Every so often, an out of state unsigned band swings through East Lansing displaying such a bright future you feel lucky to have caught the band on its way up. Two to four years ago, Outcry graced the Rick's and Small Planet stages a few times with a poise and tunefulness that suggested they clearly had potential for greatness.
Now, this group, consisting of Steve Bryant (lead guitar, backup vocals), Gerry Stanek (bass, backup vocals), Jason Stanley (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), and Jon Leidersdorf (drums, backup vocals), is one step closer to broad, mainstream exposure.
The whole band has been together for several years, with Gerry being the most recent edition. Says Jon, "He played with us on and off for three years."
And now there's a record deal. "The record is released to radio and is doing very well. It's R&R's fourth most added, and it's starting to chart. It's on a PolyGram label called Eureka. We made the album ourselves first; they bought album from us -- This Side of Anywhere. They remixed it, remastered it -- Tom Panunzio, who's known for working with U2, Tom Petty, and remixing all kinds of people's stuff... he's the one who remixed it. It's gonna be in stores June 23rd, so we're fired up about that."
It's been a while since Outcry has been to East Lansing, so, except for a new version of "On and On," this'll be all new material for fans who bought the band's current-at-the-time CD, Wentworth, on Outcry's last swing through town.
"Middle of June, we're gonna start touring, doing mostly shows with radio stations and special summer festival shows. We're going to be doing some touring with this band called Big Wreck, and we will be very, very busy for a while to support the record playing live."
What musical changes can you expect from Outcry? "It's still musically very similar," notes Jon. "The progression would be to better songs. Actually, there's a song about being out in Michigan -- the song `Little Town' is about a little town in Michigan."
"The single is 'On and On,'" says Jon, "and it's being played at a bunch of Michigan radio stations."
Personally, I've long thought "On and On" to be a potential huge hit -- still catch myself singing it occasionally even though I haven't played the CD in months -- so, hopefully, it'll get the exposure necessary to allow it to propel Outcry into the limelight.
Once the touring begins, says Jon, "We're gonna start off on the East Coast doing the Hard Rock Cafe and Tradewinds. Then we're gonna go to Hyannisport. Then we're gonna move toward the Midwest." So watch for Outcry on tour -- hopefully it'll bring them back to town this summer.
And what of the next Outcry CD? Jon calms any fears we might have of a lack of material when it's needed: "We've got a bunch of new material; that's what we're working on now." Hopefully, it'll be a much anticipated follow-up to an award winning debut.
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