Vinyl Theatre & Finish Ticket Talk Co-Headlining Live Nation’s “Ones To Watch” Tour In 2016, 2015 Achievements & Taking Their Music Beyond The U.S: Directlyrics Exclusive Interview!

vinyl theatre interview directlyrics
finish ticket interview directlyrics

One of the best gifts to give yourself or a friend this holiday season? Possibly a ticket for the upcoming joint tour Vinyl Theatre and Finish Ticket are going to do next year. Both alt-rock bands will be co-headlining Live Nation’s “Ones To Watch” tour in 2016! Getting picked by Live Nation to do such a tour so early in their careers? Major!

Here goes a quick recap about these two bands belonging to the Warner Music Group: Vinyl Theatre (Fueled by Ramen) is a group from Milwaukee that last year released their debut album “Electrogram”, which spawned the super catchy hit “Breaking Up My Bones”. Vinyl Theatre is made of members Keegan Calmes, Chris Senner, Josh Pothier and Nick Cesarz. This band has toured in the past alongside Against The Current or Twenty One Pilots.

Finish Ticket is a San Francisco-based band composed of Brendan Hoye (vocals), Michael Hoye (bass), Alex DiDonato (guitar), Gabe Stein (drums) and Nick Stein (keyboard). They released last year their major label debut album “Tears You Apart” and this summer they dropped a 5-song EP titled “When Night Becomes Day”. Finish Ticket has opened tours for the likes of Ed Sheeran, The Black Keys, Phoenix or The Strokes.


* denotes Live Nation “Ones To Watch” official dates
17 – Saint Petersburg, FL – The Local 662
18 – Orlando, FL – The Social
19 – Atlanta, GA – Terminal West
21 – Nashville, TN – 3rd & Lindsley
23 – Washington, DC – U Street Music Hall
24 – Philadelphia, PA – Foundry*
25 – New York, NY – Gramercy Theatre*
27 – Boston, MA – Brighton Music Hall*
28 – Cleveland, OH – Cambridge Room*
1 – Columbus, OH – A/R Music
2 – Indianapolis, IN – Deluxe*
3 – Detroit, MI – Shelter*
4 – Chicago, IL – Bottom Lounge*
5 – Milwaukee, WI – The Rave Bar
6 – Minneapolis, MN – Triple Rock*
8 – St. Louis, MO – Old Rock House
9 – Kansas City, MO – Tank Room
11 – Denver, CO – Bluebird
12 – Salt Lake City, UT – Kilby Court
15 – Seattle, WA – Crocodile Café
16 – Portland, OR – Lola’s Room
19 – Los Angeles, CA – Troubadour
21 – San Diego, CA – House of Blues*
22 – Phoenix, AZ – Valley Bar
24 – Dallas, TX – Cambridge*
25 – Austin, TX – Parish*
26 – Houston, TX – Bronze Peacock*

For proof of the good chemistry between these two bands, check out the video below. It was shot backstage at a show in San Francisco.

US Headline Tour with Vinyl Theatre

Just met the guys in Vinyl Theatre last night in San Francisco. Can already tell this is going to be an amazing tour! Tickets go on sale this Friday at 10 am local.Speaking of San Francisco, we will see you guys tomorrow night for our homecoming show! Last chance to grab tickets:

Posted by Finish Ticket on Wednesday, November 4, 2015 recently had the opportunity to interview both bands and we asked them all about their upcoming joint tour across the US, what can fans expect from their individual shows, what covers they might be doing, what’s their favorite song to perform live, what they think about each other, or what their thoughts on their new singles are.

Haven’t purchased your holiday gifts yet? Well, after reading the interviews below I might have just solved this problem for you.

* Vinyl Theatre and Finish Ticket fans, make to stay tuned to We might be giving you a couple of surprises in the very near future!


1. What are your expectations for Live Nation’s “Ones To Watch” tour in 2016?

Vinyl Theatre: When we found out about this tour we were instantly excited for it. We are expecting some awesome shows on this tour and we have a good feeling that they will be just that.

