Press release, 8/20/12
Tribute band agency Big Bang is proud to announce the official launch of www.tompettyshow.com, the official website of The Waiting (Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers tribute band).
The Waiting is a nationally touring tribute act, performing the Platinum selling catalog of rock and roll pioneers Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers. For close to 40 years, the music of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers has been synonymous with FM radio hits and dynamic live performances that earned the band induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and cemented their legacy as one of the great American rock bands of the 20th century.
Although The Waiting is a new name, the people behind the band have logged a decade of experience performing as one of the nation’s most popular tribute acts, Frontiers (Journey tribute band). The Waiting vocalist Jeremey Hunsicker gained national attention in 2007 when invited by Journey’s Jonathan Cain and Neal Schon to be the band’s new frontman. Although the offer did not come to fruition, Jeremey received a Platinum award from the RIAA for his songwriting contributions to the 2008 Journey release, Revelation. The singer fronted Frontiers from 2002 until this year, when he was sidelined by a vocal injury that left him unable to perform the stratospheric acrobatics of legendary vocalist Steve Perry.
Faced with similar circumstances, many would have packed up their microphones and gone home. Hunsicker instead renewed his lifelong affinity for the songbook and soulful drawl of a very different kind of vocal stylist. Moving on with key personnel of Frontiers, he has assembled a compelling argument for preserving in the face of adversity. The band draws upon a decade of on-stage equity, having been a fixture in theaters, concert halls, and festivals across the US.
The Waiting’s official home on the web features tour dates, news and blog updates, and key resources for promotion and production. The band’s headlining debut is booked for November 1st at The State Theatre in Falls Church, Virginia. Dates are being filled through 2013 via the band’s booking and management company, Big Bang. They can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/tompettyshow.
Big Bang is a full service management and booking agency catering exclusively to the tribute band industry. The agency’s website is www.bigbangbands.com.
Thanks to everyone again for an amazing 10 years of Journey music. As we finish out the shows we have booked, the band is preparing our new act, a Tom Petty tribute called “The Waiting.” Tom & The Heartbreakers are an amazing group with many parallels to Journey – They have a long (30 years plus) history of epic rock and roll hits that have touched generations of fans, and those hits are crafted specifically with the live performances in mind. Both bands share a Diamond certified Greatest Hits release (10 million copies sold), and both bands share an evergreen catalog of songs that allow two hour plus performances of time tested hits. The band has a few additional feathers in their hat as well, including immediate induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, continued headline touring that sells out stadiums and amphitheaters around the world, and the distinction of being one of the few bands to chart in the Billboard top ten for five consecutive decades.
We are currently in rehearsals and are booking available dates beginning October 19th. The sound of The Heartbreakers is one of the most distinctive sonic textures in rock and roll, and we are committed to bringing those songs to the stage in the most accurate live context imaginable. While I’ve (Jeremey) been known as a mimic when it comes to different vocal styles (maybe some have seen my take on “We Are The World, LOL), the essence of Tom’s voice is in the emotion and delivery of those classic melodies. I’m excited about lending my voice to songs that have been such a huge part of my life over the years; additionally, some of the side effects of my injury and surgery have contributed to a more organic texture similar to Tom’s – especially a particular pinch on the upper end caused by that muscular tension. Our band is a group of seasoned touring professionals – Greg, Chris, Dave and I have basically lived on the road for the past few years – and our collective experience and approach to the project is going to make this something special indeed. We’re no amateurs and we’ve got a pretty good head start. We absolutely can’t wait to start living in these songs and sharing them with many of our old (and many new) fans. The Waiting official web site will launch later this week, and our Facebook page can be found here.
Over the past 9 months, I’ve been approached by several friends in other bands that have supported me and urged me to stay in this industry in a way that can share my experiences and knowledge with others. I’m excited to share that I’ve launched my own little agency this month, Big Bang, a booking, management, and media agency that works exclusively with other tribute acts. In order to dedicate adequate focus on clients, I’ll be working with a small handful of some of the best tribute acts in the country, and driving that business with the knowledge, experience, and contacts I’ve made in my role with Frontiers over the past decade.
We continue to get regular inquiries about Frontiers, and I am working with a few different Journey tributes that I admire and respect and can recommend from a booking standpoint. I’m taking all current and future inquiries through Big Bang, and if you have found our site for the purpose of booking Frontiers, I encourage you to drop me a line at Big Bang and I can work with you to make sure your event is a resounding success.
We’ll maintain the Frontiers site until after our final show in October, and then integrate the site more closely with the new Big Bang site. Thanks again to everyone for your timeless support and we will see you on the road again soon!
Hey Journey fans! It’s been an amazing 10 years and thanks for all the love and support. Unfortunately today we want to announce that due to the uncertain nature of my recovery from the vocal injury I sustained last year, after the current shows we have scheduled, we will be going on an indefinite hiatus. We are fulfilling the dates we currently have scheduled with Jason Kelty of Escape and Allen Brady, of New Orleans’ own Bottoms Up.
