New Netflix Original Series inspired by the music of the Beatles, “Beat Bugs” Airing Now!

 Netflix has been known for their original series content. They have come up with some truly amazing shows like “Marvel’s Daredevil” or “Orange is the New Black”. One of their latest their latest though is aimed at a slightly younger audience yet has stolen the hearts of the entire family. The new preschool-targeted animated children’s show is called “Beat Bugs”, it is a Netflix Original Series inspired by the music of the Beatles. That’s right the Beatles. Each episode is specifically titled after a song and it also re-recorded and sang throughout the episode. I cannot recommend this show any more! Fun for the whole family!

This show follows five friendly, child-like bugs that learn big lessons about the world around them, all from the safety of their own backyard. There is no shortage of talent either, this Emmy Award-winning series features the talents of P!nk, Sia, Eddie Vedder, James Corden as well as other big-name stars who cover the Beatles songs in each episode. The main reason why “Beat Bugs” is so important because it introduces a whole new generation to one of the most influential band in rock history (and my favorite), The Beatles.

I have a five year old daughter and she doesn’t like The Beatles…she LOVES them! From the moment she was born literally, we had Beatles lullabies playing in the hospital and flash forward five years, she is gearing up to see Paul McCartney live in concert this Summer! She is non-stop singing their songs. So when I introduced this show to her and the she heard the theme song “All You Need is Love” kick off, her eyes lit up…let’s just say that it took literally six episodes before we could get her away from the TV!

Netflix really has a huge hit on their hands here and I know that there is lots more planned for this show in the future with cool consumer products outside of the episodes. If you want to find out more about this show please check it out via the following links: Official WebsiteNetflix Page. Stay tuned also to MediaMikes.com as we will be covering this show with all their excited new products coming out this Summer.

Live Nation Celebrates Beginning of Summer Concert Season with “National Concert Day” and Special Offer for Fans.

LIVE NATION CELEBRATES BEGINNING OF SUMMER CONCERT SEASON WITH ‘NATIONAL CONCERT DAY’ AND SPECIAL OFFER FOR FANS:

1,000,000 TICKETS AVAILABLE FOR ONLY $20
  – $20 Tickets Will Be Available for 1000+ Shows at LiveNation.com/20ticket for One Week Only May 2 – May 9, with Special AT&T Pre-sale Beginning May 1–

– Jason Aldean, Foreigner, The Roots, Daughtry, Prince Royce, Nickelback and More to Celebrate Live Nation’s ‘National Concert Day’ Presented by State Farm on May 1 in New York City –

LOS ANGELES (April 25, 2017) – From experiencing live music under the stars at an outdoor amphitheater, to rocking out at an arena, or taking a road trip to a music festival, there is something special about summer concerts, and Live Nation is celebrating the start of the season with National Concert Day on May 1, as well as the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion,” which offers over 1,000,000 tickets to some of Live Nation’s summer tours for just $20 (that’s all-in, no additional fees).

Presented by State Farm and produced by Live Nation, National Concert Day is a time for the artists and fan communities to unite around their love of live music. With most tours and festivals already announced, it’s also a great time for fans to plan out their summer concert schedule throughout May, June, July and August.

In celebration of National Concert Day, for one week only, Live Nation is launching their “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion” by making over one million tickets available for just $20. There will be tickets for 50+ tours and 1000+ shows at venues across the nation. The general on-sale for the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion” begins Tuesday, May 2 at 8am local time, and continues for one week through Tuesday, May 9. See below for a highlight of performers offering $20 tickets, and visit livenation.com/20ticket for more information and to purchase tickets.

AT&T is bringing customers to the front of the line for the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion” with AT&T priority presale ticket access beginning Monday, May 1 at 10am local time through the AT&T THANKS program**. For complete presale details visit att.com/frontoftheline.

Additionally, on National Concert Day, Live Nation is producing a special concert in New York City at Irving Plaza presented by State Farm. This year’s celebration features performances by Jason Aldean, Foreigner, The Roots, Daughtry, Prince Royce, and Nickelback.

Prior to the performance, several of the artists will stop by to chat with media about their upcoming summer tour including, OneRepublic, Rob Thomas and Paul Doucette (Matchbox Twenty), Joan Jett, Adam Lambert (Queen + Adam Lambert), Phillip Phillips, Stephan Jenkins (Third Eye Blind), John Rzeznik (Goo Goo Dolls), Mike Einziger and Brandon Boyd (Incubus), Straight No Chaser, Scott Bradlee (Postmodern Jukebox), Adam Duritz (Counting Crows), Cheap Trick, Jason Bonham, The KIDZ BOP Kids, and more. The National Concert Day event will be hosted by NBC’s Lilliana Vazquez.

Continuing the celebration of National Concert day, and launching the on-sale for the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion,” OneRepublic will perform live on NBC’s TODAY Show on May 2.

Nationally Touring Artists Included in Live Nation’s $20 “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion”

For a full list of artists, please visit LiveNation.com/20ticket.

Boston with Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
Brad Paisley with Dustin Lynch, Chase Bryant and Lindsay Ell
Brantley Gilbert with Tyler Farr and Luke Combs
Chicago and The Doobie Brothers
Chris Brown
Dead & Company
Deep Purple and Alice Cooper with special guest The Edgar Winter Band
Def Leppard with Poison and Tesla
Deftones & Rise Against
Depeche Mode
Dierks Bentley with Cole Swindell and Jon Pardi
Earth, Wind & Fire and CHIC ft. Nile Rodgers
Enrique Iglesias & Pitbull
Florida Georgia Line with Nelly and Chris Lane
Foreigner and Cheap Trick with special guest Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience
Future
Goo Goo Dolls with special guest Phillip Phillips
Hank Williams Jr and Lynyrd Skynyrd
Incubus with special guest Jimmy Eat World
Jason Aldean with Chris Young and Kane Brown
Jeff & Larry’s Backyard BBQ featuring Jeff Foxworthy & Larry the Cable Guy
Jermaine Dupri Presents SoSoSUMMER 17 Tour
John Mayer
Kings of Leon
Korn with Stone Sour
Lady Antebellum with Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Young
Lifehouse and Switchfoot
Lionel Richie and very special guest Mariah Carey
Luke Bryan with Brett Eldredge
Matchbox Twenty and Counting Crows
Muse with special guest Thirty Seconds to Mars
New Kids on the Block with Paula Abdul and Boyz II Men
Nickelback with special guest Daughtry and Shaman’s Harvest
OneRepublic/The Honda Civic Tour featuring OneRepublic with special guests Fitz & The Tantrums and James Arthur
Prince Royce
Queen + Adam Lambert
Retra Futura
Rod Stewart with very special guest Cyndi Lauper
Sam Hunt with Maren Morris and Chris Janson
Straight No Chaser / Postmodern Jukebox
Styx and REO Speedwagon with special guest star Don Felder
Sublime with Rome and The Offspring
The KIDZ BOP Kids
Third Eye Blind with special guests Silversun Pickups
Train with special guests O.A.R. and Natasha Bedingfield
Young the Giant with special guest Cold War Kids & Joywave
Zac Brown Band

To see a complete list of Live Nation’s summer tours and festivals, please visit livenation.com.

**Priority presale: While supplies last. Eligibility, ticket limits, fees, charges and additional terms & restrictions apply.

Deftones and Rise Against announce Co-Headline Summer Tour

DEFTONES and RISE AGAINST ANNOUNCE CO-HEADLINE SUMMER TOUR
North American Run Kicks Off June 9 In Chicago
Tickets Go On Sale To General Public This Friday, February 10

LOS ANGELES (Feb. 6, 2017) – Deftones will join forces with Rise Against this summer for an extensive co-headline tour. Produced by Live Nation, the North American run will kick off on June 9 in Chicago, IL at Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island. It will include shows at the Nikon at Jones Beach Theater in Wantagh, NY (June 13), Starplex Pavilion in Dallas, TX (June 27) and Concord Pavilion in Concord, CA (July 6). See below for itinerary.

“Every once in awhile you get to share the stage with a band so powerful they make you work harder. After conspiring for years, we’re excited to finally share the road with such an epic band. We can’t wait to put Deftones and Rise Against fans under the same roof in 2017,” said Rise Against.

Tickets will go on sale to the general public this Friday, February 10, at 10 AM local time. In addition to regular Deftones/Rise Against single ticket options, fans in select cities will have access to a special 3- or 4-show TICKET TO ROCK package, which will include a lawn ticket to multiple rock shows at select venues this summer. For full package listings and additional information, visit http://livemu.sc/TTR.

