s exactly it.
Nicky T: Yeah, that’s a big difference.
Wesley: They see that they call Menudo, V Factory and NLT … we all come out give each other hugs and high fives and stuff. They see that and are like “wow, that’s cool”.
FV: Well my personal favorite song is “Doin’ It Too.” So you guys have any writing credits on that? Does that stem from a personal experience?
All: Ohhhhh [Laughs]
Wesley: No we didn’t, we had a producer on that.
Asher: But unfortunately yea … on our first album I think it was more a, it was really a privilege of getting to write most of our own stuff, but on the second album we’ll have opportunities to do more of that so.
FV: Are you singing it tonight?
Nathaniel: None of us have ever been in that situation.
FV: You’ve gotten a pretty big response on tour with Bandemonium and online (especially through MySpace). Were you shocked at the initial buzz having just released your EP last month?
Nicky T: We have the best fans because we had a lot of fan pages and fan stuff before we even really came out.
Asher: Everything, we’re like…
Wesley: Yeah, before we had a MySpace we had fan pages, it was kind of awkward. I was like “How do they even know about us?” it was crazy.
FV: I think I remember that too.
Nicky T: Yeah.
Wesley: Yeah, it’s wild.
FV: Didn’t you add the “V”?
Nicky T: Yeah, yeah.
Asher: Yeah, we had a lot of names oh my…
Nathaniel: For five, it stands for five.
Asher: Roman numeral.
Wesley: Yeah, we were like “V Factory, eh lets just add a little something to it”. So for Roman numeral five, we added a V.
Asher: That was the hardest part getting the name. We went through so many names.
Nicky T: Yeah, and being satisfied with them.
Asher: … and actually like it, going through ‘cause there’s so many people that had rights to it.
Wesley: We were almost called The Sexies.
Asher: Yeah, The Sexies that was one of our names.
Nicky T: The Sexies, that would work.
Nathaniel: Was that your idea? [All Laugh]
Nicky T: No, that was the girl on the street “You guys should be called The Sexies”. Remember that?
Nathaniel: Oh, our first photo shoot the day we met?
Nicky T: [Shakes head] Yeah.
Nathaniel: Oh, I remember that!
Wesley: There was this girl and she goes “What are ya’ll called?” we’re like “V Factory”, she’s “well you should be called The Sexies”.
FV: It’s a given that people are going to compare you guys to the previous groups, such as BSB, ‘NSync, and the New Kids [on the Block]. But, if someone were to come up and ask you to tell them how V Factory is different – what would you tell them?
Wesley: I mean just the music obviously. It’s a different time and the music’s evolved, it’s a lot more urban. I mean we still have some songs that are definitely pop and ‘N Sync related and stuff…
Asher: I don’t think anyone… like on the track “She Bad” we have E-40 on it. So, like we try to uh..
Nicky T: Yeah, ‘N Sync had Nelly on one of their tracks.
FV: But, that wasn’t until about their fourth album.
Nathaniel: I think it’s an honor to be compared too..
Wesley: Yeah, they were huge.
Nathaniel: ..because they were all really amazing acts and really successful. We can only hope that will be us one day.
Nicky T: Yeah, we all grew up listening to that so.
Wesley: New Kids.
Asher: Yeah, he’s a big New Kids fan.
FV: Oh my gosh, so is she. [Points to FV’s Chanelle Justice]
Wesley: Yeah, New Kids on the Block!
WATCH our interview with V Factory below, then take a look at more photos in the gallery.
“THESE ARE THE DAYS” EP
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We caught up with Mark & James again, this time while they were out on the Bandemonium Tour with NLT, Menudo and V Factory. The talented and funny duo gave us the scoop on what really happens on the bus, getting recognition on the tour and the wild fans. Maybe even the Spice Girls?
Boy bands have gone wild! But have the fans gone wild for Mark & James?
