By Ellen Garnett
Last Saturday, Arizona-based, middle school heartthrob band The Maine performed at Simmons’ Holmes Sports Center.
Hosted by the Campus Activities Board, the Residence Hall Association, and the Black Student Organization, The Maine playfully graced the stage and performed songs from their new album “American Candy,” which they released this year. There was a sizeable audience in which a quarter of the concertgoers knew the lyrics up until the very last song The Maine performed, “Everything I Ask For,” a song from their 2008 album “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop.”
“Each venue has its own energy,” said lead singer John O’Callaghan when asked about their favorite place they have performed. They have performed in various countries, with South America and Australia being at the top of their list of favorites.
For those of you who are not familiar with the band, The Maine is an American rock band. Some may categorize them as a boy-band due to some of their love songs, but they are definitely not. You will not see them doing any corny boyband dances like that of NSYNC and The Backstreet Boys (thank goodness we no longer live in the early 2000s).
Simmons CAB gave The Voice the chance to go behind the scenes with The Maine. A bunch of down-to-earth, friendly guys, The Maine embraced the opportunity to perform at Simmons. Although they regretted the fact that none of them ever went to college, they rejoiced in their privilege to call their jam sessions their job.
Most people don’t know that The Maine doesn’t have a proper record label. Their three most recent albums—“American Candy” in 2015, their EP “Imaginary Numbers” in 2013, and “Forever Halloween” in 2013—were all released on their own accord without the help of an actual record label. Their following on social media, including on Facebook and Twitter, adds up to approximately one million followers. The support of their followers, according to the band, is what has kept The Maine going since its inception in January 2007.
The Maine’s presence at Simmons emphasized the human aspect of performers, as the band was very approachable. Often, very popular musicians become intimidating, as their stardom fuels their ego. This is not the case with The Maine. It felt like the band had been friends with the audience for a long time.
What made The Maine’s performance at Simmons particularly special is that even though they had fun rocking out, they also made it a point to address the horrific acts of terrorism in Paris, France that occurred last Friday. The band’s message was simple: their performance was a distraction from the terror happening in the world, but at least it was a means of unity during the tough time.
Indeed, The Maine’s concert was a perfect retreat from all of the chaos going on in the world. Their music brought together longtime fans and first-time listeners for a lyrical refuge.
To learn more about the band and its upcoming concerts, or if you would like to buy merchandise to support The Maine, visit their webpage wearethemaine.net.