Finish Ticket: This tour is going to be incredible, it's going to be our first opportunity for a headline tour across the USA, I think that excitement is going to translate on stage, it's going to be something special for all these fans, and it's going to be something special for us as well. Knowing that we are going out with a band like Vinyl Theater, guys that love touring and love music like we do and put on such a great live show, I think it's going to be a really good fit and just a really good time overall.

2. Does it feel good to be included in a “ones to watch” list?

V.T: Yes, it definitely feels really good to be a part of a “Ones To Watch” tour. Really great bands have been a part of this in the past and it is awesome to be a part of this.

F.T: It's definitely an honor to be including in this list. Some of our favorite Artists have started here and have been getting these opportunists through Live Nation. Looking at the whole list, it's just such a huge list of amazing bands who have done great things and have had awesome careers. So to be picked as one of these artists is a really big thing to us and is definitely getting excited to go out there and do an even better job on this tour.

3. You recently met your tour’s co-headliners in San Francisco (there’s a group photo of you on Facebook). What’s the chemistry like?

V.T: We played a show in San Francisco and we were told they were going to come out and hang out with us after the show. They came to the show and actually watched our performance and followed us outside after and there was great chemistry right away. They were all really friendly and definitely share the same passion and drive for music.

F.T: The chemistry is amazing already, so far we have only gotten to sit down with them for one evening and hang out. But it was one of those situations where it already felt like we knew them and we had already been on the road together for a while. They seem like a band with a similar approach to music and are in it for the same reasons, yeah I think it's going to be a perfect fit.

4. What’s the favorite song of yours to play at a concert, why, and what’s the reaction of the crowd usually like?

V.T: It changes for all of us from tour to tour usually. Personally, my favorite is currently “Breaking Up My Bones.” The crowd makes the songs very enjoyable to play live. We love playing the songs, but playing them for a live audience that is engaging and also has a connection to them makes it even better.

F.T: Our favorite song to play live as a band is definitely "Bring The Rain". Our live show is a very important thing to our band, it's what we are most passionate about. It's kind of our chance to get in front of a lot of people and win them over in the 30 minutes or so that we have to do that. Bring the Rain is definitely a special song in that we always try to end with it and and we are putting all this effort and work into our live show and trying to win fans over throughout the set and that's kind of the song that we kind of throw in at the end that seals the deal for a lot of people. We often will see this transition, we see their faces, you have a crowd of people that don't know us and throughout the set they are getting into the more we are playing and you know they are just getting aquatinted with the band. It's usually Bring The Rain that we just go all out, that really showcases the best of everyone in the band somehow, all in one song. It just has this big impact, and we always see this transition of someone who is just starting to get into it and then you see that transition into them becoming a true fan. It's usually this song that helps people make that leap in each show.

5. You seem to like doing covers. What covers do you see yourselves doing at Live Nation’s “Ones To Watch” tour next year?

V.T: A few songs come to mind that everyone in the band would like to cover. We have some ideas up our sleeve that we are excited to perform at this tour.

F.T: To be honest, we do enjoy playing covers but we don't really do them that often, or at least not a lot of them. We have a few that we really like that we tend to cycle through them into our live show from time to time. It's always been super important for us to be doing originals. Even for me as just a songwriter when I first picked up a guitar I just learned three chords and started writing my own original songs. So we were never really a band that did covers. But from time to time we will in fact pick covers and cycle them in our live show. A frequent one is The Killers "When You Were Young" that's a song we actually cover quite frequently and it's a song we really love to play. It's one we don't really change very much, it's one we really love the way it is, we don't feel like changing it and putting our own little flair to it is not as important as just playing it great, it's a killer live song show as well. On the other hand we have done other songs like Kid Cuddy's Pursuit of Happiness and we have totally changed it, rearranged it and really made it our own, so we really love to do that as well. We are going to plan something special for the upcoming tour, try to work up something really special for the fans and for us to have fun with on stage, maybe even a few song options and cycle them in the show where we change it up from night to night on the tour depending on what we feel like playing. I am not sure what we are doing to do yet but feel like we are going to keep things secret and make it really special for the fans that come out to each show.

