Band News and Events

The Shana Stack Band Opened for Toby Keith 

Concert Announcement

The Shana Stack Band opened for Toby Keith and Aaron Lewis on the CruCon Cruise Outlet Main Stage at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion on Saturday, June 13.

Show began at 7:00 PM. Doors opened at 5:00 PM.

The Good Times & Pick Up Lines Tour presented by Ford F-Series was sold out.  The entire staff of the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion and Toby Keith's staff and crew were amazing to work with. 
 

The Shana Stack Band Opening for Toby Keith on the Main Stage 

Concert Announcement

This just in...The Shana Stack Band to open for Toby Keith and Aaron Lewis on the CruCon Cruise Outlet Main Stage at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion this Saturday, June 13.

Show begins at 7:00 PM. Doors open at 5:00 PM.

Purchase your tickets to the Good Times & Pick Up Lines Tour presented by Ford F-Series by clicking the link https://www.banknhpavilion.com/show061315/ticMS_SSB Use promo code: MS_SSB for your chance to win a meet and greet with Toby Keith.

Nate Grant - New Lead Player 

Please join The Shana Stack Band in welcoming their new guitar player, Nate Grant.

Nate Grant is a spiritual guitar player who was born and raised in Manchester, NH. After acquiring his first guitar, a Trusty Fender Stratocaster named Annabell, Nate was influenced by guitar legends such as Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana, Billy Gibbons, Wes Montgomery, Trey Anastasio and many more across many genres. While he composed and produced original music, Nate played in various local groups around New England. Shortly after picking up the guitar he was mentored by Luke Moss, and played professionally for the Bluzey Jazzy Funky Instrumental group; Booboo Groove. 

Nate quickly became interested in country boogie, and other forms of classic southern style music, and feels blessed to be a part of The Shana Stack Band. He can't wait to rock n' roll and give fans a great music experience.
 

Keene Sentinel - The Shana Stack Band wins Band of the Year 

Keene Sentinel
April 2015

The New England Music Awards, held in Foxboro, Mass., announced the winners of their 4th Annual New England Music Awards on April 18, 2015.

The Shana Stack Band, comprised of all New Hampshire musicians (Shana Stack, Ed Leavitt, John Sanchez, Kurt Ekstrom and Alec Derian), was nominated in the top category of Band of the Year. 

At the awards ceremony The Shana Stack Band was announced as this year’s Top Award winner for Band of the Year for the 4th Annual New England Music Awards.  Members of The Shana Stack Band later expressed, “This is just so hard to believe.  Last month we won Country Artist of the Year from the 7th Annual Limelight Magazine Awards and coming only a year after being awarded Country Act of the Year last year at the New England Music Awards. Then being nominated again this year for the Band of the Year category was so amazing.  We were surprised and thrilled at just being nominated again and we were honored to be in the category along with so many amazing artists like Twiddle, Kung Fu, Girls, Guns and Glory, Quilt and the Jason Spooner Band.  We wish to congratulate all of the nominees and winner from the 4th Annual New England Music Awards.  We hope that people will take the time to go and see these bands perform at music venues all across New England.  There is so much amazing talent and we are proud to be considered a part of it all.”

The band has released 4 albums in 4 years, "Then and Now" 2014, "Every Now and Then" 2013, "What You See Is What You Get" 2012 and "You Can't Make Me Fall" 2011. The band is looking forward to another successful year, traveling all across New England to perform for their fans.  They have opened for Country Superstars such as Reba McEntire, Sugarland, Travis Tritt, Rascal Flatts and the Band Perry and in September will be opening for Little Big Town at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion at Meadowbrook in Gilford, NH.  

You can view their website and order their latest CD by visiting www.ShanaStack.com

New Hampshire’s Shana Stack Band Takes Top Honors at Regional Awards 

New Hampshire’s Shana Stack Band Takes Top Honors at Regional Awards

By Mark Jennings
WOKQ 97.5
April 23, 2015 2:36 PM


Congratulations are in order for the Shana Stack Band. Last weekend they took home “Band of the Year” honors at the 4th annual New England Music Awards.The awards took place at the Showcase Live Theater in Foxboro Massachusetts on Saturday April 18th. The band has won numerous other awards recently including Country Band of the Year and the Fans Choice Award by the Independent Country Music Association in Nashville, Tennessee, and 2014 Country Act of the Year by the New England Music Awards.

The band has opened for country stars such as Reba, Sugarland, Rascal Flatts and The Band Perry. In September they will be opening for Little Big Town at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion in Gilford, NH.
 

And the winner is by Amy Nachbar 

The New England Music Awards 2015

Photo: Amy Nachbar

Examiner.com

The New England Music Awards 2015
PHOTO: Amy Nachbar

On Saturday, April 18, the New England Music Awards sold out Showcase Live at Patriot Place in Foxboro. Bands and musicians from all over New England were there to perform and celebrate the fact that no matter what, each and every one of them had been recognized for their contribution to the music industry.

Special awards were given to Chris DeSimone who received the Scene Award which is given to a person or organization for their dedication to the New England music scene. The Grassroots Award was given to Grace Morrison who has shown a dedication to humanitarian causes. The Decade Award was given to Chip McCabe who has been a staple of the New England music industry.

Comedian, Dave Russo was the evenings host and there were live performances by the Willie J. Laws Band, Little Ugly, We Were Astronauts, Amy and the Engines, Sarah Barrios, Joey Batts and Them, Ben Knight, and Pat and the Hats.

Here are a list of the winners, but I say, every one of them are winners.

Band of the year - The Shana Stack Band

Album of the year - National Throat by artist, Will Dailey

Song of the year - Sunken Ship by artist, Will Dailey

Producer of the year - Brian Coombes

Songwriter of the year - Elison Jackson

Male performer of the year - Dan Blakeslee

Female performer of the year - Anna Lombard

Live act of the year - Aldous Collins Band

New act of the year - West End Blends

Roots act of the year - Dusty Gray Band

Country act of the year - North of Nashville

Pop act of the year - Pat and the Hats

Rock act of the year - We Were Astronauts

Jazz act of the year - Los Sugar kings

Blues act of the year - Mr Nick and Dirty Tricks

Hip Hop act of the year - Lady Essence

Metal act of the year - A Simple Complex

Best in States:

Massachusetts - High Hopes Band

Maine - Hilton Park

Rhode Island - The Rare Occasions

New Hampshire - Gretchen and the Pickpockets

Vermont - The Vacant Lots

Connecticut - The Meadows Brothers

Regional artists shine at New England Music Awards 

Billy Copeland Music
Willie J. Laws

Willie J. Laws

The New England Music Awards is now running like a well oiled machine. Held at Showcase Live at Patriot’s Place in Foxborough, Massachusetts last Saturday night, performers and presenters were on and off the stage without hardly a glitch. This gave the performers a comfortable setting to strut their stuff between speakers and presentations. Showing what the whole event was all about, the bands who performed last night gave it their all as they presented their music to a six state audience.