It was our hope that with the previous time off to rehabilitate the muscles in my throat that eventually I would return to form. However, the reality is that this is a constantly moving business, and without being able to fully predict when I would be able to perform these songs again, the venues and audiences we’ve built over the past ten years will have moved on with other acts and the market for our band would not have been sustainable. As a band, we cannot simply remain in a holding pattern for an unforeseen duration, and the best thing for all of us at this time is to move forward with other projects, and hopefully maintain a presence in the industry for many years to come.
We will continue to perform over the next couple of months and I certainly hope to see many of the friends we’ve made over the years as we play out this final hand. It has been an incredible experience, though one that has certainly taken it’s toll on all of us in a variety of ways. The overwhelmingly positive side of everything we’ve done has always been the support of so many fans of these great songs and the great music that Journey created for us.
We anticipate announcing some new ideas we have in the works in the very near future. Until then, thank you so much to the venues, agents, crew, and most importantly the fans that have sustained this band for so long. We wish you all the best and hope to see you again very soon.
Hey everyone! Just a note to say thanks so much for the continued support for my (Jeremey) vocal recovery. The underlying issue is a muscle injury and physical therapy is much more intensive than just recovering from a sore throat or even surgery – So I do appreciate all the well wishes and support that everyone has shared.
Frontiers is celebrating our ten year anniversary this summer, and we are excited that we’re able to continue the tour with the help and support of our singer friends in some other bands. Vocalist Allen Brady of Bottoms Up (New Orleans) will be flying into NC this week for our shows in Charlotte and Wilmington, and Jason Kelty of Escape (Cleveland OH) will be coming down to Texas the following week and joining us in Ohio and Pennsylvania next month.
I am continuing to tour with Frontiers on keys and in my original capacity as tour manager and general jack of all trades, so I hope to see many of you over the next few months as we continue to spread the gospel of Journey across this great nation!
Thank you everyone for the warm welcome back to the stage the past 2 weeks! Thanks especially to Allen Brady, Mike Leigh, and Ross Hancock for your help. We will continue to honor the dates we have currently booked with Allen returning to the stage in NC in two weeks and Jason Kelty joining the band in TX and OH later this month/next month. Unfortunately the Springfield OH show had to book another act (6/16) before we could secure a sub singer, and we will not be performing for that event. However, all other dates we have on the books are locked in with sub singers, and we look forward to rejoining Allen later this month – and to sharing the stage with the amazing Jason Kelty as well! I have stopped booking new Frontiers dates about 4 weeks ago when it became clear I would not be recovered in time to return this season to the lead vocal position. However, with my continued recovery and the help from some talented and generous friends, we are looking forward to a continued future with this band, and appreciate everyone’s love and support for what we do.
It’s been a long six months off the road, and we are excited to finally get back out and start playing music again this week. Unfortunately, I am continuing to recuperate my voice after my last surgery in February. Although the polyp surgery was a success, the underlying issue has remained the pulled muscle from my injury last July in Toledo. I have been working every waking moment over the past several weeks and months to remap and realign my vocal cords, but as anyone who’s been through extensive physical therapy can attest – it’s a grueling and unpredictable process. When I began to reschedule Frontiers dates in March, there was no way to know that the polyp surgery would not be a factor in my recovery. We were working off of the schedule my doctors and therapists have developed for thousands of procedures just like mine. It has only been the past several weeks working with several world-renowned therapists that I’ve been able to get some real answers about my injury and what it will take to recover.
If I were the only person of any consequence in this situation, it would be easy to go away and work at my body’s own pace, and come back to this when my throat and my brain figured out how to work together again. However, there’s venues who have put faith in my word and the Frontiers name, shows scheduled and in some cases rescheduled with the good will of many people who want to see me onstage again with my band. There’s the rest of the guys in this band that have stood by me over the past several months and believed that we would get back out on the road. There’s my family, who has sacrificed and grown stronger in spite of it all. And of course there’s you, the guys and girls who have emailed, texted, Facebooked, talked with me and encouraged me through it all, always positive and always on point with the same message: “You will get through this, you will come back stronger than ever.” Your thoughts and prayers and words have given me faith and strength, more than anyone can know.
So with only a few weeks left in the hourglass, it became clear that I may be forced to pack it all in, move on and be proud of everything we’ve accomplished over the past 10 years. It’s an impossible decision to make under pressure and with so many uncertainties. Luckily, over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been able to work with some friends and colleagues that have stepped forward to help us honor our commitments to our venues and our fans, and buy me a little more time to continue working on putting things back together. I’m grateful that a few key people have agreed to stand in for me over the next month or so. I will be with the band and giving support to my colleagues onstage and from the sidelines as they handle the singing duties, and the rest of my band does what they do so well. I am looking forward to seeing you all again real soon, if not immediately in my familiar role, and I assure you the lineup we have will be more than capable of bringing the music, every night they walk out on stage.
