By Maureen Robertson
A Ramona band has its sights set on the Vans Warped Tour ‘11 next Tuesday, but to earn a slot on that stage it has to get through the Battle of the Bands for Warped Tour Finals at 4th & B in downtown San Diego on Saturday, Aug. 6.
“Want to see us at Warped Tour?” they ask. “Come and support us at the finals as we battle to win for a slot at this year’s Vans Warped Tour.”
Relevance will be one of eight bands in the Battle of the Bands at 9:30 p.m. at 4th & B, 345 B St. in San Diego, on Saturday. They’ll be judged on performance, originality, personality on stage and fan reaction — the reason they’d like to see as many Ramona faces as possible.
Advance tickets are $10 each, less than the ticket price at the door. Advance tickets are available at the Ramona Sentinel, 425-A 10th St., and from band members.
Two of the musicians in the three-member band hail from Ramona and the third is a former Ramona resident. They rehearse their mainstream rock songs in the Effem Records studio on Brazos Street in Ramona.
“A lot of our lyrics are very relevant to what people go through,” said Ramona resident Mike Link, 30, who plays drums and piano and does backup vocals for Relevance.
Also in the band are fellow Ramonan Chris Hartjen, 28, bass player, and Josh Gates, 32, guitarist and lead vocalist. Gates, a Julian High graduate, is a former Ramonan who lives in Lakeside.
Link and Gates have been writing music since 2004, and the musicians have performed at many open mic nights and acoustic shows.
Relevance started as a band last summer and opened at Ramona Mainstage Theater for Adler’s Appetite last August. Steven Adler of Adler’s Appetite is a former drummer for the hard rock band Guns N’ Roses.
Since then, they’ve played primarily in the San Diego and beach area.
“We want Ramona to know us,” said Link.
“Whoever wins (on Saturday) will end up playing at Warped Tour in front ot thousands,” added an enthusiastic Link.
The Warped Tour music festival on Tuesday will be at the Cricket Wireless Amphetheater in San Diego. More information is at vanswarpedtour.com.
Advance ticket sales for Battle of the Bands are cash only. For tickets from band members, call Link at 760-214-6023 or Hartjen at 760-859-64611. More information about Relevance is at www.relevance.com.