The Drive Home
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Alt-rock, country musicians set for CityFest
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
MALCOMB DANIELS
News staff writer
Country music singer Tracy Lawrence and alternative rock group Sister Hazel will headline Alabaster's 2008
Sixth Annual CityFest.
The Drive Home, a rising popular boy band, also will perform. This year's event will be June 7 at the city's
Municipal Park, starting at 9 a.m.
Lawrence and Sister Hazel will be two of the biggest performers CityFest has had, said Adam Moseley,
president of the Alabaster Arts Council.
"We've tried to get Sister Hazel before, it just never worked out," Moseley said. "They're always a fan
favorite in the Birmingham area. Tracy Lawrence, if you know country music, then you know Tracy
Lawrence. He's had numerous No. 1 hits."
The Drive Home should be a hit among the younger CityFest crowd, Moseley said. They're a group along
the lines of the band *Nsync, he said. The Drive Home has had its music played on RadioDisney and been
picked as an MTV Best College Band.
Other groups that will perform will be announced later, and will include local acts, Moseley said.
"As we've always tried to do, we've got a little bit of something for everybody," Moseley said. "We've got
country, contemporary and blues."
Last year's CityFest drew more than 35,000 people, with more and more people attending from outside of
Alabaster, which means more tourism dollars being spent in the Birmingham area, Moseley said.
CityFest did a survey last year and found attendees came from eight states, he said.
E-mail: mdaniels@bhamnews.com
© 2008 The Birmingham News
© 2008 al.com All Rights Reserved. - The Birmingham News


For Immediate Release
Miami Area Band Wins Spot on Ernie Ball Stage at Warped Tour
SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA (June 28, 2007) – The live portion of the 11th Annual Ernie Ball Battle of the Bands is about to begin, and there’s local, homegrown talent taking the stage! This year, over 13,500 bands entered the Ernie Ball Battle of the Bands competition for a chance to perform live on the 2007 Vans Warped Tour. Nominated by fans and then hand-selected by a panel of Ernie Ball judges, local bands earned a spot on the Ernie Ball Stage for unsigned band performances this summer.
Coming to Bicentennial Park in Miami on July 21, THE DRIVE HOME has been selected to play live at this summer’s Warped Tour on the Ernie Ball Stage.
“We can’t wait to see all the great acts and meet the fans and people behind the scenes who make it all happen,” said Lester Melendez, guitarist for The Drive Home. “I’ve been going to the Warped Tour since 2000 and each year it keeps getting better and better.”
Giving musicians the incredible opportunity to sound off to huge crowds, the stage has featured more then 5,000 unsigned bands, including then up-and-comers Bowling For Soup, Sugarcult, Story of the Year, New Found Glory, Avenged Sevenfold, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Less Than Jake, and more. This year, winners will play alongside headlining bands Throwdown, My American Heart, We Are the Fury, It Dies Today, and more. For a complete list of all bands playing the Ernie Ball stage, go to www.battleofthebands.com.
The Vans Warped Tour starts on June 28 in San Diego, CA and will make 45 stops across the North America this summer, ending August 25 in Los Angeles, CA. Bands entered the competition by uploading two songs, a bio, a picture, and a band website. Every band profile can be heard online at www.battleofthebands.com.
The 180 bands who make it to the Ernie Ball stage at the Vans Warped Tour also compete for the chance to be one of four showcase bands chosen to play live before industry and record label executives at a major Hollywood venue in the fall of ‘07. Throughout the Battle of the Bands competition, participants will be judged on performance by a group of Ernie Ball staff and sponsors as well as highly regarded musicians and entertainment industry professionals.
All registered bands are automatically eligible to win thousands of dollars in rock ‘n’ roll music gear from Battle sponsors in the also fan-driven online voting competition, where fans vote for their favorite groups at the Battle website from June 28–September 10. The top four bands in this Battle portion will win prizes from Battle sponsors including Auralex, Krank Amps, DW Drums, Boss, Electro-Voice, Ernie Ball/Music Man, OLP Guitars, Taylor Guitars, Zildjian, M-Audio, and Remo.
Since its debut eleven years ago, the Ernie Ball Battle of the Bands has given the best local bands from North America the opportunity to showcase their talents in the world’s longest running and largest live music promotion in the music industry. The Vans Warped Tour heads into its 12th year with a lineup of more than 106 bands on six stages that includes Anberlin, Circa Survive, Coheed and Cambria, Meg and Dia, Paramore, and The Used.
For more information on the Battle, contact Ernie Ball at (800) 543-2255, or visit www.battleofthebands.com. Editors may contact On the Horizon Communications at (805) 773-1000 or info@thepressroom.com.
The Ernie Ball Company was the first to offer rock strings with the creation of Slinkys, and further revolutionized the market by offering guitarists Custom-Gauge single strings. Ernie Ball also produces Music Man guitars and basses, volume pedals and accessories. - Ernie Ball