Joey Batts & Them opened the show with their catchy chorus, rap-rock number “Bestie.” Their song was a joyful romp through today’s fixation on social media and trendy expressions. Next up, Sarah Barrios, last year’s New Act winner, showed she had staying power. Accompanied only by her acoustic guitar, her voice seemed to remain elevated, suspended in the air, as if held up by a mysterious power. Soon after, Ben Knight came on to conclude the brief opening portion of the awards ceremony with his keyboard and horn driven rock and roll abandon. His rhythm section locked into a solid groove and the rest of the band just let it rip.

Blues Act nominee Willie J. Laws Band came on strong with their thick, pulpy groove beneath WJL’s as he belted with the heart and soul of a true, down and dirty blues man. His voice was loaded with richness, experience, and he projected it with the smooth confidence of a southern gentleman. He made his song “Can’t Let Got” and his recent title track “Cornbread Moan” come alive by riffing his way into the stratosphere with a sweet guitar sound. His rhythm section pumped out something huge that a singer-musician like Laws needs to launch those mighty vocal belts and those heavenly guitar leads.

Little Ugly went up next to do their acoustic roots thing, singing together beautifully with a depth of feeling in their words and music and a great sense of rustic charm. Michael Sanford Day’s banjo and Kaia Pazdersky’s fiddle added plenty of natural beauty to their songs, which were already blessed with their uniquely matched vocal harmonies. Little Ugly had a calm, quiet stage presence, but they made every note count with their flinty, gritty picking and bowing styles.

We Were Astronauts

We Were Astronauts

We Were Astronauts played smooth, flowing pop-rock tunes that moved through their changes at a graceful pace. Melodic but also danceable, WWA showed their potential for mass appeal with a vocal melody that fit the music like a velvet glove. It also helped that a whirl of keyboard notes wrapped it all up in a sweet confection of sound.

Amy & The Engines featured dual female vocalists and a fresh modern sound. They had magic coming out of every singer and player and they made that magic happen on numerous levels. Very engaging and very involving, their twisty, multi-dimensional music created a party vibe that matched the energy level in the venue.

Next band, Pat And The Hats were catchy, melodic, and their lead vocalist, Patrik Gochez, sang with a unique timbre, one that could be distinguished enough from a million others singers, a voice that could get the band attention from record companies. They also had a special guest join them on stage, Greg Hawkes, keyboardist from the legendary Boston band The Cars. Hawkes made his mysterious, eerie sounds effective and chilling as he joined Pat And Hats for a special rendition of “Moving In Stereo.”

Master of ceremony, comedian Dave Russo, was a hoot with his one liners, zingers, and stories. His highlights included his banter with a Connecticut music scene official, his spoof on NEMA chief Joe Graham’s communication devices, and a brief display of his break dancing abilities. Yes, Russo can, in fact, break dance, but that part of his act isn’t meant for the whole family.

Booking agent Phil Simon

Booking agent Phil Simon

Project manager LeAnne Piepiora and her production crew kept things running smoothly. A slick production inside a hip, modern function room symbolized the growing sophistication of the New England Music Awards as it heads toward becoming this region’s largest, most diverse music awards show. There was a limited number of names from their previous awards shows which indicates how far and wide NEMA casts its nets to be as inclusive as possible. That a small rural state like New Hampshire had won nine out of the 26 awards presented on the same night Boston’s Will Dailey won two shows the extent of this awards organization’s outreach in the New England music scene.

We will likely see NEMA outdo themselves each coming year. The winners are listed below.

And the award goes to:

Band of the Year: The Shana Stack Band

Album of the Year: National Throat/Will Dailey

Song of the Year: Sunken Ship/Will Dailey

Producer of the Year: Brian Coombes

Cars legend Greg Hawkes

Cars legend Greg Hawkes

Songwriter of the Year: Elison Jackson

Male Performer of the Year: Dan Blakeslee

Female Performer of the Year: Anna Lombard

New Act of the Year: West End Blend

Live Act of the Year: Aldous Collins Band

New Act of the Year: West End Blend

Roots Act of the Year: Dusty Gray Band

Country Act of the Year: North of Nashville

Pop Act of the Year: Pat & The Hats

Rock Act of the Year: We Were Astronauts

Brittany Laine/Pat & The Hats

Brittany Laine/Pat & The Hats

Jazz Act of the Year: Los Sugar Kings

Blues Act of the Year: Mr. Nick & The Dirty Tricks

Hip Hop Act of the Year: Lady Essence

Metal Act of the Year: A Simple Complex

Best in State/Massachusetts: High Hopes Band

Best in State/Rhode Island: The Rare Occasions

Best in State/New Hampshire: Gretchen & The Pickpockets

Best in State/Maine: Hilton Park

Best in State/Vermont: The Vacant Lots

Best in State/Connecticut:The Meadows Brothers

2015 NEMA Honor Award Winners

The Scene Award ~Winner Chris DeSimone

Presented annually to an individual or organization for their outstanding dedication, involvement and contribution to the New England music scene.

The Grassroots Award ~Winner: Grace Morrison

Presented annually to an individual or institution who through music and performance has demonstrated a dedication to humanitarian causes.

The Decade Award ~Winner: Chip McCabe

Presented annually to an individual who over the last ten years has distinguished him or herself as a celebrated staple of the New England music industry.

New England Music Awards - Band of the Year 

Press Release
The Shana Stack Band wins Top Honor as Band of the Year

4th Annual New England Music Awards

Foxborough, MA, Saturday, April 18, 2015:  The New England Music Awards, held in Foxborough, Massachusetts, announced today the winners of their 4th Annual New England Music Awards. 

The New England Music Awards are presented every year to the musicians who call New England their home and whose dedication, spirit, and achievements over the last year have without a doubt established them as a contributing force to the most robust and diverse music scene in the country. The NEMA nominating committee consists of a variety of music industry experts including journalists from music publications, radio personalities, talent buyers, event planners, record label executives and more. This selection of professionals collectively represents all six New England states and every awards category.
 
The goal of the New England Music Awards is to celebrate and recognize some of the area’s best musical achievements. Every year NEMA nominates over 100 artists and/or bands spanning a number of categories and genres of popular music in New England.  This includes the coveted individual state awards, which recognize one act from each of the six New England states as its Best in State.

The Shana Stack Band, comprised of all New Hampshire musicians (Shana Stack, Ed Leavitt, John Sanchez, Kurt Ekstrom and Alec Derian), was nominated in the top category of Band of the Year.  The New England Music Awards receives thousands of perspective nominations each year and narrowed the field down to 26 categories and chose only 6 artists/groups to be represented in each category. They also chose Chris DeSimone as The Scene Award Winner, Grace Morrison as The Grassroots Award Winner and Chip McCabe as the Decade Award Winner. The Master of Ceremonies for the awards show was Boston Comedy Festival winner Dave Russo who has been featured on “Comics Come Home with Denis Leary,” the E! TV series “The Entertainer,” with Wayne Newton, NESN’s Comedy All-Stars, the Phantom Gourmet, Charlie Moore Outdoors, USO shows nationwide, and can be seen weekly as co-host of NESN’s “Dirty Water TV.”

