Guster Announces Fall Tour Openers: High School And College Bands

Meet King Guru, Emily Youth Project, and The Bends!

By Jackie Yaeger - Sep 29, 2015
Photo by Zoe-Ruth Erwin
Guster Meet King Guru, Emily Youth Project, and The Bends!

It's not every day your favorite band of all time asks you to open for them while they're on tour in your city. But when it does happen, it's pretty magical. For 13 lucky bands across the country, Guster has given them that chance. It makes a lot of sense that they give back to emerging artists, considering the Massachusetts alt rockers got their very own start inside a college dorm. Fast forward 24 years and that very same band has toured across the globe, released their seventh studio album, and are helping to make young musicians' dreams a reality.

Meet all 13 bands below and find out just why they can't wait to share the stage with Guster. Then, see why the band's drummer Brian Rosenworcel can't wait to share the stage with these 13 bands.

Nemes

Boston-based folk rock band. According to their Facebook page, "You say it like 'knee·miss.'"

Playing with Guster @ Lupos in Providence, RI on 11/5.

What was the moment when you knew this band had to open for you guys? Guster says...

Listening to Black Streak they just had the sound of a band that played live, played together, and had confidence. Excited to witness their chemistry in person.

First Time You Ever Saw Guster Live?

I saw Guster live for the first time at Boston EarthFest in 2007 and it was totally a transformative experience as a songwriter and performer and musician in general (Josh)

If you could take Guster out for Pre-Show Food or a Post-Show Party, where would you take them?

We'd take them to Nara, a hookah bar in Providence which also has badass grape leaves and hummus platters if they were hungry, as well as karaoke to help us all warm up for the show.

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

We would definitely appoint Jason Statham as Guster's celebrity driver. He would transport the band safely, punctually, and discreetly to each gig no matter how many flamethrower-wielding, martial art master thugs were hired to keep them from performing.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

Dream piece of Guster merch would be a Guster song-singing toothbrush so I start and end my day with their music emanating from my mouth.

 

Amy & The Engine

Boston-based Twiggy-meets-Stevie-Nicks frontwoman Amy Allen brings folk pop to new heights with her five band members.

Playing with Guster @ Calvin Theatre in Northampton, MA on 11/6.

What is one quality that sets this band apart? Guster says...

It was Amy's voice and the way she could treat a melody. Stood out right away. All those players that make up the Engine are great too but it's going to be hard to pay them all. Best to transform the band into a cult and hope for their endless loyalty Amy.

First Time You Ever Saw Guster Live?

Maine State Theatre. My mom let my older sisters take me in 2003. I had never been to the State Theatre before and I remember leaving the concert, knowing I wanted to play there someday.

Dream Guster song to cover live?

For me, it's always been "Homecoming King" or "Careful." The first time I heard those two songs, the only thing I wanted to do was listen to them on repeat in my bedroom and play along to them with my guitar - so that's what I did :)

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

Guster puff jacket for winter. I would love that, so so much.

 

Smoke n' Mangos

Any band who claims tea and salsa dancing as their interests is one you need to know about–especially when they've got a banjo and mandolin as part of their bluegrass ensemble: the real deal.

Playing with Guster @ Rams Head Live in Baltimore, MD on 11/7.

What pop culture group or gang do you think this band is most like? Guster says...

They remind me of my high school band, Toejamb, who were before their time, misunderstood, and are still waiting for the right moment to announce their reunion tour. I love that this band has layers beyond what you see in their hippie instrumentation. And I also love their hippie instrumentation.

First Time You Ever Saw Guster Live?

Merriweather Post Pavilion for the Route 29 Revue. They were the first band of the day we got to see, and they killed it!

Dream Guster song to cover live?

Probably "Satellite." I know it's THE song, but it's just such a well rounded, great song, and I also think our instrumentation would suit it well.

If you could take Guster out for Pre-Show Food or a Post-Show Party, where would you take them?

For a post-show party: definitely the Mount Royal Tavern. No doubt. And for pre-show food, The Golden West Cafe is the bomb.

