The Shane Martin Band spent several years itching for a chance to play the Saturday night street dance at Monticello Riverfest.
A local group that tours on national stages, the band finally got the chance to take the Riverfest stage last year. The set opened, the band had the crowd rocking and rolling, and then ‘boom’.
Thunder, lightning and rain came crashing into town, ruining the Saturday night party and ending the street dance just half an hour in.
This year, in 2017, the Shane Martin Band will be back on the Riverfest stage, hoping for sunshine, but guaranteeing a fun time.
“Both I and my band mates are very excited to be back at Riverfest this year and hope the weather cooperates so we can country rock our full concert,” said Martin, in an email to the Monticello Times. “We always enjoy being the headlining band at a concert and Riverfest is an area close to a number of fans so it’ll be like one big backyard party.”
Fans sure seemed to like what they saw before the band was forced off the stage last year, and Martin said the feeling was mutual. In fact, the local band was so impressed that they decided to up the ante a little bit in 2017.
“I was pleasantly surprised on the stage set up and concert setting Monticello put together last year,” said Martin. “I liked the setting and crowd so much that this year I am hiring a production company to video record our concert at Riverfest to create live promotional videos for my band.”
Those that come out to the street dance this year will be treated to a variety of country and rock, including some of The Shane Martin Band’s own music mixed with classic covers from today and years gone by.
Popular cover choices include music by Garth Brooks, The Zac Brown Band, and The Eagles.
As for their own music, the Shane Martin Band will have some new material for fans who haven’t seen them in a couple of months. The band recently released a new CD titled “Keepin’ The Night Alive.”
Martin, the lead singer of the group, said the album has been well-received since they debuted it in concert last month.
“Fans will definitely be hearing music off the new album,” said Martin. “We’ve been working the new album in our set since the release concert back in May and now that fans have had a chance to listen to it, we’re getting song requests from the album.”
The Shane Martin Band is a four-member group, with no changes since their appearance last year.
Martin is joined in the band by three other members. Shawn Kolles plays the drums and sings vocals.
Kolles played his first gig at age 12 and went on to play in a myriad of bands, including a German polka band.
The drummer, who is cousins with Martin, holds a master’s degree in Conducting from Southern Oregon University.
On the bass, and singing harmony vocals, is Mike May. The Shane Martin Band website describes May’s technique as a “driving, groove-oriented style on the 5-string bass”
The fourth member of the band is Brad Nelson. Nelson is the lead guitarist and helps provide vocals as well.
The experienced musician was a founding member of the band “Aslyn” that performed original rock in the Chicago-area during the late ‘70s. He also spent five years with the Top-40 band “Prophecy” and is now a part-time director of a church worship band.
Martin said that the continuity in the band has allowed the group to continue to try new things and improve the same old things.
“We just keep raising the bar and getting better as a band,” he said. “We keep adding new material to our set to keep it fresh. Original and cover songs that fans will enjoy. We’re always adding and changing up our show to keep it entertaining and keep the crowds engaged. The band is rockin’ better than ever.”
Martin also said the band won’t hesitate to do whatever it takes to bring good weather luck their way for this go-around.
“I’ll do whatever it takes to keep the rain away this year. Sun dance, no rain dance, Keepin’ the Night Alive dance…,” said Martin. “A few prayers to the man upstairs always helps.”
The Riverfest Street Dance will take place Saturday, July 15. Evening activities take place in the Monticello Community Center parking lot starting at 5 p.m. A Beer Garden will be on site and there will be a concession stand with food and beverages available. Terry Dubois will provide music between 5 and 7:30 p.m., with the Shane Martin Band scheduled to take the stage at 8 p.m. and play until 11:30 p.m.
Contact Clay Sawatzke at [email protected]