Welcome to Tour Journals, a Music Times segment where we ask some of our favorite up-and-coming bands to send us a dispatch from the road. This time around, we've asked our Camplified Summer Concert Tour contest winners Council to step in and send us their journals and blogs from the currently Camplified tour.
Our next stop on the Camplified Tour was Camp Arrowhead in Pittsford, NY. After a late night from the previous camp, the drive wasn't the most fun considering we had to arrive early the next morning. Thankfully, the three of us are used to waking up early so it wasn't entirely bad. The first thing we realized when we arrived at the camp is how hard the Camplified staff has to work. They setup, run the event for the campers, tear down and, with little to no sleep, are ready to go the next morning. Honestly, they are the real rock stars of the tour.
From the moment we pulled up to Camp Arrowhead to the moment we pulled away, these campers were energetic. Once we arrived, we got right into helping the campers at different tents. We chose to split up to really get to know all the campers, which turned out to be great! It was a lot of fun being at different tents. And we were asked to do a secret show, which was very cool. Of course, it's not really too secret since everyone knew about it but it was great nonetheless. It was a stripped down performance ... something totally out of our comfort zone, but we decided to try as many new things as possible on tour. After all, this is what the Camplified Tour is all about: new experiences for the campers and new experiences for the bands.
During the performance, we played one of our original songs, "Light Up The Sky." We had about ten minutes to put the acoustic version together. The spontaneity only added to both the song itself and the moment with the campers. We went for it and the campers enthusiastically clapped along. It turned out to be a great show and left us in very high spirits. In the end, we were happy to have tried something new because it worked out better than we could have planned. Shortly after that, we were called for a sound check.
We had a pizza for lunch, which became a trend for the next string of camps. Having lunch and dinner with the campers has been great because it gives us a chance to get to know the campers. Afterwards, we started preparing for our show.
We were second on the bill. The first act, Alexis Biesiada, really got the campers going. They loved her voice and energy. During our set, we felt we played a very energetic performance. Pat got lost in a sea of campers. They followed him as he paraded around the outside theater. He commanded the audience and they responded to his every move and word. It was a very cool thing to see. Andy connected to the audience and even played side by side with a camper playing air guitar during his solo. As with every show, the campers who love guitar would congregate by the side of the stage that Andy is on and watch his every move. His Gibson guitar might be one of the most popular things on tour actually. It's a beautiful guitar with our Council Logo taped on it along with Duck Brand Duct Tape. Check it out below!
After our set the campers gave us Camp Arrowhead hats and asked us for autographs. House On A Cliff was the final act of the night and they surely didn't disappoint.
Following them, we had our meet and greet. We loved to seeing everyone and always appreciate when they say how much they liked the set. All in all, it was a great day. On to the next camp!
This next camp was a homecoming of sorts for our band. We arrived at Camp Iroquois in Manlius. NY. This camp is about 30 minutes from where we used to live on our family farm in Baldwinsville, NY. In fact, we were able to stop in and see some of our family the night before the show, which was great!
Over the course of this tour, we've felt as if we're becoming seasoned professionals on what to do on arriving at the camps. We've sort of built a routine. We like to unload the few things of equipment we did bring: the Gibson guitars, Andy's mad scientist setup with computer and some in ears for Pat and I. After that, we headed right for the Camplified tents.
Andy and I went to The Duck Brand Duct Tape tent because we enjoyed making Duct Tape anything. On this day, we tried something new: if the camper really showed some interest or seemed to be down then we would offer to let them be part of the band by making them special Council tags that they could wear. If that didn't work we just let them wear our sunglasses and that usually cheered them up. Meanwhile, Pat was at The Roland Tent teaching the campers chords on the guitars and piano. He's a great teacher and I am sure the campers enjoyed him taking the time to do so.
For lunch, we had Mark's Pizzeria –– pizza and wings. Luckily, pizza never gets old to us, especially great pizza! And no, we don't get anything for saying how good the pizza is. Unless Mark is reading this and wants to reach out to us when we are in town (LOL).
While we were busy eating lunch we noticed that even then the Camplified staff was working on something. It actually sets the bar for our band to work as hard as they do. So thank you, Camplified!
After lunch, we couldn't wait for our set. The guys from Rocky Mountain Sound have been amazing. They've helped us tweak our sound for different venues and have given us a ton of tips. Right before the show we went out into the crowd and got the campers amped. As soon as the intro to our first song, "You Will Always," started the campers were on their feet, and they stayed that way through the entire show. It's safe to say that because of this tour we have become more confident and have worked hard to improve everything about our set. In thinking back, it seems to have paid off, because the campers were absolutely amazing. We finished off our set on a high note. And the next two bands, Alex Biesieda and Bad Seed Rising, kept the campers in a frenzy for the rest of the day.
The meet and greet at this camp was crazy. Each camper wanted an autograph from every member of every band. We gave extra Council cards out and even had to go and get more CDs. It was a great feeling to do well in our hometown. Afterwards, we packed up and hit the road to the next camp.