Deftones have released eight studio albums to date – including 2016’s Gore – and have sold over 10 million albums worldwide. “Hard rock thrives on conflict and chaos, and no band has found more beauty and soaring aggression within those ingredients than Deftones,” said the Los Angeles Times. The multi-Platinum, GRAMMY®-winning alternative rock band from Sacramento, CA is vocalist/guitarist Chino Moreno, guitarist Stephen Carpenter, keyboardist/samplist Frank Delgado, drummer Abe Cunningham, and bassist Sergio Vega. http://www.deftones.com

             Photo Credit: Frank Maddocks

Chicago-based band Rise Against’s most recent album is The Black Market, which hit No. 1 on the Alternative, Top Rock and Hard Rock albums charts. Alternative Press awarded The Black Market four stars, noting, Whatever meaning you take from them [the songs]…one thing remains solid—the sheer heart with which they were forged and the very visceral emotion they contain” and Kerrang praised the album as “a magnificent wake-up call.” Rise Against is Tim McIlrath (lead vocals/rhythm guitar), Zach Blair (lead guitar), Joe Principe (bass) and Brandon Barnes (drums). http://www.riseagainst.com

              Photo Credit: Patrick Münnich

Deftones and Rise Against North American Co-Headline Tour

6/9 – Chicago, IL @ Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island

6/10 – Sterling Heights, MI @ Michigan Lottery Theater at Freedom Hill

6/11 – Toronto, ON @ Budweiser Stage

6/13 – Wantagh, NY @ Nikon at Jones Beach Theater

6/16 – Boston, MA @ Blue Hills Bank Pavilion

6/17 – Philadelphia, PA @ Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing

6/18 – Raleigh, NC @ Red Hat Amphitheater

6/20 – Charlotte, NC @ Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre

6/22 – Tampa, FL @ MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre

6/23 – Miami, FL @ Bayfront Park Amphitheater

6/24 – Jacksonville, FL @ Daily’s Place Amphitheater

6/26 – The Woodlands, TX @ The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

6/27 – Dallas, TX @ Starplex Pavilion

6/28 – Austin, TX @ Austin360 Amphitheater

6/30 – Denver, CO @ Pepsi Center

7/1 – Salt Lake City, UT @ USANA Amphitheater

7/3 – Seattle, WA @ White River Amphitheatre

7/6 – Concord, CA @ Concord Pavilion

7/7 – Chula Vista, CA @ Sleep Train Amphitheatre

7/8 – Las Vegas, NV @ Downtown Las Vegas Events Center

7/9 – Phoenix, AZ @ Ak-Chin Pavilion

Channel 4 delivered the coverage for the Paralympic Sports during the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics

If you watched the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics, one of the stand out events to have caught was the Paralympic Sports. This showcases real superhumans of sport. You honestly cannot watch and be in awe of how hard it must have been to perform the tasks that they do and they show the most dedication and delivery that any other game that occurred during the Olympics.

If you were looking for great news coverage during these events, Channel 4 had you covered. Hosted by Alex Brooker, “The Superhumans Show” is a magazine show covering all things Paralympics featuring all the latest news from qualifying events, and profiles of the established and emerging talent. The Channel 4 show is easily the best place to get all the coverage for these superhumans of sport.

.
Channel 4 have released spots to showcase their coverage of the Olympics and Paralympics. Their ‘We’re the Superhumans’ campaign took over social media when it was released when the Superhumans returned to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games this past September. I look forward to these game again when the Olympics returns in 2020 taking place in Tokyo!

Ballers set to return this summer

Dwayne Johnson is back as the ex-NFL star striving to find success off the pitch as a financial manager for the biggest “Ballers” in Miami. The hit HBO show will return this summer and promises to be bigger and better than before. The first season of the show received widespread critical acclaim, with a rather impressive 80% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and the premier for the new season is due to be screened on July 17.

To those unfamiliar with the show, you don’t need to be a football fan to be able to get into it. In fact, it is only loosely based on the actual sport, and instead has greater focus on the lives and conflicts surrounding players, agents and managers. As it is set in Miami, the Miami Dolphins are a primary focus in the series. The Dolphins are well known globally, and have appeared on screen before in “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective”. However, their fortunes on the field have not been so impressive of late and, at the time of writing, in the Bet365 NFL odds they are 50/1 to win the Super Bowl.

The finale of season one of “Ballers” brought closure to a number of conflicts, but also planted seeds for new potential storylines. Wide receiver Ricky Jerret (John David Washington) called out his absentee father in a news broadcast. However, his father insisted he had done the right thing in deserting him at an early age, as it stirred up anger and emotions in his son that ended up making him a ferocious force on the field of play.

We also witnessed the return of Vernon’s cousin, Reggie (London Brown). As a massive troublemaker, Reggie is one of the most hated characters on the show. Some Reddit users on a “I Hate Reggie” thread have even suggested that Johnson should use his famous wrestling move, “the Rock Bottom”, on Reggie in the show. In the season finale though, Reggie was seemingly able to put his ego aside when he admitted that Johnson’s character, Spencer Strasmore, knew best. However, we will have to wait and see if this is just part of a play.

The tagline for the new season is “You’re no one until you have enemies”, with Andy Garcia playing the enemy in question. Bringing in a powerhouse actor that has taken on major roles in “The Untouchables” and “The Godfather Part III”, among other massive hits, could boost ratings significantly. Garcia’s character is the biggest powerhouse in the game, and Strasmore is warned not to cross him. However, it seems unlikely that Strasmore will heed this advice, and it could come down to an epic showdown between the two.  Judging from the trailer for the new season (see above), there should be plenty of humor, action and fast cars. All of this, along with another set of compelling storylines, means the second installment should be as well-received as the debut season.

Corey Beaulieu of Trivium talks new album and Summer Festivals

Heavy Metal band Trivium released their 7th full length studio album titled “Silence in the Snow” in October of 2015. Since that time the band has been performing at a relentless pace playing to thousands and thousands of fans all across the world. As the summer tour months get closer and closer the band is showing no signs of slowing down. Media Mikes caught up with the bands co-guitarist Cory Beaulieu recently to discuss the latest album, the bands upcoming performance at the inaugural “Rock N’ Derby” event and his thoughts on the changing tour landscape here in the United States.

Adam Lawton: Now that “Silence in the Snow” has been for a few month how do you feel the reception has been not only from a sales stand point but also from live performance reception?

Corey Beaulieu: Every record we put out there is always this quick knee jerk reaction from various places that either love it or think it sucks. A lot of time people build up these expectations in their head of what a record is going to be and if it ends up being something different than they expected there tends to be a negative reaction. There are also people who take their time with a record and really digest it and take it for what it’s worth. A lot of people have come up to us and said they weren’t sure about the album at first but after giving it some time they really like it. The album has been doing great and gotten on radio in a big way. Because of that we have been able to reach new fans that didn’t know who we were. We also have been able to change radio’s perception of who they thought Trivium was. I think there were some out there that thought we were a death metal band from Sweden and weren’t too sure about playing our albums. After meeting us and hearing the new material they have jumped on board and this new exposure here in the States has been really great.

AL: From a player/band stand point is there anything you would want to go back and change about the album?

CB: We spent a lot of time honing in the songs for this album. We knew exactly what type of record we wanted to make and what songs we needed to write. We spent a lot of time jamming and feeling the songs out. We wanted everything to feel very smooth and natural. If something didn’t feel natural we would re-write it. We didn’t stop till every key point we wanted to achieve with the record was done. I don’t think there is anything we would want to change however when you reflect back on a record you look at it and pick out things that you may or may not want to do with the next record. This record is definitely a great step for us and how we plan to do the next one.

AL: How much of the new album has made its way into your live set thus far?

CB: We have been doing a lot of headlining on this album which has allowed us to have longer set times which has been great. So far in the set we have four or five new songs that we have played. We try and balance things out between the newer and older material. Our new drummer has been learning a lot of the older stuff that we haven’t performed in years so to add in some of that stuff along with the new material has been a lot of fun. Each show we have been changing the set list so it’s a little different each night. By doing this we have been able to play a lot more material and we keep working on other songs to add in to the set on different nights and for future tours. I think it would be a lot of fun to be able to play “Breath in the Flames” and “Rise Above the Tides” which are both off the new record so hopefully for the next U.S. run of shows we will be able to debut some of these.

AL: With each album release do you find it harder to fit new material into your sets due to fans wanting to hear a lot of your back catalog?

CB: It seems like every song we rotate in and out fits pretty well. We aren’t switching a real popular one with a more obscure one or anything like that. All of the swaps are pretty equal. I think each of the sets that we play is equally strong regardless. With the internet it seems after you do your first show fans can check out the set list and know what you are playing ahead of time. It’s cool being able to swap sets because people come in not knowing what we are going to be playing that night. That brings back the excitement of not knowing what’s going to be played and makes for a cool surprise. Also with our new drummer learning more and more of our back catalog and by us adding in stuff here and there people will see that we are trying to cover all of our history and by doing that we hope more people will come out to the shows and see what we bring. Every show is different and the excitement that fans want is there each night.

AL: What are your thoughts on the recent climate shift in touring here in the States where we are seeing less multi-city traveling festivals and more single city weekend festivals similar to what have been done in Europe for quite a long time now?

CB: There is definitely more of a Euro style going on as of late. Weekend destination festivals are a model that has worked in Europe for twenty plus years. Traveling festivals like Mayhem and Ozz-fest were great in that they helped break a lot of bands but a lot of those shows took place during the week when a lot of fans were working an unable to attend. With shows shifting to a more weekend based time frame more fans are able to attend. People fly in from all over for these types of shows. Festivals like “Rock on the Range”, “Knot-Fest” and “Rock N Derby” show that this type of model is working here and are very popular.

AL: Outside of the bands appearances at various festivals this summer what other plans does the band have?

CB: “Rock N’ Derby” is actually our last show on this run of shows. After that we have a little time off then we head over to Germany to start a Euro festival run that is four weeks of shows over there. After that we are taking some time off from touring but will be working on other band related work. After that we are looking to finalize a fall headlining tour that will start in September and run through October. There is also potential for us to hit some new territories in the winter months and then wrapping up the album cycle early next year with another possible European run. You never know what else may pop up in between now and then though.

