Rejects ‘Move Along’ to Blossom Music Center

Andrew Gaug

When a band forms and one member of the band suggests they be called “The All-Americans,” while the other suggests “The Rejects”- you compromise with The All-American Rejects.

This was the case with the All-American Rejects’ founding members Tyson Ritter and Nick Wheeler when they formed the band in the late ’90s while they were still in grade school. After releasing their debut EP Same Girl, New Songs and a platinum-selling self-titled album, drummer Chris Gaylor and guitarist Mike Kennerty were brought on board to round-out the lineup.

All American Rejects

Where? Blossom Music Center

When? May 7

How much? $30

After frequent touring on Warped Tour and a slew of hits such as “Swing, Swing” and “The Last Song,” the band slowly gained notoriety. In 2004, the band went in to record their latest record, Move Along.

“(Move Along) was approached differently,” Kennerty said. “It was the whole band sitting in a studio and we jammed out songs. We played the songs to sound as if they were live.”

With two hit singles in the past year, the All-American Rejects have found themselves getting major airplay on MTV, Fuse and major radio stations such as Kiss FM. But the band has found themselves on the verge of being overplayed.

“Between midnight and five in the morning, we’re usually up on the tour bus watching MTV or Fuse and actually, I have been sick of seeing the ‘Move Along’ video,” said Kennerty, “If anything else, it’s just strange to see all of us on TV.”

Writing songs mainly dealing with breaking up, heart ache and rough times, the band was initially distinguished as “emo,” referring to blubbering music solely based on melancholy emotions. “A couple years ago, it was more frustrating,” said Kennerty, “it’s now more of a joke. It was a buzz word, but now it’s dying off.”

Currently, The All-American Rejects are one of the main acts on “The Black Clouds & Underdogs Tour” with other radio-friendly acts Fall Out Boy and Hawthorne Heights. The band will be making stops at such huge venues as Cuyahoga Falls’ Blossom Music Center.

Kennerty described the experience as “pretty ridiculous.”

“We haven’t come close to playing venues like this,” he said. “We gained some recognition from the first record, but thought that might be it. We never expected this.”

One of the main benefits The All-American Rejects have found while traveling on such a large-scale tour is being able to ride in a huge bus. “We’ve done our fair share of vans tours,” said Kennerty. “This isn’t our first tour in a bus, but this is the biggest and nicest we’ve ever been in.”

The band also is given their personal space to have some time to themselves. “We definitely made sure to bring a huge CD book of DVD’s.” said Kennerty, “I brought a portable record player, Nick brought his yoga mat and memory foam pillow. Each member brings their own thing to the bus.”

As for their show at Blossom Music Center, Kennerty said fans should expect “a full-on, exciting rock show.”

“We’re not the headliner, so we don’t have the pyro – but we definitely have the energy,” he said.

After the tour concludes in mid-May, the band plans to do some overseas shows and record a music video for their upcoming single “It Ends Tonight.” The band is also, as Kennerty said, “taking baby steps with new material.” But even though “Move Along” showed a happier, less heart-broken All-American Rejects, don’t expect them to fully recover.

“I think the heartbreaks bring on the good (songs,)” said Kennerty, “so I hope that doesn’t go away. But if it does, he said jokingly, “hopefully, we can fake it well.”

Contact ALL correspondent Andrew Gaug at [email protected].