In what’s being called the largest international battle of the bands ever, a group from Cleveland has won the right to appear on Hard Rock Calling’s main stage at London’s Hyde Park July 14. Say hello to Hey Monea!
While an unknown band playing the main stage will probably have to face an audience grabbing beer breaks and hitting the portable toilets, one thing is for sure: the three guys in Hey Monea! – brothers Danny and Nate Monea along with Adam Orin – are going to mingle with the big boys when they play the main stage ahead of Tom Morello, Lady Antebellum, John Fogerty and headliner Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band.
How does a group leap from being a local favorite to appearing on a major music festival’s main stage? For Hey Monea! the journey began with several band battles at Cleveland’s Hard Rock Café.
More competitions followed until the band was performing in front of a judging panel comprised of E Street Band’s Steven Van Zandt, Portugal. The Man singer John Gourley, Scott Hutchison of Frightened Rabbit, Fyfe Dangerfield of Guillemots, Live Nation VP of Promotions Toby Leighton-Pope and Hard Rock International CMO John Galloway.
But beating other bands was only half of the journey. Hey Monea! also had to mount its own fan-driven marketing effort, a multi-tiered social media-based fan-engagement campaign. This included song downloads for votes and a YouTube campaign where the band had a few laughs at its own expense, such as going out bar-hopping dressed in Daisy Dukes, tied-off shirts and cowboy boots. Ah, the price of fame.
“We are a fun-loving band and we’re a social band,” Danny Monea said. “We’re not above our fans and we want to engage them even if it means making light of ourselves and putting the rock star egos in check.”
Behind every band is a story and Hey Monea!’s story features religion, rebellion and rock ’n’ roll. Click here to listen to the band’s “Ballad Of Moonbeam Swiner” and here for the Hey Monea! website.