by Wanda Blake

Scottland born Toby Black moved to North America to pursue a career in hockey. He did pretty well but found music to be his true calling. His nickname isn’t bone crusher like one might expect from someone into a sport as brutal as hockey, instead his friends call him “The Poacher.” As in, he poached each member of his band from another band …. or at least one they had just quit.

Toby BlackArron Rayner tells his story,”Toby, he was in the music store and he was asking, ‘Hey, hey Les, do you know any bass players?”  He follows with “Les should have told him I could play bass, but he didn’t. I come in and the UPS driver says, Rayner, he can play bass.”
“True story,” says Black.
“True story,” agrees Rayner, “and I don’t even play bass, but you’re fucking right I can play bass,” cracking himself up.
Black laughingly states, “Fucking right Arron’s a guitar player.”

Sean Boyle explains he’d been in a band for six years and for a while it had been doing well but then they lost motivation.  Boyle states, “Me? I’m a work horse, so I quit.  And literally I was like, I’m done with music.” How do you give up playing music? Well, don’t ask Boyle. He received an email from Black saying, “Hey, you’re a drummer, I’ve got this band who needs a drummer.  Do you wanna come out and jam?”  He was given songs to learn during that week and when they jammed on Friday, Boyle just “hammered them out.”  Four days later they were recording.

Sons of Revelry put out their first EP Born With a Bigga Goal, which contained only 3 tracks. The song “Whiskey” brings immediately to mind a smoke filled, hazy club with velvet couches and bean bags, where some of the harder drugs of the 60’s & 70’s were obtainable. It’s easy to imagine Sons of Revelry on the stage with Jimi Hendrix, Janice Joplin, or other greats of the time. But their melodious writing doesn’t leave one in the drug haze of the 60’s. They leave that heavy bluesy guitar and shift to something more modern, folksy yet rock n roll.  They play a fusion of blues, harmonies, melodic rock that ties into modern folk rock and up beat tunes.  It’s a striking and sometimes moving sound. In the four months they were together before competing in Ernie Ball’s Battle of the Bands for Toronto’s Uproar concert in 2013, were landing second or third routinely in the Canadian contests.

Corey BrouwerThey won the Battle of the Bands for Ernie Ball and played with, among other bands, Jane’s Addiction and Alice in Chains. At the end of the Rockstar Energy Drink UPROAR  Festival in 2013, they found out they won the whole competition in the Battle of the Bands.  The judges felt like they were the complete package.  Ernie Ball sponsors them now, they got recording studio time in Los Angeles with Jay Baumgardner and released their second EP,  Fractal August 15th with the start of Rockstar Energy Drinks UPROAR Festival 2014.  They are on every stop on the concert series this year and they are awaiting their Revolver and Loudwire interviews which were also part last years winning package.

Now, fourteen months together and they’re tight.  Strangely their unique sound fits in with the harder bands in UPROAR. “We’ve always had that. We’ve always had shows where we’re playing with heavier bands, but we’re like whatever. We’re doing our thing. We don’t need to be someone else,” says Boyle.  “We stay true and proud,” he laughs.  When asked if they’d gotten advice from the bands that have been around and touring a little longer, Boyle says, “Ah, we haven’t really gotten advice, like professional advice. We’ve more gotten cool stories and what to avoid.   We’ve talked to the guys from Seether and Godsmack those guys tell us stories like this happened one time on stage, yeah, try not to do that.”

Sean BoyleThe music comes together in their jam space as one or more of them will bring a piece or an idea and it is written collectively.  But according to Boyle, Black does most of the lyric writing. “He will literally,  as we’re making something up on the spot, he will just start singing something that’s amazing and there’s no one around. He does that with a lot of songs. There are still a lot we play live that he doesn’t have anything down solid. He makes it up every time we go up. So he’ll come up and go ‘I don’t know the verse so he just kinda wings it.’  As he says, He likes to challenge himself,” obvious in Boyle’s demeanor and tone is his respect for Black’s writing talent.  Undeniable to anyone listening is their combined skill.

Road fatigue is something they all must deal with along with missing their families.  Not one of them is complaining but with two married, at least one with a child and one with a steady girl of over 5 years, the missing seems to be evident as does the road fatigue with shows most nights.  Asked about routines to keep them energized such as a special diet or exercise, Boyle laughs out loud. “Well, we’ve (laughing) we’ve now started what we call the Bud Light Challenge. Which is where we work out while we drink Bud Light but we do funny challenges. So the other night while we were staying in South Carolina, we put a planking challenge where we all put a half drank Bud Light on our backs while we were planking and then when it fell off you were out.”  Laughing… “so stuff like that we would do, We’re doing curls and stuff while we’re drinking beer.”

Arron RaynerRoad fatigue and exhaustion would seem to make for poor shows with less enthusiasm.  One wonders if the energy of the show will change. Black and Rayner say no.  “It’s all about sex drugs and sausage rolls” per Black.  In chimes Rayner with, “Absolutely except the worst part is none of us has had sex in …” Black says, “Yeah we’re all married with children so we release our energy on stage. That’s why our show is so sexy, ” both men start laughing.  Boyle left it at, “Going on stage is NEVER  the last thing I want to do, honestly. I can get 2 hours of sleep and once I see people coming up and talking with me before hand it gets me up, and my energy going because this is what I want to do, this is what I was born to do. So all of that energy, if I’m on stage, I’m 100%  and when I’m done, I’m pretty pooped. ”

Boyle’s response to what would he say to someone who’s frustrated with their music career not going where they want was, “That’s tough. But honestly don’t do what other people say. Do what comes true to you.  Don’t be anyone different. Because if you’re writing for someone else, then it’s not going to be you and its going to be fake and it’s not worth it. Write what comes to you. ”

Sons of Revelry also had great news they wanted to get out there. They are going to be doing a PledgeMusic campaign. PledgeMusic’s theory is to draw the fans and artists closer together by giving them the chance to know their favorite artists. “We have a PledgeMusic campaign that’s coming out soon. We’re basically giving out all this cool stuff, very personal stuff as well for people to purchase to support and help us with the next record that we’re working on. We are going to be going back down to LA to work with the guys down there, with Jay Baumgardner, who did the CD we just did. So we have different stuff like you can buy a CD, a signed CD, signed Vinyl. There’s a digital camera that we have on the road that we’re taking cool pictures with that people can buy… guitar lessons from Corey through Skype, cooking lessons through Skype with Toby,  drum lessons with me through Skype…. there’s all these cool things!”  Keep a watch for the start of this campaign and climb on board. These men are fun, talented and hilarious.  The personalized lessons would be both informative and humorous.




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