Concert Review: Goo Goo Dolls, Daughtry, Plain White T’s – Tag’s Summer Stage, Big Flats, NY

Goo Goo Dolls, Daughtry, Plain White T’s
Saturday, August 16th 2014
Tag’s Summer Stage, Big Flats, NY

Our score: 2.5 out of 5 stars

The quiet town of Big Flats, NY sprung to life on Saturday, August 16th as New York natives the Goo Goo Dolls made a stop at Tag’s Summer Stage as part of their summer tour which also featured season 5 American Idol finalist Chris Daughtry along with the Plain White T’s. Though the weather was touch and go throughout the night it didn’t stop those in attendance from enjoying the night of music.

Opening up the nights show was Plain White T’s who burst on the music scene a few years back with their hit song “Hey There Delilah”. The group performed an intimate acoustic tinged set that sounded great however with the exception of one or two more well know songs the bands time on stage did little to ignite the crowd’s attention. Daughtry would take the stage next opening up his set with the title track off his newest album “Baptized” and instantly had the crowd in his hand. As the set progressed Daughtry and company treated the crowd to a variety of songs from his current and previous albums including hits like “Feels like Tonight”, “It’s Not Over” and “September” before closing out his set with “Long Live Rock & Roll”. Though the crowd seemed appreciative of the bands performance there were several points during the set where Daughtry seemed to push his voice a little too far past his range making those parts a bit harsh on the ears. Personally I also would have enjoyed hearing a few more of his edgier rock tunes this time around however that did not happen.

As darkness fell on the semi-remote venue the Goo Goo Dolls would take the stage to close out the night with an impressive 21 song set which ran the gambit of the bands 20+ year career. The group opened the set with the song “Dizzy” which gave way to other classic tracks like “Big Machine” and “Slide” before the night was closed out by songs like “Broadway” and “Iris”. I found the band’s sound to be tight and well rehearsed however with the exception of bassist Robby Takac whose energy kept the show interesting the other members seemed to be just going through the motions. It was also a little disheartening to see the absence of vintage Goo songs like “Long Way Down” and “Naked”.  Despite my own feelings toward the nights set those in attendance seemed very appreciative of the bands performance and showed that by large periods of applause after each and every song. If you have never seen any of the bands or you are a seasoned show going fan make your way out to one of the remaining shows for a solid night of music and fun as the tours lineup has a little something for everyone.

Plain White T’s Set List:
1.) American Nights
2.) Helium
3.) The Giving Tree
4.) 1,2,3,4
5.) Should’ve Gone to Bed
6.) Hey There Delilah
7.) Rhythm of Love

Daughtry Set List:
1.) Baptized
2.) Feels like Tonight
3.) Over You
4.) Renegade
5.) Traitor
6.) It’s Not Over
7.) What About Now
8.) Wild Heart
9.) Battleships
10.) Home
11.) September
12.) Waiting for Superman
13.) Long Live Rock & Roll

Goo Goo Dolls Set List:
1.) Dizzy
2.) Big Machine
3.) Slide
4.) Rebel Beat
5.) When the World Breaks Your Heart
6.) Already There
7.) Another Second Time Around
8.) Come to Me
9.) Black Balloon
10.) Stay With you
11.) Here is Gone
12.) Caught in the Storm
13.) Name
14.) January Friend
15.) Bringing on the Light
16.) Better Days
17.) Slow It Down
18.) Broadway
19.) Let Love In
20.) Iris
21.) Give a Little Bit (Supertramp cover)

 

New Shopping Dining for Summer 2014 at Downtown Disney as Progress Continues on Disney Springs

The largest expansion in Downtown Disney history, Disney Springs will provide even more opportunities for guests to relax and enjoy themselves. When completed in 2016, Disney Springs will double the shopping, dining and entertainment experiences, with an eclectic and contemporary mix from Disney and other noteworthy brands. Seen in this rendering, part of the expansion includes widening Lake Buena Vista Drive, constructing two multilevel parking garages and two pedestrian bridges and creating a new I-4 interchange that will offer guests direct access to Disney Springs. Drawing inspiration from Florida’s waterfront towns and natural beauty, Disney Springs will include four interconnected neighborhoods: The Landing (opening in early 2015), Marketplace, West Side and Town Center (opening in 2016).

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – As work continues on the re-imagining of Downtown Disney to Disney Springs, a multi-year transformation into a high-energy destination that will double the retail and offer innovative new dining options, Walt Disney World guests continue to enjoy more than 70 themed and immersive shopping, dining and entertainment venues day and night.

For summer 2014, immersive outdoor entertainment will bring Downtown Disney to life, with nine different acts scheduled nightly – more than 30 live performances daily, a free highlight of the Downtown Disney experience.

And special events like Car Masters Weekend (June 14-15) puts the spotlight on classic and exotic cars for Father’s Day weekend, and includes character experiences featuring favorite Disney*Pixar “Cars” characters.

 

New this summer for Downtown Disney:

  • Two new Starbucks locations – a storefront at Downtown Disney West Side and a kiosk near World of Disney at Downtown Disney Marketplace. Look for the familiar green roof at the West Side flagship Starbucks, part of the company’s commitment to be environmentally conscious.  The design includes a covered patio overlooking the waterfront and a fireplace, as well as the new Clover Bar, featuring special reserve coffees brewed to order. A high-tech screen behind the Clover Bar will show images from coffee regions around the globe, and a new Human Connection Wall will include large touch-screen monitors that allow guests to use their finger to draw images.
  • Marketplace Co-Op will serve as a testing space for new Disney retail concepts, shops and products with six boutiques under one roof:
    • Beautifully Disney – A beauty destination for women featuring make-up, fragrance and   beauty accessories;
    • Cherry Tree Lane – Accessories for the sophisticated woman with a passion for scarves, shoes, bags and jewelry;
    • D-Tech on Demand – A place to personalize and customize your own electronic accessories;
    • The Trophy Room – Vintage-inspired, lifestyle sports apparel and collectibles;
    • Disney Centerpiece – Home products offering a splash of Disney in room furnishings, textiles and everyday ware;
    • Zoey and Pickles – A girls’ destination with the latest trends.
  • Just in time for World Cup, United World of Soccer opens in Late May at Downtown Disney West Side. The shop offers favorite team jerseys, sports gear, cleats, World Cup apparel and accessories.
  • The Happy Hound at Downtown Disney Marketplace offers custom accessories and dog tags, toys and more for four-legged friends.
  • Food Truck Park, opening later this summer, will serve as a permanent home to the four Disney Food Trucks and will be situated between Bongos Cuban Café and the new Starbucks at Downtown Disney West Side.

Even with expansion work underway, guests still can stroll from Downtown Disney West Side to The Marketplace. While shopping, playing and dining this summer, they will see signs of exciting things to come captured in colorful, mural-sized artistic renderings of the new Disney Springs destination throughout the expansion site.

Disney Springs – What’s Next

  1. The largest expansion in Downtown Disney history, Disney Springs will provide even more opportunities for guests to relax and enjoy themselves.
  2. When completed in 2016, Disney Springs will double the shopping, dining and entertainment experiences, with an eclectic and contemporary mix from Disney and other noteworthy brands. From boutique shops to unique flagship anchor stores, guests will be able to explore and discover options unlike any other currently available in Central Florida.
  3. Drawing inspiration from Florida’s waterfront towns and natural beauty, Disney Springs will include four interconnected neighborhoods:
  • The Landing (opening in early 2015) set along the waterfront and featuring nationally known restaurateurs.
  • The family-friendly Marketplace will continue to delight guests of all ages by combining new experiences, such as an over-the-water pedestrian causeway, along with classic Disney favorites, including an expanded World of Disney store.
  • West Side will be enhanced with a series of new elevated spaces that provide both shade and an overlook to the activity below.
  • The Town Center, opening in 2016, with a sophisticated mix of shopping and more dining.

The first phase of roadwork construction has begun, with lane closures scheduled as much as possible for off-peak hours to minimize impacts to the guest experience. Buena Vista Drive will expand from seven to 10 lanes, with a dedicated bus lane. Two parking garages and two pedestrian bridges also will be added, as well as an I-4 Interchange that will offer direct access to and from Downtown Disney/Disney Springs.

Disney Springs is expected to create an estimated 1,200 construction jobs and nearly 4,000 operational roles, providing new business opportunities and generating significant tax revenue for Central Florida.

The Cross-Country “Rio 2” Summer Party Tour Stops in 8 Major Markets Bringing Soccer Fever, Games, Samba Lessons, and Fun for the Whole Family!

JOIN THE SUMMER’S BIGGEST PARTY AS
TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX HOME ENTERTAINMENT BRINGS THE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS OF THE AMAZON TO YOUR HOMETOWN

The Cross-Country RIO 2 Summer Party Tour Stops in 8 Major Markets 
Bringing Soccer Fever, Games, Samba Lessons, and Fun for the Whole Family!

– RIO 2 is on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD July 15 – 

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings the party to the people with its cross country RIO 2 Summer Party Tour. Families will have plenty of reason to shake a tail feather down to the tour; it’s full of interactive activities for all ages including portable viewing stations to watch soccer games, live from Rio; screenings of RIO 2; Samba performances and lessons; customizable Carnival masks; soccer challenges, and much more! All guests can also turn their fun into a global sensation by joining a cross country karaoke   from the party via the sing- and dance-along photo booth.