At the awards ceremony presented at Showcase Live in Foxborough, MA, Saturday evening, The Shana Stack Band was announced as this year’s Top Award winner for Band of the Year for the 4th Annual New England Music Awards.  The Shana Stack Band members were thrilled about the news.  The band members Shana Stack Davis, Ed Leavitt, Kurt Ekstrom and Alec Derian accepted the award on the band’s behalf.  Their band manager, Conrad Farnham was asked to accompany them on stage.  Shana approached the microphone and began her acceptance speech with “O.M.” and Ed finished the statement with “G”.  The audience clapped and laughed along with the band’s excitement.  Shana then spoke to the audience with true emotion with “Thank you to everyone that voted.  We want to thank our families, our friends and our fans.  We are just so shocked to win this award.  We were up against such amazing artists that have thousands of Facebook fans.”  Shana continued on with introducing each of the band members and sending a shout-out to John Sanchez, Lead guitarist for the group and Wayne Braley the group’s sound tech, that were not in attendance for the big event.  Shana then turned her attention to Conrad Farnham, their band manager, to express gratitude on behalf of the band.  “Without Conrad, this would not be possible.  He works extremely hard every day to provide us with the opportunity to perform all across New England.  We are very lucky to have him.” Shana finished by saying, “We are all in this together.  There are so many amazing bands and artists in our genre of music (country) and many other genres.  We are all in this together.  Instead of competing with each other, we should all be supporting each other and helping each other when we can.”  The audience broke out in applause and screams.  Ed Leavitt then stepped to the microphone and continued the gratitude with, “We especially want to thank The New England Music Awards, Granite Coast Entertainment, the nominating committee members and especially Joe Graham, Mike Flynn and John Fleming, who founded the New England Music Awards.  We are grateful for all of that you do for the music industry.” To show how much The Shana Stack Band is appreciative of all of the support they receive during the year and their commitment to supporting other bands, Kurt Ekstrom quickly stepped up to the microphone as the band was exiting the stage, “Don’t forget to stick around for Pat & the Hats performance.”
 
The Shana Stack Band later expressed, “This is just so hard to believe.  Last month we won Country Artist of the Year from the 7th Annual Limelight Magazine Awards and coming only a year after being awarded Country Act of the Year last year at the New England Music Awards. Then being nominated again this year for the Band of the Year category was so amazing.  We were surprised and thrilled at just being nominated again and we were honored to be in the category along with so many amazing artists like Twiddle, Kung Fu, Girls, Guns and Glory, Quilt and the Jason Spooner Band.  We wish to congratulate all of the nominees and winner from the 4th Annual New England Music Awards.  We hope that people will take the time to go and see these bands perform at music venues all across New England.  There is so much amazing talent and we are proud to be considered a part of it all.”

The list of awards The Shana Stack Band has won over the last few years range from Country Band of the Year and the Fans Choice Award by the Independent Country Music Association, to Wiles Magazine's World's Best Indie Artist to their awards for Country Act of the Year by the New England Music Awards and now their most recent awards for Country Artist of the Year by Limelight Magazine and Band of the Year by the New England Music Awards.  The band never takes these awards for granted and realize it is the fans and their family’s commitment that are the drive behind their success.  "Winning awards is amazing, but what these awards really show, is that the fans and the music industry really approve of what we do.  We love to make music and share it with everyone.  The fans are really what make this rollercoaster ride fun, exciting and truly rewarding.  We look forward to doing what we love, making music, for years to come.”

The band has released 4 albums in 4 years, "Then and Now" 2014, "Every Now and Then" 2013, "What You See Is What You Get" 2012 and "You Can't Make Me Fall" 2011. The band is looking forward to another successful year, traveling all across New England to perform for their fans.  They have opened for Country Superstars such as Reba McEntire, Sugarland, Travis Tritt, Rascal Flatts and the Band Perry and in September will be opening for Little Big Town at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion at Meadowbrook in Gilford, NH.  

You can view their website and order their latest CD by visiting www.ShanaStack.com

Congratulations again to The Shana Stack Band on their latest award as Band of the Year for the New England Music Awards.

Local Artists Nominated for New England Music Awards 

Concord Monitor

By SARAH KINNEY
Monitor staff
Thursday, April 16, 2015

New England’s top musicians, songwriters and producers will be recognized Saturday at the New England Music Awards.

Those who attend will hear Latin, rock, country, folk, pop, hip hop, reggae and more by artists who call New England home.

There were a number of smaller, regional awards programs: the Connecticut Music Awards, the Boston Music Awards, the Worcester Music Awards, and the Limelight Music, said Joseph Graham, one of the awards program organizers. But not one that involved all of New England.

Graham and partners John Fleming and Mike Flynn set out to change that four years ago with the first New England Music Awards night.

A New Hampshire band, Pat and The Hats, will be one of the featured live performances of the evening. The group is nominated for best pop act of the year. Last year, they were named best band in New Hampshire at the awards.

The band features front-man and songwriter Patrik Gochez on guitar and keyboard, Brendan Harisiades on bass and vocals, Bobby Rice on drums and vocals, Scott Solsky on guitar and Brittany Laine on vocals.

The band has been promoting its first album Fake it ’til you Make a Hit, which features accompaniment from Greg Hawkes of The Cars. Hawkes will join them at the New England Music Awards, too.

The band will give an unofficial pre-party concert Friday at Bull McCabe’s Pub in Somerville, Mass.

Other featured performance acts at the awards include Joey Batts and Them, Sarah Barrios, Ben Knight, We Were Astronauts, Amy and The Engines and the Willie J. Laws Band.

Boston comedian Dave Russo will host the award ceremony.

Musical artists can be nominated in a variety of categories all year on the website.

Then, a committee of music industry experts including journalists from music publications, radio personalities, talent buyers, event planners and record label executives narrow down the nominations for each category, trying to represent a variety of genres and states, Graham said.

Once, narrowed down, voting takes place on the website.

The nominees for best in state for New Hampshire this year are Tan Vampires, Best Not Broken, Gretchen and the Pickpockets, Blacklight Ruckus and the Jandee Lee Porter Band.

New Hampshire musicians are represented in almost every category.

The Shana Stack Band, a country music group, is a nominee for band of the year.

“Bad Decisions” by Manchester singer Josh Logan was nominated for song of the year.

Brian Coombes of Rocking Horse Studio in Pittsfield was nominated as producer of the year. American Idol finalist and Mont Vernon singer Alex Preston was nominated as male performer of the year.

Roots of Creation and the Aldous Collins Band were nominated for best live act of the year.

In the genre categories, Concord-based Dusty Gray Band and Four Legged Faithful were nominated for roots, the Rory Scott Band was nominated for country, Emmarie and Pat and The Hats were nominated for pop, Crushed Out was nominated for rock, Mr. Nick and The Dirty Tricks was nominated for blues, Cameen was nominated for hip hop, and A Simple Complex was nominated for metal.

Lizzy Marella, a 15 year old New Hampshire native was nominated for new act of the year.

The awards ceremony starts at 7 p.m. at Showcase Live in Foxboro, Mass. Seats are sold out for the concert, but a livesteam can be viewed at nemusicawards.com.

Country Music Stars Sing at AUDI 

COUNTRY MUSIC STARS SING AT AUDI
Concord Monitor
Wednesday, March 25, 2015


We've spent some time covering cup stacking at the Insider (thanks Mr. Jim!), and we're big on newspaper stacking (it's the only way to get our paper into those little boxes downtown.  We found balling them up and shoving them in there to be less effective).  But what about Shana stacking?  That's not a thing. 