February 29, 2008
The Drive Home hits the college tour circuit
BY MIKE NUNEZ
FOR FLORIDA TODAY
What happens when you mix a pop star with a rock star and add a little bit of contagious
enthusiasm?
You get a band that within its first four months of existence was able to garner attention from
world-renowned musicians such as Kyle Cook (Matchbox 20, Maroon 5) and promoters such as
World Wide Entertainment (Yellowcard, Cold Play, Train), and was hand-picked for a high
profile arena gig and radio commercial by Radio Disney.
Coming on the heels of an international tour with Brevard County resident and Backstreet Boy
singer Howie Dorough, The Drive Home has embarked on a college tour that includes
Saturday's stop at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.
Comprised of Sean Alan (lead vocals), Lester Melendez (guitar), Ian Thomas
(cello/keyboards/guitar), Jim Pandolfe (bass) and Everton Furtado (drums), The Drive Home
continues to push an aggressively positive message rarely heard in today's mainstream rock 'n'
roll. In doing so, The Drive Home has garnered the attention of national sponsors and fans
alike.
I spoke with Alan and Melendez about their music, name origin and upcoming tours. So let's
Shake, Rattle & Know: The Drive Home.
SRK: The last time you were interviewed for Shake, Rattle & Know, you were a three-piece
band. Why did you feel it was necessary to expand to a five-piece band?
Alan: The more people we add, the better the sound. If you look at a lot of great groups over
the years like The Jackson 5, The Backstreet Boys and others, five seems to be the number
that works. For us, it gave a fuller sound, and by adding instruments like a cello and bass, it
added a new dimension to the music.
Melendez: It seems like five has always been the magic number. I think live we sound more like
our CD by having the added members, and the magic of the CD isn't lost in the live
performance. It also gives us a better stage presence, and on the road it adds great chemistry
with the guys. Adding the new guys has also helped in the songwriting by having more creative
ideas flow among the band.
SRK: Because you had already been together for quite some time, was it hard for the new band
members to fit in right away?
Melendez: No, it took no time at all. The great thing is that no cliques developed. There is no
difference between them and us and the transition from a three-piece to a five-piece was pretty
seamless.
Alan: It wasn't hard at all. Everyone bonded right away. It was as if we were meant to meet
each other.
SRK: How has your music progressed over the last two years?
Melendez: Thankfully, as we have become closer to each other as a band, we are more in tune
to the message we're trying to convey.
We are trying to send a very positive, happy message with our music. That message is pretty
universal in appeal. With the addition of a piano and bass, it adds credibility to our sound. Ian
even adds the cello and a classical component to some of our songs that you don't find
anywhere else.
Alan: We have different people now, and with each person they bring their own something
special to the overall sound. I think we have matured as a band. Our sound isn't as "poppy" as it
was before, and I think it appeals now to a larger range of audiences.
SRK: You all come from diverse ethnic backgrounds. How do you think that diversity shows in
your music?
Melendez: We are so diverse, yet we get along so well. It shows the universality of a positive
message. Sean is a Broadway-caliber singer. Everton is from Brazil, and his unique cultural
background shows in his unique percussion. Ian is classically trained, and I grew up in Miami,
where big chords and Latin rhythms were the thing. I think our diverse backgrounds really show
in the end result of our music.
SRK: How did the tour come together with Brevard's Howie Dorough of the Backstreet Boys?
Alan: We were working with a guy named Jorge Gateno from GEM management, and he called
us and let us know Howie was looking for a band for his charity cruise for the Dorough Lupus
Foundation. We were thrilled with the opportunity to not only work for a charity like this, but
honored to be working with Howie as well.
Melendez: Jorge didn't know us too well at the time, so we were thrilled he was willing to take a
chance on us. At first, we didn't really know Howie's level of involvement, but the fact it was for
charity was enough for us. We love doing things for a good cause. In fact, any charity that ever
wants us to play should call us. As long as expenses are covered to get there, we will do a
show for free if it's going to help people and be for a good cause.
SRK: What can you tell me about the tour you are working on, including the show at UCF?
Melendez: We really have two tours going on at once right now. We have the Sansa Connect
concert series sponsored by SanDisk, and that primarily covers the college circuits. We a - Florida Today


