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"4Play has got it covered"

What's up: No, 4Play is not an explicit party game or an X-rated movie. It is a group of four guys who like to get together for the sake of rock'n' roll and having a fun time.

The band drew about 300 people into Godfather's Lounge in Colonial Heights last Saturday to enjoy a night of straight-up rock.

Screams and cheers oozed from the eclectic nightspot as if a national act were onstage. The crowd, with arms raised, clapping with the music, treated 4Play as if it were the creator of the songs the group covers.

Pearl Jam, Metallica, AC/DC and Puddle of Mudd are some of the artists 4Play incorporates into its arsenal of cover songs.

The band members describe their sound as an amalgamation of creativity and replication. Even though they do not write the music they play, the band members enjoy using their musical knowledge to create an atmosphere for their crowd.

"It's almost a yin-yang thing because you're trying to be in a cover band and play exactly what the CD sounds like," Cox said. "At the same time, you're musicians and you have your own ideas and your own creativity."

The members have tweaked their effect pedals and their mind-sets to reproduce the original sounds of the songs. The band tries to enter the mind of the original writers to fully understand the song they are going to play, Howard said.

The purpose of the band, Booth said, is to bring an exciting show to people who like to have fun and to listen to good music.

"We have a good time playing around with each other and that gets people in that fun mode, too," Booth said. "We're not trying to go anywhere but here."

Although the band does not have aspirations of becoming famous, its members, for now, are enjoying the thrill of playing live shows for friends, family and themselves.
Would you call the band a party band? "I hate to get grouped in that category," Cox said. "It's music that people get off on, that we get off on, but it's not, 'Hey we're playing a fraternity' type of thing." Howard described the band's show as something to make people feel good. "One thing that we like to provide is an enjoyable atmosphere. We don't try to be doing the rage thing. We don't want to promote angst. We're not playing to angry 17-year-olds. We like playing songs that everybody knows because it gets them involved," he said, adding that people like to sing along with him into the microphone.

Why do you choose to play covers? "Nobody is here to be rock stars," Cox said. "We're not trying to go anywhere but where we're at. We're just having fun playing songs." Hobbs said that all of the band members have full-time jobs. "We all have girlfriends or wives. We all have kids. We're all not trying to dump our full-time jobs and everything else and go off and be rock stars."

Do you plan to write original material? "We plan on doing some writing and getting some of our own stuff going when it comes around," Hobbs said, adding that the band has talked about the issue.

How would you describe the feeling you get when you are on stage? "There's nothing better than being onstage with these three guys," Cox said, "and having 300 people scream in your face for three hours. You're on the receiving end of all this energy from the crowd. It's impossible to describe"

Angie Castlebury

- Richmond Times-Dispatch


Still working on that hot first release.



What is needed for great 4PLAY?

The Right Music, The Right Mood and The Right People.

The Right Music
Established in mid 2003, 4PLAY plays the best rock music from the 70’s, 80’s 90’s and Now. Their song list includes Ted Nugent, Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, Ozzy, SRV, AC/DC, Creed, Godsmack, Stone Temple Pilots, Metallica and more.

The Right Mood
4PLAY always puts on a high energy show to set the mood for a party that the audience will never forget.

The Right People
4PLAY is Vocalist Johnny Artus, Guitarist Jerimiah Cox, Bass Guitarist Mike Hobbs and Drummer Danny Mizelle.

Johnny is nothing short of an atomic explosion on stage. With his incredible vocal ability and his love of performing, the man does not know the meaning of the word stop. Want to talk about a guitar player? Jerimiah is amazing, with the capability to go from smooth blues style of Stevie Ray Vaughn to a shredder like Eddie Van Halen with the greatest of ease. Now for the rhythm section, Mike holds down the groove for the band but nothing holds him down. With him and Johnny on the same stage it’s like having the best of both worlds. And last but not least, Danny Mizelle. Between his timing and awesome double bass work, “The Man is a Machine”.
To add to the equation, in the Summer of 2005, 4Play was proud to announce their sponsorship by Bud Light Beer and Brown Distributing Co.

So the question is:
Got 4Play ?