Shana Stack is a thing, though-she's the lead vocalist in The Shana Stack Band, which will be performing tonight at 7:30 at the Audi as part of the Walker Lecture Series.

The Shana Stack Band is a country music act of growing renown, if you consider being the winner of the New England Music Award for Country Act of the Year to be renown (we do, you should).  They've opened for the likes of Reba McEntire, Rascal Flatts and Travis Tritt (not all at the same time, presumably), but tonight they are going to play music right in front of your face.  Don't miss out.  All Walker Lecture Series shows are free and open to the public, with seating on a first come, first seated basis.

 

Limelight Magazine - Country Artist of the Year 

Press Release

The Shana Stack Band wins Country Artist of the Year
7th Annual Limelight Magazine Music Awards

Plymouth, MA, Saturday, March 21, 2015:  The Limelight Magazine Music Awards, located in Dartmouth, Massachusetts, announced today the winners of their 7th Annual Limelight Magazine Music Awards. 

Founded in October 2006, Limelight Magazine is one of the leading online destinations for coverage of the New England music scene and beyond, providing readers with exclusive interviews with musicians from all genres of music.

After five years of publication, including 12 issues, the print version of Limelight Magazine moved its operations completely online, while always reserving the right for another print issue.

Besides its online efforts, Limelight Magazine is committed to supporting the local music scene of New England with its annual music awards ceremony in the late winter/early spring. Each year dozens of musicians have been recognized for their immense creativity and talent.

The Shana Stack Band, comprised of all New Hampshire musicians (Shana Stack, Ed Leavitt, John Sanchez, Kurt Ekstrom and Alec Derian), was nominated in the Country Artist of the Year category.  The Limelight Magazine Music Awards received hundreds of perspective nominations and narrowed the field down to 15 categories and chose only 8 artists/groups to be represented in each category. They also chose the band "New England" to receive their Legend Award and "Robin Lane" to receive their Unsung Hero Award.  Ashley Jordan was the Master of Ceremonies for the awards show. 

At the awards ceremony presented at The Spire Center for Performing Arts in Plymouth, NH, Saturday evening, The Shana Stack Band was announced as this year’s Country Artist of the Year for the 7th Annual Limelight Magazine Awards.  The Shana Stack Band members were thrilled about the news.  Shana Stack Davis, Ed Leavitt and Kurt Ekstrom accepted the award on the bands behalf.  Shana spoke to the audience with sincerity with “Thank you for everyone that voted. I want to introduce this man right here, he is a genius, Ed Leavitt.  He is our songwriter.  We have put out 4 original albums in the last 4 years.  This is Kurt (Ekstrom) our drummer, I'm Shana.  Nice to meet you all.  Thank you everyone who voted.  And thank you to a very special guy in the audience, Conrad Farnham, we call him our Honey Badger, he's our Manager and he works wonders, we love him.  So thank you very much.”  The Shana Stack Band is appreciative of all of the support they receive during the year.  “Being awarded Country Act of the Year last year at the New England Music Awards and being nominated again this year for the Band of the Year is such an honor.  We were surprised and thrilled at just being nominated for a Limelight Award and we were honored to be in the category along with so many amazing artists like Ben Cesare, Kate Cameron, Matt Casey, Alec MacGillivray, Katie Perkins, Marian Rose and congratulations to Brianna Grace for being awards the Runner Up in the Country Artist of the Year category.  Congratulations to all of the nominees and winner from the 7th Annual Limelight Magazine Awards."

The list of awards The Shana Stack Band has won over the last few years range from Country Band of the Year and the Fans Choice Award by the Independent Country Music Association, to Wiles Magazine's World's Best Indie Artist to their awards for Country Act of the Year by the New England Music Awards and now Country Artist of the Year by Limelight Magazine.  The band never takes these awards for granted and realize it is the fans and their family that are the drive behind their success.  "Winning awards is great, but what these awards really show, is that  the fans and the music industry really approve of what we are doing.  The fans are really what make this adventure fun, exciting and sincerely rewarding.  We look forward to doing what we love, making music, for years to come.”

The band has released 4 albums in 4 years, "Then and Now" 2014, "Every Now and Then" 2013, "What You See Is What You Get" 2012 and "You Can't Make Me Fall" 2011. The band is looking forward to another successful year, traveling all across New England to perform for their fans.  They have opened for Country Superstars such as Reba McEntire, Sugarland, Travis Tritt, Rascal Flatts and the Band Perry and in September will be opening for Little Big Town at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion at Meadowbrook in Gilford, NH.  

You can view their website and order their latest CD by visiting www.ShanaStack.com

Congratulations again to The Shana Stack Band on their latest award and wish them luck on their nomination for Band of the Year for the New England Music Awards which will be held at Showcase Live in Foxboro, MA on Saturday, April 18, 2015.

Granite Coast Entertainment - The Shana Stack Band 

Granite Coast Entertainment
Article by:  Rick Stephens Murphy
Winter 2015 Issue


 
The Shana Stack Band:
What you see is what you get
High energy, high impact, engaging, talented, entertaining...Led by multi-national award winning vocalist Shana Stack and Nashville Songwriter association member, Ed Leavitt, The Shana Stack Band is all that and more.

I had the great privilege of talking with Shana and Ed and found them to be smart, witty, (Ed kept us laughing for an hour and a half) humble, and realistic about their accomplishments and goals. I found the blend and diversity of band background extremely interesting and a good example of how music truly is a universal language.

Please list the name and respective instrument of each band member
Shana Stack– Lead Vocals
Ed Leavitt– Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals, Acoustic Rhythm Guitar and Songwriter
John Sanchez– Lead Guitar
Kurt Ekstrom– Drums
Alec Derian– Bass guitar

Tell us the brief history of your band.
The Shana Stack Band was formed in 2010. Both Shana and Ed had fronted country bands for a number of years, but had enjoyed and admired each other for a long time. Being musicians, they often crossed paths on the road, and decided to join forces and form a new band. John Sanchez was brought in as an original member of the band, and Kurt Ekstrom joined two years later. Alec is the latest edition. The band has consistently been a part of the New England music scene; traveling all over the region to perform about 80 shows a year. The Shana Stack Band focuses on top 40 Country and original music. The band recently released their fourth album of all original music and are still, after nearly five years together, enjoying what they do.

What inspired you to make music together?
Shana and Ed have known each other for many years, and have similar tastes in musical interests. They discovered through a series of opportunities to sing together, they had a nice vocal blend. From there, the seed was planted to get together to form something. The rest of the musicians in the band have interesting backgrounds and different genre experiences, and that’s what makes the band so unique. The perspective they each bring to the group is what makes the overall sound and feel of the music unique in its own way.

Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
Shana loves country music, but is also influenced by the great 1980-90 bands. Ed’s influences were the classic country singers like Haggard, Jones and Alan Jackson. He also loves the newer artists who meld the classic sound with the modern sound like Dierks Bentley and Justin Moore. John is a dead head, Kurt is into Van Halen and the classic rock bands, and Alec is the resident Jazz expert and fan.

