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Who’s Ready For Route 91 Harvest Festival ?

Best Sets of Sasquatch! VIBES

Flaming Lips Live In Spokane Beach Slang


What The Hell? An Evening With Dierks Bentley

The Night The Forest Came Alive WAYLAND ‘Almost Famous’ SEETHER ~ ‘Through The Lens’ The Common Ground Music Festival “Something For Everyone”

Collecting Souls With Semptember Mourning Country Music At The Gorge Watershed

Staff Photographers

Editor Clint Burton

Contributors Angela Tuetken Caleb Olson Samantha Purdum Karen Yarborough Travis Eisenhard

Clint Burton Angela Tuetken Travis Eisenhard Bayelee Burton Tori Brasseur Peter Zurrin

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Table of Contents 6. Flaming Lips Live In Spokane 8. Beach Slang 10. The Night The Forest Came Alive 17. Vibes The New Hi-Fidelity Earplugs ~ Review

18. Who’s Ready For Route 91 Harvest Festival? 24. What The Hell? An Evening With Dierks Bentley 26. The Common Ground Music Festival “Something For Everyone”

32. Collecting Souls With September Mourning 34. Best Sets Of Sasquatch! 37. SEETHER ~ ‘Through The Lens’ 40. Country Music At The Gorge ~ Watershed 43. WAYLAND ‘Almost Famous’

About Us Backstage Music Magazine is a digital music magazine. Started by a group of music lovers that want to share their experiences with other music fans that love the music as much as we do. Our issues include anyone in any music genre from punk to country. If it has anything to do with music we cover it from concerts to movies. We hope you enjoy reading our magazine as much as we enjoy bringing it to you. Be sure to surf over to our website to get even more out of your music experience with video, photos, concert schedules and album and show reviews at

Contact Us Want to work with Backstage Music Magazine? Send us an email at Want to send BMM your music to review? Want BMM to feature you or your artist? Send us an email at Want to advertise with us? Send us an email at

Flaming Lips Live In Spokane Written and Photos by Angela Tuetken

As soon as the lights drop in the Spokane Knitting Factory for the There Should Be Unicorns, in support of their latest album release “Oczy Mlody,” you already have an idea of what your about to watch. If you’ve listened to The Flaming Lips before, you know that its not going to make much sense, but you’re not going to be able to tune it out or look away. The first clue of what kind of show I was about to enter was when the sign on the front door warned of laser lights and bright LEDs. With seemingly endless strands of LED lights hanging over the stage and draped over a statue unicorn shoved in a corner, visual affects play a large role in The Flaming Lips performance. Lead performer Wayne Coyne brings the show to life by acting as conductor of both sound and light. With his back to the crowd he leads drum beats, syncing them with the draping LED strands hanging from the ceiling.


Soon after, performers in inflatable suits emerge on stage and confetti is shot into the crowd, breaking the tradition of confetti raining down as the final song is being played. A hoard of large balloons appears almost out of nowhere and bounce all around the venue. Coyne holds the crowd, almost effortlessly, showing that in his confidence alone, he rules the night. Coyne knows his crowd and he knows how to keep their attention his crowd responds with nothing but love, taking in everything from the confetti to the dancing inflatable frog and bright yellow star, to the outrageous outfits the performers don. Coyne embraces the love the band receives by climbing off stage and making his way to the unicorn statue stashed in the corner. Mounting the statue, now lit up, he puts on his inflatable rainbow wings.

From there Coyne is pushed slowly through the middle of the crowd while singing. Coyne makes two rounds before making his way back to the stage. If you don’t listen to this band regularly, you would be shocked, if not confused about what is going on around you, but the dedication and love from the fans quickly shows how this band has created a world where rainbows, unicorns and dancing frogs is nothing out of the norm. Though the visual performance may overshadow the music to those who don’t regularly listen to this band, the music that is pouring out is unique in the best way, you don’t hear music like that every day. But even if the psychedelic alternative music is not your style there is so much to take in. Your attention is pulled in every direction as you try to figure out what is going on and what will happen next.

Want to escape reality for a bit? This is the show for you, let The Flaming Lips take you on a psychedelic trip, a carefully constructed trip that looks almost effortless. The Flaming Lips continue with the remainder of their US dates with Klangstof before heading to the UK and finishing the tour in October in Phoenix.