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

Emperor Palpatine, we know/hope he's not real, but if you've got the Lord of the Sith driving you around, you're pretty unstoppable

 

Port Harbour

Another band with epic interests, Port Harbour (made up of students from James Madison University) is totally as into Chipotle as much as you are. This six-piece rock group is definitely something you don't want to miss.

Playing with Guster @ The National in Richmond, VA on 11/9.

What was the moment when you knew this band had to open for you guys? Guster says...

I think when I saw one of them brushing a dog's teeth on their Facebook page I was like 'these guys should open for us.'

Dream Guster song to cover live?

"Simple Machine," because its funky and fresh, but more because its got a fun beat and a lot of instrumental parts Port Harbour could have a lot of fun with.

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

Neil Patrick Harris because he is Neil Patrick Harris.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

Definitely the oven mitt. They're a perfect way to round off any ensemble.

 

From Bears

Post psych-punk from the mountain.

Playing with Guster @ The Orange Peel in Asheville, NC on 11/10.

What is one quality that sets this band apart? Guster says...

The singer's voice is super strong and their recordings have awesome vocal effects. I'll be interested to see them pull it off live, and to see if this band actually likes Guster, or is maybe too indie and cool to like Guster, maybe they just wanted to get paid.

Dream Guster song to cover live?

“Satellite” would be a dream cover song

If you could take Guster out for Pre-Show Food or a Post-Show Party, where would you take them?

Farm Burger is a great burger place in Downtown Asheville. For lighter fare, Chai Pani is an Indian restaurant with more vegetarian options. Asheville has a number of nationally renowned breweries. We recommend Greenman or Highland Breweries for some refreshments.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

A Guster leaf blower: A Guster Bluster

 

King Guru

In the genres of surf, jazz, soul, and rock, King Guru's live set will definitely have you dancing like a fool.

Playing with Guster @ Georgia Theatre in Athens, GA on 11/11.

If you had to give this band one piece of advice about the tour life, college life, or high school life, what would it be? Guster says...

Go to the college parties. Play their beer pong and talk to them and listen to the music in their dorm rooms. Do this until you are 35 years old, and when someone calls you creepy, then you should never do it again after that. Worked for us.

Dream Guster song to cover live?

"New Underground."

If you could take Guster out for Pre-Show Food or a Post-Show Party, where would you take them?

Pre show food: Your Pie - like subway for pizzas. Post show party: House party!

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

Riff Raff.

 

Porky's Groove Machine

"¡Viva la funky revolución!" Specifically the Nerd Funk genre revolution that this septet from Appleton, WI identify with. Trust us.

Playing with Guster @ Egyptian Room in Indianapolis, IN on 11/13.

What pop culture group or gang do you think this band is most like? Guster says...

I just couldn't stop thinking of Dr Teeth and The Electric Mayhem when I learned about this band. They had me at 'Porky's'...

First Time You Ever Saw Guster Live?

Opening for Ben Folds at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY.

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

George Clinton.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

A date with the band.

 

Georgia Rae Family Band

This band is made up of three sisters whose harmonies are certainly related, but uniquely different. The Georgia Rae Family Band features lead singer Kelly Jo, multi-instramentalist Quin, and 4-state fiddle champion Georgia Rae—pretty coool.

Playing with Guster @ Pabst in Milwaukee, WI on 11/14.

If you had to give this band one piece of advice about the tour life, college life, or high school life, what would it be? Guster says...

Family bands make everyone happy. I want you all to know how special that is, how lucky it is, how you must keep the love of playing music together at the forefront of your lives as long as you can. Once you have children it'll all make sense. Families playing music together are special.

If you could take Guster out for Pre-Show Food or a Post-Show Party, where would you take them?

SUSHI!! Post party? OUR HOUSE of course! we have jam parties all the time! At our home we have no rules as far as how late or loud you play music. We are about providing a creative fertile environment for our girls, and we encourage them to play with many people, all types of music. WE even encourage others to stay for awhile, we have plenty of room at our home.

 

King Median

..."To exact revenge on his high school bullies he created his bandmates in a secret laboratory: Colin Smith (guitar, vocals), Ken Tsuchiya (more guitar, more vocals), and Dylan Polcyn (good looks, keyboard, but mostly dancing)..."