SCHEDULE: 

Date City Venue Event Times Game Times
Monday, 6/30 New York South Street Seaport 12-6:30pm ET 12 & 4pm ET
Tuesday, 7/1 Philadelphia Franklin Square 12-6:30pm ET 12 & 4pm ET
Saturday, 7/5 Atlanta Mall of Georgia 12-6:30pm ET 12 & 4pm ET
Tuesday, 7/8 Cincinnati Riverfront Park Smale Field 1-6pm ET 3pm ET
Wednesday, 7/9 Chicago Kohl Children’s Museum 1:30-6:30pm CT 3pm CT
Saturday, 7/12 St. Louis St. Louis Galleria 1-6pm CT 3pm CT
Monday, 7/14 Dallas The Parks at Arlington 12-5pm CT N/A
Friday, 7/18 Los Angeles Hollywood & Highland Center 12-5pm PT N/A
.

With the Blu-ray/DVD and Digital HD release right around the corner, Fox Home Entertainment will bring the party from the Amazon this summer with a bunch of family-friendly fiestas across the country. You can find the Summer Party Tour any time of day, check out pictures from the tour, follow the GPS enabled tour bus, and explore all sorts of RIO 2 goodies at www.rio2summertour.com.  Follow the tour on social media with #rio2summertour.

Brian Regan talks about his Summer Stand-Up Comedy Tour

Brian Regan started off in the comedy business after his 1997 CD, “Brian Regan Live” took off and became a huge success. Since then we have been non-stop touring, has worked with Jerry Seinfeld and has appeared on “The Late Show with David Letterman” over 25 times. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Brian about up summer comedy tour, which makes a stop in Orlando FL on June 21st. and about his amazing career as a stand-up comedian.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about your current tour this summer with upcoming stops in Orlando, FL?
Brian Regan: If people like music and dancing and comedy, come on out because I offer one third of that [laughs]. I never know how to sell my own show. It’s me just doing my comedy and that is kind of it. I love the simplicity of it. It is also fascinating to me being off stage before the show starts and you look out and see a microphone stand, a stool and a bottle of water…then you go “Wow, that’s it…that is all I got out there” [laughs]. The simplicity is beautiful and I love the challenge of it.

MG: What do you do to prepare for each show?
BR: I am not like some people that have a crazy routine they have to follow. I will re-tie my shoes though. I know it sounds goofy but the thought of having a shoe untied on stage kills me for some reason. I had a shoe untie when I was on stage a couple of years ago and it just felt incredible awkward, you know? I had to try and put the mic under my armpit and tie my shoe…and you have a thousand people watching you [laughing]. They are thinking “This is supposed to be entertainment…not watching a guy tie his shoe”. It just felt wrong.
MG: …Wow, I can’t believe that he double knots [laughs]
BR: [laughs] Yeah, maybe I should invest in those kids’ Velcro shoes or something, I don’t know.

MG: How do you blend your classic work with your new material when you perform a live show?
BR: When I first come out, I do about an hour and that is the most recent material from the last few years. This is the show that I am working on, so to speak, is the more recent stuff…the fresher stuff. Then usually, I will say “Goodnight” and then come back out and do a little encore. During that time, I might do a handful of bits that people are more familiar with and they will be able to shout out and so on. I like having that line in the sand to delineate between the two. It would be awkward for me to just do old bits. I would feel a little stale.

MG: I saw one of your shows a few years back and people kept calling out for classic bits…
BR: It is an interesting dilemma. I am honored that people know my stuff and want to hear it. My fans are very cool. They usually know that for my first hour they let me do my thing and they know they will have an opportunity at the end to shout out. You can get some people shouting out in the middle of the show “Do Donut Lady! Take Luck!” I usually just smile, nod and go back to my new stuff [laughing]. I try and nice guy it and usually they get the hint. Some people don’t get the hint and they keep yelling and then I have to tell them the process and how I will get back to that stuff once I plow through this new stuff. Then if they heckle a third time…I have them shot with a BAZOOKA! [laughs].

MG: Congrats on recently making your 26th appearance on “The Late Show with David Letterman”, the most of any comedian; how does this feel for you?
BR: Thanks man, I am very honored by it. There was a day that I couldn’t even get on the show. I had auditioned a couple of times. They were intrigued but never pulled the trigger on me. When I did get on the show, it meant the world to me. Doing the one means everything and the moment you are done, you think “Wow, was it good enough to get a second” [laughs]. Automatically you have a new goal. It is like crossing the finish line at a marathon and wondering where the next 26 miles go to. I obviously did well enough that I was brought back a second time and I was able to just get some traction on that show. Clearly Letterman and the show seemed to like me and it just feels tremendous to have this constant national booster shot that I can get on the show about every nine months.

MG: Along with David Letterman, you have many big named celebrities like Jerry Seinfeld and Patton Oswalt praising your work; does that add any pressure to how to perform?
BR: Nah, listen I am incredibly honored by it. When you have people who do what you do like what you do. It is like the ultimate compliment. I don’t put any extra pressure on my shoulders. What is the expression…”you dance with the one that brung you”. I just do what I always done. I just try and come up with stuff that I think is funny. I just do my thing. What I like is turning the material over. To me, that is one of the thing that has really helped me along the ways. Every couple of years, I feel like I have another hour of material under my belt. So people tend to keep coming back. So I try not to worry about what other comedians will think. I am honored that they like what I do but I think they like what I do because I do what I want to do [laughs].

MG: How do you feel that stand-up has changed since starting back in the mid-90’s?
BR: The technical side of things have definitely changed. It gives the average Joe Blow out there in the entertainment world a fighting chance, especially if the powers that be aren’t inclined to give them a fighting chance. Back in the day when it was just TV, you needed to convince “The Late Show” or “The Tonight Show” that you were funny. Then getting on one of those, I am going way back here, was sort of being knighted. It put you into the forefront. Now things are much more fractured, there is many ways to get content out there. Anybody can tape themselves and put it up on YouTube. If they have some jets then they might be able to get some traction, which could lead to the higher ups taking notice. So for the most part it is good but there is just a sea of content out there and in some ways makes it harder to break through. There are a million people with a million clips.

Dog Fashion Disco’s Todd Smith talks about new album “Sweet Nothings” and Summer Tour

Back in late 2006, the experimental metal band, Dog Fashion Disco, announced to their fans that they had decided to call it quits. They had just spent the last 12 years constantly pushing themselves to be more creative and crazy, playing different styles like ska, piano, and metal with many calling them circus metal. They had recently just released their sixth studio album, Adultery, and were reaching more fans than ever before. Since then, they have played a couple of reunion shows running through a marathon of fan favorites and keeping the camaraderie alive amongst the bandmates. In late 2013, the announcement was made that not only would DFD get back together, but they would be putting out a new album, called “Sweet Nothings”. They would then launch a highly successful Indiegogo campaign and realized that fans not only wanted a new album, but that they want two new albums, a music video and some overseas shows in Britain. Media Mikes recently caught up with the lead singer, Todd Smith, about their upcoming summer tour, the release of “Sweet Nothings” and the hectic schedule they’re about to enter.

Jeremy Werner: I guess the first thing that automatically comes to mind is what was it that lead you guys getting the band back together and put out another album?
Todd Smith: Since the break-up, we’d done several reunion shows and we’re all friends…so because the demand was still there and people were planting those ideas in our head about doing another tour, another album, so forth and so on, we figured why not? Like I said, we’re all very close friends. We enjoy creating and performing music together. It was just like a reunion with old friends who happen to make music together. It seemed like a no-brainer really.

JW: Your last album, back in 2006, “Adultery”, was what a lot of fans and critics would say is your best album. Was there any pressure heading back into the studio to match that same level or was it just business as usual?
TS: For the most part it was business as usual. Of course, opinions are subjective. I’m flattered that people love “Adultery” so much and are pleased that we went out on a high note, and I think we’re reemerging on a high note as well. Everyone who’s heard “Sweet Nothings”, is gushing over it and saying they love it. Will it be as well received as “Adultery”? I have no idea, but I think people are definitely gonna think it’s a solid release. I definitely do, the rest of the guys in the band do. The engineer that we recorded with said it was the best sounding he’s ever had come out of his studios. There’s a lot of positive things being said about the new album.

JW: Going back to the people who’ve heard it. You guys played the full album for a group of people that paid a certain amount towards your Indiegogo campaign. Was the room just ecstatic?
TS: Oh yeah, absolutely. There were loud cheers and applause after every song. A lot of smiles. As far as the comments when we were mingling after we played the record, they were gushing as well. They were really digging it. It’s a lot to digest in one sitting, but the reaction we got was very positive.

JW: Did the crowd have any favorites?
TS: I mean…they all seemed to be well received, but as for a crowd favorite…it’s kind of hard to tell. I had quite a few glasses of wine. (laughs) The memory’s a bit spotty, but I remember we all had a great time and they seemed to like every song, so I really can’t pinpoint a favorite.

JW: Now I remember a while back you mentioned that you guys might avoid playing new music on your upcoming tour, is that still true?
TS: Jason and I had a conversation that we totally misunderstood each other. I was saying that I would entertain performing two new songs, but we have such a catalogue of music, that I think giving people just a hint of a few new tunes and then just playing through a retrospective from each album we put out would probably be more pleasing to the crowd. So we’re going to do two new songs for the most part, every night. If for some reason we decided to just do one new song a night, that might happen as well.

JW: Going back through all your songs, what are some of the songs that you might be playing that you have rarely, if ever, played?
TS: Let me think…I mean we haven’t played in so long, I don’t remember what was in rotation back then, but we’re gonna revisit “Satanic Cowboy”. I’m trying to think what else…”Dr. Piranha”, we haven’t played that in a while. “Valley Girl Ventriloquist”, we’re gonna do that one. Pink Riots, we’re gonna do that one. Besides the reunion shows, they haven’t been played in many, many years. There’s gonna be plenty of songs to choose from every night. We’ll try to cover all our bases.

