02/20/13Posted in Features by Andre Reddy

L4LM Artist Direct Connect: The Mantras


Want to know what life is like on tour for your favorite band? Want to hear what the musicians have to say about your favorite festival? How about getting an idea of what is going through the mind of a front man when he is looking back at you from the stage? If you want to get inside the mindset of the musician, we’ve got you covered! 

In this installment of L4LM Artist Direct Connect we get a glimpse at a small slice of the hectic tour life of Southeast natives The Mantras.

Since 2005, the band has been perfecting their unique and infectious sound characterized by high energy and precision. It is fusion of jam, metal, funk, and rock 'n roll that grabs you by the balls and gets your groove going. The Mantras continue to impress their peers, and win over new fans at every turn with their instrumental prowess, positive lyrics, and unending drive to put on an amazing show every night! This rising profile has resulted in an incredible year, seeing The Mantras and their members sharing stages in double-bills and direct support for the likes of Umphrey's McGee, Eoto, George Clinton and P-Funk, Kyle Hollingsworth Band and many more.

Tour Diaries

January/February 2013

MantrasLogo

The Mantras

The Mantras

We have been out on the road for the past couple weeks pushing our brand new album, “Jambands Ruined My Life”, and decided to keep tabs on some of the play by plays, day by day.  We have eight people in our crew – this includes the five band membersThe Mantras — Keith Allen on guitar, Brian Tyndall on bass, Justin Powell on keys, Justin Loew on drums, and me, Brent Vaughn on percussion.  We also travel with a FOH sound engineer (Matt Gordon), a projectionist (Dustin Klein) and a tour manager/merch slinger/ band mom (Lindsay Harris).  Here’s a run-down of what we have been up to lately.  Enjoy! -   Brent Vaughn The Mantras / percussion

Brett Vaughn of The Mantras

Brett Vaughn of The Mantras

January 22, 2013 – Album Release

  • Our much-anticipated album “Jambands Ruined My Life” via the internets.
  • In regards to the title of the new album, there’s a story behind it all.  Several years ago, a friend of ours decided to bail on work, just so he could make it to one of our shows.  After being fired due to missing the shift, he called Keith saying, “man…..jambands
    Jambands Ruined My Life Cover Art

    "Jambands Ruined My Life" Cover Art

    ruined my life”.  He was just being sarcastic and funny, but we’ve been saying that one liner ever since. We have now realized that the clever statement has multiple interpretations.  “Jambands” hardly ever make it, or get big, but this impossible dream has kind of “ruined” all of our lives in the eyes of the generic population out there.  We’ll never be doctors, or lawyers, or stock brokers.  Oh well, we are just going to roll with it.  What have we got to lose?

  • Definitely knew the album-title choice would create some chatter amongst the live music scene—that was a no-brainer – so we’re ready to hit the road and rawk.

January 25, 2013 @ Peasant’s – Greenville, NC

  • Ice, Ice, Baby – the Southeast is both scared – and un-prepared – for ice/snow.  When it happens here in eastern NC, people freak out like the world is going to end.  Therefore, the show was cancelled.

January 26, 2013 @ The National – Richmond, VA w/ Umphrey’s McGee

  • We knew this gig was going to be a party when it sold out the day before the show at 9 a.m.TheMantras_thenational_ marquee
  • Venues rarely put the opening act up on the marquee > so it was cool showing up in Richmond and seeing our name up there.
  • We had an excellent crowd in front of us for our set.  Spotted some familiar faces out in the crowd, but most of them were brand new – #crushedit
  • UM’s guitar master, Jake Cinninger, sat in for the final three songs of our set.  We actually recorded the new album at Cinninger’s studio (Boondock Studios) in Michigan and he was kind enough to add some shreds to two of the tracks on the album, “Kinetic Bump” & “House of Cards”.
  • We wrapped up our set at The National with “Sabotage” by the Beastie Boys.  Bruce “The Shark” Sharky tried to eat Jake during the tune, but he only got a
    "Sharky"

    "Sharky"

    tiny nibble.  Bruce travels with us from show to show, collects super heady hat pins, flirts with all the ladies, and has his very own Facebook page.  If Bruce is not on the stage while we are playing, we do not have a good show.  We have definitely jinxed ourselves on that one.

January 30, 2013 @ Headliners – Toledo, OH  w/ Ultraviolet Hippopotamus

  • Details from this show are fuzzy because it was so freaking cold/windy/icy that night – our brains froze.
  • However, this was our first show with UV Hippo.  Most of us had only heard them once before (at AURA 2012 – our set was right before theirs – so they were forced to listen to us as well:)  Anyways, these guys are pros.  Very complex instrumentation with strong lyrics – and makes you shake your booty.Mantras Tshirt
  • The Hippo guys got a real kick out of our use of the word “yall”.  Guess that word isn’t very popular with y’all people from the North.
  • Jambands Ruined My Life finally added to Spotify – our previous album, Dharland, was released in early 2010 – so the Spotify selection was very out of date.  Many, many, many things have changed in this band, for the better of course, since 2010.

