The Record Breakers – The Record Breakers played their hearts out at the Bell Centre last Thursday night. It was a dream come true for the young West Island Band, when they were selected in March to open for Bon Jovi at the Bell Centre. They were honoured to be one of two opening acts chosen to open for the Bon Jovi This House Is Not for Sale tour concerts and psyched that they would be playing their largest venue to date.
Seeing the April 4th and 5th concerts postponed at the last minute due to Bon Jovi band and crew members suffering from the flu came as a shock. But as TRB lead singer and songwriter, Hayden Nolan, pointed out before Thursday’s concert, “Even though it got complicated, it did help in this situation. Just last night, the (new) album got uploaded and now we have a date that it will come out and we’ll be announcing that shortly. Which means that any attention we get from this, we can tie into the album and any new fan base will start seeing stuff about the new album.”
Any musical gig requires preparation and a team behind it to make it a success. Long days of rehearsals and juggling, music, work and school for the band members is nothing new. But opening for a legendary rock band at a venue the size of the Bell Centre was a learning curve and required a small army of parents and helpers to make it happen. So with a rental van loaded with equipment, instruments and outfits early Thursday morning, they were off to start setting up, sound checking and prepping for the 4 songs they would play to get the crowd ready for Jon Bon Jovi and his band.
Arriving at the already bustling Bell Centre at 1 pm, they were shown the dressing room, given their passes and the strict regulations that come along with being part of a tour of this magnitude. That’s when it reality hit home for Bella Galasso, the 19 year old lead singer and songwriter for the almost 4 year old band. “I wasn’t nervous until I saw the Bell Centre. You know when your heart goes into your stomach when you’re on a roller coaster; that’s exactly what happened.”
Setup was followed with downtime and vocal warm ups in the dressing room. Then sound check, where Michael Vallinakis, keyboardist, guitarist and youngest member of the band, spotted Bon Jovi lead guitarist, Phil X watching from below. He and Hayden were happy to meet up with him later and chat before heading to catering for a quick supper.
Another meeting that the band won’t soon forget, is with Jon Bon Jovi. The 56 year old band leader, met with the Record Breakers Band members shortly before stage time, sharing a few jokes and stories and a quick picture. 19 year-old Devan Meisner, Bassist for TRB was thrilled to share a story with Jon about being on the big screen of a Bon Jovi concert 7 years ago. “And now I’m opening for them, which is pretty funny.”
A 20 minute set of four songs with a huge crowd in front and behind them was an exhilarating feeling. As Julian Galasso, the 21 year old drummer of the band explained, “I’ve been in the Bell Centre watching shows of my favourite bands, and I’m here playing in it. I’m just so happy.”
The Record Breakers new album “Bigger Plans” is set to drop on iTunes early June with a launch show on Saturday, June 9th at the Crowley Arts Centre. Tickets are available on Eventbrite.
Feature image: The Record Breakers on stage at the Bell Centre bowing to crowd after performance
All photos & video: Valerie Provost