Beach Slang Written and Photos by Angela Tuetken

For Philadelphia based band Beach Slang, gaining a crowd appears simple. The energy of lead singer James Alex alone catches and keeps the crowd’s attention. Dressed in a heavy jacket, Alex is sweating within minutes of the show starting, but keeps his energy up none the less. The band has gone through some trials in the last year, from losing members to almost breaking up a few times along the way. But the show goes on, and it seems it’s all good spirits while on stage. Alex reads a very long list of things that people have told him that he looks like. Frodo from the Lord of the Rings movies being one of his favorites. He shows the spirit of acts that many have not had the chance to experience. Drinking on stage and then spitting it into the air mid-performance. Opening for Jimmy Eat World on their tour to promote their latest album release,


but Beach Slang creates its own atmosphere in the room.

You want to like this band, you want to know all the songs they belt. The band continues to tour across the United States, hitting up the eastern side of the country for the rest of the year. Should you need to see someone and just feed off their energy for a while, this band will definitely give that to you.


The Night The Forest Came Alive Experienced by Caleb Olsen

Back in 2008, Rothbury Michigan held their first “Rothbury Music Festival”. A multi-medium event of music and art showcased itself to find a repeat showing again in 2009. Due to scheduling conflicts with musicians on tour and recording the 2010 Rothbury Music Festival had to postpone their event for the summer in hopes to return in the summer in 2011. This was the year that Rothbury Music Festival would take its transformation and give birth to the “Electric Forest Music Festival” (EFF). Year after year the Electric Forest Music Festival has continued to share their 4-day getaway with thousands, allowing an escape from the monotony of workday routine. Sharing a communal sense of Peace, Unity, Love, and Respect with a central theme of Art and Creativity. In 2017 it was finally time for me to disappear from reality for a few days to become engulfed in the sights and sounds and to experience the nightlife of the forest coming alive.


2017 was the first year that EFF decided to include a second weekend to their schedule allowing more fans to attend and more artists to perform. As an avid follower of Electric Forests Signature act, The String Cheese Incident (SCI), I, without a doubt, knew this would be one of the festivals that I needed to attend. Along with three other friends, we made our way from the mid-west (Wyoming and South Dakota) to embark in the greatest of all adventures. Clocking in 20+ hours of vehicle time on the road, traveling across two time zones, and being in 7 different states, we finally arrived at the Electric Forest Festival. After running through check-in points and security searches we were finally at our destination. We instantly began setting up our camp and meeting our fellow neighbors. Once camp was set up we tried our hand at entering the venue grounds to see the lay of the land and familiarize ourselves with what we would be dealing with for the next 4 days.

Unfortunately, the grounds were closed until later, due to heavy rains and maintenance needed to ensure organization and good times to be had. So back to camp we headed to relax and anxiously wait at the same time. Beverages were drank, stories were shared with neighbors, and artist schedules were discussed among all as we awaited our first sight of the festival. Once the time had come to enter we made our way into the forest. Upon entering the festival, we found ourselves traveling into another universe close to that of Narnia.

Fans dressed in assortments of costumes, Vender tents selling everything from clothing and multi-perspective art-hangings to hammocks and Vietnamese food, and enough love and good-vibes to make you feel welcome enough that you never wanted to leave. We decided it was time to locate all the stages so we could travers the forest seamlessly to ensure we could catch all the music acts that we wanted to see. Each stage was an architectural spectacular with elegant art themes for each one.


The sun was still high above us as we began listening to the first band of the weekend. A band that we had never heard of before by the name of COBI. A trio with a good grasp of rock and blues. The Observatory stage was much smaller than the others but allowed spectators to have their choice of dancing on the ground or climbing stairs up scaffolding to watch from a raised vantage point. The next stop we had was under a tent called the Jubilee stage where OTT and The All Seeing Eye performed their style of Dub Reggae. As the moon worked its way into the sky and night began we decided the forest needed to be visited again.


As we entered we found ourselves wondering through color changing LED lights shining on many art installments. There were animal sculptures made from recycle material all over. An elephant made from wood scraps and a dragon made from old CD’s. With three stages inside the forest itself there was plenty of action to be had. Colored lasers shot up and down the forest all night long as spectators wondered through to observe music and art. A chapel had been built so that marriages could be performed. (Not your typical marriages as i think there were group marriages of 3 and more people as well as marriages to inanimate objects).

