Live from Florida, it's the 2016 Warped Tour lineup: New Found Glory, Sum 41, Less Than Jake and more
To announce the lineup for the 2016 edition of his Vans Warped Tour, Kevin Lyman wanted to shake things up.
So he brought the party to Florida.
“It’s hard to do something different after 22 years,” the Warped Tour’s founder told a throng of reporters and musicians Tuesday at Full Sail University in Winter Park. “Walking in here this morning, and seeing the production they put together? I always say, get out of the business if you don’t get goosebumps. Today I was able to walk in and go, Wow, okay, that’s pretty cool.”
Four months before the Warped Tour comes to St. Petersburg’s Vinoy Park on July 3, Lyman and a handful of Warped bands announced this year’s lineup via live-streamed concert from Full Sail’s campus.
The move was fitting because as usual, there’s a strong Florida contingent aboard this year’s Warped bill: Less Than Jake, Sleeping With Sirens, Yellowcard, We the Kings, Mayday Parade and Tampa Bay’s own Set It Off, among others.
Other big names who will play the Warped Tour in St. Petersburg: Sum 41, New Found Glory, Falling In Reverse, The Maine, Reel Big Fish, Four Year Strong, Pepper, Real Friends, Veil of Maya, State Champs, Ballyhoo!, Crown the Empire, Every Time I Die, Motionless In White, The Color Morale, Whitechapel and many more.
Warped has done live announcement events like this before, but only in places like New York and Los Angeles. But the tour has a long relationship with Full Sail, whose music production students often work and intern at the festival. So it made sense for the campus to host Lyman and four Warped Bands – Less Than Jake, Real Friends, Wage War and Dash Ten – for the lineup announcement party.
“If Kevin were to do this in California, it’d just be a s--- show,” said singer Chris DeMakes, the singer of Gainesville’s Less Than Jake. “You’d have the beggars and hangers-on. This is a little more controlled. Full Sail’s obviously a huge sponsor for the tour. It’s a good place for them to kick it off.”
Lyman, 54, is calling this a back-to-basics year for Warped, with more of a focus on the music, the tour’s many nonprofit arms and featuring young bands and brands.
“It was just about simplifying,” Lyman said. "It's just going to be about getting it back to what it was: Great music, great things and trying to do good for the commuity."
It should be a historic year for the tour -- it's expected to reach a milestone of 10 million overall fans at some point this summer, and as Lyman said, punk rock always tends to feel more vital during an election year.
"We're playing Cleveland when the Republican National Convention is going on," he said. "I'm going to be able to advertise and say, 'Send your kids to the Warped Tour to be safe!'"
There are more than 70 punk and metal bands on the bill that’ll hit St. Pete on 7/1. Among them will be Wage War, an Ocala metalcore outfit whose members went to Warped Tours in St. Petersburg and Orlando growing up.
“I feel like you’re a real, touring, grinding-out band if you do the Warped Tour,” said vocalist Briton Bond. “It’s one of the big things a band can accomplish.”
“This is definitely a big freak-out for us,” said singer-guitarist Cody Quistad. “We’re fans of the tour, and just super thankful to be here.”
Lyman, in turn, has a soft spot for the Sunshine State, which this year will host Warped dates in St. Petersburg, Orlando and West Palm Beach. In fact, after Orlando, he and 3OH!3 were heading to Madeira Beach to go fishing.
After Wage War ripped through their set at the university’s Full Sail Live concert venue, Lyman said: “You guys can feel the grass and the dust already, right?”
Warped’s lineup varies by city (Warped bands that aren’t playing St. Petersburg include Good Charlotte, 3OH!3 and Bullet For My Valentine), so check Warped’s website closer to the show for the specific lineup for a given city.
Tickets to the Warped Tour’s stop in St. Petersburg are on sale now for $26.50 and up. Click here for details.
-- Jay Cridlin