nbc6.net
On Monday's Show
South Florida Today, April 28, 2008
POSTED: 11:28 am EDT April 28, 2008
UPDATED: 11:38 am EDT April 28, 2008
The Drive Home
A South Florida band called The Drive Home has a spot on The
Backstreet Boys summer tour through Europe. The Drive Home
will perform on Thursday, May 1, at West Palm Beach's Sunfest
with artists such as Good Charlotte. For more information, visit
www.drivehomemusic.com.
Shecky's Girls' Night Out
Shecky's Girls' Night Out is a five-hour shopping event of up-and-coming designer names with complimentary
cocktails and mini-makeovers included in the admission price. Shecky's President Claudia Chan tells us more. For
more information, click here.
StyleBakery.com
Style expert and co-founder of StyleBakery.com, Alison Deyette has some styles of jeans that can keep your
budget in balance without sacrificing style. Visit www.alisondeyette.com or StyleBakery.com for more.
Lombardi's Ristorante
Mel Gonulkirmaz and Chef Hector Diaz from Lombardi's Ristorante serve up one of their signature dishes.
Lombardi's Ristorante is located inside the Bayside Marketplace in Downtown Miami. For more information, call
305-381-9580. Get the recipe for Osso Bucco Braised Veal Shank With White Bean Ragout.
Self Magazine's Workout In The Park
Crunch Fitness trainer Robin Retherford gives a preview of the high-energy moves you can do at Self Magazine's
Workout In The Park, which is scheduled for Saturday, May 3, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Ocean Drive between 11th
and 12th streets. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the event. For more information, visit
selfworkoutinthepark.com.
South Florida Today Show Archive
Copyright 2008 by NBC6.net. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed - NBC6.com