JW: Please tell me “Darkest Days” is one of those.
TS: One of those is “Darkest Days” (laughs)

JW: (laughs) Awesome, I love that song. With DFD’s music, it’s always been experimental. Sometimes it’s different from song to song or completely changes tempo within the song. It’s very Mr. Bungle with how you guys can just flip on a dime. So I gotta ask, with the new album, what kind of musical ideas went into this or is there a running theme on “Sweet Nothings”?
TS: There’s definitely not a running theme. The album is all over the place. It starts out with a jazz…smokey lounge…kind of 1940’s kind of vibe and then ends with a song that starts out acoustic country…mellow…goes to dub and ends with a three minute section of stoner rock doom metal. So it’s all over the place. We have a short attention span and we like a lot of different types of music so we tend to write a lot of different styles and try to incorporate them into an album. Even several styles into one song as you know. A lot of twists and turns, and I think our fans love twists and turns. They’re fun to perform live.

JW: I see you guys haven’t released a single yet. Is there a song you’re looking at as your first single?
TS: As far as I know, the first single would be a song called “Taste So Sweet”. It kind of goes back to maybe, “Committed to a Bright Future” era with a catchy hooky chorus, lots of horn lines. We’re making a video for that in July. So that’ll most likely be our first or second single. We had talked about a song as a lyric video, initially a song called “We Aren’t the World” which is more of an “Adultery” vibe. It has tons of horror lines, cello, lots of moods, lots of twists and turns, a big epic chorus. That would probably be the first one we do a lyric video for just to get something out there because we’re not available to do the video shoot and release the “Taste So Sweet” video until July.

JW: I want to touch upon your Indiegogo campaign for a bit. A lot of bands will put it up and will slowly watch the money crawl to their goal, but with you guys it was extraordinary how fast and how many people latched on as soon as it was live. I bet as a band, it’s a great feeling to reach your goal that quickly.
TS: To meet our goal of $30,000 in 27 hours was completely unexpected. I remember going about my day, that first day, and just seeing the totals just go up and up and up and up. I hadn’t checked in a few hours and they were way up. Our fans are absolutely incredibly and I don’t just say that lightly. Granted we’d possibly still be making music if we had no fans because we enjoy it, but they keep the train rolling. We’re very humbled by the generosity of everybody and how much they actually cared about DFD getting back together and how they care about whatever project we do. We’re very lucky in that respect.

JW: I’m sure before starting you guys didn’t have stretch goals in mind, but after that response, you got to. Even more amazing is reaching all of them. Didn’t you guys break the top 10 most successful Indiegogo music campaigns?
TS: Yeah. I think we’re in the top 10. In regards to the stretch goals, once we hit $30,000 and added the first stretch goal of $50,000 for the video, I mean I thought that was gonna peak and it just kept going and going. We ended up at $85,000 which is a staggering amount. Shows how much people love Dog Fashion Disco.

JW: You guys are incredibly busy with side projects like Polkadot Cadaver, El-Creepo, Knives Out and other things…and with such an impressive and positive response to DFD…do you think DFD now deserves your undivided attention and everything else kind of has to sit on the back burner for the time being?
TS: I would say that everything is on the back burner now. The last stretch goal was to do two albums to be released within a year of each other. So with all the tours we have coming up, there’s really no time to devote to anything else besides Dog Fashion Disco, which is fine. We just wrapped up, mixed, mastered, put a nice little bow on “Sweet Nothings” and we’re already psyched to get back into the studio, wishing it was happening next month. Everybody will go into their little corners and start writing and then we’ll reconvene in December and have another album out by next May or June.

JW: Might be too early, but do you have any ideas for the next album?
TS: Not really. I definitely wanna utilize the horns a lot like we did on “Sweet Nothings”. I mean, they’re just too good not to have. So ya know, a lot of twists and turns. Maybe have more extremes. I’d like to do like a 50’s doo-wop kind of song and then a song that’s just the heaviest thing we’ve ever done. Just a lot of polar opposite dimensions and dynamics to the album. And really like there are no rules, not like there are any rules on “Sweet Nothings”. Going into it, wanna try to do something new and push the envelope as far as what we’ve done before.

JW: So what is the future now of Polkadot Cadaver, El Creepo, Knives Out and other projects?
TS: It’s really hard to predict. I would love to do another El-Creepo record. Something that’s a little more acoustic and mellow. That’s always fun to do. Polkadot has a handful of shows that we’re doing until the end of this year. We’re going out with Bam Margera and his band in August, doing a run on the east coast and then doing a full national tour with him in October and November for Polkadot. So that would be the next in line to revisit after the next DFD record considering that that band tours as well. Kind of like a missed opportunity if we don’t put out a record and do more shows. I would say DFD and Polkadot would work simultaneously and then maybe El-Creepo would be the next thing to get to. As far as Knives Out or anything else, I would seriously doubt that there would be another album that we would put out with Knives Out. It doesn’t make any sense. The band doesn’t tour and the members aren’t available to do shows, so it’s like…what’s the point?

JW: Looking at this upcoming year, in terms of tours, it looks like the one big thing of note is that you guys will be heading across the big pond for the first time.
TS: This would actually be our second time. The first time Dog Fashion went over there was 2001.

JW: Oh shit, I guess my Dog Fashion Disco history is a bit rusty…so I guess the obvious dumb follow up question would be are you excited?
TS: We’re extremely excited and psyched that the first two shows have been sold out and that the third is on it’s way to being sold out. So that’s incredible, it’s gonna be a lot of fun. The weekend is gonna be a blast. We’re looking forward to it.

JW: Because it’s doing well in ticket sales, do you see yourself branching out in Europe?
TS: Our agent overseas is actively seeking out a support band for Dog Fashion Disco. Most likely that would happen next year. I would love to go deeper into Europe. That would be blast. So hopefully that will happen next summer.

JW: I’m out of questions, any last thing you wanna tell the fans?
TS: I just wanna say thanks for all the support on Indiegogo and support they constantly give us. Spread the word: the new Dog Fashion Disco album, “Sweet Nothings”, is coming out July 22nd. We’re psyched to be back on the road and hearing people’s reactions to the new album.

You can check out Dog Fashion Disco on their summer tour, ‘The Merica F*ck Yeah Tour’, playing alongside Psychostick and The Bunny The Bear, at the following dates:
May 29th: Amityville, NY
May 30th: Albany, NY
May 31st: Pennellville, NY
June 1st: Watkins Glen, NY
June 2nd: Trenton, NJ
June 3rd: Providence, RI
June 5th: Westland, MI
June 6th: Cleveland, OH
June 7th: Cherry Valley, IL
June 8th: Joliet, IL
June 9th: Minneapolis, MN
June 10th: Merriam, KS
June 11th: Waterloo, IA
June 12th: Des Moines, IA
June 13th: Lincoln, NE
June 14th: Denver, CO
June 16th: Salt Lake City, UT
June 17th: Sacramento, CA
June 18th: West Hollywood, CA
June 19th: Las Vegas, NV
June 20th: Tuscon, AZ
June 21st: Scottsdale, AZ
June 23rd: San Antonio, TX
June 24th: Houston, TX
June 25th: Fort Worth, TX
June 26th: Oklahoma City, OK
June 27th: St. Louis, MO
June 28th: Indianapolis, IN
June 29th: Columbus, OH

Psychostick’s Rawrb talks about the band’s summer tour, “The ‘Merica F*ck Yeah Tour”

Psychostick is probably best known for their song “BEER!!”, the heavy metal anthem to irresponsible drinkers everywhere that made the rounds on the Internet back in the early 2000’s and popped up frequently on active rock stations across the country. They’ve had their tongue firmly planted in their cheek for nearly a decade and a half and now they’re about to enter a new chapter in their band history. After a successful Indiegogo campaign, Psychostick was able to raise the funds to build their very own studio in their home. That means they’ll be able to put out more music and content to their rabid comedy-metal fans. Media Mikes had a chance to catch up with the lead singer, Rawrb, about what kind of plans they got in the works and their upcoming summer tour with Dog Fashion Disco and The Bunny The Bear.

Jeremy Werner: I know the first thing people will wanna know is everything and anything about the new album you’re working on. So, is there anything new about the album you’d like to share with us that people might not already know about?
Rawrb: The only thing that’s been released about the new album has been “Obey the Beard”. The actual title and track listing hasn’t been announced yet because we’re still going back and forth on a lot of that stuff. We’ve recorded a lot of songs and it’s coming together. Once everything really starts to get finalized. We’ll really start releasing more info.

Jeremy: Do you guys have an estimated release date?
Rawrb: Hopefully early fall…I’m guessing.

JW: Now I know during the Indiegogo campaign, one of your stretch goals, if you raised the money, was to release a covers album. Sadly you guys didn’t reach that goal, but is a cover album still in the cards?
Rawrb: We talked about it, but we still might do it eventually. We were gonna do it sooner than later if we hit the stretch goal but we definitely want to. It’ll just be longer before we can.

JW: So you’re about to hit the road with Dog Fashion Disco and The Bunny The Bear…can fans heading out to the shows expect a new song on this upcoming tour?
Rawrb: We’re going back and forth on that one too. There’s one in particular we wanna play, but I’m not sure if we’re gonna have time. We’re a little bit short on the set for us, but I think we’re gonna try and squeeze another new one in there. We’ll see.

