The group started when Ogden and Cabezas were students at the New College of Florida in the late ’90s. Initially named No Chef, the lineup included bassist/lead vocalist Josh Harrold and drummer Mike Benbow; the band was something of a lark until Ogden and Cabezas decided to make it a full-time concern. Harrold left the group at this point and Ogden took over vocal chores. Benbow was the next to depart, and he was replaced by Frank Beasley. This was the trio that took the name the Dollyrots and left Florida in 2001 in search of a new home. After a long road trip, they settled in Los Angeles and began playing shows as soon as they got settled. After replacing Beasley with Josh Valenti, the band recorded their first EP, Feed Me Pet Me, and released it themselves in 2003.
The group met producer John Fields not long after and went into the studio with him to record their debut album, Eat Your Heart Out. Initially self-released, the record was picked up by Panic Button, a label housed under the Lookout umbrella. By the time it was released in July 2004, Valenti had left the group and was replaced by Amy Wood. The Dollyrots spent most of the next two years on the road, including a stint on the Warped Tour. In between dates, they started working on their second album but were derailed when Lookout went out of business. Luckily, the band had a fan in Joan Jett, who was so taken by the Dollyrots that she offered them a spot on her Blackheartlabel roster. Produced by Jacques Wait and Fields, the group’s second album, Because I’m Awesome, was issued on Blackheart in March 2007. They toured incessantly to promote it and popped up all over the place, recording a version of Jett’s song “Bad Reputation” for the soundtrack to the film Endless Bummer, playing themselves on the TV series Greek, and doing a commercial for the Kohl’s department store.
The Dollyrots’ next album was recorded in 2009, with Cabezas taking over some production duties for the first time. A Little Messed Up was released in 2010 and saw the band folding more pop elements into their sound and working with outside songwriters too. The group left Blackheart after that release, and their next record was an EP on their own Arrested Youth label. Sticking with self-releasing their work, the band turned to crowdfunding site Kickstarter for support, launching a wildly successful campaign that yielded the funds needed to record 2012’s The Dollyrots. Working again with Fields, the album featured Ogden and Cabezas firmly in charge for the first time in their career as they played all the instruments (save for a few parts done by Fields) and had final say over all facets of the process. They hit the road after the record’s release and only stopped when Ogden became pregnant. That didn’t stop them from making a record, though, and 2014’s Barefoot and Pregnant was recorded during Ogden’s pregnancy. The album fared well critically and reached number seven on Billboard’s Heatseekers chart.
The all-acoustic Love Songs, Werewolves, and Zombies was released digitally in 2013 to the band’s PledgeMusic supporters, and received a public release the following year. The Dollyrots continued to successfully fund their projects through PledgeMusic, and in 2016 they released their first concert album, the ambitious, double-disc/DVD set Family Vacation: Live in Los Angeles. That same year also saw the release of the three-song EP Mama’s Gonna Knock You Out. By the end of the year, they were working on two new projects: another kid and their next album. The couple’s baby girl was born in November and the John Fields-produced Whiplash Splash was released in early 2017.
The Dollyrots continued touring — with drummer Rikki Styxx, who had been with them since 2014 — and raising a family before hitting the studio again. They released the single “Get Radical” on their new label home of Wicked Cool Records, and followed it in 2019 with their eighth studio album, Daydream Explosion. 2022 saw the release of the career-spanning Down the Rabbit Hole, a compilation of rarities, B-sides, and covers. ~ Katherine Fulton & Timothy Monger, Rovi
THE VON TRAMPS
THE VON TRAMPS are an American rock band formed in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 2015.
The group is fronted by guitarist/vocalist Jenna Enemy and features Chelsea Oxborough on guitar and Krissandra Anfinson on bass.
The band emerged from the Minneapolis underground punk scene and first gained notoriety for their high-energy live shows and irreverent behavior.
he Von Tramps have an eclectic style offering a new take on the Minneapolis underground sound which combines sludgy Ramones-esk punk tunes with cheeky lyrics and introduces a new wave of rude girl ska.