More or less it was another stage to rejoice and celebrate. As we moved on through the night we came across Cashmere Cat (DJ) performing at the Sherwood Court Stage. As one of the bigger stages we stood our distance in the back as we got some snacks and were taking in some people observing and watching some light dancers leave their trails in time to the music from the stage. Our first night finished with Big Gigantic at the Ranch Area Stage. These two brothers (one on drums and the other on saxophone/ computer) threw it down hard with some good “grooving” music. Sounds that really want to make you shake your hips. They performed both weekends and our count for the second weekend was 5-7 performances as they get invited to perform with other musicians. The first night of this new festival proved that this would be a great weekend. 4-days of music, visuals, friends, food, and good vibes is exactly how it panned out. Looking back at the festival I had two memorable sets that made the festival all worth it. The first was of Bassnector who has become a powerhouse superstar of the Electronic relm of music. His ability to create sounds that you not only hear, but also feel and find yourself as a puppet to the piper of some good down tempo heavy bass music.

Bassnector was the headliner for the last night of the festival and all those present showed of their enthusiasm, appreciation, and support with their own dub-step moves. The second and most memorable was of The String Cheese Incidents “Shebang”. They started out their first set with Good Originals that allowed some good fiddle driven music. But as they opened with their second set is when we had no idea what to expect. As we anxiously awaited the beginning of the second set the sun disappeared through the trees and beyond the horizon. The glow of the stage was light enough for spectators to mingle and ramble with one another. As the crowds, dull murmur grew into a mighty roar, all the spectators turned to the stage as the band appeared on stage. They started off their second set with the Funk-alicious tune “Stop, Drop, Roll”. As I got into my dance groove, on both sides of the stage they had back drops of a brick wall with a trampoline at the base of them. On the back drops acrobats with spray paint began drawing and bouncing. Shortly after, a dozen plus inflatable rubiks cubes found their way to the crowd and were being tossed around.


While the crowd was enjoying their toys and the artists were performing their graffiti we finally saw “The Man” come out. A half-dozen performs came to the front of the stage dressed in riot gear labeled with S.W.A.T. along with an actual Helicopter hovering around above the stage and crowd. Now, the thought of an actual raid and lockdown on the festival may have crossed the minds of those who became a little too festive, The S.W.A.T. group began rhythmically drumming with their billy clubs on riot shields and helicopter dropped what seemed like actual tons of confetti.


At this point in the show I had to turn to my friends and size up exactly what the hell was going on, only to see the exact same confused and excited expressions in their faces as I was feeling in mine. But the String Cheese Incident had not displayed all of their toys yet. The last little “Shebang” (this is when I realized what the shebang actually meant.) A miniature hot-air balloon came hovering just above the crowd with a Lady Liberty dressed performer attached to it. They made their way from the back of the crowd to the front of the stage with the slogan “Lead With Love”.

The night continued with covers from The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and SCI Originals, but, it wasn’t just a band playing instruments on stage. The sound production that was set up for the band was unbelievable because you weren’t just feeling rhythm and melody but allowed the band to explore a more electronic side of music and reveal textures of sound that I have never heard before. Looking back at the Electric Forest Festival, it felt like one of the tightest art communities where-

everyone knew where to escape to and have a great time. The neighbor’s we camp next to where the greatest companions that enhanced every bit of the weekend with their only personalities and experiences. The art vendors and food vendors brought additional sensory and passion to the forest to share and contribute to a great time. The staff, medical, and security not only could enjoy their own time in the forest but also provided a safe experience for the masses on both weekends.


And finally, all the musicians who performed and opened their experiences in life, emotion, and escape to allow thousands of fans to forget the hustle and bustle, stress, and anxiety of everyday routine to let loose and bring themselves back to balance. I for one will have to return to the forest a few more times to feel what I had felt that weekend.


Vibes the New Hi-Fidelity Earplugs While I was watching a previous episode of Shark Tank. One of the guest introduced a company that sold earplugs. These aren’t just the ordinary plain old foam earplugs, these are an earplug that could be worn so you could enjoy the music while blocking the dangers of the high decibels of live music. Since we are music magazine and shoot numerous live events a year I decided to put these earplugs to the test. I normally use custom fitted earplugs, so I knew this would be a good test for this product. After using this product for about 3 months now I have concluded that I won’t be going back to my old customs. These earplugs are light, comfortable, hardly noticeable and with a sound reduction rating of 15dbs they just plain work. The sound with these earplugs is just fantastic.

Vibes are made with a special sound-Enhancing Filter to increase sound clarity and balance. Having multiple size fitting (S, M, L) to give great comfort to all customers. These low-profile earplugs basically unnoticeable earplugs are built to last. Considering my custom earplugs cost well over $100 selling this product at price of $23.99 is a great value. On a scale from 1-5, I will be giving a great big 5 rating and 2 thumbs up for this product and always remember at concerts or any event with loud noise to protect your hearing you can’t replace it.