James: I would say so. On this tour it’s really been depending on the night or the city. It’s like … I feel like the smaller shows we’ve gotten to do that are smaller venues are like we’ve really gotten a chance to connect with fans more and I really guess like that’s more of our scene, that’s more of what we’ve been used to.
Mark: There … there has been like a lot of fans that have gone wild. One in particular because she writes us on MySpace and Facebook too; we have Facebooks. She writes us non-stop and her last name on that is James’ last name. [Laughs] So like if you’re saying “gone wild” – she went wild. But it’s awesome, I love it. I go on there and I see that she’s written back and I’m like “James, your girlfriend wrote you.” You gotta check it out, you know?
James: I’m trying to get used to it. Someone asked me if I got married the other day, they didn’t know I was on tour.
Mark: Yeah, I mean it’s weird though for us. Because we’re from Orlando; we’re in a smaller kind of town, it’s more like a bar scene for college kids. And it’s like probably people that like music but they’re not going to be like “Oh, I love you” because of who you are. Then you come here and you play and people are just like, “you’re famous”. And it’s just like… you know, “we’re not”.
Do you feel like you guys are getting enough recognition on the tour?
Mark: How do I really feel about that? No, um I think we’re getting quite a bit of recognition; and the bands that we are on tour with are awesome. You know, they’re awesome to hang out with. They’re awesome to play with, and we hang out quite a bit.
James: For really just … for playing two songs, um I think that we actually do get quite the recognition which is great because for all intents and purposes we’re just hosting the show. We get to jam a little in the beginning. So the fact that we get any recognition has really been great. Really they’ve been … uh; we’ve gotten the rock star treatment from the fans. It’s been great.
At the NYC show, fans saw you guys walking around and didn’t know it was you. Then once you hit the stage, they went wild!
James: The good thing about I guess not really being known yet is that you can lie to fans before the show. So I’ll around and I’ll tell them…
Mark: I don’t do this.
James: I do it … I’ve done it a few times. I’ll tell them my name is Vince and that I’m just the merch guy. Then they’ll be like “okay”. Because they’ll be like “Let me take a picture with you!” and I’ll be like “I’m nobody” and they’ll be like “oh never mind.” And then I’ll walk up on stage five minutes later and you just hear “you lied to me, you lied to me!” [Laughs]
Mark: And we were recognized in the subway the other day in New York and it was so crazy, because we got off “the sub”, I guess people call it subway, but whatever, “the sub”. And we’re walking and someone was like “hey, Mark and James…” it was like seven girls. We turn around and we’re like “I think they’re talking about us.” Which is weird because we’re somewhere that we’ve never played before really and like people just picked us out of nobody. It’s like… I was like “I don’t want to sound weird but how do you know who we are?”. You know? It’s crazy.
You’re currently sharing a tour bus with V Factory, so have there any crazy moments you could share with us?
James: That we can share? [Laughs]
Mark: About us or about them?
About just times on the bus, on the road…
Mark: Are we allowed to say stuff? [Looks around for approval] Oh okay, well then I’ll start listing ‘em off. Asher and Wes were in a bed one night.
James: Yeah, they got in bed together.
Mark: Messing around…I don’t know why. Not messing around like messing around. Don’t get that wrong. Don’t take that the wrong way. They were just like you know…
James: They’re just gonna cut that.
Mark: Getting into that, we were in a bed with three Menudo guys today on the bus so…
James: [Makes a ‘cut’ motion – Laughs]
Mark: But we have the air soft guns that you guys have probably heard about; and that, it just gets wild. Like, you’re either getting shot or shooting somebody and most of the time you’re on the bus. Like this…
James: Yeah, they shoot little plastic bbs [pellets], it’s the worst idea.
Mark: That’s from two weeks ago and I have a scab. But uh besides that though I mean, most of the time it’s after the show, we’re kinda tired so we sleep a lot. But I mean there’s definitely been some… maybe some arguments, some shoving…
Mark: Jared Murillo, I won’t say any names. No. [Laughs] But it’s been a good time.