What are your dreams and goals?
The Shana Stack Band is pretty realistic with their dreams. They know that Nashville is not exactly rolling out the red carpet for more Indie country acts, but they are very happy and content to be a part of the New England music scene. They love interacting and meeting new fans, and sharing their original music with them. “It’s always a big thrill to receive an opportunity like this, to be interviewed and thereby, allowing our group to be introduced to a new audience. We’ve won a number of awards, like the Independent Country Music Association award for Country Band of the Year and the New England Music Award for Country Act of the Year, and we are grateful. But, the awards are just icing on the cake for us. We get our biggest reward in growing our fan base and entertaining people. We’d love to continue to build that following all throughout New England.”
 
Who is the main songwriter?
Ed is a songwriter, and has a membership with NSAI (Nashville Songwriter’s Association International) and is a member of ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers). Ed enjoys storytelling, and likes to present ideas that the band can build upon. Everyone in the band infuses their talent and expertise into building an original song. It is always amazing how a melody and lyrics from Ed turns into a production when the band is finished infusing their own take on the song.

What has been your biggest challenge as a band? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?
The biggest challenge continues to be balancing the band with other work, families and the time on the road. The Shana Stack Band members traveled nearly 13,000 miles each last year, and somehow still managed a house and family obligations. It can be very challenging at times. Not only does the travel and overall obligation involve the five band members, but it also affects their sound tech, Wayne Braley and their Manager, Conrad Farnham. As the band likes to describe it, “Lots of balls always in the air.”

What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?
Be ready to work extremely hard. The music business is difficult and finicky. One day you are opening for a headlining act, and the next you can be playing a small club where no one knows who you are. You have to be ready to sacrifice time away from your family and other work, which is always a gentle balancing act. You have to rehearse constantly to get tight and stay tight, and you have to be willing to change up things at a moment’s notice. Always be humble and never take anything for granted. It can all be gone tomorrow in the music business.
 
How do you promote your band and shows?
If the band is lucky enough, they get radio and newspaper advertising help. And interviews like this are invaluable to get word out about the band. As well, they continue to build their Facebook following of nearly 3,500 fans, 1,600 twitter followers and over 1,500 Reverbnation fans. They pay special attention to keeping their website current, and are always trying to engage their audience to keep them informed about where the band will be performing next and to be sure the fans know where to find their latest music. The Shana Stack Band has released 4 albums of all original music and they are available to purchase from the band’s website: ShanaStack.com as well as CDBaby, Amazon, iTunes, Spotify and many other outlets.

What’s your outlook on the record industry today?
The record industry is a very up and down industry. CDs don’t sell like they used to, so you have to supplement sales with shows on the road and the dotcom outlets that
will allow Indie bands to work with them. The major record labels sign less and less acts each year, and the demographic is very young. Add to that the complication of people that are now finicky about who they follow. It’s a volatile, ever changing market, and you have to be able to change with it, or get left behind.

Tell us about your next shows and why we should be there.
Along with being lucky enough to perform at Bank of NH Pavilion at Meadowbrook this past summer, to open for The Band Perry, The Shana Stack Band has been fortunate to play some cool local venues that keep them moving through the winter months and already have approx. 35 bookings going into 2015. They are most thankful to the fans and venues for allowing them to do what they love, which is making music.
 
Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge for offering support?
“Oh gosh, so many people. We would like to thank our Manager, Conrad Farnham, who works around the clock on our behalf to find us some amazing opportunities to show off our music. We also would like to thank our Sound Tech, Wayne Braley, who travels with us to be sure that we sound our musical best during our live performances. Thank you to the club owners who have consistently believed in us and kept us booked and to the folks at Meadowbrook who allow us to come back each year and be a part of their wonderful family. We must undoubtedly say a sincere and heartfelt thank you and we love you, to our own families, who support what we love doing and keep the home fires burning while we are away on the road. Of course a special thank you to our fans who buy our music, come to our shows, and encourage us to keep moving forward. We always know that none of what we do could happen without all these people behind us. That old saying, “it takes a village” is so true in this case.” The Shana Stack Band hits the stage with one goal in mind... “To engage the audience and leave them wanting more.”

Any final thoughts?
Thank you for the opportunity to be interviewed. We are always so grateful for these opportunities, and the chance to continue building our fan base. We are very humbled to be able to share our music with anyone who will listen. We would love for folks to check us out at: ShanaStack.com and to “Like” us on Facebook.

The Shana Stack Band is the perfect example of how talent, hard work, and a great sense of humor lead to success. So slip on your boots, grab your hat, and boot two-step your way to The Shana Stack Band show near you.

Here is a glance at just a few of their accomplishments over their four-years together

Winner of the Independent Country Music Association’s Country Band of the Year and Fans Choice Award
2014 Winner of the New England Music Award for Country Act of the Year
2013 - Band of the Year Winner for the Independent Country Music Association, Nashville, TN
2013 - Fans Choice Award Winner for the Independent Country Music Association, Nashville, TN
2013 - Album of the Year nominee for the Independent Country Music Association, Nashville, TN
One of Ed’s songs, “Let it Go”, has been featured in the movie Compliance which was released nationwide in the summer of 2012 by Magnolia pictures.
The Shana Stack Band has opened for such mega stars as Reba McEntire, Sugarland, Rascal Flatts, Chuck Wicks, as well as performing before Travis Tritt on the Main Stage at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway before the Nascar Sprint Cup Race.
In August 2014 the band opened for Vocal Group of the Year by the Academy of Country Music Awards, The Band Perry
 

The 2015 NE Music Awards Nominees 

The Examiner
February 23, 2015

The 2015 NE Music awards nominees for best band

 

The fourth annual New England music awards will take place on Saturday, April 18 at Showcase Live, Patriot Place in Foxboro. David Russo, Boston Comedy Festival winner will be the host. There will be live performances by We Were Astronauts, Amy & The Engine, Pat & the Hats, The Willie J. Laws Band, Ben Knight and Sarah Barrios.

The categories for the NE Music Awards are for band of the year, album of the year, song of the year, producer of the year, song writer of the year, male performer of the year, female performer of the year, live act of the year, new act of the year, roots act of the year, country act of the year, pop act of the year, rock act of the year, jazz act of the year, blues act of the year, hip hop act of the year, metal act of the year, and best in state for Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Maine.

