Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader
THE WOODLANDS, Texas —
The men of Shinedown are happy and healthy and enjoying life in 2013.
Florida rock outfit Shinedown is back in Texas this week and will be performing as the main attraction at Buzzfest 30 this Saturday at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion in The Woodlands. The concert is sold out.
Shinedown’s selection as the headlining act, along with a great undercard of bands such as Bush, Stone Sour, Papa Roach, Sick Puppies, P.O.D., Hollywood Undead, Oleander and others, helped the twice-yearly concert sell out quickly this spring.
The band is still touring in support of its fourth album, “Amaryllis,” which was released in March 2012 and features the singles “Bully,” “Unity,” “Enemies,” “I’ll Follow You” and a fifth single, the title track, tentatively set to be released in May. Shinedown has a well earned reputation as a touring machine, and, according to drummer Barry Kerch, a healthier lifestyle has made that process easier to handle.
“We’re all fitness guys now,” Kerch said in a telephone interview. “We’re all very healthy. We work out five-days-a-week, we eat better. I’m one of the original guys who started working out several years ago, but it’s been great to see everyone become healthier and more fit.
“We’re all in our thirties now, so we have to watch ourselves a little more,” he added. “We’ll go to the gym or do Insanity. I’ve been doing Tapout, which is more martial arts-based. The best part of all of this has been watching the transformation in Brent (Smith - vocalist). He’s lost 65 pounds since he started working out and he’s back on top of his game on stage like he used to be when we first started out. I think it shows with our schedule and performances.”
The group, which features Kerch and Smith, along with Zach Myers on guitar and Eric Bass on bass, has toured relentlessly since the release of “Amaryllis” more than a year ago. Kerch said he is not yet ready to pass judgment on the album and if it has met the group’s expectations.
“We’re still working it and touring for it and releasing singles, so we don’t really know what it’s accomplished quite yet,” Kerch explained. “We’re quite proud of it and it’s going well at radio and we’re still touring in support of it. We love touring. It’s a blessing and curse (laughs).”
This will Shinedown’s fourth time to perform at a Buzzfest concert. The group has headlined the side-stage twice, but it is the first time for Shinedown to be featured as the main attraction at Buzzfest.
“You can’t beat Buzzfest,” Kerch stated. “It’s legendary. There have been so many great Buzzfest shows we have been a part of and we’re thrilled to be headlining it this year. A big rock show like this is a lot of fun, and you can’t beat a Texas crowd.”
The band will continue touring through May 10 before taking a brief hiatus. Shinedown will then travel to Canada for a summer run with none other than rock icons, KISS.
“We really haven’t been to Canada very much in our career,” Kerch said. “So, in a way, it’s almost like we’re still a new band up there. But we’re really excited about this tour because we get to open for KISS, and who doesn’t want to play with KISS. Those guys still rock.”
Kerch said Shinedown is taking life on the road and living the album “Amaryllis” one day at a time and, with the band still being able to release singles from the disc and continue touring, there is no timetable for getting off the road and into the studio anytime soon.
“We’re still here, and we’re not going anywhere,” he said. “We’re just looking forward to a great show in Houston and our summer tour. Then we’ll see what’s next.”
Visit www.shinedown.com for more information on the band.
BUZZFEST 30 Lineup
A Silent Film 1:20 to 1:50pm
Beware of Darkness 2:20 to 2:50pm
Sick Puppies 3:20 to 4:00pm
Papa Roach 4:35 to 5:20pm
Stone Sour 5:55 to 6:55pm
Bush 7:40 to 8:40pm
Shinedown 9:25 to 10:45pm
Virginmary’s 1:00 to 1:20pm
IAMDYNAMITE 1:50 to 2:20 pm
Youngblood Hawke 2:50 to 3:20pm
Oleander 4:00 to 4:35pm
The Dirty heads 5:20 to 5:55pm
Hollywood Undead 6:55 to 7:40pm
P.O.D. 8:40 to 9:25pm