JW: A short set-list? It’s not a co-headlining tour with Dog Fashion Disco?
Rawrb: No, probably not, it’s pretty much their tour. They invited us out and we were very ecstatic to do that because .they still have a huge fanbase. I don’t know if you saw their Indiegogo, but they just blew it out of the water.

JW: Oh yeah. It was really impressive. It’s good to see both of you guys hitting your initial goals without a problem.
Rawrb: Yeah, so honestly, it’s not a co-headlining tour. We’re the opening act for them the whole tour.

JW: Now I saw they’re heading overseas for the first time to play three nights in England…so is that a sign that maybe you guys are heading overseas for the first time?
Rawrb: We’re trying. We’ve made a few new contacts and it’s the closest it’s ever been so I’m pretty optimistic. I think it will happen, maybe this year or maybe next year, hopefully. I’m hoping that it will happen later this year because we’ve been overdue for this for a long time. We have a pretty good following overseas and we’ve just never had an opportunity jump over there because of…silly reasons like money (laughs).

JW: So going back to the new studio you guys were able to build…what exactly does it mean for the future of Psychostick?
Rawrb: We’ll be able to produce music more frequently. One of the biggest challenges and why it’s been so long since we’ve had a new album, is that we tour so much and don’t have the resources to sit down and just crank out another album on a more frequent basis, but now we’ll be able to do that. I’m hoping we’ll release more music, more frequently. Instead of waiting three years, it’ll be a year and a half or less. We live in our studio too, so we can wake up and write a song and record it then and there. It’s really nice to be able to do that. A lot of the obstacles have been removed so we can get a lot more done and there will be a lot more stuff coming.

JW: What musical direction will you go with now that you have this studio? Will you be focusing on cranking out more albums or maybe a couple EP’s here and there or will it be like the video posted a while back…your cover of “Reading Rainbow”?
Rawrb: We put out the “Reading Rainbow” cover a couple weeks ago and that was just us testing out the studio. We just wanted to see how it was gonna work. It happened really fast and we were super excited. We’re gonna do full length albums and little tidbits like “Reading Rainbow” We’re gonna try and do more covers too because we have a great idea and we can’t sell it because it’s owned by somebody else. So since it’s a cover, we can just go crazy with it. There’s no limits to this now, except for time…(laughs)…we’re excited.

JW: Now that you have your own studio, are you guys thinking about dropping from your label and creating your own?
Rawrb: We haven’t really thought about it. We’re very happy with Rock Ridge. We handle all of our own production, they don’t have any say in that and that’s part of the reason why we love them is because we can do what we want. We built the studio so we can crank out whatever we want and when we want.

JW: Is there anything else you want your fans to know?
Rawrb: We’re working on new stuff and there’s gonna be a lot more content like videos and gags and things like that, that we got planned. When it hits, you’ll know. It’s gonna be non-stop and there’s gonna be more music from us now that we have a studio. So we’re excited about all these things and I think our fans will be really happy with what we come out with because we are. And that’s the first step, we have to like it, before we let it out…(laughs)…it’ll be good.

You can check out Psychostick on their summer tour, ‘The Merica F*ck Yeah Tour’, playing alongside Dog Fashion Disco and The Bunny The Bear, at the following dates:
May 29th: Amityville, NY
May 30th: Albany, NY
May 31st: Pennellville, NY
June 1st: Watkins Glen, NY
June 2nd: Trenton, NJ
June 3rd: Providence, RI
June 5th: Westland, MI
June 6th: Cleveland, OH
June 7th: Cherry Valley, IL
June 8th: Joliet, IL
June 9th: Minneapolis, MN
June 10th: Merriam, KS
June 11th: Waterloo, IA
June 12th: Des Moines, IA
June 13th: Lincoln, NE
June 14th: Denver, CO
June 16th: Salt Lake City, UT
June 17th: Sacramento, CA
June 18th: West Hollywood, CA
June 19th: Las Vegas, NV
June 20th: Tuscon, AZ
June 21st: Scottsdale, AZ
June 23rd: San Antonio, TX
June 24th: Houston, TX
June 25th: Fort Worth, TX
June 26th: Oklahoma City, OK
June 27th: St. Louis, MO
June 28th: Indianapolis, IN
June 29th: Columbus, OH

Experience Summer Like A Local And Enjoy A Little Something Extra With Loews Hotels & Resorts

Get the most out of everyone’s favorite travel season with value-driven deals on local attractions and a special perk simply for booking early

NEW YORKMay 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Summer will be here before you know it and over way too soon. This year get the most out of everyone’s favorite travel season with Experience Summer Like a Local from Loews Hotels & Resorts. Offering great rates and value-driven deals on local attractions, the new seasonal promotion makes an exciting start to a memorable getaway for couples, families and friends. And if that weren’t enough, guests can get a complimentary perk on top by booking their stay early through a One-Day Cyber Sale on May 21, 2014.

From design to decor, dining to diversions, the distinctive charms of Loews Hotels are drawn from the locations around them. Experience Summer Like a Local offers guests great deals on local attractions that just can’t be experienced elsewhere. For instance:

  • At Loews Hotel Annapolis enjoy a “Day at the Bay” on the sparkling Chesapeake with a special 20% discount from Schooner Woodwind Sailing, plus two sun visors, complimentary breakfast for two, suntan lotion and lip balm, and complimentary parking for one car.
  • At Loews Coronado Bay Resort overlooking the Pacific, get a Summer Sweet Deal with two adult tickets for a day of fun at the San Diego Zoo, Legoland or Seaworld. Don’t forget to bring the kids!
  • Linger longer at Loews Hotel Vogue, Montreal and enjoy a Summer Sweet Deal for a 3rd night at 50% off, plus an Insider Guide to Montreal and $450 worth of deals on popular attractions and restaurants. See if you can use ’em.

Take summer vacation over the top with the One-Day Cyber Sale from Loews Hotels & Resorts onWednesday, May 21, 2014. Book the Experience Summer Like a Local package or Loews Best Available Rate online at www.loewshotels.com and take your pick of a special summer perk with choice of one:

  • $25 Parking Credit
  • Two Summer Cocktails Daily
  • Complimentary Premium Plus Wi-Fi
  • Late Check Out

Summer rates at Loews Hotels from $199 per night. For more information or to arrange your stay, call 1-800-23-LOEWS or visit www.loewshotels.com.

Offer available through www.loewshotels.com and bookable at 12:01 AM EST May 21st, 2014, through3:00 AM EST May 22nd, 2014, for reservations through September 30th, 2014; subject to availability and blackout dates. Not available at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Loews Royal Pacific Resort, Hard Rock Hotel in Orlando or Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort. Taxes and gratuities not included. Not applicable to groups, negotiated or third-party rates. Cannot be combined with any other promotional offer other than those listed below. Not applicable to existing reservations. Only one perk is available per room. Premium Plus Internet is the premium Internet option that, outside of this offer, incurs a fee. Premium Plus Internet offers the ability to connect up to 8 devices per room. The $25 parking credit is per stay (not per day or per person) and applies to valet or self-parking charges at the selected hotel only. Late checkout is defined as up to three hours past the official checkout time per the selected hotel’s policy. Must be 21 years of age or older to receive alcohol, non-alcoholic beverages may be substituted on request. Hotel follows responsible beverage service principles and reserves the right at any time to deny service of alcohol to patrons. Offer excludes premium wines and liquors. Additional terms & conditions apply to each property’s local offer. Please see specific terms that apply on the landing page for each offer.

Loews Hotels & Resorts
Headquartered in New York City, Loews Hotels & Resorts owns and/or operates 20 hotels and resorts in the U.S. and Canada, including the newly acquired Loews Madison Hotel located in the heart ofWashington at the epicenter of legendary D.C. landmarks and the Loews Boston Hotel, one of Boston’spreeminent historic buildings, situated on the corner of Berkeley and Stuart Streets. Located in major city centers and resort destinations in North America from coast to coast, the Loews portfolio features one-of-a-kind properties that go beyond Four Diamond standards to delight guests with a supremely comfortable, uniquely local and vibrant travel experience. For reservations or more information about Loews Hotels & Resorts, call 1-800-23-LOEWS or visit: www.loewshotels.com.

Like Loews Hotels & Resorts on Facebook: www.facebook.com/LoewsHotels
Follow Loews Hotels & Resorts on Twitter: www.twitter.com/loews_hotels
Watch Loews Hotels & Resorts on YouTube: www.youtube.com/LoewsHotels
Read our Wish You Were Here Blog at www.loewshotelsblog.com

SOURCE Loews Hotels & Resorts

2014 Summer Movie Preview

As the first few days of May pass by, and many of us give each other the fond wish of “May the 4th Be With You,” the first of the summer movie blockbusters has hit screens with “The Amazing Spiderman 2” pulling in almost $36 million on opening day!

Here is our annual “Summer Movie Preview” so you can mark your calendars early! As always, thank you to our friends at the Internet Movie Data Base for some synopsis information. Please note this is not an all-inclusive list so check your local papers for the films that snuck past us. And remember, all opening dates are subject to change based on the whims of the studios. Enjoy!

MAY 9

CHEF
Starring: Jon Favreau and Scarlett Johansson Directed by: Jon Favreau
After losing his fancy restaurant gig a chef starts up a food-truck business in the hopes of rekindling his passion for food. After two “Iron Man” films and “Cowboys and Aliens” Favreau is returning to his small film roots.

THE DOUBLE
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg and Mia Wasikowska Directed by: Richard Ayoade
A clerk in a government agency finds his unenviable life takes a turn for the horrific with the arrival of a new co-worker who is both his exact physical double and his opposite – confident, charismatic and seductive with women. I guess if you can believe Jesse Eisenberg as a seductive womanizer you can ALMOST see him as Lex Luthor.