There are six bands nominated for band of the year. They are Twiddle, a Vermont based quartet who masterfully blend reggae and funk and like to say they play three dimensional music. The band is: Brook Jordan on skins, Zdenek Gubb on low end, Ryan Dempsey on ivories and Mihali Savoulidis on axe. More info: http://twiddlemusic.com/

Kung Fu a funk, rock and fusion band who are home based in Connecticut. The band features Tim Palmieri on guitar, Robert Somerville on tenor sax, Todd Stoops on keyboards, Chris DeAngelis on bass guitar and Adrian Tramontano on drums and percussion. It has been said the quintet's live show is explosive and musically mesmerizing. For more info: http://www.kungfumusic.com/

Girls Guns and Glory, a country rock and roll band are nominated in two categories: Band of the Year and Album of the Year. At the Boston Music Awards they were the first band of its genre to win Act of the Year. They also took home Independent Artist of the Year at the French Country Music Awards. Rolling Stone magazine has listed Girls Guns and Glory as one of the “10 New Artist's You Need To Know." The band is: Ward Hayden on acoustic guitar and lead vocals, Josh Kiggans on drum kit, Chris Hersh on electric guitar, banjo and vocals, and Paul Dilley on upright electric bass and vocals. For more band info: http://girlsgunsandglory.com/

The Shana Stack Band is a top 40 country/pop band who mixes it up with original music. They have received awards for Independent Country Music Association's Country Band of the Year and a Fans Choice Award, country act of the year at the at the New England Music Awards and most recently named World's Best Indie Band by Wiles Magazine. The band's second full-length original CD, "What You See Is What You Get" was released in the summer 2012 and was nominated for Album of the Year by the Independent Country Music Association. For more info: http://www.ShanaStack.com/

Quilt is a Boston based psychedelic, indie-rock, pop, folk band founded in 2009. The band is Anna Fox Rochinski on vocals, guitar and organ, Shane Butler on vocals and guitars, and John Andrews on vocals and drums and Keven Lareau on vocals and bass. To date they have two full length albums, the latest "Held in Splendor" was released in January 2014.

The final band of the year nominee is a roots, folk rock and americana band, The Jason Spooner Band who hail from Maine. The band is award winning song writer Jason Spooner on guitar, vocals and harmonica, Adam Frederick on bass and vocals and Reed Chambers on drums and percussion. Some recent band highlights are taping an episode of “FoodNation with Bobby Flay”on the Food Network which featured song clips and performances by Spooner and his band throughout the episode. For more band info: http://www.jasonspooner.com/

For more info on the New England Music Awards: http://nemusicawards.com/

The (Almost) Big Stage 

Playing for pre-show Meadowbrook fans
11/13/14
By Michael Witthaus music@hippopress.com

The music at Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion at Meadowbrook always starts a couple of hours before the lights go down for the headlining act. As fans pass through the gates for every show, there’s a band playing on an elevated stage decorated like a country store. This year, the Gilford amphitheater began offering pre-show talent in its premium parking lot.
The gig looks great on a performer’s résumé. 
“It’s easier to book clubs when they see that,” said Tim Souza, whose band Maganahan’s Revival played prior to Steely Dan last September. “Owners take us more seriously.”
“It has brought us a lot of exposure,” agreed Shana Stack; her country band has appeared four times, dating back to 2010. “When people see names like Band Perry and Sugarland [her band’s opened for both] they think, ‘These guys must really have their stuff together.’ … It makes people comfortable.”
It takes more than talent to land a gig on Meadowbrook’s Magic Hat Stage. Social media skills are essential.
“We look for at least 1,000 followers on Facebook, to show they can build that, and they know a bit about marketing,” said Emily Keane, who books the acts for Meadowbrook. 
A well-maintained Reverb Nation presence is also critical, posting recordings, videos, links and an up-to-date show schedule.  The music website offers Band Profile, an app that links it seamlessly with Facebook.
“I go through pages and pages of bands to find the ones that work for me,” said Keane.
If your band’s social media skills haven’t yet culled thousands of online fans, your best Meadowbrook option is performing during the pre-show Ultimate Tailgate Party. 
“It’s a great stepping stone to the second stage,” said Keane. “There have been some amazing talents out there, like Erin Ollis before Band Perry, and Beechwood at Zac Brown. … They don’t have a stage, but they play their hearts out. It adds another level of music.”
Musically, the venue seeks a balance of unique and familiar. 
“I like to book original songs, maybe some covers,” said Keane. “I look for something that makes me go, ‘I have to have them here.’” 
The selection process starts months before Meadowbrook’s typical mid-May opening day. Once a show date is set, Keane begins scouting for second-stage acts that line up musically with the headliner. Alt pop twin duo The Cranks got the nod for a Fall Out Boy/Paramore double bill, while the rootsy Adam Ezra band fit perfectly with Willie Nelson and Alison Krauss.
Meadowbrook recruits most of the acts, but artists are encouraged to reach out directly. 
“Definitely email me, in January or February when the shows come up,” said Keane. “Get familiar with our schedule, and look for a match.”
For many years, pre-show music happened in a beer tent near the gate. 2013 brought a permanent stage, with improved sound and lights. Initially placed adjacent to a food concession, it was moved to the opposite side of the midway this season. 
“We want to make it more open, provide room to dance,” said Keane.
Magic Hat Stage performers play a plugged in set prior to the show, which usually lasts a couple of hours, and an acoustic show for departing fans. Performers aren’t paid outright, but can make money selling show tickets to their own fans using a special code. The venue often sweetens the deal, Stack said. 
“For each show, fans using our code are entered in a drawing to win a meet and greet with the headliner.”
For Souza and his band, the primary benefit was exposure. 
“We got maybe 50 ticket purchases, but we did big business selling CDs,” he said. “Plus, our social media activity went way up, with all kinds of new followers.”
By providing prominent placement in the season program and click through to Magic Hat Stage bands’ websites, Meadowbrook adds a big boost in that department. 
“We track that information, and we get a lot of hits from the Meadowbrook website,” said Stack. “It’s a huge help.”
It’s not unheard of for a band to parlay pre-show success into a slot in the big amphitheater. In 2013, the Mallett Brothers Band provided support at an Allman Brothers concert. In June of this year, the Maine band opened for Lynyrd Skynyrd and Charlie Daniels. 
“It was a really cool night … when they said direct support, main stage, we jumped for joy,” band member Luke Mallett said last August. “It was kind of a dream gig. I grew up listening to WTOS in Northern Maine, and I can recite every single Skynyrd song.”
The Shana Stack Band is already eying the 2015 season for a fifth appearance on the Magic Hat Stage. 
“We’ve been super lucky to have the opportunity to present our music there,” said Stack. “It’s a fantastic stage, with great sound. It’s the highlight of our summer.”

The Shana Stack Band in Concert Oct. 17, 2014 


Published on the Ledger Transcript (http://www.ledgertranscript.com)

Shana Stack Band in concert Oct. 17

A country music concert featuring the Shana Stack Band, will be held at the Peterborough Town House on Oct.17, from 7 to 10 p.m.

There will be a mechanical bull on site and all proceeds from bull riding will go to the Peterborough Food Pantry.

A cash bar will be provided by Carroll’s Bartending, and the Peterborough Fire Explorers will be selling food from Roy’s Market.

This concert is the annual fundraiser for the Peterborough Fire Rescue Association.

Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Tickets are available at the Peterborough Fire and Rescue station, at Steele’s Stationers, and the Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough and Keene.


Source URL:http://www.ledgertranscript.com/home/13844649-95/shana-stack-band-in-concert-oct-17

Shana Stack Band offer interesting treats, re-worked versions of old songs on Then And Now album 

Billy Copeland Music News

ShanaStackBandCDCoverArtThenAndNowShana Stack Band just released an 11 track album called Then And Now. This new album features reworked versions of their most requested songs, a couple done acoustic style, and two brand new songs. Longtime fans of Shana Stack Band get to hear all new versions of their favorite songs while new fans discovering the band through this disc will be treated to a classy country record.