How do you think your involvement on the tour will differ with Bandemonium II?
James: It’ll be more focused on Mark and James?
Mark: Well not to say more focused on Mark and James but the thing that we love about this tour is that we get to show more personality than anybody else because we get to actually host .. MC, mess around and not have anything to worry about. In the second one…
James: I’m looking forward to playing more music.
Mark: Yeah, we’re looking forward to sharing more of our music because two songs, it’s like I want more. You know? But, I mean it will be different. It’ll be kind of slow because we’re playing more and its full band obviously. So, it’s going to be crazy.
Well, you mentioned on the current tour that you perform “As You Are,” will you be performing “Letting Go” tonight because I think I mentioned before in our last interview, it’s my favorite.
Mark: Is the pope catholic? We will definitely perform that. [Laughs]
That’s from the Spice Girl Movie. I remember that.
Mark: It was in a movie?
That was in a movie!
Mark: I don’t know.
James: You’ve been quoting the Spice Girls movie? This entire time! [All Laugh] It all makes sense now.
Mark: I’ve been a fan of the Spice Girls since day one…
James: Oh, Posh Spice…yeah.
Mark: Yeah no, I guess that’s where it’s from. I don’t know. I didn’t see it so…
James: Sure you didn’t…
Mark: What were we answering? [Looks towards James – both laugh] Oh “Letting Go.” Yes, we definitely will be playing it tonight. It’s like my favorite song, one of ‘em.
You joked around with us in our last interview about getting all the groups together to duke it out in a backyard fight! Have you made any progress?
Mark: Well you know sometimes…going back to the air soft, sometimes people don’t like to get shot. And Wes, when I said the Jared thing earlier, Wes shot Jared [James laughs]. Like when you shouldn’t shoot him, you know? He’s busy on the computer or talking to somebody…I don’t know what he was doing. I wasn’t on the bus.
James: It was wrong.
Mark: It actually wasn’t even Wes that shot him, it was Asher, but Wes shoots everyone so you think its Wes. And so it was a brawl, there was a wrestling match that went on.
James: And then NLT had to go and they bought like serious air soft guns. So … we actually one day there was a bit of a fight but it was a fun fight and we had
a gun battle outside of one of the venues for a good 30-40 minutes with everyone just running around.
Mark: But as far as fist fights…
James: There’s still time though. I mean, there’s a good week left.
Mark: With James’ hope, I don’t think it’s happening though.
Mark: Yeah, for sure.
WATCH our interview with Mark & James below, then take a look at more photos in the gallery.
“HELLO, I LOVE YOU & GOODBYE”
IN STORES JUNE 10TH!
Boy bands have gone wild! Four of the hottest groups in pop music are heading out on a month long tour across the US for the BANDEMONIUM TOUR, a Johnny Wright Production presented by Live Nation. The man who brought you ‘N SYNC and the Backstreet Boys is doing it again, butt this time you’ll see your favorite bands all on one stage, in one night for the greatest show pop music hasn’t seen until now! The tour will include high energy performances from Menudo (Epic), NLT (Geffen), V Factory (Warner Bros) and GLOWB (Konvict Muzik). Hosted by Mark & James. Get ready for a new wave of talent that will unite all of their fans!
Want to win tickets AND Meet ‘N Greet passes to their show May 16, 2008 at Gramercy in New York? You can do that right here. [READ MORE]
In 2001, Linkin Park established Projekt Revolution. As an annual tour dedicated to featuring revolutionary, cutting-edge talent, Projekt Revolution magnetizes a diverse, passionate audience.
This year the line-up is full of awesome bands like My Chemical Romance, Taking Back Sunday, HIM, Placebo, Julien-K, and of course Linkin Park…and that’s just to name a few!
