Local band opens for national tour at Velour

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Although Provo is a small dot on the map, the local music scene is expanding larger than the city limits.

Tonight, Velour Live Music Gallery in downtown Provo will welcome Rocky Votolato and Matt Pond PA’s national tour. It will be the third to last stop on their 36 city co-headlining tour. Parlor Hawk, a well known local band, will open the show.

Kaneischa Johnson, spokesperson for Velour, said Velour is Votolato’s venue of choice when touring Utah, and he usually comes about twice a year. Because he is a well known artist, Johnson said his shows usually sell out, and she recommends getting tickets online before the show, as there will not be many left at the venue.

“Rocky’s a legend in the music industry in general, and he has a lot of fans wherever he goes, we never have a problem selling out his shows,” Johnson said. “There’ll be lines wrapping around the block.”

In order to help local music, Velour has bands from around Provo open for shows. Johnson said Velour likes getting a local opener because it gives the band the opportunity to play for a crowd who otherwise would not come to their shows, and in return the band earns a larger fan base.

“We have a pretty good relationship with Rocky Votolato’s people, because we’ve been working with him for a long time and we have really quality musicians here in Provo,” Johnson said. “It wasn’t too big of a deal.”

Although Velour was able to get Parlor Hawk the opening slot, it will not be the full band playing. The headliners as well as the owners of Velour preferred to keep the show mellow and acoustic, so there will be guitar, keyboards and vocals. No bass or drums.

Andrew Dyer, who plays bass for Parlor Hawk, said he worried for those in the crowd who do not know the band’s music, because it may not convey their true sound.

“When it’s stripped down, that might be a little bit of a misrepresentation of who we are and what our sound is, but the soul is still there,” Dyer said.

Dyer said although he would rather be a part of the show, he realizes it is a good opportunity to gain more fans.

“I think it’s good exposure for the band,” Dyer said. “I think when it comes to opportunities to play for guys like Rocky Votolato, it’s definitely a good thing because he’s going to draw a crowd, and there’s going to be people there that have never heard of us before. They might like what they hear and they might pick up an album.”

Miranda Henstrom, a junior from Portland, Ore., majoring in psychology, has seen Parlor Hawk multiple times and said she thinks its great when the local music scene can get this type of exposure on a national level.

“As a mellow band that kind of got its start in the local scene, I think they’re still going to maintain their sound because they already have an acoustic flair,” Henstrom said. “I think the people going for the headliners are going to be impressed with the local scene.”

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