FED UP
Documentary Directed by: Stephanie Soechtig
An inside look at how what we eat actually makes us sicker than we should be. The poster states that “Congress says Pizza is a Vegetable.” And a very tasty vegetable at that.

GOD’S POCKET
Starring: Philip Seymour Hoffman and Christina Hendricks Directed by: John Slattery
When Mickey’s crazy stepson Leon is killed in a construction ‘accident’, nobody in the working class neighborhood of God’s Pocket is sorry he’s gone. “Mad Men’s” Slattery directs Hoffman in one of his last roles. A great supporting cast, including Richard Jenkins and John Turturro make this an anticipated film for me.

NEIGHBORS
Starring: Seth Rogen and Zac Efron Directed by: Nicholas Stoller
A young couple with a newborn baby have to deal with the problems that come with living next to a college fraternity house. Ironically, Rogen is the adult here. Not to be confused with the underrated John Alvidsen film that starred John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd.

MAY 16

GODZILLA
Starring: Bryan Cranston, Aaron Taylor-Johnson Directed by: Gareth Edwards
Remember the 1998 version that starred Matthew Broderick and Jean Reno? I’m sorry. Here, the world’s most famous monster is pitted against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity’s scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence. Director Edwards also did 2010’s “Monsters.” And really, what giant lizard has a chance against Walter White and Kick-Ass?

THE IMMIGRANT
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix and Marion Cotillard Directed by: James Gray
On the mean streets of Manhattan, Ewa falls prey to Bruno, a charming but wicked man who takes her in and forces her into prostitution. Jeremy Renner helps round out the Oscar nominated (and, in Cotillard’s case, winning) cast.

MILLION DOLLAR ARM
Starring: Jon Hamm Directed by: Craig Gillespie
Hamm stars as a sports agent who scours India for cricket players good enough to pitch in the majors. Based on a true story about two boys who, I believe, were signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates.

MAY 23

THE ANGRIEST MAN IN BROOKLYN
Starring: Robin Williams, Mila Kunis and Peter Dinklage Directed by: Phil Alden Robinson
A foul-tempered Brooklyner is told he has ninety minutes to live, sending him rushing all over New York to make amends. Of course, in real life, Robin Williams would need twice that much time just to apologize to all of the people whose jokes he’s stolen over the years. Director Phil Alden Robinson helmed two of my all time favorite films: “Field of Dreams” and “Rhinestone.” Don’t judge me!

BLENDED
Starring: Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore Directed by: Frank Coraci
After a bad blind date, a man and woman find themselves stuck together at a resort for families, where their attraction grows as their respective kids benefit from the burgeoning relationship. When he’s not giving Rob Schneider a paycheck, Sandler has made some very good comedies with Barrymore (“The Wedding Singer” and “50 First Dates”). Nothing from the trailer tells me this will be any different. In what I think is a weird side job, I recently caught director Coraci and a friend tracking down the best sandwiches in New York.

X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy Directed by: Bryan Singer
The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants. An intriguing premise with both casts taking center-stage. Don’t look for director Singer on the publicity tour.

MAY 30

MALEICENT
Starring: Angelina Jolie and Elle Fanning Directed by: Robert Stromberg
A vindictive fairy is driven to curse an infant princess only to realize the child may be the only one who can restore peace. So that whole “Sleeping Beauty” thing was just a mis-understanding?

A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST
Starring: Seth MacFarlane and Charlize Theron Directed by: Seth MacFarlane
As a cowardly farmer begins to fall for the mysterious new woman in town, he must put his new-found courage to the test when her husband, a notorious gun-slinger, announces his arrival. After the success of “TED” this ranks as the must see comedy on my list.

JUNE 6

EDGE OF TOMORROW
Starring: Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt Directed by: Doug Liman
A soldier fighting in a war with aliens finds himself caught in a time loop of his last day in the battle, though he becomes better skilled along the way. Cruise’s second straight sci-fi film (after “Oblivion.”) I’m still waiting for him to do the Les Grossman film.

THE FAULT IN OUR STARS
Starring: Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort Directed by: Josh Boone
Two teenagers, one who relies on an oxygen tank and the other with a prosthetic leg, meet and fall in love at a cancer support group. I’m assuming you’ll need lots of Kleenex.

THE SACRAMENT
Starring: Kate Lyn Sheil and Joe Swanberg Directed by: Ti West
Two journalists set out to document their friend’s search to find his missing sister. Did I mention that the sister went off and joined the People’s Temple?

JUNE 13

22 JUMP STREET
Starring: Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum Directed by: Phil Lord and Christopher Miller
After making their way through high school (twice), big changes are in store for officers Schmidt and Jenko when they go deep undercover at a local college. After the lackluster performance of both “The Lone Ranger” and “Transcendence” I’m thinking Johnny Depp is wishing he didn’t die in the first film.

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2
Starring the voices of: Jay Baruchel and Kristen Wiig Directed by: Dean DeBlois
It’s been five years since Hiccup and Toothless successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. When an adventure leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace.

JUNE 20

JERSEY BOYS
Starring: John Lloyd Young and Christopher Walken Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Based on the Tony Award winning Broadway musical, Eastwood presents the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, warts and all.

THIRD PERSON
Starring: Liam Neeson and Olivia Wilde Directed by: Paul Haggis
Three interlocking love stories involving three couples in three cities: Rome, Paris, and New York. The film also stars Mila Kunis and James Franco. Haggis won two Oscars for writing and producing “Crash.”

JUNE 27

SNOWPIERCER
Starring: Chris Evans and Tilda Swinton Directed by: Joon-ho Bong
In a future where a failed global-warming experiment kills off all life on the planet except for a lucky few that boarded the Snowpiercer, a train that travels around the globe, where a class system evolves.

THEY CAME TOGETHER
Starring: Paul Rudd and Amy Poehler Directed by: David Wain
When Joel land Molly meet, it’s hate at first sight: his big Corporate Candy Company threatens to shut down her quirky indie shop. Romantic complications ensure. Sounds like “You’ve Got Mail” without email….or Tom Hanks.

TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION
Starring: Mark Wahlerg and Nicola Peltz Directed by: Michael Bay
An automobile mechanic and his daughter make a discovery that brings down the Autobots and Decepticons – and a paranoid government official – on them. Always good and bad with these films. Here good = no Shia LaBeouf. Bad = no Megan Fox!

JIMI: ALL IS BY MY SIDE
Starring: Andre’ Benjamin Directed by: John Ridley
A biography of musician Jimi Hendrix before he hit the big time. Sadly, it has to be before he hits the big time because Hendrix’s family would not allow the use of his original songs so expect a lot of Hendrix-covered tunes. Director (and screenwriter) Ridley just won an Oscar for his screenplay for “12 Years a Slave.”

JULY 2

DELIVER US FROM EVIL
Starring: Eric Bana and Edgar Ramirez Directed by: Scott Derrickson
NY police officer Ralph Sarchie (Bana), investigates a series of crimes. He joins forces with an unconventional priest (Ramirez), schooled in the rituals of exorcism, to combat the possessions that are terrorizing their city.

TAMMY
Starring: Melissa McCarthy and Susan Sarandon Directed by: Ben Falcone
Husband and wife McCarthy and Falcone (he played the air marshal in “Bridesmaids”) wrote this tale about a woman who, after losing her job and learning that her husband has been unfaithful, hits the road with her profane, hard-drinking grandmother.

JULY 4

BEGIN AGAIN
Starring: Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo Directed by: John Carney
A dejected music business executive forms a bond with a young singer-songwriter new to Manhattan. So nice to see Knightley in a film that takes place in THIS century.

JULY 11

AND SO IT GOES
Starring: Michael Douglas and Diane Keaton Directed by: Rob Reiner
A self-centered realtor enlists the help of his neighbor when he’s suddenly left in charge of the granddaughter he never knew existed until his estranged son drops her off at his home. Even though he’s had more misses than hits lately, Reiner still remains one of my favorite filmmakers.

DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES
Starring: Gary Oldman, Keri Russell and Andy Serkis Directed by: Matt Reeves
Survivors of the simian plague trigger an all-out war between humanity and Caesar’s growing forces. I believe it was Caesar who said “Ape Shall Not Kill Ape.” But he said nothing about those damn, dirty humans!

THE FLUFFY MOVIE
Starring: Gabriel Iglesias Directed by: Manny Rodriguez
Comedian Iglesias performs on the big screen.

JULY 18

JUPITER ASCENDING
Starring: Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis Directed by: Andy and Lana Wachowski
In the future, a young destitute human woman gets targeted for assassination by the Queen of the Universe, and begins her destiny to finish the Queen’s reign. Sure to be another dazzling sci-fi treat from the Wachowski siblings.

PLANES: FIRE & RESCUE
Starring the voices of: Dane Cook and Julie Bowen Directed by: Roberts Gannaway
The sequel nobody asked for starring a person nobody likes (I’m looking at you, Dane Cook). When world-famous air racer Dusty learns that his engine is damaged and he may never race again, he must shift gears and is launched into the world of aerial firefighting. I only learned a few months ago that I knew Julie Bowen’s dad when I lived in Baltimore. Small world.

THE PURGE: ANARCHY
Starring: Frank Grillo and Zach Gilford Directed by: James DeMonaco
A young couple works to survive on the streets after their car breaks down right as the annual purge commences.

