By Liz Hitchcock
The Ataris’ lead singer, Kris Roe, will be headlining a Valentine’s Day concert held at Common Grounds Monday, Feb. 14.
Most famous for their cover of the ‘80s hit “Boys of Summer” by Don Henley, The Ataris are known for their pop-punk melodies. Roe will be straying from his punk roots to perform in a solo acoustic tour.
The songs Roe will be playing reflect more on his singer-songwriter capabilities, said to Common Grounds’ booking manager, Justin Horrell.
“His style has evolved according to the industry and the way that rock has evolved in the past couple years,” Horrell said.
Horrell said fans should expect Roe to play a couple of the hit songs and favorites along with some new tunes as well.
Horrell is pleased to have a big name artist such as Roe to perform on Common Grounds’ stage, and is hopeful to have a large turnout. His aim is to attract old and new fans to the venue.
Two smaller bands will be opening for Roe, an instrumental band called Zombie Western and a folk band called Lomelda.
“We provide a good forum for local bands as well,” Horrell said, “to help them get a trampoline start.”
The guitarist for Zombie Westerns, Jarrod Pierce, spoke of The Ataris’ influence on him in his younger years during which he developed some of his tastes in different genres.
“Me and our drummer were both punk rock fans back in 1999 and 2000. We both listened to them,” Pierce said. “I remember going to shows and screaming our heads off. We are fans and we are happy to open up for Kris. He’s been an influence of mine for a long time.”
As for Lomelda, the lead singer and front-girl, Hannah Read, was especially pleased to have the chance to perform to a large crowd, and is optimistic that the lineup will be cohesive and complementary.
“I think the show will be a good transition. We decided to strip down to really simple arrangements of our songs,” Read said. “And Zombie Western is a little more epic. It should really build up to Kris.”
Roe’s goal with this tour is to really touch base with his fans and get them ready for a complete tour with the rest of The Ataris, Horrell said.
He has already begun to accomplish this, just by the sheer fact that he will be playing in Waco.
“What stuck out about Kris and The Ataris in general was the passion in his music, even though sometimes punk is considered kind of cheesy,” Pierce said. That passion rings true throughout the whole music world and that’s what people respond to and appreciate in all different genres of music.”
The show opens at 8 p.m., and tickets are $8 at the door. Will call tickets are available through Common Grounds’ website at www.commongroundswaco.com.