Bands and bikes headline downtown benefit

September 06, 2007|By TIFFANY ARNOLD

Downtown Live Rock 'n' Ride aims to match outdoor rock music with BMX stunts in Hagerstown.

The Saturday street show gives equal footing to BMX riders and regional pop and punk bands, with a portion of the proceeds going toward efforts to build the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts, said Demcore's Toni Britton.

Demcore is organizing the event and has already hosted several concerts in downtown Hagerstown.

Four bands are slated to perform in the lot behind Baltimore Street Station Car Wash, 32 W. Baltimore St. Between music acts, six professional BMX riders will perform their own "set lists," spinning their bikes and themselves off a 10-foot quarter-pipe. They'll also stunt on a 6-foot box jump.

"We're going to have a pretty serious setup, and if the crowd gets really into it, we might pull out some new tricks," said Dan Sieg, one of the BMXers. Sieg is a touring BMXer from North Carolina and will be joined by BMXers from across the country.


Baltimore-area threesome Dropout Year will open the show. The self-described pop-punk band performs original music. Inspiration for their songs comes from romantic comedies, said the band's guitarist Brandon Reter.

The title of the group's seven-song EP "Seven Unreturned Phone Calls" was a borrowed line from the 1989 movie "Say Anything" starring John Cusack. The band's more recent song, "It wasn't over, it still isn't over" is a line from "The Notebook," the 2004 film starring Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams.

Reter said such influences fit with the band's audience.

"It's a female demographic," he said. "We don't hide what we like."

Other performers include The Hint, Calisus and Hotspur.

The Hint will headline the show. The pop band generated a buzz on the Vans Warped Tour, where Hint members engaged in some heavy-duty guerilla marketing - even though they weren't officially on the tour - so much so that Warped Tour organizers signed them on as guest bloggers. (You can read about The Hint's follies and check out photos from the tour at

Organizers of the Hagerstown event are expecting 300 to 400 people, roughly a third of the event's 1,000-person max capacity, Britton said.

If all goes well, there will be future BMX/rock concerts down the road, Britton said.

Britton said downtown has proven itself a successful music venue, so it seemed logical to pair that with something else that has seen some downtown success, albeit unofficial - BMX riding.

"Any day you go down the streets of Hagerstown, you see kids riding their BMX bikes," Britton said.

If you go ...

WHAT: Downtown Live Rock 'n' Ride, concert and BMX show

WHEN: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8

WHERE: Downtown Hagerstown, behind the Baltimore Street Station Car Wash, 32 W. Baltimore St.

COST: $5 in advance and before noon on concert day. Thereafter, tickets will cost $8. Free for children 4 and younger.

MORE: For more information, e-mail Toni Britton at or go to

The lineup

Noon - Dropout Year
1 p.m. - BMX stunts
2 p.m. - Calisus
3 p.m. - BMX stunts
4 p.m. - Hotspur
5 p.m. - BMX stunts
6 p.m. - The Hint

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