Playing with Guster @ Intersection in Grand Rapids, MI on 11/15.

What pop culture group or gang do you think this band is most like? Guster says...

Pineapple Express. As the most stonery band out of the 400 that we listened to, King Median stands out as someone we would enjoy a piece of Pot Peanut Brittle with. The music benefits from it, guys. Well played.

If you could take Guster out for Pre-Show Food or a Post-Show Party, where would you take them?

Given that we're playing in Grand Rapids, we'd want to take Guster to Two Beards Deli, which has a selection of 90 sandwiches. SO MANY TO CHOOSE FROM. If they're looking to loosen up with a hoppy beer, we'd head over to Founders.

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

We'd pick Mac Demarco to be Guster's tour driver. Who's a more agreeable and down-to-earth guy to drive your bus? He's just such a sweetheart.

 

amateur eyes

Self-classified as "honest rock," one listen to the Saline, MI-based band fronted by fronted by John Pederson and you'll totally get it.

Playing with Guster @ Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor, MI on 11/18.

What was the moment when you knew this band had to open for you guys? Guster says...

When we heard the melodies. There's serious songwriting going on here, and as a band that puts almost all of their energy into that department, it's nice to share a stage with someone who's writing great melodies and lyrics.

Dream Guster song to cover live?

"Two Points for Honesty" or "G Major."

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

John Cena, "The Prototype," because he's won the WWE world heavy weight championship twelve times, and happens to be an amazing rapper, fashion model, and actor.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

I think I speak for everyone when I say we'd like shirts with Rosenworcel's face on it...

 

The Bends

"Surfadelic Garage Rock // The Bends are your friends."

Playing with Guster @ Danforth in Toronto, ON on 11/19.

If you had to give this band one piece of advice about the tour life, college life, or high school life, what would it be? Guster says...

Use your Canadian-friendliness to help Americans be better people. Help us find the path to joy, optimism, and Canadianity. And when you change your name, just add a -TER, worked for us.

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

David Cross. He seems like a funny guy and a more than capable driver.

 

Darryl Rahn & The Lost Souls

Inspired by The Avett Brothers, Good Old War, Brett Dennen, Ben Folds, Ben Kweller, Langhorne Slim, Guster, and Ray Lamontagne, Darryl Rahn and his acoustic folk Americana band won't disappoint.

Playing with Guster @ State in Ithaca, NY on 11/20.

What is one quality that sets this band apart? Guster says...

When someone can captivate you with just a voice and a guitar they're doing something right. Daryl moves his chords and melodies and lyrics around in a way that hooked us.

First Time You Ever Saw Guster Live?

April 26, 2009 @ The Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY

Dream Guster song to cover live?

"Happier"

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

Bryan Cranston.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

Guster coffee mug.

 

Emily Youth Project

The Emily Youth Project is a four-piece indie rock jazz group from West Long Branch, NJ, made up of students from Monmouth University.

Playing with Guster @ Wellmont in Montclair, NJ on 11/21.

If you had to give this band one piece of advice about the tour life, college life, or high school life, what would it be?

Keep going fellas. You have friendships that can carry your band a long way. If there was one band here for us to pass a torch to it'd be y'all. Keep writing. Keep playing.

First Time You Ever Saw Guster Live?

April 26, 2009 @ The Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY

Dream Guster song to cover live?

"One Man Wrecking Machine (We heard this song on our college radio station a few days before we got the great news that we were chosen! Coincidence?!?!? probably.)

If you could appoint a celebrity tour driver for Guster who would it be?

Dulé Hill.

What's your dream piece of Guster merch?

'SHAPES' ECO-FLEECE SWEATSHIRT.

  644Guster

No upcoming concerts. Track Guster on Bandsintown to see when new tour dates have been added!

Jackie Yaeger

The first concert I ever went to was to see Backstreet Boys (I wore snap-on pants and pigtail buns). My favorite live show this year so far was by The Strokes at Governors Ball. I like glitter, eggplant parm, and hot pink smooshy earplugs. Follow: Instagram // Twitter

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