Who’s Ready For Route 91 Harvest Festival? With less than 2 months until the 4th annual 3-day Neon Sleepover takes over the capital of good times and entertainment, Fabulous Las Vegas. This year’s Route 91 Harvest festival has locked in three of the biggest touring acts of the year. Sam Hunt, Jason Aldean and Eric Church promise to make this year’s Festival worthy of being the biggest to date. So, I wanted to reflect to last year’s festival and give you my list of tips on how to handle the fun filled weekend. Along with my list I also wanted to publish some pictures of the ones that make it all possible, you the Fans.

“The Guide to Survive the 3-Day Neon Sleep Over.” my top survival tips for the Route 91 Harvest Festival • Use lots of sunscreen. • Wear comfortable shoes. • Stay hydrated (lots of water). • Set a bag chair in the chair corral. • Download the Rt91 app on your phone. • Stay at a MGM property within walking distance (Excalibur, Mandalay Bay, or the Luxor) or other MGM properties will bus festival attendies. • Most importantly go with the flow; don’t be afraid to meet people and share your experience with others.


I hope some of you find this list useful and make sure to look for us with the Backstage Music Magazine shirts. Come up and say hi and maybe we can get your own BMM t-shirt. Have fun and enjoy the festival.


What The Hell? An Evening With Dierks Bentley

Dierks Bentley’s “What The Hell Tour” rolled into Rapid City South Dakota to a packed house in the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. Fan waited in line for the doors to open so they could see one of this year’s hottest country music tours. With opening acts like Jon Pardi and Cole Swindell this night promised to be a special one. The night started off with California’s Jon Pardi, one of today’s up and coming country artist. Pardi opened the night with about 45 minutes of pure county music. Starting his set with “Paycheck” and ending with “Dirt on my Boots.” The night continued with Cole Swindell. Swindell’s high power hour long set included hits such as “Middle of a Memory,” “Ain’t Worth the Whiskey,” and “You Should Be Here”, written about his father.


About half way through his set he broke into a fun melody of the Thomas Rhett hit “Get Me Some of That,” which Swindell co-authored, and Luke Bryan and Florida Georgia Line’s “This Is How We Roll,” along with Bryan’s “Old Beach Rollercoaster.”

The “What The Hell Tour” with continue the summer into November with stops in Chicago, Philadelphia, Denver, San Diego and Dierks’ hometown of Phoenix. Get you tickets now this truly is one to see.

After a short intermission, the light went out and Dierks hit the dark spotlight lit stage in a red and black flannel shirt, along with his five-piece band to a low key acoustic version of “Up on the Ridge.” Brently quickly went into a more upbeat performance of “Free and Easy” and continued the night with 16 more solid hits which included “Every Mile a Memory,” “What Was I Thinkin’,” “Somewhere on a Beach.” Midway through the show Bentley and Pardi got together for King George’s hit “The Fireman” and then Dierks teamed up for one kick ass version of “Flatliner” with Swindell. The night was topped off as Bentley brought a jet cockpit on the stages for his Encore as all three and some lucky fans collaborated on his major hit “Drunk on a plain.”


The Common Ground Music Festival “Something For Everyone” Written by Samantha Purdum Photos by Torri Brasseur

Every year in July 50,000 plus attend a 4-day long music festival in Louis Adado Riverfront Park on the bank of the Grand River in downtown Lansing Michigan. The Common Ground Music Festival is a very unique Festival that features a large range music genres. In 4-days the festival brings some of the biggest national and local contemporary classic rock, pop, alternative, country, hip hop, R&B artists to 2-stages. Headlining the music festival this year was Alessia Cara, Toby Keith, Shinedown, and Big Sean. This was a four day music festival with each day having a music theme about it. The first day was considered to be hiphop day. The second day was country day. The third day was rock day. The fourth and final day was rap day. Each day was unique and brought many different types of music fans together. Day 1 Hip-hop Day: Olivia Millerschin opened up the day at the Sparrow Stage. Being the very first act made for very few people to be able to get to the stage but that was not enough to discourage Olivia from performing her best.


Olivia is best known for being a quarter-finalist on America’s Got Talent. She played her ukulele and had an amazing opening performance. Phoebe Ryan was next up at the Auto Value Main Stage where she fascinated many. During her set she threw out candy to her fans. Her set was having some technical difficulties but she kept the crowds attention. She even exchanged bracelets with a young girl from the crowd.