January 31, 2013 @ The Loft – Lansing, MI  w/ Ultraviolet Hippopotamus

  • We rolled up to the venue a bit early — pulled up next to Hippo’s van/trailer in the alley behind The Loft.  They invited some of us into their van to hang and we immediately realized that their method of transportation is much nicer, and more comfortable, than our 2006 Chevy Express. If their van is reported missing anytime soon, it wasn’t us.
  • Mantras w/ UV Hippo

    Mantras w/ Russel from UV Hippo

    The co-engineer/secret-agent-man of “Jambands Ruined My Life”, Jim Leep surprised us at the show — Jim is our tour manager Lindsay’s inspirado.  He lives by the “there’s no such thing as Problems, just Solutions” method.  Jim tour managed Ali Baba’s Tahini (Jake’s side project – our keyboardist, Justin Powell, joined ABT for their most recent album/tour)

  • Russell from UV Hippo sat-in with us – we like to play.

February 1, 2013 @ Abbey Pub – Chicago, IL  w/ Ultraviolet Hippopotamus

  • While en route to Chicago from Lansing, and listening to “Chicago” the band, we see that the “Reel Feel” is going to be -5 degrees in Chi-town.  Our witty drummer, Justin Loew, chimes in saying, "Man, I wish I had brought some pants".  Justin Loew – is better known to us as “#”, “Pasta”, or “J-Lo” — He has gone by the nickname of J-Lo since he was a kid, long before that no-talent ass clown became famous and started winning Grammys.  When asked why he doesn’t just go by “Justin” instead, he responds with, “No way! Why should I change? She’s the one who sucks!”  But hey, not as bad as Michael Bolton.
  • It started snowing during our Soundcheck.   Businesses and people still go by their regular daily routine in places like Chicago if it snows.   In the south, everything shuts down if one flake falls from the sky.  Later on that night, our bass player accidently ate some yellow snow.  Well, we hope it was an accident.
  • This was our 3rd time playing at the Abbey Pub, and thanks to UV Hippo, this was by far the biggest crowd we have had there to date.  Happy to see the guys from Strange Arrangement make it out in time to see us too.
  • Covered  Megadeth’s “Symphony of Destruction”

February 6, 2013 @ The Pour House – Charleston, SC  w/ Big Something

  • After a couple of days off in our hometown of Greensboro – we got scared of the massive blizzard in the Northeast, so we decided to head south.
  • Celebrated “Weird Wednesday” with our good friends (and NC neighbors) Big Something.

    Our new fan

    Our new fan

  • Woke up the next morning with this photo in our inbox.  I think we made a new fan last night.  Why, hello there.

February 9, 2013 @ Dub’s Pub – Savannah GA

  • Best turn-out ever in Savannah – was scheduled to be at the Live Wire Music Hall, but the venue was shut down randomly a week beforehand.  That didn’t stop Live Wire’s production team though.  They moved the show a couple doors down on the second level of Dub’s Pub.
  • Want to give a shout out to our FOH man Matt Gordon – he somehow finds a way to make each and every show sound superb, no matter the obstacles.
  • On the way back to Greensboro, we decided that the band deserves a Sheetz sponsorship.  If you don’t know what a Sheetz is, then you have been living under a rock somewhere, but it’s a WaWa…with a deep fryer.  Sheetz does give you the sheetz, however.

February 15, 2013

  • On the road again headed back to the Northeast.  Of course we stopped at Biscuitville one last time, and said our goodbyes.  Goodbye to Biscuitville that is.  You can only find these fine establishments in North Carolina, and of course there happens to be one located 500 yards from the band house in Greensboro.The Mantras_Biscuitville
  • We start a run from Frederick MD (2/15) > Baltimore MD (2/16) > Pittsburgh PA (2/17) > Williamsport PA (2/18) > Boston MA (2/19) > Portsmouth NH (2/20) > Burlington VT (2/21) > and ending at the Sullivan Hall in NYC (2/22) with our good friends Turbine.

Don't miss the Mantras NYC tour stop:

Friday, February 22nd – The Mantras @ Sullivan Hall

214 Sullivan Street – New York, NY

w/ Turbine, Newton Crosby, Chromatic, and Tweed

$10 in advance // $12 day of show

Doors: 7:00pm

Show:  7:30pm

(Turbine headlines – The Mantras play right before them)

Brand new album titled "Jambands Ruined My Life" available for "name your own price" download at www.themantras.com


Related



Comments


You Can Now Rent Bob Dylan And The Band's 'Big Pink' House For A Vacation

What was once the iconic locale for Bob Dylan's The Basement Tapes and The Band's Mus ...


Look Out For The Sopranos Soundtrack Coming Soon To Vinyl

During its massive reign from 1999-2007, classic HBO hit The Sopranos featured ...


Conan O'Brien Rips On His Cue Card Man For Being A Massive Phish Fan

Last week on Conan O'Brien's second annual "Scrapisode," which airs a smattering of ...