6. What’s a live show from the band usually like?

V.T: Energetic. Each show we go out and put every bit of energy we have into the performance. We try and make the shows fun and engaging, while still making it feel like a musical concert. We want people to leave the show and be happy that they came out to see us.

F.T: Like I was previously saying our live show is a a really big deal to us. It's something that starting out as a young band in High School we had a lot to prove, since we were only 16 or 17 playing with all these guys in other bands that were in their mid 20s. So we would have to walk into a room and change people's minds because you would walk in and they would see us and be like oh, they are just these 16 year old kids and they are not going to be good at all and they are just going to sound bad. So that was a big initial hurdle to kind of jump over for us. We worked really hard at it and practiced every day or at least 4 times a week, even while in High School. Then we would go out with the other bands and play in the Bay Area, you know like San Francisco scene every weekend. It always felt wired to just be written off because we were younger, so we had that mentality that we had something to prove. We would go in and do this killer live show, we would blow people's minds because we were so young and had this live set that was just so high energy and just brought something else to the stage. And so that kind of carries with us still, specially when we are opening for other bands now, we have that same mentality. We have this 30 minutes or so, and we have this one job, that is to go out there in this short set and in like 5 or 6 songs we just have to win fans over. So we go out there every night, every show, and just put it all out there. We go crazy sometimes, and just have a really great time up there on stage. Everyone is moving around a lot, we try to show people in one show how much we love to do this and that we are very passionate about our live show and hopefully that's the vibe that's coming off the stage every show, every night. We have fans listen to our recordings but really hope people come to our live show, that's the heart and soul of our band.

7. In the many concerts you’ve played in the latest years, is there a particular show that’s stuck in your head for something that happened in it or because of a fun anecdote?

V.T: Definitely. A moment that sticks in my head is when we were on tour with twenty one pilots. It was the last show of the tour and Josh Dun came out in the middle of our set and actually did a backflip off our piano shell. It was our first end of tour prank, but it was very memorable.

F.T: There have been so many memorable opportunities and shows this past year, specially while on tour with our friends twenty one pilots, that it's really hard to narrow it down to just a few that stand out. If I had to choose I would start with Red Rocks just outside of Denver, Colorado. Red Rocks is one of those bucket list venues, we basically got to play to a packed house of 10,000 people, it was early evening and the sun had just gone down by the time we went on, which doesn't always happen for opening bands at that venue, a lot of openers go on and play when it's still daylight. Getting to play to a packed house at such an iconic and historic venue as it was completely dark out and there was a rare blood moon overhead of the stage as well, it was just this incredible atmosphere. It was really hard to take in that we were really doing that, it was one of those kind of special experiences that you don't fully realize until you get off stage and even then you still can barely believe that you really got to do that. Another one was playing in an arena for 13,000 people in Columbus, Ohio. We were playing a soft song, a song called Catch You on My Way Out, and at one point we had been talking about it with the crowd, telling then this is such a crazy experience and that we don't often get to play to this many people in an arena and so the crowd was really on our side. They were all just really happy that we were all able to have this opportunity, so they all just put up their lights and phones and from the front back it was just this wave of light. Starting from the first person right in front of me all the way to the top of the arena, you could see it spread. It was just such an amazing thing to see this spreading of light throughout the arena, we all just had to take a step back during that moment and try to get a mental picture of it, we just didn't want to forget that moment because it was so crazy. And then another one was we were playing in this venue in Utah, which was an outdoor venue, I believe it was seasonal and the stage had you kind of facing out onto the Salt Flats. We went on right at sunset and the view of the mountains and the sunset and the Salt Flats and all that was the most amazing view from the stage I have ever seen. And the atmosphere was incredible and the crowd was one of the best crowds we've ever had, honestly like one of the top five crowds ever. It just felt like I had a dream like this, you know, I definitely had had a dream where I was playing to a crowd like this at a time like this, honestly it just felt like a dream. This was definitely a show I will always remember.

8. How’s 2015 been like for you?

V.T: 2015 was a great year for us as a band. We spent most of the months of the year touring and playing shows for our fans throughout the country. We have also been working on new music as much as we possibly can while still being on the road.

