Photo courtesy of Jason Janick
Nearly two decades ago in a coffee shop called The Refuge, nestled in the small town of Wichita Falls, Texas, four hopeful musicians were down on their luck.
Jaret Reddick, Chris Burney and Erik Chandler had each recently parted ways with their respective former bands.
Hoping for better luck with a new formation, the men decided to try something together. With the addition of Gary Wiseman soon after, Bowling for Soup was born.
Eleven albums and a Grammy nomination (2003’s “Girl All the Bad Guys Want”) later, the band is still going strong and will perform today at 6 p.m. at The Basement.
“We’re just a lot of fun,” Reddick, lead singer and songwriter of Bowling for Soup, said in an interview with The Lantern. “We’re considered sort of the ultimate party band.”
With an up-tempo sound and an obsession with supplying a good time for all, Reddick said their concert will provide attendees with “one of the most fun times (they) have ever had.”
“We don’t rehearse anything,” Reddick said. “There’s no predetermined set list. It’s just very interactive.”
With no prior itinerary of songs to play, Bowling for Soup exhibits one of their trademark characteristics of staying “low key,” Reddick said.
“We don’t over-think anything,” Reddick said. “We tend to just walk up on stage and do our thing.”
Other bands set to perform at this week’s show include the Florida-born band, The Dollyrots, and pop-punk band Patent Pending.
Both groups are close comrades of Bowling for Soup, Reddick said, which makes their travels together all the more enjoyable.
“They’re good friends of ours,” Reddick said of the other bands on the tour, “so it’s like we’re at camp.”
Bowling for Soup also shares a special relationship with the city of Columbus.
The band has appeared on WNCI’s morning show, “Dave and Jimmy,” multiple times before their shows, and performed at the Major League Soccer All-Star Game held at Crew Stadium in 2005.
“We’ve played there many times,” Reddick said of Columbus. “We’ve got quite a Columbus history.”
Aside from putting on concerts across the country, Reddick said the band brings the same fun atmosphere it displays on-stage to its off-stage touring activities during the band’s downtime on the road.
“We’ll just find a place to park, like a mall or a Walmart,” Reddick said. “We’ll have a barbeque and grill out. It doesn’t take a lot to entertain us.”
This relaxed vibe also translates into the band’s musical pursuits.
“I liked their first album because it was very real and unapologetic,” said Josh Ramzy, a fourth-year in marketing.
With this mindset and their recent departure from their long-time label, Jive Records, Bowling for Soup attempted to go back to the roots of previous albums with their most recent release, “Fishin’ for Woos.”
“It’s a little bit scaled back from the last few records,” Reddick said, comparing this album to the band’s 2002 release, “Drunk Enough to Dance.”
As for the band’s witty and boisterous lyrics, Reddick said the inspiration for his songs can come from anywhere.
“It’s kind of a hard thing to put my finger on. I do have a collection of ideas, whether it’s a concept or a line,” Reddick said of his song-writing process. “It definitely differs with every song.”
Tickets can be purchased for the show online at www.ticketmaster.com for $17.25 after fees.