“I Threw Your Ring Away” begins the album with Stack’s beautiful coos and something unusual for country music, drum programming. A haunting intro, it soon fades into an assertive country rock number, with the emphasis being on rock. Punchy bass lines abound. The drums push hard to move the song along. Guitar lines run from lively to electrifying. And, Stack’s vocal lets the listener know she means business. Aggressive and foreboding, she expresses that post-relationship frustration that could make a woman teeter on the brink of becoming dangerous.

Fetching honky tonk guitars usher, mid-tempo, the listener into songwriter-rhythm guitarist Ed Leavitt’s lead vocal song “The Bottle.” Leavitt contemplates the issues surrounding the bottle, listing episodes of near destruction and failure in vivid imagery, detail, and theme. Yet, the emphasis remains on the emotion of the man who needs to recover. Leavitt sings this one mightily, expressing the earnest emotions of a man who hit rock bottom and has nowhere to go but back up. His hefty chorus is hooky as well as revelatory, and that works well.

ShanaStackPromoPic3“You Can’t Make Me Fall” turns the microphone duties back to Stack. Here, she makes clear she won’t let someone toy with and topple her. Her voice is as beautiful as ever in this Top 40 country number. She glides through the chorus while also pulling in all she moves past with her graceful ease. During the verses, she sings with an audacity of spirit that lets you know she means every word of this anthem of independence and strength. Her voice on the ride out is killer.

Another drinking song, “Black Whiskey,” finds Leavitt offering his chirpy country crooner vocal over some snappy rhythm guitar. Lead guitarist John Sanchez takes over and gives off some tasty bits of twang, nice little touches that add up to one fine melodic phrase. It’s amazing how the guitars in this band are just drenched and dripping with country idioms. That’s no mean feat for a band out of the northeast. These boys, Leavitt and Sanchez, tie their lead and rhythm work into one homespun heft of sound.

“Pleasure And Pain” makes the most of Stack’s beautiful, towering vocal. She sings with a power that could fill sails and send ships moving over the waves. Slowing it down on some verses, she uses her voice as a precise instrument, filling each vocal note with that extra something special. Listen to the way she handles the sustains in the close out and you might think you’re listening to a angel who just fell out of heaven.

“Let It Go” passes the vocal chores back to Ed Leavitt. On this one, he readily handles a hooky chorus that twists and turns with the song’s meaningful rhythms. Leavitt, creates, with his songwriting, a rising lift of music, and he rides it well with his rangy vocal heft.

Leavitt continues at the microphone with “Give Back,” a country gentleman’s call to remind us to pay it forward after all that’s been done for us. Helping the less fortunate, giving more to those with less, comes across as spiritual as any Sunday school lesson, and he puts it across without any faux preachy pretense. His sincerity makes you picture the earnest child learning his Bible lessons about the good Samaritan. Leavitt’s hearty vocal, the guitars and piano texture, and the deep groove from the rhythm section help to make the listener feel the message running through this.

Stack sings lead vocal on “Just Kiss Me,” a hugely popular regional hit from this band’s last album. It’s original Taylor Swift-inspired version has been reworked into something aimed more at adult contemporary radio. Stack applies her beauty of a voice to winning over a shy guy’s ears as well as his heart. This song takes graceful flight as Stack’s voice get lift from her gusts of emotive, rangy power. Each time she takes the chorus it’s like a lovely winged creature suddenly lifted upwards, something natural, beautiful, and blessed with taShanaStackPromoPic2lent

“Blame It On Me” puts Leavitt back in charge of microphone detail. The songwriter’s easygoing philosophy comes across load and clear. He tells a beloved person she can blame him for everything, bad weather, car failure, and relationship difficulties. Leavitt’s winsome charm comes through in his lyrics as much as in his rested, confident vocal. He’s as witty as all get out here, and he keeps offering up his gentle sarcasm with gentlemanly aplomb. He also boast one heck of a singing voice on the ride out.

This reviewer’s favorite song on the album,” What You See Is What You Get,” is Stack’s attitude-laden call to arms against people who have a specific, narrow image of femininity. She can drive a John Deere tractor and walk in the rain just to get wet. She can also dress up pretty and flirty. Stack stomps through this one beautifully and authoritatively, with a force of personality that smolders its way forward, knocking down any that dare to get in her way. The groove is killer, twisty, and the melodic instruments wrap around it like battle armor. Pretty coos, sweet guitar notes, and the initial take-your-time groove at first lull the listener in while they belie the all American girls flexes her muscles vibe.

SSB close out with “Better Life,” a call to follow one’s dreams rather than settle in a one horse town. This track does what the album has been longing to do by now, pair Stack and Leavitt in a duo number. Leavitt sings this anthem, about the brave and lonely person’s need to press on, with his first rate vocal chops. He caresses his lyrics with warm regard for his subjects. Stack comes in on the next verse. She coats her words with care, and that makes this song come alive as much the striking vocals and warm musical support.

Stack, Leavitt, bass guitarist Billy Moedebeck, lead guitarist and Mandolin player John Sanchez, and drummer Kurt Ekstrom have come up with a classy album. Though most of these songs are not new, they are newly arranged and they find the band pulling them all together with their own distinct sound based on where they‘re currently at.

Wiles Magazine - World's Best Indie Band: The Shana Stack Band 

THE SHANA STACK BAND

WORLD’S BEST INDIE BAND:

THE SHANA STACK BAND

By Elizabeth “Izzy” Jordan

 

In a few days, MTV will honor some of the video achievements of the biggest names in the music business. Before all of that, let’s take a look at who our readers have voted as the World’s Best Indie Band…

Shana Stack Band

The Shana Stack Band was formed four years ago and since then, with hits like “I Threw Your Ring Away” and “Her Lips Taste Like Guilty,” they’ve gone on to win  the Independent Country Music Association’s Country Band of the Year and Fans Choice Award and New England Music Award’s Country Act of the Year. The Shana Stack Band features multi-national award winning vocalist Shana Stack, and Nashville Songwriter’s Association International member, Ed Leavitt – who is the group’s male vocalist and songwriter.

 

While issues like competitiveness and creative conflicts often plague bands in the business, The Shana Stack Band cites support, respect and appreciation among the keys to their success.

 

“We love what we do, and appreciate every new opportunity,” Shana told us. “We want our creative goals to always be evolving. We constantly push each other out of our comfort zones, because that is what keeps us growing. The dream [of success] is forever changing for all of us.”

An eclectic group of artists whose individual music tastes range from Billy Joel and Garth Brooks to The Grateful Dead and Van Halen, like most indie bands, The Shana Stack Band practices the art of balancing the time commitment of shows, rehearsals, and promo work with the creative process. And, when the going gets tough, they’re fortunate to be surrounded by fans and loved ones who keep them encouraged.

“I think what inspires us the most is the drive of those whom we work with and who support us,” Shana shared. “Our families inspire us and we love covering new ground.”

And when it comes to touring and performing, The Shana Stack Band is a family affair.