Next up on the Sparrow stage was a band called Clubhouse. During their set they experienced technical difficulties as well. When this happened Max Reichert the lead singer, interacted with the fans and told jokes to keep them entertained. AJR came out with high energy on the Auto Value Main Stage. Jack Met was so full of energy bouncing around and had everybody in the crowd singing and dancing along to their songs. AJR ended their set by showing the crowd how to make a remix of a song. They remixed the song “Mercy” by Kanye West. James Arthur had big shoes to fill following AJR performance. The energy at the Sparrow Stage was a lot different from any of the other singers of the day. There was a calming presence. The fans all waited in anticipation for James to play his most famous song “Say You Won’t Let Go”. Throughout the set girls kept yelling play my song. James ended his set with that song and not one fan was quiet. Everyone was screaming the lyrics to him. Alessia Cara was the headliner for the Main Stage. She was so full of energy and was moving all over and owning the stage. She performed many of her big hits including “Here”, “Wild Things”, and “Stay”. Alessia took time before she song her song “Scars To Your Beautiful” and spoke to her fans telling them that everyone is beautiful despite what society standards.

By far the most amazing part of her set she brought a little girl named Lauren to the stage and performed the song “How Far I’ll Go” from Disney’s movie Moana. She proceeded to walk the girl down the catwalk and sing and dance with her throughout the song. Kyle ended the night at the Sparrow Stage. DJ Superduper Brick pumped up the crowd in anticipation for Kyle to come onto the stage. Kyle came out onto stage more full of energy than any other performer of the day. He never stopped moving and had the crowd singing along to all of his songs. The crowd kept chanting for him to sing his song “iSpy”. Kyle acknowledged this and started to freestyle the song for the crowd. During his freestyle he stopped singing and the actual melody of the song started to play. Kyle then proceeded to bounce around and sing. Kyle was nearly done with the song and stopped singing and told the crowd he needed them to take it up a notch in order for him to sing it. Kyle restarted singing the song “iSpy” and closed out the night with the fans going wild singing this hit with him.


The Railers were the next to play at Sparrow Stage. They performed with smiles on their face and created a cheerful atmosphere. Their energy was surely noticed by the crowd. You could not help but smile and dance around listening to them. Day 2 Country Day: Lisa Mary opened the Sparrow Stage. This day was a huge day for her. She was the opening act of Day 2 at the Common Ground music festival and in the same day her debut album Everyone Has A Story to Tell was released. Opening up the Auto Value Main stage was Aileeah Colgan. Her stage presence was flawless and she gave a don’t look away performance. She was able to catch the attention of non country music listeners with her vocal skills. Drew Hale was next up at the Sparrow Stage. Drew Hale is a singer songwriter from Traverse City, Michigan. He had the crowd moving to his music. His music was a unique country sound. Drew had the crowd moving when ended his set with his hit song “El Paso Skyline”.


Toby Keith was the headliner of the night at the Auto Value Main Stage. Not one person was sitting when he opened the stage with his song “Haven’t Had a Drink All Day”. Toby played his well known song “I Wanna Talk About Me” and had fans going crazy dancing and singing. Toby said he could smell the marijuana that was being smoked in the crowd. This opened the door for him to sing his new single “Wacky Tobaccy”. Toby Keith emphasized throughout his performance about how much he supports the USA. Keith then closed out the show with two of his very patriotic songs “Courtesy of The Red, White, and Blue” and “American Soldier”.

Day 3 Rock Day: Molehill started off the day and opened at Sparrow Stage. Assume Nothing opened the Auto Value Main Stage. Assume Nothing is a local metal band from Michigan. They had everyone in the crowd head banging to their music. The Legal Immigrants were next up at the Sparrow Stage. They were another band that was from Michigan. They have a real old style rock and roll sound. It is a sound you don’t hear out of bands from today’s era in music. They performed their hit “Daddy’s Little Girl” and it had everyone moving to beat.

She told a story about how she wrote the song “Heavy Prey” for the movie Underworld Awakening. She closed out her set by singing two of her most well known hits from when she was in the band Flyleaf. She performed “All Around Me” and “I’m So Sick”. After her set there were a few fans that had stayed behind and waited for Sturm to exit the trailer. To everyone’s surprise Sturm came out with her son attached to her hip to the few fans who were there and interacted with each person who had waited. She told personal stories about herself and listened as her fans shared stories of their own lives with her. She took pictures and signed autographs for everyone who stayed after to meet her.

Leopold and His Fiction were next at the Auto Value Main Stage. The lead singer Daniel Leopold has a very unique sound and was able to capture the attention of many of the people in the audience. Lacey Sturm was next up at the Sparrow Stage. Lacey Sturm was previously the lead singer of the band Flyleaf and has since started her own solo career. Multiple times in betweens songs during Sturm’s set she preached the importance of being positive and living life to the fullest. Watching her perform left you with chills because of the aura and positivity she gave off. You can tell the love and passion that Sturm has for the lyrics she sings.