Fanvasion is giving away tickets to four different stops on the tour! All you have to do is fill out the form below and we’ll pick FOUR lucky winners at random to win a pair of tickets. How sweet is that? ENTER NOW! [READ MORE]
The Avalon Ballroom
Boston, MA – May 20, 2006
“If you’re here and you’re all alone tonight,
Then I’ll give you a free ride.
Take a chance cause I know you want to”
Despite taking place prior to the May 23rd release of Angels & Airwaves’ debut album, entitled We Don’t Need To Whisper, the crowded Avalon Ballroom, for the most part, saw fans cohesively sing along with the headlining band, much to the delight of lead-singer Tom Delonge.
Between songs, whether commenting on unicorns and the magic that comes with believing in such mystical creatures, or how the ongoing war in Iraq has affected him and his family, DeLonge at times spoke with such charisma that the audience would become engulfed in his words. As the Angels & Airwaves headliner claimed to have great desire to change the world “from the inside-out” with his music, speaking with such conviction that one would be hard-pressed to doubt such a profound statement. [READ MORE]
“Never Gone Tour”
[opening for Backstreet Boys]
Tweeter Center @ the Waterfront
Camden, NJ – August 13, 2005
It felt like the hottest day of the year, my ears filled with screams from the mouths of young girls and boys, my eyes were blinded by lights and I was surrounded by security guards and crowds of people. I looked up from my seat and said to myself, “Wow .. do I love concerts or what?”
This wasn’t just any concert though, it was a Backstreet Boys show and anytime you’re at a concert for a boy band it’s very important to make sure you’ve done everything you’d have to do before you sit in your seat. Why’s that? Because if you ask someone to move to make room for you to get in and out of your aisle, be aware of the death stares you’ll receive. So, I sat down in my *very-close-to-the-stage* seat with friends, and got ready to watch the opening acts before BSB went on. Seventeen-year-old Kaci Brown wowed the crowd with her catchy tunes and off-the-wall energy until it was time for the Boston band the Click Five to take the stage to perform songs from their debut album, “Greetings From Imrie House.”
The Click Five opened their set with the catchy tune “Pop Princess,” right away people stood up (yea, until then.. everyone was actually sitting) and instantly the stage and audience were filled with energy. The second song on their roster was the electrifying Friday Night, and by the crowds reaction.. you would’ve thought it was Friday, but it wasn’t… it was Saturday, bummer.
Moving on, one of my favorite songs was next, “Resign.” What’s so great about hearing it live is because the band gets so into it and even with the fact that they move around the stage a lot and put on little choreographed movements with their instruments, they still harmonize flawlessly while they stay in tune with the crowd.
As much as I can appreciate original music, I love cover-tunes as much as the next gal and the Click Five performs a great version of Tommy James’ “I Think We’re Alone Now.” Contrary to what people believe, Tiffany was not the first artist to record it. It also gave the crowd a good song to sing along to in-case they weren’t familiar with the Click’s music.
The band went on to perform a huge fan favorite and MTV TRL’s chart climber, their single “Just The Girl.” If you like this song on the record, you’ll LOVE it live. If you can imagine, it actually sounds better live. More people began standing up, the fans went crazy while holding up their “Eric Will You Marry Me Signs,” and “Joey I’m ‘Just The Girl'” posters while others just bopped their heads and sang along.
I thought they were gonna end their set there, but no… they sang one of my favorites, “Catch Your Wave.” The most outrageously contagious song I’ve heard since Hanson’s “MMMBop.” Fans were actually not only singing along, but they had created dance moves to it too! It was crazy. Most artist, when they perform they’re energized for the first 3 songs and then they wear out on us — but the Click truly performed from the minute they got on stage, until they stepped off.
If that weren’t enough, the band took in a little R&R before they went right back out to sign copies of their CD, posters and t-shirts for their fans at a signing towards the end of the Backstreet Boys set. What a down-to-earth bunch of guys.
