Of late, Vinnie Amico has been home for New Year’s.
He was on the job in 2013 and 2014, and will be working tonight: As drummer for jam band moe., Amico loves the band’s now traditional New Year’s shows at the Palace Theatre in Albany.
“It’s a hometown boy-does-good show for Vinnie,” said Amico, a 1987 graduate of Niskayuna High School who now lives in Ballston Spa.
moe. ‘Ringing in 2016’
WHEN: 8 Thursay and 7:30 p.m. Friday
WHERE: Palace Theatre, 19 Clinton Ave., Albany
HOW MUCH: $50
MORE INFO: 465-3334, www.palacealbany.com
It’s also a double play, as “moe. Ringing in 2016” happens tonight at 8 and New Year’s Night at 7:30. Amico said long parties are planned; the band generally plays five-hour shows.
“If you’ve been going out for New Year’s for years, there’s only so much hanging out you can do without some sort of entertainment,” Amico said. “Especially if it’s a really well-put together, well-produced rock ’n’ roll show. It’s a lot of fun to do all those things you do on New Year’s and have entertainment in front of you the whole time. It’s your favorite band, 40 or 50 of your favorite friends in a big room going crazy. I think that’s the main deal.”
Moe. has been a good party band since 1990. The guys were University at Buffalo pals who got together during the fall of 1989. The outfit was first known as “Five Guys Named Moe,” and the musicians made Albany their headquarters for a short time during the mid-1990s.
It’s kind of hip to be part of a jam band these days.
“Anybody who they couldn’t categorize was a jam band and anybody who played live music over selling CDs was a jam band,” Amico said. “Nowadays, nobody sells CDs. It’s hard to sell your music commercially, so everybody seems to be playing live music. At the end of the day, you look at the bands who are still touring all the time and drawing, it’s still jam bands. The market’s a little more saturated. There are a lot more bands out there.”
There used to be comparisons with jam giants Phish, but not so much anymore.
“You can tell by the split in the crowd,” Amico said. “There used to be a lot more Phish fans coming to moe. shows, a lot more moe. fans going to Phish shows. Now there’s definitely a separation. Granted, Phish is a lot bigger as far as success goes, they sell out arenas and we play theaters, but there were those comparisons. Now we’re all peers in the scene because we’ve been doing it so long, we know all those guys, we’ve played with them a bunch.”
There has been longevity for moe., and Amico likes that. While some bands reach high for high marks, tumble down and fade away, moe. has remained steady through the years. “We’ve made a career of steady musicianship and workmanship, making music and keeping our fans happy,” Amico said.
That will be the priority tonight and Friday. Amico said specials and surprises will be included in the moe. holiday set lists. He knows people will be in good moods as one year winds down and another winds up.
“People just like to rage on New Year’s,” he said. “We’re a good party band for that.”
Reach Gazette reporter Jeff Wilkin at 395-3124 or at [email protected] or @jeffwilkin1 on Twitter.
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