“We enjoy getting to perform in new areas and getting to meet new people, and we spend time [together] as a family unit. From our manager, Conrad Farnham, to each of our musicians, John Sanchez, Kurt Ekstrom, Ed Leavitt, and Billy Moedebeck, to our sound tech Wayne Braley, “ Shana told us. “Even the wives of the guys will travel with us.  Often, Kurt’s wife Robin will assist with merchandise sales on the road. John’s wife and kids sometimes make a trip and it’s fun to have everyone along.  It’s like a giant camping experience.”

Slated for release in September, the band’s upcoming album is, in fact, a direct reflection of feedback they’ve received from their fans.

“We thought it would be cool to take our most requested songs from our first two albums, do different arrangements, perhaps take a song and make it an acoustic version etc and package it along with new songs.  We thought our fans would really enjoy that.”

 

Shana Stack Band performing

The band began work on its latest album last December and went into the studio to work with producer Kevin Federico in early spring. We spent most of spring and summer in between performing finishing up the project.  Featuring original tunes written by Ed Leavitt, each musician in the band contributed their own personal touches to each song to create the unique Shana Stack Band sound that fans have come to love. The album was completed earlier this month.

Along with the upcoming album, the band is looking forward to a very busy September filled with projects.

“We are always working on new projects and waiting for that next thing to come along,” Shana shared. “We’ll be playing the NH Motor Speedway in September before a huge race and we already have fall dates that will take us all around New England.”

Someday soon you may see The Shana Stack Band touring with artists like Miranda Lambert, Lady Antebellum or Dierks Bentley.  Until then, they’ll continue to go about the business of making great music and encouraging other independent artists to do the same.

“Our advice to indie artists is to never give up. The music business is very hard and can be an emotional roller coaster at times. You have to be patient, persistent and always work hard,” Shana said.  “There’s a big misconception out there that an artist can make it big over night. It’s not true. But, it’s in the early stages, when you are playing small clubs and venues and you may have only a dozen people in the audience, that you truly learn your craft.”

To learn more about The Shana Stack Band, please visit: www.shanastack.com

Discovering a New Sound: The Shana Stack Band 

Discovering a New Sound: The Shana Stack Band

Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Fancy Pants & Sugar Shacks Blog
Meghan Liegel

Many moons ago (okay, it was only a few months ago), my friend and colleague Ed invited me to listen to his band, The Shana Stack Band, play at a local venue.  As I was already familiar with a few of their tunes, and was also aware of their recent win at the New England Music Awards, AND the fact that they have opened for the likes of Reba McEntire and Sugarland, I knew it was going to be a great show and said yes immediately!  I put in a call to my friend, Ms. K., as I knew she would be up for an evening of good music, food, and fun. 

After a great dinner, we headed to the Tupulo Music Hall to see Ed and the band play. So, a foreword. Well, I guess it's a mid-word as we are already well-into this post. Until about a decade ago, I was never a huge fan of country music aside from my love of Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton...I mean, how can you not love them???   Anyway, country music always seemed so sad and mournful and I just couldn't get into it.  However, thanks to the many great cross-over artists that have created some amazing music over past ten+ years, the genre has grown on me tremendously.  For one, I really appreciate the simple, honest story-telling aspect of country music; also, its melodies can be really comforting and familiar... they sort of make you feel like you are home getting a big hug from mom.  And after this concert, I like it even more!   In fact, Shana mentioned that one of her favorite things about performing is turning people on to country music.   She says: "I love 'converting' people to country music.  We hear frequently 'I don't like country but I LOVE you guys.'  Such a great compliment when people have a preconceived notion of what a genre of music is and you can turn it around for them."  Shana: you may have another convert on your hands!!!

Anyway, let's get to the good stuff!  They started out with some covers which got the crowd up and moving and clapping their hands, and then moved into their own songs which were thoughtfully written and artfully sung. Shana and Ed also took the time to introduce numbers, and chit chat about the stories behind several of the songs, and engage those of us in the audience to make sure we were enjoying ourselves. 


One thing I noticed right off the bat is the rocker edge their music has.   It is definitely country but lined with a great, edgy rocker beat.  After having asked the band members about this, it turns out that this is no accident.  Shana Stack, the awesomely fierce front-woman of the band, cites Martina McBride, Trisha Yearwood and Carrie Underwood but also Pat Benetar and Heart as her influences.  A quote from Shana on the latter: "Man that woman could sing!"  I would have to say the same of Shana - she has some seriously mad vocal skills!


John Sanchez said his influences include Brad Paisley, Albert Lee, Brent Mason and Doug Seven, but hopes his own sound shines through.  It does and in spades!  AND....wait for it...he plays the mandolin!  And ROCKS it!


Other influences run the gamut from Haggard, Wynette, and Cash to the Beatles, Neil Diamond, Michael Jackson, Led Zeppelin and funk disco.  And this diversity really shines through in not only their music but also their performance.



Here's my buddy, Ed, singing his heart out!!!






























Ed provides lead vocals and rhythm guitar and writes most of their music - and I am trying to not be biased as he is a friend -  but his lyrics are fantastic - truly thoughtful, moving, relevant, and reflective. In fact, I recently found out that one of his songs was in the movie 'Compliance', which premiered at Sundance a few years back. Who knew I was working with someone so talented???!!!

At the concert, the one song I found especially moving was the song he wrote called 'Give Back' which is about just that - paying forward the good things in life to those who might need some help.  They performed this number (and a few others) acoustically and it was such a quietly moving way to take in their music.  Acoustic sets are not a usual part of their performances so if you happen to catch one you are in for a treat.


And towards the end of the more laid-back, non-electronic set they transitioned right back into their high-energy show, making sure that the audience was up and out of their seats, dancing away!  Also, did I mention that their band manager Conrad was in the back of the room teaching people how to line dance?  It is really a show that absolutely everyone can enjoy.  You can hang out up front and listen to the story-telling and do a bit of dancing with others in the crowd, or you can head to the back and do some good old-fashioned country line
dancing.  It's a win-win in my book!















































I was so happy Ed invited me out to see their show as it was just awesomely good fun.  I danced, I sang along, and left feeling a little hoarse - just the way one should leave a concert!

If you get the chance, you should definitely try and catch one of their shows.  They are smack-dab in the middle of a heavy touring schedule all around the Northeast (in fact, this past weekend they opened for The Band Perry at Meadowbrook in NH!!), and you can find their schedule here. www.ShanaStack.com

And, should you feel be feeling impulsive and want to listen to some of their tunes straightaway, check them out on iTunes!

Meghan xoxo

The Shana Stack Band Wins Wiles Magazine's World's Best Indie Band 


The votes are in and The Shana Stack Band wins World's Best Indie Band from Wiles Magazine.  For the month of July Wiles Magazine featured 31 different acts, a different act each day in their online magazine.  Band and musicians solicited votes from their fans spanning all social media networks from Facebook to Twitter to comments on the Wiles Magazine website.  As voting was ending the competition came down to three acts that were leading the race.  Axe Man's Bridge, McKenzie Jones and The Shana Stack Band.  In the last hour of the competition, The Shana Stack Band pulled ahead with the win.  Family, friends and fans of the band have once again provided their unwavering support for the band and have helped them to win this incredible award.  The band will have a full length feature in the next issue of Wiles Magazine. 
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