F.T: 2015 has definitely been our most successful year. It's been a year of many firsts for us and a year that we really got to see a lot of reward for all the hard work that we have been doing. We may be young but we have been a band for a very long time, so when we finally get to go play the places we have always wanted to play and see the places we have gotten to see it's very validating to us. I mean, we have toured the USA plenty of times but we have gotten to do it now on a much bigger scale. We have gotten to play massive venues, venues we have always dreamed of playing and we have gotten to see so many incredible cities. We have gotten to tour Europe for the first time, we have recorded in London and lived there for about a month then we got to go tour through Europe and see these cities that like I mentioned before we have always dreamed of experiencing. And just experiencing these difference cultures and stuff, it was incredible for us. Definitely our favorite year so far and very validating and we are definitely sad to see this one come to an end, because we kind of just don't want 2015 to end.

9. What’s a country that you haven’t been to yet that you can’t wait to take your music to and why this country?

V.T: I’ve always thought it would be great to play in Australia. There have been a lot of bands recently coming out of there that are making some great music and it seems like a great music scene!

F.T: I think my top pick for places we have not been yet I think would be maybe Mexico, I have heard amazing things about the scene there, specially for rock bands. They seem like a very appreciative audience, very ravenous fans of the kind of music that we do and they definitely apparently don't take it for granted. Rock band shows seem to sell very well out there and bands seem to have some of their best shows there. So I would be very eager to experience what it would be like to play in Mexico. And if I had a fall back, secondary one it would be Australia. We have gotten to tour with a good amount of bands from Australia and we have heard amazing things and so yeah, I would love to go there as well.

10. What’s your advice for up-and-coming new bands that are trying to break in the scene?

V.T: I think the best advice to give any band is to commit to it. When we knew that this was what we wanted to do we went and got full time jobs and practiced as many times a week as we could. It is important to figure out what kind of music you want to make and to write as many songs as you can to see what you are truly feeling.

F.T: I would say the biggest thing is just getting out there, specially if you are just starting out. Get out there and play in front of as many people as you can, don't be too picky about shows just get yourself out there, get your name out there. Kind of expose yourself to your people and open yourself up to things including becoming a better performer, and I would say try to find something unique about yourself. Maybe it's in your music or your sound or your performance on stage. Something that kind of makes you stand out from the rest. That would be something important to do and establish pretty early on.


Vinyl Theatre

1. What do you think of the reception your debut album “Electrogram” had?

The reception to the album has been really good. We are just happy that the album is getting to people and they are finding a connection in the songs as we do.

2. If you had to choose a new single from “Electrogram” right now, what song would it be, why, and how do you imagine the music video’s treatment to be like?

If we had to choose another single from “Electrogram” it would be “Gold.” It’s a special song to us because of the message. The music video actually just came out and we were fortunate enough to work with Anthem films on it to help deliver the message we had.

Finish Ticket

1. Finish Ticket, you recently released a new EP called “When Night Becomes Day”. For those who have yet to get it, how would you describe the EP?

Our main goal with this EP was to pick a group of songs that would represent our live show well. We wanted it to be a collection of songs where you just plug in and turn it up and listen through speakers where you can almost picture these songs being played up on a stage with these songs coming through these big PA speakers. It's such a big thing for us, our live show, it's such a big part of our band. We are always striving for and trying to get closer and closer to recording songs that represent that well.

2. You recently dropped a new single from your EP called “Color”. What’s the story behind this song?

'Color' is definitely a unique track for us. We went into the recording studio with the plan to record a few other songs that we had already been demoing and wanted to get properly recorded and we were pretty far along and already had all these ideas. But what actually ended up happening was we walked out of that studio with a whole different song, based off of this riff that I had started working on. That's kind of the first time we have ever gone into a studio and just walked out with a complete new song, having started it in the studio and then having recorded it. Usually we will take our time and go demo songs a few times or just go play the song live and though the process change the song a lot more in a live band setting. So it was a very different experience for us and still to date is the only time we have ever done that. Just walked into a room, started a brand new song and then just walked out with it fully completed.

By on December 23, 2015

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