Next up at the Auto Value Main was the band LiVE. The band drew in a huge crowd. The band played a cover of Audioslave’s song “I Am The Highway”. They played this to pay tribute to the recent death of singer Chris Cornell and it was surely the highlight of their performance.

Day 4 Rap Day:

Shinedown closed out the night at the Auto Value Main stage. Shinedown opened with the song “Devour” and it set the tone for the whole show. Everyone one was pumped and full of energy. Brent Smith the lead vocalist was very interactive with the fans. During his set he did a thumbs up thumbs down meter to get the fans to become loud enough for the band to be able to perform. Also, during their set he told everyone to listen up. He said for everyone on his left to take 5 steps and go to the left and everyone on the right to take 5 steps and go to the right. Smith’s exact words after that were “Don’t be shy give me give me a line down the center of the field”. Smith then went out into the crowd and then returned to the stage to continue on his performance. They ended their set with the song “Sound of Madness”.

Diamond Jones was next up at Sparrow Stage. His performance started right after Tugga The Rapper. Diamond Jones was right at home in Lansing, Michigan. Being a Michigan native he drew many people to the stage. He had a very energetic stage presence which had everyone in the crowd bouncing along to his beats. He performed his newly released single “Like Woah”.

Here Come The Mummies ended the night at the Sparrow Stage. They were all dressed as actual mummies. The Mummies taught the crowd how to do the Fenk Shui dance while performing their song “Fenk Shui”.


Tugga The Rapper opened the Sparrow Stage. Tugga The Rapper is a Michigan Native. He drew out the biggest crowd out of all the openers at this stage from the week.

SahBabii opened the Auto Value Main Stage. SahBabii is a rapper from Atlanta, Georgia. He had the audience jumping around to his beats. He performed his song “Eazy” and had the crowd going crazy. Waldo was up next at the Sparrow Stage. Waldo is a rapper from Grand Rapids, Michigan. Being a Michigan native a lot of fans were drawn to him as well. His fans rapped along with during his whole performance.

Next up at the Auto Value Main Stage was Fetty Wap. Fetty Wap drew in a huge crowd. Everybody went crazy when he came onto the stage. Fetty Wap had the crowd rapping along when he and the Remy Boyz performed his song “679”. During the performance Fetty Wap and the Remy Boyz took of their shirts and signed them and threw them into the crowd. Fetty Wap ended his set by rapping his song “Trap Queen”. Twista performed next at the Sparrow Stage. The stage was packed for his performance. He rapped his well known hit “Get It Wet”. This had the fans going wild. His set was just enough to get the hype going for the headliner of the night Big Sean. Big Sean was the headliner at the Auto Value Main stage. He opened his set with his hit song “Moves”. Big Sean did not sit still for a second on stage he danced all up and down the catwalk during his performance.

He surely had the people in his home state of Michigan pumped during his performance. Big Sean performed his hit “Dance A$$” and the crowd went wild. Everybody in the crowd was clapping and singing while Big Sean danced around on the stage. Big Sean played another well known hit “I Don’t Fuck With You” which everybody sang along with as well. Big Sean rapped his hit song “Bounce Back” which also ended up being the same song he used for his encore performance. He surely encaptured the night. Rosco P was the last performance of the night at the Sparrow Stage. Rosco P was also a Michigan native. He had the crowd bouncing around and rapping to his hits. One older lady that was there bouncing around and rapping at the barricade stuck out to me. You surely would not think that this lady would be at this rap concert. She danced along and rapping to each of the songs with Rosco P. This surely was the best way for the music festival to end. It showed me that the power of music, no matter what the genre, is able to bring people together. I believe that is the whole meaning behind a music festival. Look for all the Common Ground photos by Torri Brasseur comming soon in the “Through the lens” section on our website.


Collecting Souls With September Mourning On a warm June night, in Denver Colorado I walked into a small bar/concert venue named Herman’s Hideaway to check out a fast-rising band on the metal music scene. September Mourning is an interesting concept that was pitched on Myspace by Emily Lazar (lead singer) to Marc Silvestri, COE and founder of Top Cow Productions. After a very successful Kickstarter campaign which achieved its funding goal in under 72 hours the project was set to take off. Emily plays the role of Comic book character September. In the comic book September is guided by the voice of Skullfly,


which only she can hear, she sets out to help lost souls that are kept in a purgatory state by the evil Fate and his righthand man Dark man. Fate sends out his reapers to stop September from helping these lost souls.

