A SKAring Controversy and An Extended Break in Our Relationship

A Preview for the Streetlight Manifesto Concert at The Neptune Theatre in Seattle presented by Take Warning Presents

For anyone who knows me and has ever had any sort of musical talk with me has heard me, somehow, probably irrelevantly, shoved Streetlight Manifest into the conversation. I first listened to Streetlight Manifesto, like many other Streetlight Manifesto fans in my tween years. Streetlight, then, meant completely different things than it does for me now. The band, led and run by front man Tomas Kalnoky, was angst, optimism, and musical brilliance all in one. Whenever I felt down about small outbreaks of acne, or possibly not being able to speak to the girl I had a crush on, Streetlight Manifesto was my reminder that problems suck but there are much bigger issues in the world.

These days, Tomas and the rest of the band stand for much more to me. Tomas’ perfectionist style of writing, as well as the style of the band, is not only amazing and beautiful but very difficult to find in the ska genre. The work this group does for the music business is also completely inspirational.

Recently Streetlight Manifesto released a new album The Hands That Thieve. Originally this was supposed to be paired with Tomas’s acoustic side project Toh Kay’s album The Hand That Thieves. After a few weeks of waiting for the album that I ordered to arrive in the mail and not receiving it, I angrily checked up on what was holding it back. Streetlight Manifesto was signed to Victory Records, also home to bands such as A Day to Remember. Because Streetlight Manifesto was signed to Victory Records, Victory Records essentially owned Streetlight Manifesto’s songs and its words. This sounds terrible but in actuality it is very common in the music industry. I would like to point out the irony that I am writing for a blog that owns my words, yes that is you WordPress…. But anyway, Streetlight Manifesto is signed to Victory records. Toh Kay, however, is not signed to Victory Records and though, Tomas Kolnaky wrote, and performs all of Streetlight Manifesto’s music he did not have the “right” to cover the songs as Toh Kay. So, this held up not only Toh Kay’s album but also Streetlight Manifestos album because Victory felt as though Tomas did not deserve the money for the music he wrote.

Due to this debacle Toh Kay’s album was never released. Streetlight has also stated that they will be taking a break after this current tour or as they put it the End of Their Beginning.

Take Warning Presents has booked Streetlight Manifesto for their last tour at the Neptune Theatre in Seattle and for fans of Streetlight Manifesto this concert is a final stick it to the man but also a bittersweet farewell. I will be seeing the concert on Sunday and I will have most likely an overly emotional review of it next week.

Marcus Shriver/ The Angsty Dolphin/ Social Media and Outreach Director

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