– Courtney Justice, September 2005
“American Idiot Tour”
Hershey’s Giant Center
Hershey, PA – October 26, 2004
Nearly a decade after Green Day (drummer, Tre Cool, bassist, Mike Dirnt, and lead singer/guitarist, Billie Joe Armstrong) dropped their first smash hit album “Dookie,” they’re back on the scene, older, wiser, and a bit more political than fans are used to.
The three pioneers of punk pranksters dropped their seventh major label disc on September 21 2004. The guitar driven rock opera “American Idiot” takes place in a 7-11 parking lot, featuring characters like “St. Jimmy”, “Whatsername,” and the protagonist “Jesus of Suburbia.” Fans will also be surprised to find an ending to the classic “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” in the song “Wake Me Up When September Ends.” The fifty-seven minute punk rock operetta covers a wide range of topics like conformity (a Green Day favorite), the current war in Iraq, and finding your individuality in a society driven by reality television.
Green Day kicked off their tour of “American Idiot” (which debuted at number one, the bands first album to top the charts ever) with fellow punksters New Found Glory and Sugarcult on October 19 2004. The trio of thirty-somethings made their way to Hershey’s Giant Center on Tuesday, October 26, their sixth stop on the national leg of their international tour. Sugarcult started off the night, with not much enthusiasm from the crowd, although the guitarist was able to get a few of those in attendance on their feet. Their pitiful attempt at witty banter between songs made for a short set, leaving fans with merely encouragement to vote.
New Found Glory was better at stimulating a response from the crowd, dishing out more interaction and taking time between songs to actually converse with their fans. Lead singer Jordan Pundik and guitarist Steve Klein not only joined fans in the crowd, but after the set was finished, Pundik conversed with fans sitting in the section closest to the backstage area. Although they displayed better stage presence than Sugarcult, they still had trouble getting the crowd on their feet and moving. Apparently the audience was in the same boat, saving energy for the main event.
Green Day took the stage around eight o’clock. By that time the crowd was quite anxious, wondering if the guys still had what it takes to pull of those crazy nine-minute, five movement compositions “Jesus of Suburbia” and “Homecoming” from the new album. Not only did they pull it off with style and grace, but with an immense amount of energy as well. Along with playing nine of the thirteen songs off of the new album, the band couldn’t get away without mixing in some of the classic fan favorites like “Longview”, “Basket Case”, “Minority”, and closing out with the always appropriate “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life).” Leaving the crowd satisfied seemed like an unrealistic ambition, but with a set of over twenty songs jam packed into two hours, it was hard not to find one of your favorites, new or old school.
Not only did the trio deliver an energetic, flawless performance, but it was a show full of surprises and definitely not a show for the conservative. At one point, a male fan wearing the same outfit as Billie Joe was pulled on stage and, to his surprise, received a kiss from the Dickie’s clad Papa of Punk. While the band took a quick break, a man dressed in a pink bunny suit rushed the stage and chugged a beer in less than a minute as the crowd cheered him on. Random, but apparently the crowd found it entertaining.
Green Day’s crowd interaction and stage presence was phenomenal. Armstrong grabbed three members of the audience and made a mock Green Day of them, having them finishing out the song he had slowed down and drug out. At the end of the performance, Billie Joe told one of the guys to keep his guitar and demanded that another come back and stage dive.
But for those who felt that the new political Green Day had strayed from their past of immature, insane antics learned quickly that even at thirty-two, they can still act like a band of angst-ridden thirteen year-olds. Green Day’s sick humor, obscene gestures, and frequent use of profanity in their live shows is something better shared with friends and peers as opposed to say parents or younger siblings. But as evolution would have it, getting older does mean showing signs of maturity, and “American Idiot” has shown that Green Day has mastered the ability to become older and wiser without losing the angry, immature, punk kid inside.
After all, what good is having your cake if you can’t eat it too?
– Kristin Monahan, May 2005