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By MICHELLE ALLENBERG
Come rain or shine, high-school band Back in the Daze got people to forget about the terrible weather and start dancing at The Grape and Wine Festival.
There were not many people at the festival on Sept. 21, but a few braved the pouring rain and frigid temperature to try the wine and listen to music.
A small group of people stood close to the stage without umbrellas and were soaking wet. They were enjoying themselves and dancing. Others were standing under coverings trying to stay dry, but that was near impossible with the wind blowing the rain in every direction.
One of the bands that played was Back in the Daze, a band with a “rock sound.” The band consists of five members who all attend the same high school in St. Catharines.
The band was approached to perform by a man who worked with the festival after he saw them play a show at The Merchant Ale House in St. Catharines.
Scott Robinson, 16, who plays many instruments and does vocals for the band, says there was no application; someone sent them an email asking them to perform.
Back in the Daze played cover songs from artists such as Billy Joel and The Beatles, but they also made sure to play original music.
Fellow band member, Joel Lewczynski, 16, says that they have about 12 songs, and they played five or six originals at the festival.
Robinson says this was their first time playing at Grape and Wine.
“It was a fantastic experience. The sound was amazing here; probably the best sound we’ve ever had. It’s just a great venue to play.”
The music was clear and could be heard everywhere in the park, even with the pouring rain and groups of people talking.
Long-time participant of Grape and Wine, Shawn Spiewak, 32, of the Niagara region, says this was his seventh year attending the festival. He says the music by Back in the Daze matches the “vibe, casually drinking wine in the park. The music is complementing the wine feeling.”
Heather James, 23, of St. Catharines, was volunteering with GreenLane Estate Winery, and says Back in the Daze suited the atmosphere.
“I’ve seen people run up and start dancing,” she says, smiling.
Sadie Bhangal, 29, of St. Catharines, says it was not her first time attending the annual wine festival. She notes the band is “perfect” for the event and everyone knows cover bands. Bhangal says that it would be better without the rain, but it doesn’t hold her back from having fun. She starts dancing and smiling with a glass of wine in her hand and says, “the more we drink, the more we dance.”
“Oh, yeah, it’s not bringing them down. So, you get a little wet,” James says about the rain.
Lewczynski says he joined the band “a while ago” and he is not on the current album. He adds the band is working on about three or four new songs. Each member brings something unique to the band from drums to mandolin to saxophone.
To check out some of Back in the Daze’s music and videos go to www.backinthedaze.ca.