Dada Celebrate The 20th Anniversary Of Puzzle At The Wonder Bar Tomorrow, Feb. 14

Who can forget the opening D drone of “Dizz Knee Land?” That was the hit from Dada’s debut disc, Puzzle. Like other classic songs that withstand the test of time, “Dizz Knee Land,” along with other well-known hits such as “Dim,” “Surround” and “Dorina,” have propelled this band into a new year’s worth of touring and product alignment.

Dada are a band that has come full circle and are eager to get back to basics and have some fun along the way. Singer/guitarist Michael Gurley says in their press release, “The best way for me to crank it up—to let my hair hang down and really rock—is with Dada. It’s the best band I’ve ever been in and I’m looking forward to taking it to the people again.”

Original drummer Phil Leavitt also chipped in, “This tour is about celebrating longevity. We have a ton of material and a ton of material we’ve never played for an audience.”

The band is in the midst of a 35-date outing and will be rolling into Asbury Park tomorrow night for an appearance at Lance & Debbie’s Wonder Bar. The band’s focus will be on performing all of the songs off of Puzzle, but add that they will “be performing material from their notable discography that the band has rarely or never played live.”

In addition to showcasing a range of gems from their extensive catalog, the band will feature several new songs during the marathon-length performances. The opening band will be Shoreworld alumni Lisa Bianco from New York City. In addition, the following band will have the convenience of two members of Dada being in it. 7Horse features Dada’s Joie Calio and Phil Leavitt. 7Horse describes their sound as, “Where cosmic country meets dirty blues.”

Dada will also be performing at the Highline Ballroom in NYC on Feb. 20. For information on this show, go to highlineballroom.com.

Tickets are available on Ticketmaster or at the Wonder Bar box office. The Wonder Bar is at 1213 Ocean Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ, 07712. thewonderbarasbury.com

Bands On A Budget – Endorsing Unlimited Vision

When it comes to the music business, my number one pet peeve has to be companies and individuals that offer services to a group they undoubtedly have limited knowledge of. I’ve seen my share of writers, merchandisers, booking agents and other so-called “industry professionals” who have no actual experience when it comes to the musical communities they serve. A degree in journalism or business is an excellent platform, but it does not take the place of hands-on experience of playing in a band and working your way up the ranks. Hard work is the only way to gain the reputation of trust.

Bands On A Budget is a company made up of musicians, artists and peripheral specialty folks that have lived and breathed music since they were able to crawl. Their involvement with the New Jersey music crowd is well documented, and I’ve personally witnessed their climb to credibility.

They were the first to combine the social aspect of solidarity through their innovative drop card distribution and their Cowerks collective. The Cowerks collective is a partnership that shares space with Bands On A Budget, and is the area’s only community-shared space that offers classes, seminars, and meet-up groups geared towards the tech community.

Bands On A Budget practice what they preach. Their involvement in the community and their credo of paying it forward are what initially put them on my radar. In other words, they are the real deal. During Hurricane Sandy, co-founders Danny Croak and Bret Morgan used their marketing savvy to raise over $55,000 with their now Jersey famous “Restore The Shore” campaign. That foundation is ongoing, and monies are still coming in to help our neighbors. Once again, that’s what puts these guys on the map. The ability to think on their feet and take charge in a state that was essentially doing minimal damage control at the time is wild enough, but combine that with their ability to keep a steady focus on business and innovative design, and it’s a winning combination for sure.

However, the guys (and girls) at BOAB are not content to sit back and bask in what they considered to be “a citizens duty.” They have gone ahead to offer other community-based programs aimed at involving musicians and artists on their climb to notoriety.

The latest thing they’ve become involved with is their endorsement of upstart media companies such as The Tiny Giant Artist Collective, which celebrated the Tiny Giant Winter Beach Ball this weekend. Over 30 bands participated in this three-day event across several venues, including the Court Tavern, Asbury Lanes, and The Lamp Post.

Bands On A Budget is also kicking in on the radio end with their endorsement of Valley Free Radio out of Northampton, MA. Valley Free Radio is a non-profit, volunteer-run station that aims to provide “critical thinking about mass media” while providing a space for the community to discuss educational topics and trade information and equipment. Valley Free Radio has nearly 100 local programmers on air, and as part of the Pacifica Radio network, they are able to broadcast a variety of programs produced at other community stations around the country. The Bands On A Budget endorsement will include their signature indie card. This is their digital download product that has been featured over the past several years as the most cost effective means of sharing music, photos, and videos on Band On A Budget’s exclusive platform.

The cards will be provided for the compilation of the bands performing at the event, as well as clips from the various radio shows provided.

If there’s a main theme here, it is that Bands On A Budget is not satisfied to sit in one place for too long. While they have built their reputation on local support and product, they are also opening their collective doors and minds to companies across the country. It is growth with purpose, and it’s a model that will continue to evolve as they add new endorsements, products and bands.

If you are searching for an honest, forthright company that does everything from MP3 cards to earplugs, call up one of the fine folks over at Bands On A Budget and see if they have what you need. Like it says on their website, “If you don’t see it, just ask—we’ll find it!”

Bands On A Budget will continue their ongoing assistance with endorsements for groups and organizations across the country. If you want more information about their programs and products, contact Jeanne Crump at jeanne@bandsonabudget.com or visit the site at bandsonabudget.com.

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