THE RUN AROUND
Your Friendly Party Punk rock Hooligans from Chicago
The year was 2006. The day was no different than any other Fall Day in Normal, IL. Five guys got together for the first time in a cramped basement to start what can be described as a true underdog story that they only slightly remember. Fueled by Admiral Nelson and a desire to write uninhibited Party Punk The band started playing house parties, winning numerous local battle of the bands and the hearts of every college kid they played in front of. To them this was success, they wanted to drink for free, and play one hell of a party every night. However, in the back of their minds they knew there was a great big world out there and if they ever wanted their brand of debauchery to reach the masses they’d have to expand on their college circuit.
In the Spring of 2009 frontman Jason Fein was surfing the world wide web, for what he still refuses to speak of, but in doing so he stumbled upon an International Battle of the bands. The winner of this contest got to play one of the main stages at SummerFest in Milwaukee, opening up for Blues Traveler and Tom Petty. Jason, not thinking much of it, decided for the hell of it he would enter their latest single “Runaway Mexico” into the contest. He didn’t even tell his band he did so for the first couple weeks. After all, there were 776 other bands across the world in this contest and they were just a small time College band. After the second week of being in the contest the band had climbed from the bottom to the 223rd spot. Thinking this was news worthy for his band mates he decided to mention it at that point. Within a month, the band had reached the top 50, two months, the top 10 and by the end of the first round the band had over 100,000 votes and was firmly locked in the number two spot. The top 4 bands went on to the final round which was three weeks of the world voting on their favorite band based on their entire catalog. Still, forever the underdogs the band knocked off three other more experienced bands to put them from a college basement band to playing the biggest Music Festival in the world.
Many bands would have peaked at this point. After all, how do you top that? Well, within a month of them playing the festival they had signed their first Management contract. This contract put them on stage at The famous Congress Theatre in Chicago. Shortly after that they signed their first record deal with the now defunct Window Licker Records but before that they released their most successful album up that point entitled Side Effects May Vary. The album’s biggest single “The DEA” got them nation radio play including Chicago’s late/great Q101. The band took this album and hit the road playing twenty different states across America and gaining hundreds of fans a night helping fund their completely DIY tour schedule. For This band, being independent and doing it themselves was never an issue. In fact, it’s what felt most natural. After all, in their heads they were still the band playing in that cramped basement in Normal, IL.
A year later and many management, artist development and record label conversations the band finally got tired of handling everything themselves. At this time they met Rafay Qamar, a young but driven band manager who immediately saw and fell in love with The Run Around brand. For the band, going to someone unknown but eager was exactly what they needed. Now, they could focus on writing the long awaited follow up album to Side Effects May Vary that their fans were growing more and more impatient for by the day.
In The Fall of 2012 The Run Around released what would easily be their most impressive and impactful body of work yet in Welcome to the Circus. Their CD release show was to a sold out Hard Rock Café in Chicago and they haven’t looked back yet. At the same time they released a video for their biggest single to date “Chicago” that has over 30,000 plays. Everyone that has heard that song has said the same thing “I can’t wait to hear that song in Chicago sport stadiums.” Since the release the band has helped pack and sometimes sell out The House of Blues, The Metro, Reggies, The Cubby Bear and Durty Nellies just to name a few.
Just like their music, The Run Around fans are rowdy and dedicated. One thing that hasn’t changed from the frat party basements, this bands stage show and energy goes unmatched. Their albums will draw you in, there live show will make you a lifelong fan.
SPACE AGE ZEROS
DROP THE HERO AND GET WITH THE ZERO
Space Age Zeros are a Chicago area power pop / pop punk hybrid. The band is made up of many scene veterans from bands such as Naked Raygun, the Bomb, Bollweevils, Oblivion, I Love Rich, Urban Idols and more. Recommended for fans of Screeching Weasel, Material Issue, Ramones and Cheap Trick.