So we will see you soon – God bless and be well…
I recently spent some time talking with music critic Ross Muir about my solo CD, “Every Little Thing” which is on sale now. We covered a ton of ground, including not only the making of the CD, but my close call with the band Journey as well as my vocal injury, surgery, and recovery. Please check it out here today! And don’t forget to buy my CD if you haven’t already!
Greetings everyone and sorry for the downtime – The site domain was renewed on an expired credit card, so we have rectified that and are back in business, haha… Things have been in turmoil over the past couple of months, but they are slowly beginning to come around again. Unfortunately, recovery from vocal surgery is unpredictable (as are most injury recoveries), and on my Dr’s orders, I’ve cleared our schedule through the end of May to allow for 100% healing before Frontiers performs again. We will not be performing our March and April scheduled gigs, but we are rescheduling them for another time. I appreciate all of the positive thoughts, prayers, and support throughout this rough time. I remain positive and continue to get stronger each day, and have focused all of my energy on getting well. Our summer schedule will be updated later this afternoon and continues to be updated as we add new dates.
I want to take a moment to make a very strong point. Frontiers has become the top touring Journey tribute in the US for a number of factors. Be it my experience working with the band Journey, the calibre of our performances, the rapport we share with our audience and fans, or the countless days and weeks spent full time on the road taking the financial risks of a full time touring band – All the members of Frontiers past and present have been professionally dedicated to the band’s success. One key element to our success over the past 4 years, as the “business owner” of the band and primary investor, is that at every turn I have sacrificed financially in ways no sane person would ever have done in order to allow the show to go on. In 2008, I personally invested my life savings into the band, leaving me no option but to continue moving forward at all costs. On many occasions over the past four years I have made the painful decision of paying for gas for the tour, or paying my family/household bills. If it meant going without water for 2 days so the band could make money in Shreveport LA, for example, that’s what had to be done. As a business owner in the heat of a 4 year long full time tour, I wasn’t always able to make the right decisions, and I eventually found myself in a position where I had to continue working at all costs to maintain cash flow. This is what got me into my current circumstance/voice issues.
At this time, Frontiers has been off of the road for 2 months. I’ve seen amazing support from friends, family, and fans for the band and my personal situation. I have also undergone two surgeries and, being uninsured, put myself in debt for over $30,000 in medical bills – For one reason. For the express purpose of getting back in my van, driving to your town, and performing these songs again. I tell you this to drive home one very important point. There is no way myself, Frontiers, my bandmates, are going to go away. I’ve given every single thing I have to make this work, and when we return to your town, this band is going to be better than we’ve ever been. There are so many people waiting to see us again. There are some who hope we never return. Unfortunately for the latter group, that’s just not an option. I say this only to drive home my commitment to you, our fans, to the venues that have supported us over the years, and my bandmates and family that have stood by during this bump in the road. There’s a reason why Frontiers has persevered over the years. You’ve all been patient and faithful, and we’re not going to let you down.
After a follow up appointment with my surgeon yesterday, I regret to announce that the safest thing to do is to reschedule our appearance at Ram’s Head Live next month. Due to a complication and side effect from some unrelated prescriptions, my vocal cords have continued to be irritated and swollen over the past two weeks. This is in no way a setback to a full recovery, but it does interfere with the planned timeline of my return to singing. While there was a chance I would still be prepared by 2/11, myself, my doctor, and the staff of Rams Head Live agree that it’s in everyone’s best interest to play it safe and reschedule for the soonest available replacement date.
In an unrelated (non voice) development, House of Blues Orlando has had to open our 2/24 date for another national act. As a result, our first performance will now be February 25th, 2012 at Freebird Live in Jacksonville FL.
This was a difficult decision, but the most important thing for Frontiers is to be able to hit the ground running when we return to the road. The last thing I would want to do is have to cancel the show the week before, or take a chance without being 100% ready to sing the Journey catalog for 2 hours straight, and jeopardize future performances.
Personally I want to thank everyone for the well wishes and positive thoughts in the 4 weeks since my surgery. Aside from this prescription drug side effect, my therapy has been making great progress, and my recovery team has been very pleased with the results so far. This is merely a bump in the road, and I’m excited about what 2012 has in store for us.
We continue to add dates to our tenth anniversary tour starting in February. Tonight we’re happy to announce our return to some markets we haven’t visited in a while, with a performance on Friday March 2nd at The Handlebar in Greenville SC, and a return to Pittsburgh PA at Hard Rock Cafe on Friday March 23rd. Looking forward to getting back to both venues, we’re going to have a blast!