WISH I WAS HERE
Starring: Zach Braff and Kate Hudson Directed by: Zach Braff
Already infamous because Braff financed it via a Kickstarter campaign, the film tells the story of Aidan Bloom, a struggling actor, father and husband, who at 35 is still trying to find his identity and a purpose for his life.

JULY 25

HERCULES
Starring: Dwayne Johnson and Ian McShane Directed by: Brett Ratner
Having endured his legendary twelve labors, Hercules, the Greek demigod, has his life as a sword-for-hire tested when the King of Thrace and his daughter seek his aid in defeating a tyrannical warlord. If this performs like “Tower Heist” Ratner may be begging Chris Tucker to do “Rush Hour 4.”

A MOST WANTED MAN
Starring: Philip Seymour Hoffman and Robin Wright Directed by: Anton Cobijin
A Chechen Muslim illegally immigrates to Hamburg, where he gets caught in the international war on terror. With the exception of the upcoming “Hunger Games” sequels, this is Hoffman’s final performance.

SEX TAPE
Starring: Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel Directed by: Jake Kasdan
A married couple wake up to discover that the sex tape they made the evening before has gone missing, leading to a frantic search for its whereabouts. Director Kasdan did the very funny “Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story.”

AUGUST 1

CHILD OF GOD
Starring: James Franco and Tim Blake Nelson Directed by: James Franco
A dispossessed, violent man who’s life is a disastrous attempt to exist outside the social order. Successively deprived of parents and homes and with few other ties, Ballard descends literally and figuratively to the level of a cave dweller as he falls deeper into crime and degradation. Franco also co-wrote the screenplay. When does this guy sleep?

GET ON UP
Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Octavia Spencer and Viola Davis Directed by: Tate Taylor
A chronicle of James Brown’s rise from extreme poverty to become one of the most influential musicians in history. Boseman was outstanding as Jackie Robinson in last year’s “42.”

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
Starring: Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana Directed by: James Gunn
In the far reaches of space, an American pilot named Peter Quill finds himself the object of a manhunt after stealing an orb coveted by the villainous Ronan. This is a part of Marvel Studios second phase of films. If that doesn’t make you want to see this, how about Bradley Cooper as the voice of Rocket Raccoon?

AUGUST 8

LUCY
Starring: Morgan Freeman and Scarlett Johannson Directed by: Luc Besson
A woman, accidentally caught in a dark deal, turns the tables on her captors and transforms into a merciless warrior evolved beyond human logic. Besson has featured a lot of lady ass-kickers, from Anne Parillaud in “La Femme Nikita” to Natalie Portman in “The Professional” so I don’t expect ScarJo to disappoint here.

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES
Starring: Megan Fox and Will Arnett Directed by: Jonathan Liebesman
Darkness has settled over New York City as Shredder and his evil Foot Clan have an iron grip on everything from the police to the politicians. The future is grim until four unlikely outcast brothers rise from the sewers and discover their destiny as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Johnny Knoxville voices Leonardo. I don’t remember April O’Neil being that hot!

AUGUST 13

LET’S BE COPS
Starring: Jake Johnson and Damon Wayans, Jr. Directed by: Luke Greenfield
Two struggling pals dress as police officers for a costume party and become neighborhood sensations. But when these newly-minted “heroes” get tangled in a real life web of mobsters and dirty detectives, they must put their fake badges on the line.

AUGUST 15

THE EXPENDABLES 3
Starring: Sylvester Stallone and Harrison Ford Directed by: Patrick Hughes
Barney (Stallone and the rest of the team come face-to-face with Conrad Stonebanks (Mel Gibson), who years ago co-founded The Expendables with Barney. Once again a great package for most of the action stars of the last three decades. Except the apparently “lazy and greedy” Bruce Willis.

THE GIVER
Starring: Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep Directed by: Phillip Noyce
In a seemingly perfect community, one without war, pain, suffering, differences or choice, a young boy is chosen to learn from an elderly man about the true pain and pleasure of the “real” world. Do you hear that? It’s nomination number nineteen knocking on Meryl’s door.

AUGUST 22

FRANK MILLER’S SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR
Starring: Mickey Rourke and Jessica Alba Directed by: Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez
The town’s most hard-boiled citizens cross paths with some of its more reviled inhabitants.

AUGUST 27

UNDERDOGS
Starring the voices of: Rupert Grint and Anthony Heard Directed by: Juan Jose’ Campanella
A young man named Amadeo sets off on an unexpected adventure with the players of his beloved Foosball game.
AUGUST 29

LIFE OF CRIME
Starring: Jennifer Aniston and John Hawke Directed by: Daniel Schechter
Two men hit it off in prison, where they were both doing time for grand theft auto. Now that they’re out, they’re joining forces for one big score. I will assume Aniston is NOT one of the men.

THE LOFT
Starring: Karl Urban and James Marsden Directed by: Erik Van Looy
Five friends who share a loft for their extramarital affairs begin to question one another after the murdered body of an unknown young woman is found in the property. I hope it wasn’t Cyclops or Dr. McCoy that did it!

Styx’s Lawrence Gowan talks about the band’s “Soundtrack of Summer” 2014 tour with Foreigner & Don Felder

Lawrence Gowan is the lead vocalist/keyboardist for the legendary rock band. Earlier this year, they announced their 2014 summer tour titled “Soundtrack of Summer”, which will feature a co-headline with Foreigner and former Eagles guitarist Don Felder. Media Mikes had the chance to speak with Lawrence Gowan about their upcoming tour, creating new music and his thought’s on being a member of Styx for 15 years.

Adam Lawton: Can you give us some info on the bands upcoming tour?
Lawrence Gowan: We will be out this summer with Foreigner and Don Felder. We have toured the states with Foreigner in some time. We did some shows with them over in England and we realized that the pairing of the two bands was just really great. We wanted to add a little more to the bill like we had done last summer bringing Ted Nugent out with this. This year were brining Don Felder formerly of the Eagles. It’s a great night of entertainment when you can add a third element that takes things over the top. We had done a show last year with Don and it was fantastic. The fact that he has written so many of those Eagles classics that people know is great but he also has an amazing band as well. We added him to the mix and now fans will get 3 hours of music that they know all the words to. The tour is being call the “Soundtrack to Summer” tour and I think that is very fitting. It definitely describes our experiences from playing in the U.S. and Canada. I think people will probably be tired from singing after it’s all over.

AL: The last tour featured Styx performing the “Pieces of Eight” and “Grand Illusion” albums in their entirety. Will the band be picking different albums to perform for this tour?
LG: I don’t think it will be this time. The evening is very much hit driven so I think people will be hearing all the songs they know. Having performed albums in their entirety I have found this to be a curious thing. The big thing is that audiences seem to keep getting younger and younger. So many people seem to have discovered classic rock in the last 10 years. At our shows we see younger people enjoying the experience of hearing some of our albums in their entirety. They seem to share their enthusiasm for both our hits and other tracks from the various albums that don’t get as much play. One of those tracks is “Man in the Wilderness”. That song was never released as a single and it has become a huge favorite. Of course we will be playing “Come Sail Away”, Blue Collar Man” and Renegade” as they are some of our corner stone’s but we can change our set a little to hit some of those more obscure songs which have become peoples favorites over the years. There’s going to be diversity in the night with an element of cohesiveness among the three bands.

AL: Being this is not the bands first time out in a multi-band tour format how do you go about keeping the shows fresh and new from year to year?
LG: That’s our task. It just so happens that we are band who is up to that challenge. We love hearing from fans that the show was even better than the last time they saw us. We are always trying to figure out ways to elevate the show and play the songs better than we have before. A song is a living thing. It’s not stagnant piece of music that stays the same. Every time we play one of our songs it’s going to be a little different. Each night songs take on new meaning for us when we play them. Each day is new and it’s another opportunity to try and get the song right. There is a lot more going on with the music than just being a collection of notes. There are feelings and emotions that need to be navigated every time you play a song. That’s our challenge. In addition to that Styx is a band of 5 front men. Everyone on stage is a great entertainer and musician. I think that’s why the audience is so engaged in what we do. We have a tremendous connection with the audience and we are certainly aware of that. The combination of the band, the song and the audience is infectious. We love what we do and constantly want to do it better.

AL: As an artist I am sure you always want to be creating new material however, does the fans wanting to hear the bands previous catalog make it tough to introduce new material?
LG: There is definitely a balance. We did a full album about 10 years ago that we are still trying to play as much as we can. It hard to squeeze a song in to the set but when we have the chance we will do that. We also had a cover album come out where we did a cover of “I am the Walrus” and that ended up being a big hit with classic radio stations. We try and get that one in there whenever we can. We have been trying to put out some new pieces when we can. We also have re-recorded some of the classic Styx songs and added new pieces to those. We always look for the opportunities to add something new. We also have to try and grapple with the reality of the music industry right now. The one thing that can’t be downloaded or replicated in any way is the live experience. That’s what people are drawn to.  Every show is different and its own separate experience.

AL: This May will mark your 15th year as a member of Styx. When you first joined the band did you ever envision being where you are today?
LG: I have had a really fortunate career. I had a successful solo career in Canada prior to joining Styx and was able to garner a big enough audience to where I could one day perform with Styx in 1997 when they came to Montreal. That led to the second half of my career where I get to be a part of this legendary band. Not many people can make a claim like that. My career has gone backwards in that I had the long solo career and then a lengthy band career. I really have enjoyed the whole thing. There is always something more you want to accomplish but when I am beating myself up about that I look at where I am and see how fortunate I am. It’s a very unique situation and I am so grateful to be part of this.