Only One Road In…

Mitch Arnold of Wayland

Mitch Arnold of Wayland

“There’s only one road in and one road out of Reno.”

-Wayland, Reno

So I have been have working through further posts on my playlists. Part of what is halting me is Camp NaNoWriMo. Everything seems to take back-burner when you are writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days with a 40 hour a week day job. Also it seems to be the heart of concert season. Shown by the fact that I went to yet another concert for Wayland. This time in Janesville.

Okay, honestly it was a miniature music festival called Redneck Fest Reunion. Even though the later part of the night we were there for seemed decidedly non-redneck in nature, who were we to argue? The last three bands to play were Wayland, Royal Bliss and Bobaflex. A deal for the $10 at the door to get in.

Phill showing the guitar who's boss

Phill showing the guitar who’s boss

I know, get to the point. Part of the point was to share the photos my wife took at the event. Yes, every photo on this page was taken by Mrs. Zombie with her new SLR camera. We bought it last year to replace the first digital Rebel we bought her, with all the lenses being compatible. As we were closer than at the Acoustic New Year, she managed to get some awesome shots.

The other reason is to do my part to get #RENO trending. Reno is their latest single that releases on iTunes and the radio in the next couple of weeks. Honestly, I think this is one of their best songs. Ranks right up there with Welcome To My Head for me. WJJO already has an acoustic recording from the last sound lounge they did over there. In theory you can request it now. Once it releases, I am sure they will be playing it light crazy. But requests never hurt.

If you’re not from Madison, direct your station to their YouTube channel for a preview and the contact for them. For the acoustic version of Reno, link to this video below…

Now, you may ask yourself if Mitch is really singing Reno in the photo at the top. I am pretty sure he was. Like 83% sure he was.

Tyler Coburn of Wayland

Tyler Coburn of Wayland

Even though I have put their songs on the playlists for several of my stories under construction, you may also wonder why it is I am pimping this band out like one of my favorite authors. Maybe it is a belief that art is connected. Through the written word or the prose set to music. Possibly it is due to the inspiration their music has given me and the way it has grown on me over the past year and a half. Or the sheer number of shows they do in the area.

Dean Pizzaz of Wayland

Dean Pizzaz of Wayland

Honestly, I think it has to do with interaction. I see a few bands like Wayland that are dealing with fans in a similar way that Felicia Day did back at the beginning of The Guild series. They engage the fans. Interact on Twitter and Facebook. Hang out at the merch booth after a show signing things. If they see you enough at shows they will recognize you when you show up. I assume if they don’t they will treat you as if they did. Foremost, they appreciate you.

The concept of the statement of “I appreciate you” is a whole other can of worms, and topic of its own blog in the future. But these guys seem to embrace the concept wholeheartedly. Both on and off the stage.

They don't play, they put on a SHOW

They don’t play, they put on a SHOW

Any band that can type in four letters to a reply in Twitter and get me to bring booze soaked cupcakes to a show has got to be pretty good at inspiring and involving fans. I know some of you out there are thinking that isn’t a tough sell, but apparently I have many people fooled into believe I am not an introvert. I’m a writer. If I didn’t have a really needy older dog, I would write at home an even fewer people would ever see me. As it is, I still don’t feel right saying hello to any of them at a show. And my wife won’t act as my public relations as she tends to at conventions. Or at least how she used to.

Phillip Vilenski of Wayland

Phillip Vilenski of Wayland

Sure at Romantic Times I can hand out cupcakes to a bunch of authors sitting around an editor I know and then pick on them for accepting food from someone whose name they don’t know, but musicians are different. They are social people by nature. Or at least their art is. In my defense, I have practiced the art of indifference for decades. It was tempered in the fires of choir and drama class through high school and college. The art of public speaking, maintaining character and test taking were the best classes other than creative writing and English I took in school. But again, my introverted nature (or lack thereof) is a topic for yet another blog post.

Robin was getting artistic here...

Robin was getting artistic here…

The band I’m discussing is a touring band. Seriously a touring band. Like 320 or 330 shows last year. One of their standing hashtags (as well as themes on their concert shirts) is #alwaysontour. At 330 shows in a year, that’s no boast either. Check out the Wayland facebook page for information on the band and their touring schedule. If they are showing near you and you love classic rock, they are worth the time to go see. If you are a listener to your area’s rock station, call up and demand they play this music.

Dean playing the bass line

Dean playing the bass line

And if you do make it out to their show and you like it, stop by the merch table. Buy the EP for $5, or a t-shirt proudly proclaiming yourself as a Wayland Warrior. Get your CD signed, the guys will sign anything. Each dollar you spend keeps them on the road. It keeps them on the road, writing new songs, and singing. I have already bought 4 copies of the EP (and given away three of them to other people), and have more Wayland shirts than any other kind of shirt other than zombie shirts. Let’s face it, I am Zombie Joe.

For my part, I always make a point to spend money on some swag and usually $5 or so directly into the gas fund. The amount tends to weigh on how many people show to the event, the size of the venue, and how much money is in my pocket at the end of the night.

If you are on Twitter, link up to this with the #RENO hashtag to get it trending. Or, if you love rock and roll, click onto their website or Facebook page and find out when they are playing near you. You shouldn’t be disappointed.

Are you not entertained?

Are you not entertained?

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