Onstage September’s band is formed of the reapers that are sent to stop September. The reapers consist of the characters of Riven (Rich Juzwick), Wraith (Kyle Ort) and Stitch (Josh Fresia/Dylan Roy). The band brings together a mixer of goth/theatrical metal and glam rock. Their set showcases a unique sound of a combination of different styles of hard rock which allow Emily to show off her high end vocal range that rival some of the best pipes in metal.

The band is touring in support of their comic book and their album “Volume II” and have been on tour with Marilyn Manson, Mushroomhead and Avitar. September and the group of reapers are currently collecting souls and enlisting members into their following properly named the Children of Fate on the Summer Soul Collection Tour which will run through August. After completion of the tour they will set out this fall with Xandria.


Best Sets Of Sasquatch! Written and and Photos Photos b byy Angela A ngella Tuetk Tuetken ken n

Every year in the heart of Central Washington, concert season kicks off at the Gorge Amphitheater, with the indie music festival, Sasquatch! This is a chance for bands to get their names beside some more established names in the music business. Many of the bands come from the Pacific Northwest and its close surrounding areas. But there are a few bands that come from across the world. Spread across the vast venue of the Gorge Amphitheater, four stages host a wide range of artists. Some of the best sets take place on the secondary stages to the main stage.

Sloucher Originating from Seattle, Sloucher is currently making their way around the Pacific Northwest. Though this is a change from the western part of the state, the band is not surprised by the sagebrush and dry environment of the Central Washington, like most artists. Sloucher is beginning to make noise in the indie world of music, with their EP “Certainty.” The title track recounting the absence of a loved one due to obligation. This band holds its own the Sasquatch stage, which is the main stage of the festival, later holding acts such as MGMT and Twenty One Pilots.

Klangstof The guys of Klangstof have been touring non-stop promoting their new album “Close Eyes to Exit.” The band is hitting the country’s biggest music festivals, Coachella, Sasquatch! and later this summer Bonnaroo.


Arkells Arkells originating from Ontario, Canada are another band that have travelled quite some ways to land at Sasquatch! In promotion of their new album Morning Report, the band is planning on touring the United States all throughout the summer and into the fall months. Vibing from the new Bruno Mars album and just enjoying the beginning of summer, the band brings a hype to the Yeti stage that draws one of the biggest and rowdiest crowds this stage has seen so far. Some fans arrive at the stage a good forty-five minutes before the set is due to begin, engaging with each other about their love for this alternative band. The band just finished an opening gig for The Flaming Lips and will continue touring with Foster the People this summer as well. To say the band has been busy is an understatement. Originating from Amsterdam, the guys are a long way from home, and picking up steam as they continue their touring. The band takes the Yeti stage here at Sasquatch, ready to experience another festival compared to the private venues they’ve been playing lately with The Flaming Lips. Providing a more toned down sound compared to the other sets that have been playing for two days, watching lead singer Koen getting lost in his sound and his playing brings the crowds attention their instrumentals.


The show starts with massive energy and the crowd responds immediately. An already established fan base does help when it comes to festivals in the middle of the Washington desert, but this band draws people from all corners of the venue. The band continues their tour throughout the US through November.

Around me the conversations continue, for some this is their first show, for others this is the third or fourth time seeing them. Once the show starts though, it’s clear why they are so sought after. Lyrically, they have clearly put in the work, but they back it up with their performance as well. Joshua Dunn (drums) and Tyler Joseph (vocals, bass, piano, ukulele) demand the attention of their audience and then thank them dearly for it. The show echoes throughout the gorge, bouncing off the walls of the canyon below the stage. Between crowd surfing while playing the drums, running off the stage and up a hill to a platform above the crowd, there is nothing lacking within this performance and deserves the title of best set of Sasquatch!

Twenty One Pilots When you bring big names to a small area, you get more than just the general population of that area. Twenty One Pilots have blown up into stardom in the last two years with their hit record “Blurryface.� Commanding all of the venues attention to the mainstage, long before they are set to go on, this duo has its followers and they are all here trying their hardest to get as close to the stage as possible.


SEETHER ‘Through The Lens’ of Peter Zurrin

Our own Peter Zurrin caught up with Seether on their ‘Poison the Parish World Tour.’ The South American rock band played hits such as ‘Fake it’, ‘Broken’ and ‘Remedy’ to a packed house at the Upstate Concert Hall in Clifton Park NY. ~Catching all the action ‘Through the Len.’




