Music Fans Get Musically Submersed at Annual RBBQ Festival
Susquehanna Bank Center
Camden, New Jersey
May 20, 2012
Photos: Steve Trager
There is no better way to kick off the summer concerts on the east coast in our own back yards with the likes of the annual RBBQ festival type event with another great lineup this year. Earlier in the Month of May WMMR hosted its annual radio event at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden New Jersey, with another stellar lineup of musical ear candy which has become a staple type tradition opening the doors to summer time concerts here in Philadelphia. While each of the previous RBBQ’S can often be noted as great lineups, this year’s run of bands tops the books as a history making show for the 44 year old radio station. Mind you it’s not always about the shows they put on or the slew of concert tickets they pass out, it’s really all about the music they play, the family oriented personalities that transcend the music through the airwaves round the clock, which makes WMMR an award winner hands down. WMMR has that notable phrase Everything that Rocks that can often be a counterpart as to why they haven’t left the FM dial all these years surpassing many stations that either have changed formats, or simply bit the dust, just go to show how one station can truly out do themselves behind the scenes.
WMMR has often be a long supporter for local music that has blessed the city of Philadelphia in the 80’s with something called Street Beat which focused on unleashing the local scene to a wider audience through live broadcasts and concert promotions, that have become a fine example of the growth of a station besides mashing both old and new music to feed our heads on a daily basis.
The RBBQ is both a great way to experience a hand full of bands that one is either unfamiliar with or have grown to love with a tapestry of hits which have become a signature for most of the bands gracing the stage for WMMR on a yearly concert event. This year marks the 6th annual RBBQ with one of the greatest lineup’s to date including Shinedown, Godsmack, Halestorm, and legendary guitar hero Slash along with Myles Kennedy for what appeared to be a great day of rock. Without the heavy weight radio hitters we can’t forget to acknowledge the baby bands like Pop Evil and Adelitas Way sharing the stage at the RBBQ, but there is one band who lives the dream of the 80’s and that can only be Steel Panther, who truly emphases the parody of hair bands and glammer rock which we all remember as being the best era in music.
Opening the RBBQ was the first ever Jaxson’s performance of Building the Band rounding out 6 stellar local musicians welded together forming the first ever local series of no names etching themselves with stability of greatness which they call themselves the Endless March. Not a bad way to kick off the show I would have to say, there are many great and successful local bands amongst the area but often lack the ideal of crafting originals.
Next up we had Adelitas Way, another great band widely discovered by WMMR and their potential of something great which they are with just 2 CD’S under their belts and having been together for 5 years, Adelitas Way is certainly making a name for them. In fact Lead front man Rick DeJesus is a local in our own back yard hailing from just outside of Philly region. Adelitas Way can certainly jam a bunch of hits down your throat in mere moments during their set. This band is fast paced and full of energy just like the CD’S but even better live.
Pop Evil is no exception of the new era of emerging bands inside the world of rock music, while Monster You Made Me as become a signature staple on the airwaves of WMMR for months, Pop Evil unloaded some great tracks at the show that including Bosses Daughter which not only is a great song, but it’s also a heavy hit home rock track by Pop Evil certainly out does the Monster you made me by far hands down.
One great ideal behind the RBBQ is quick performances, and lighting fast changeovers makes for a great day if you blink an eye you might miss something like the great performance of local rockers from Pennsylvania known as Halestorm. Lizzy and the band have come along way from playing the local scene in the area for sometime before getting the attention they deserve as a band and now currently have blown up twice the sizeable measure to return to the RBBQ a second time this year sharing the stage with many great iconic rock bands. Their performance at the RBBQ was nothing less then great spanning tracks from their catalog including Love Bites and I Get Off.
Living in the era of the 80’s was the greatest decade for music, lipstick, hairspray, and flashy outfits made for many bands to be hot sellers for both MTV and arena rock style tours, oddly enough all that has truly been washed away or has it? While we the music fans will never out live our rock roots (myself included) only one band that can bring back all those glorified days of Hair Metal and that being Steel Panther. These individuals already making a name for themselves as one of the hottest bands to captivate the 80’s with a twist in their set of songs. While they mock songs or toss in odd titles, it makes for a fun and entertaining show in good measure. With songs like Eatin’ Ain’t Cheatin’. Community Property and Death to All But Metal makes for a fun visual show with this band. They certainly can whip out Journey’s cover of Lights for great measure but what really stands out is their current single called 17 Girls a magnificent rock track that gets you all fired up 80’s style. Being unfamiliar with this band until the RBBQ show, leaves you guessing how great they can be as a live touring act and they do kill it live hands down.
This years RBBQ wouldn’t be a complete event without guitar legend persona Slash along with Myles Kennedy to entertain your senses. Slash well known for Guns N’ Roses as well as Velvet Revolver claim to fame bands over the years earned him the Grande spotlight at the show. Lending a vocal hand
Myles Kennedy dished out the great vocal licks to Slash’s current record that has quickly become a stellar hit with just one single thus far You’re a Lie, an inspirational rock track indeed face paced and melody moving for sure. Although the combined hits of Slash’s previous endeavors, Myles kicks the vocals up a few notches with Welcome to the Jungle, Sweet Child O’ Mine, and Slither gives those songs a fresh remake as tasty covers in the bands set.
WMMR often labels Shinedown the hit makers and that label fit like a glove. Shinedown have earned a cult following with fans selling out shows nation wide that including the second annual Carnival of Madness Tour as the headliner. While many of us thought Shinedown could have easily closed the show this year, we settle for a 60 minute set filled with all the hits Shinedown as to offer any fan as a great live touring band. Besides the killer songs they plowed through during the show, Shinedown always dedicate a segment where the acoustic songs come out of the woodwork and that being their version of Simple Man. If Lynyrd Skynryd can rack that up as one of the great’s besides the epic freebird. Shinedown truly opens the doors in classic rock with Simple Man closing their set of any live show.
Closing out the annual RBBQ this year of 2012 Metal Monsters Godsmack, who have collectively toured the world hand over fist and have built an arsenal of records captivating their unique sound from day one makes Godsmack a great fit for this day long event. Godsmack could have easily pulled out a larger scale of songs to perform we settle for a hand full of tracks built for speed during the 60 minute set. Included was Joe Walsh’s Rocky Mountain Way, nicely done for sure. No show is complete without a Godsmack segment with the face to face drum solo from Shannon Larkin and Sully Erna demonstrating the power and passion for killing the drums solos.
Every RBBQ show is considered to be the best summer time attended concert experience, just really depends on taste and genres of music one can tolerate. Mixing it up makes it a blast and makes it a great memorable day of performances that only WMMR can deliver time and time again.