Drive Home
Contributed by Michele Bare
Monday, 25 February 2008 02:15 - Last Updated Thursday, 06 March 2008
The Drive Home consists of five well rounded musicians, who blend equal parts pop, punk and happiness, to
create feel good music. With Sean taking over the lead vocals, Lester playing the guitar, Everton (or Evo) on
drums, Jim supplying bass and Ian finishing up with anything and everything left to be covered, together, they
create toe tapping melodies and sing along in your car lyrics.
How did the Drive Home become the Drive Home?
Lester: “Basically we met online so it’s one of those weird stories about how we met on Craigslist. I got back from
the Olympic qualifiers for soccer and ended up performing with Bill Joe from Green Day, which is when I realized
music and performing was what I wanted do with the rest of my life. So I placed an ad for band members on
Craigslist and Everton responded first and Sean was next. From there we had a picture of the three of us on our
website and Jim sent us a message saying ‘looks like you need a bassist’, and the next thing you know he moved
to Miami and started playing with us. Before we left for our first college tour we ran into Ian and approached him
about becoming our opening act and he ended becoming the 5th member of the band.”
How and when did each of you get started in music?
Sean: “I got started at the age of 6, I went to a performing arts school and got into musical theater, acting, dancing
and singing.”
Lester: “I got started in 8th grade when my grandmother bought me an electric guitar after a year of whining that I
wanted one.
Everton: “My parents surrounded me with music from the day I was born, so I was always around it. It was kind of
just a natural evolution that I grew into.”
Jim: “I started in elementary school in the chorus and I took trumpet lessons. I picked up the guitar in middle
school and stuck with it.”
Ian: “Like Everton, I’ve been surrounded by music my whole life, started playing cello at age 5, and learned to play
the guitar and piano later on.”
You're going to be tagged as the next "boy band". How do you feel about that "stereotype" and what do
you plan on doing to promote or dispel it?
Sean: “We welcome that title, we actually embrace it. Maybe you haven’t noticed but that ‘boy band’ stereotype
tends to mean a great bunch of guys making good music that makes people smile and feel good. In a nutshell,
that’s who we are.”
Who are/were your biggest influences, both personally and professionally?
Lester: “It ranges from Elvis to Beethoven. Elvis because of that teen heartthrob vibe with the ladies and
Beethoven because we have a classically trained cellist as a member of the band. We’ve all been influenced by
pop culture and pop icons.”
1 / 2
Drive Home
Contributed by Michele Bare
Monday, 25 February 2008 02:15 - Last Updated Thursday, 06 March 2008
Sean: Musically it would be bands like the Backstreet Boys or Blink 182. Growing up watching tv and seeing what
people can achieve in life if they put their minds to it has really inspired us. Look at Oprah, or anyone who had to
earn their way to where they are. A good current example of a positive pop culture icon is Angelina Jolie, who gives
back in appreciation for what she’s been given.
Where do you envision yourself in 2 years within the industry?
Sean: “As a very well established and respected band. We would like to be a signed band with one of the larger
labels, coming off our 2nd album and tour. We’d love to be on Pop Up Video! All jokes aside, as long as we can do
this full time and make a living from it, we’ll be happy.”
You write all your own music and lyrics. Is this a group effort or individual and where do you receive your
inspiration from?
Sean: “Everything we do is a group effort in one way or another. Whether it’s writing music or getting business
conducted we all play a part. I’d say our inspiration does come from everything and everyone that’s already out
there, meaning other entertainers, what’s going on in the world and the media as well.”
If you couldn't sing or perform, what would you be doing instead?
Sean: “There’s really nothing else I could see myself doing, this really is the only thing I’d love to do with my life.”
Lester: “If I wasn’t doing music I’d probably be emperor of Mars. It looks like a sweet gig don’t you think? I could do
that..depending on the hours.”
Everton: “Trying to get work somewhere? I’d be standing in the unemployment
line!“
Jim: “I’d most likely be going to school full time and I have a big interest in motivational speaking so I’d be focusing
on that.”
Ian: “I’d still want to be involved in music in some form. I had aspirations to go to law school, specializing in
entertainment and contracts, so in that way I could still be involved with the entertainment industry.”
How do you feel your music does/will influence others, and in what way?
Lester: We’re all hoping it reminds every - Tha Mod


Discography

Full length CD available NOW!!! "It's Ok to Smile"

Photos

Bio

The Drive Home is a fun, fresh, clean, and positive group of guys with infectious melodies that will make you smile and hit the repeat button on your Sansa Fuze MP3 Player. With a lineup boasting everything from a Broadway caliber singer and actor to an international professional soccer player to a classically trained cellist, The Drive Home has a little something for everyone.

What happens when you mix a pop-star with a rock-star and add little bit of contagious enthusiasm? You get a band that within their first 4 months of existence was able to garner attention from world renowned musicians such as Kyle Cook (Matchbox 20, Maroon 5), promoters like World Wide Entertainment (Yellowcard, Cold Play, Train), and was hand-picked for a high profile arena gig and radio commercial by Radio Disney.

The Drive Home didn’t break into the local music scene, they took it over. Through their hard work, professionalism, and endearing charisma, they cemented their status as a fan favorite. On the heels of their local success, the band obtained the 1 spot on MTVU’s Best Music on Campus charts.

The subsequent exposure combined with the dedication of their fan base lead to The Drive Home earning a place on the Epitaph, Drive-Thru, and Epic Records Top Unsigned Bands List. In addition, the band has also scored appearances on Fox’s Deco Drive and won the Ernie Ball Battle of the Bands, earning a chance to showcase their talent at the 2007 Vans Warped Tour.

Currently, The Drive Home is working closely with various corporate and private partners to promote their dynamic live performances and self-produced EP through a cross-promotional nationwide tour.