Country Music At The Gorge

Watershed Written and Photos by Angela Tuetken

The biggest party in Central Washington state is underway, starting July 28th. The three-day country music festival, Watershed almost always sells out within hours of the tickets becoming available. Bringing some of the biggest names in country music to the desert of Washington. This year’s headliners include, Lee Brice, Old Dominion and Randy Houser. With Chris Stapleton, Darius Rucker and Luke Bryan headlining the mainstage of the festival. Watershed is a nonstop three-day party, which begins even before the gates to the grounds open for the day. Campers and tailgaters surround the grounds of the amphitheater, eating, drinking and listening to music.


Once you get through the gates the fun really begins, food and merchandise vendors spread out across the grounds. Between the two stages a Ferris wheel, and two more rides provide extra entertainment to concert goers.

Darius Rucker closes things Saturday, spreading his upbeat, down home tunes up and down the gorge. Showing that it doesn’t take much to bring good vibes pulsing throughout a crowd who have spent the whole day in the sun. Some artists get on stage and the whole audience changes to their attitude, this is how it is with Old Dominion, originally formed in the heart of country music, Nashville, this band blends smooth lyrics with a country-rock feel that gets the audience dancing and singing at the same time. The band holds their own on the mainstage, their set on just before Luke Bryan on the last night. Also at the festival is a giant inflatable waterslide, which almost always has a line in the one-hundred-degree weather. It doesn’t matter which way you look, you’ll find someone in a cowboy hat or sporting cowboy boots and just about everyone has a smile on their face. The first night’s mainstage closing act Chris Stapleton rocks the amphitheater with seemingly minimal effort. He has exploded onto the country scene almost overnight and his fans are true, singing with him every step of the way.


By the third day the crowd has been out in the sun for three whole days, the festival should be winding down, and for some you can tell the party is just about over. But by the end of the third day all it takes is for Luke Bryan to hit the stage, take a shot, and he has everyone back on their feet and ready to party. The location may not be the most wellknown venue, but when you look at how far people are coming for just one festival, you know there must be something good happening. Three days of good vibes, hanging with friends and enjoying country music, Watershed takes place in one of the best locations where you can kick back and enjoy the view of the backdrop that is the gorge.


WAYLAND ‘Almost Famous’

About a month and a half ago I received a promotional email from a band named Wayland. As I do with most of my promotional emails, I opened it to see if the band would be in my area. I notice the band would be performing at the Iron Horse Saloon in Sturgis SD. Since Sturgis is about an hour and a half from where I live, I thought this might work out. After all I was already planning on going to Sturgis and to the Iron Horse that week to cover some other bands. Later that week I was checking who was playing what dates, and it just so happened they were opening for HellYeah, one of the nights I was going to be at the venue.


Not knowing a whole lot about the band, I started to research them. The more research I did on the band the more a movie I watched a few years ago popped into my head. The movie was a Cameron Crowe film called “Almost Famous”. I don’t know if it was the number of members of the band, the style of music, the tour schedule that was headed through the mid-west or just the small-town name of the band that made me think of the band Stillwater from the movie.

Wayland consists of Mitch Arnold (vocals) from Bloomington, Indiana, Phillip Vilenski (guitars) from Wayland Michigan, Dean Pizzazz (bass) from Detroit Michigan and Nigel Dupree (drums) from Kennesaw, Georgia and are managed by Jesse James Dupree, front man of rock band Jackel, Mark Abramson and Thermal Entertainment.


With over 500 shows since 2013 I was looking forward to seeing them play live. Wayland took the stage with authority and belted out a 90 plus minute set that included song off their 2012 EP “Welcome To My Head” and previously released single such as “Bloody Sunrise”, “Get A Little” and one of my favorites “Reno”. With a tight sound and Arnold’s powerful vocals that resemble some of the classic rock greats, Wayland live show is definitely something everyone needs to see.


Wayland has a release date of September 22, 2017 for their new album “Rinse & Repeat.” With the bands current single is at 35 and climbing on the Billboard charts and the release of their 2nd single “Shopping for a Savior” from the new album. Wayland, as with that band Stillwater from the movie “Almost Famous,” it’s safe to say they are on verge of becoming that small-town band that made it to the big time. You can see Wayland as they continue their tour all summer and into the fall throughout the mid-west and southern United States.


Backstage Music Magazine would like to Th ank Th e Knitting Factory in Spokane, WA Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City. SD Iron Horse Saloon in Sturgis, SD The Gorge Amphitheater in George, WA Herman's Hideaway in Denver, CO Upstate Concert Hall in Clift on Park, NY SLP Concerts Atom Splitter PR Grand Stand Media Warner Bros. Records High Road Publicity Wayland Mi Entertainment Group The Greenroom PR for all your hospitality and making this issue possible.

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