The Preview For This Satirical Burning Man Musical Is Hilarious

Burning Man: The Musical may soon become a reality, thanks to Google employee and NY ...


Kanye West Will Perform All Of '808s & Heartbreak' For One-Off Gig

Love him or hate him, there's no denying that Kanye West has an incredibly prolific c ...


Bela Fleck Returns For Second Straight Dave Matthews Band Appearance

For the second consecutive night, Dave Matthews Band welcomed sensational banjoist Be ...


Watch Aaron Neville's Moving Performance From The Hurricane Katrina Benefit In 2005

No one will ever forget the devastating effects that Hurricane Katrina had on New Orl ...


Béla Fleck Joins Dave Matthews Band In Colorado [Video]

Dave Matthews Band played Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre in Englewood, CO last night, a ...


HARD Day Of The Dead Announces Heavy-Hitting 2015 Lineup

HARD Presents has announced the 2015 lineup for their annual, two-day Day of the De ...


Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst Claims He Reunited Axl Rose And Slash

Perhaps one of the more intriguing stories we've reported on this past week was the p ...


Latin GRAMMYs Issue Statement Against Donald Trump

Anyone following the presidential race is aware of Donald Trump's controversial polit ...


Umphrey's McGee Shares Pro-Shot 'Night Nurse' Footage From Charlotte

Umphrey's McGee went to work at The Fillmore in Charlotte, NC last week, bringing the ...


Long Lost Punk Track Featuring John Belushi Will Finally Be Released

After 34 years of laying dormant, a lost punk track featuring legendary comedian Joh ...


Listen To The Rockin' New Gary Clark Jr. Single, 'Hold On'

Gary Clark Jr. has released another single off of his newest album The Story Of Son ...


Jeff Austin Announces New Banjoist For Solo Band

Former-Yonder Mountain String Band mandolinist Jeff Austin has been touring with a so ...


Melvin Seals To Join The Garcia Project For One Night Throwdown

Legendary pianist Melvin Seals will be joining up with The Garcia Project on October ...


MLB Pitcher Jake Peavy Busts Out Guitar For Grateful Dead Cover [Video]

We all have our outlets from the normal day-to-day, and for San Francisco Giants pitc ...


Celebrate Michael Jackson's Birthday With 12 'Thrilling' Covers

The undisputed King of Pop, Michael Jackson would have turned 57 years old today. I ...


Dopapod Promise 'Big Hits And Deep Cuts' For Disco-Era Studio 54 Set At Catskill Chill

Dopapod and Turkuaz are ready to bring festival-goers back to the days of disco when ...


Our Favorite People We Encountered At A Ridiculous Brooklyn Rave With Shpongle, Paper Diamond, & More

Given BangOn!NYC's reputation for throwing some of the wildest, most eccentric and ...


Top 20 Photos From Phish's Magnaball Festival By Dave Vann

We're still buzzing about Phish's Magnaball festival, a fantastic weekend filled wi ...


Marco Benevento Talks Grateful Dead, JRAD, Jazz Fest, Brooklyn Comes Alive, And So Much More

One of the live music scene's most captivating piano players is Marco Benevento. Betw ...


An Intimate, Behind-The-Scenes Look At The Werk Out Festival 2015

This year's The Werk Out Festival presented by The Werks featured some of our fav ...


L4LM Exclusive Premiere: Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey Shine On New Single, 'Betamax'

Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey is a sonic exploration through time and space. Classic instr ...


Getting To Know: The Highway, The Finest New York Jam That You Haven't Heard

Stumbling into a crowded Rockwood Music Hall on a typical New York summer night, I wa ...


The Mayor Of moe.down Goes In-Depth With Drummer Vinnie Amico

Enjoying their 25th year as a band, moe. continues to impress on a regular basis. Wit ...


L4LM Exclusive: Papadosio Shines A 'Glimpse Of Light' On Debut Single From New Album

Fans of Papadosio were delighted when the band announced that a brand new album, E ...


Top 30 Kickass Photos From Afropunk 2015

This year's Afropunk Festival drew a massive crowd to Brooklyn's City Park for the el ...


The Funniest Things Overheard At Phish's Magnaball Festival

Concerts can be the absolute best place to people watch and listen, with so many char ...


Natalie Cressman Planning Simulcast Fundraiser For New Album [Interview]

Easily one of the hardest working women in the music business, trombonist Natalie Cre ...


Bob Weir Borrows Guitar From Headliners For Surprise Opening Set At Sweetwater

Developing in parallel to The Grateful Dead was a lesser-known act named the Pousette ...


20 Photos That Convey The Magic Of Phish's Magnaball

Phish's Magnaball festival this past weekend was an absolute success. From the spec ...


Karl Denson On Life With, And Beyond, The Rolling Stones

Fresh off a North American tour with iconic rock n' rollers The Rolling Stones, mast ...


Lettuce's Jesus Coomes Talks About Playing On The New Dr. Dre Album

When we found out Jesus Coomes from Lettuce had appeared on the hugely hyped new ...





L4LM Twitter