AN END TO THEIR RIOT
Updated: Aug 29, 2019
“Erase me, all of me I’m not the one No, you’ll never save me I don’t belong here” – One Day, by Skytown Riot
It’s crazy to think that these lyrics describe your relationship and experience with Nashville perfectly. The sad part is, you did belong here, you just didn’t find the people to save you. And now, you’re being erased, all of you.
In January 2017, I found myself really struggling to find opportunities in the music industry. My boyfriend, at the time, was sick of me griping and decided to challenge me. He told me that if I couldn’t find any opportunities, then I needed to create one for myself. And that’s where my adventure with Skytown Riot began.
From previous experience, I knew that booking was one of the easiest ways into the industry. And even though I despised booking, I bit the bullet, hoping that it would lead me onto bigger things! I placed an ad (fancy way to say “Facebook post”) on the YEP Nashville Facebook page, letting everyone know that I was interested in being a booking agent, so please send me your stuff.
Within a couple of hours, I received about 15-20 band and artist submissions. LET THE ELIMINATION BEGIN! Honestly, it didn’t take as long as I anticipated, because most of the artists sucked … I’m talking like you should never sing again … because, I am scared for your life here … and the lives of those who have heard your angel killing- window breaking- ear drum rupturing- voice. At this point, I was on the edge of giving up, and that’s when I discovered Skytown Riot.
From the moment I clicked play on the first song off their album (Breaking Silence), and heard Van’s extraordinarily clean voice (for Alternative Rock that is lol), I knew that this was the one!! I knew that this would be the start to something amazing! I sat there easily and listened to the entire album, and was confused why a band of such caliber hadn’t already been swooped up by labels. Every song was completely different; each pulling you in and leaving you wanting more. The cinematic textures of Sensational, to the memorable electric guitar in Paint Me The Sky, to the melancholy serenade of One Day, to the rupturing core in The Afterglow; I was infatuated. You could even say, I fell in love. I fell in love with Skytown Riot, and the talent that they exuded! So, I decided that I would meet with Skytown first, and if we didn’t click, they didn’t like me, and so fourth, that I would go on to my second pick. Luckily, I didn’t have to do that.
I started with Skytown almost immediately, because they actually had their crap together. Every good booker knows, that their job will be a lot easier if the artist has all, if not, most of these things: EPK, EP or full length album, live performance vids, show history, stage plot, revenue history, etc. Some of these aren’t as important or you may not have them, but if you don’t have any music recorded, don’t even bother seeking out a booker; you will be their living hell. **Clarification: Booking is NOT easy.
After I received all the information I needed, I started hustling. My definition of hustling, was working a full 8 hour shift, (6 am-2pm), at Panera Bread, and then coming straight home to start booking for the rest of the day. That hustling led to, a lot of new venues, new friends, new add ons to the team, a lot of good and weird shows, getting radio play, and doing some interviews. It wasn’t easy, but I believed (still believe) in Skytown’s music! If the passion and belief is there, marketing is a piece of cake! And then after about 4 months working together, some stuff started to crumble.
I had to put booking on hold, (which during the end of spring/summer is not a great idea), because our lead drummer had to step down for some personal reasons. No drummer = absolutely no shows. We eventually got a drummer that we thought showed promise, but he ended up being a little wimpy B*&%$. Do you catch my drift? The first mini tour I had booked, he happened to tear his bicep at work … what are the odds???!! So, we were down a drummer again. Then we got blessed with Scott. A fantastic drummer, who nailed every beat in every song, the first time around; the guys and I were shocked!
Today, because of many successes and a couple fails, Skytown Riot has put out the fire. They decided to part ways, and end the dream they had been fighting for for years. I understand why they did it, but I also hate what the music industry has come to. Alternative Rock is one of the reasons I fell in love with music; not Pop, not Rap, nor R&B. And for some odd reason, Alternative Rock dies in Nashville. And it’s not just Nashville; Alternative Rock and Punk Rock is a dying genre everywhere. I don’t believe that there’s a single week that goes by, where I don’t put in their album and reck my voice!
Here’s to you Skytown; I really hope that one day, bands like you will spring up again. For now, I wish you all: Van, Jason, Sebastian, and Scott, as much happiness as ever, and that you don’t have any regrets! You are truly amazing, and I’m grateful that you released such a bad ass record! You definitely made a difference in my life!
For those of you who haven’t heard of Skytown Riot, please browse their website and give their album and newest single a listen; I promise you won’t regret it! https://skytownriot.com/music-videos