News Column

Three Rivers Festival brings Under the Sun Tour to Fort Wayne

July 10, 2014

By Jaclyn Goldsborough, The News-Sentinel (Fort Wayne, Ind.)

July 10--Call it a '90s music revival as the Under the Sun Tour featuring Smash Mouth, Sugar Ray, Blues Traveler and Uncle Kracker comes to Fort Wayne for the Three Rivers Festival.

The tour, sponsored by local radio station WAJI, 95.1-FM, will perform in concert at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Festival Plaza at Headwaters Park East, 330 S. Clinton St. Tickets are $20 in advance or $25 at the door.

Smash Mouth bassist Paul De Lisle and the band have played the Under the Sun Tour for a few years now, with bands including Vertical Horizon and Gin Blossoms, but he's looking forward to this year's lineup.

De Lisle said he's always been a fan of Blues Traveler, but he's never played with them before.

"I am very much looking forward to meeting them," he said. "I'm a big fan of the band and particularly their bass player. He's an extremely fine player."

Sugar Ray is another story, however. De Lisle and the band have been playing with Sugar Ray for years. He said their relationship is a lot like family.

"The guys in Sugar Ray are like our brothers," he said. "We are really close and have been for 17 years. We are good old friends."

The musicians in the Under the Sun Tour not only have a great relationship, they also know how to rock an audience.

De Lisle said that's the best part of touring -- showing the crowd the best show possible.

"It's a different approach to hearing the regular album songs," he said. "Albums can be too perfect or too clean. I like to hear some variation, jamming or a different note here and there. Then you know it's real.

"For us, we want to show everyone we are a really good live band," he added. "We surprise people. We have a lot of firepower and a slamming drummer."

Jack Hammer, executive director of the Three Rivers Festival, said when the tour came up, he thought it was a great match because that audience demographic can often be underserved in the community.

"This year we really stepped it up, and we are bringing in great bands like Sugar Ray and Blues Traveler," Hammer said. "When we bring in bands like this, it's not just saying, 'I'm going to bring in a band just to play a show,' it means bigger stage, more lights, a sea of tour buses and all the things that go with it. That all makes it a great show."

In Hammer's opinion, one of the best things about the concerts at the festival this year is the prices. The Under the Sun Tour ticket is only $20 advance or $25 day of show, but folks can get an extra deal with the Mega Music Pass. The pass is $45 per person and includes tickets to all nine TRF concerts, including the Under the Sun Tour.

"These types of tours typically sell for an additional $20 more per ticket," Hammer said. "As a community festival, we cannot have our ticket prices as high as other venues. We have sponsors that do this just for the community, because they want to make Fort Wayne a better place to live."


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Source: News-Sentinel (Fort Wayne, IN)

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