By: Megan Horst Hatch | AXS Contributor | Sep 15, 2014
It’s not every band that can say they’ve opened for Bon Jovi or consider Joe’s Bar on Weed Street their home base, but Stellar Road isn’t every band. The Chicago-based band, which was first started in 2000, has two albums to their name and recently gave an excellent performance at Buffalo Grove Days Festival over Labor Day weekend. Band member Jack Daly discussed his role in Stellar Road, the band’s connection to Chicago, and how the city influences songwriting in a phone interview with AXS.com conducted last month.
AXS: What is your role in Stellar Road? How many of you are in the band?
JD: I do vocals and guitar, and I do the management and promotions. I’m kind of a one-man team in terms of management. I am the lead in songwriting. My brother Michael is also in the band, and we’re both songwriters for the band. There are six as of right now, but we rotate the players.
AXS: What’s your connection to the Windy City?
JD: I’ve grown up here my whole life. I’ve been in the suburbs also, but now I live in the Northwest Side.
AXS: What’s your favorite place to perform in Chicago?
JD: Good question. I would have to say Park West & House of Blues are probably my favorites in Chicago. Joe’s on Weed Street is one of our home bases. Double Door is solid. Many great houses in this city.
AXS: Does Chicago influence your songwriting?
JD: Yeah, actually it does. On our last record, we had the song “Shipwrecked.” I wrote that about a night in Chicago with that whole shipwrecked theme and waking up on the beach. It [Chicago] definitely influences our songwriting. We live in a great city, one of the best cities in the world.
AXS: What’s your favorite part of Chicago?
JD: Logan Square is up and coming, and they have a ton of great hangouts. I love the culture. I went to DePaul, so I like that area and the Loop.
AXS: How would you describe your band’s sound?
JD: Hard to say, but we’re described as pop-driven rock. We have a raw sound, but we do pop. I would say we are a pop rock band, but we jam out pretty good live.
AXS: How would you describe the pop-rock music scene in Chicago?
JD: In Chicago, I think the pop-rock scene is hard to find. I think LA has the best pop rock scene that I know of. I think Chicago can be a little heavier, a little grungier, as far as the norm goes for bands. There are great bands in Chicago. I think they’re just fewer and farther between in Chicago.
AXS: What’s next for Stellar Road?
JD: We’ve been writing tunes, as our last record was almost five years ago. We have a pile of songs, so we need to get a studio and start recording them. We might shoot for about spring of 2015 for the next album. That would be our target date.
AXS: OK, final question: What’s your favorite place for a Chicago-style hot dog?
Stellar Road has performances in and around the Chicago. To find the band’s next show, check out the website.
To keep up with what’s happening in Chicago, check out AXS.com.
By: Megan Horst Hatch | AXS Contributor | Aug 31, 2014
Chicago-based rock band Stellar Road took the stage at the Buffalo Grove Days with a bang, giving concert-goers a rocking performance on Aug. 30. With a fog machine and light display, the band’s set was nothing short of stellar, and the outdoor concert included a mix of its songs.
The band, which started right on the dot of the scheduled performance time, played a mix of both older songs and their newer releases during the one-hour set. The band was friendly and polite to the crowd and name-checked Buffalo Grove several times during their set.
Stellar Road opened the set with the band’s song “Legitimate” from its eponymous album released in 2009. The song has a blues-like vibe to it, and the song let the electric guitarist play with a pedal-to-the-metal style that the crowd enjoyed.
Stellar Road also included its rock song “Shipwrecked” in its setlist. The song is also a shout-out to Chicago, which was appreciated by the crowd during the performance. Other songs in the setlist included “Amazing,” which has a bit of a psychedelic and funk sound to it. The band kept its relaxed, laid back vibe throughout the set, allowing the musicians to jam a bit and just have fun while on stage. The relaxed feel to the setlist was appreciated by the crowd; on a Saturday night, after all, you just want to sit back, loosen up a bit and enjoy the music.
The outdoor concert was held in picture-perfect weather. The temperature was comfortable, the storms that were forecast for the evening were nowhere on the horizon, and a light breeze kept everyone happy. The sound was not a concern during this performance, as it is likely everyone within the next two suburbs could hear Stellar Road on stage. The band ended their performance to loud applause by the crowd, and thanked everyone for coming out to the concert.
Stellar Road was started in 2000 by brothers Jack and Michael Daly and has grown to include as many as seven band members. Over the years, it has performed with a number of bands, including a recent performance at Wrigley Fields with band O.A.R. this summer.
Buffalo Grove Days, an annual tradition held over Labor Day weekend in this northwest suburb of Chicago, continues through Sept. 2, 2014. Admission to all concerts during the festival is free. The festival’s musical lineup for this year also included a number of bands and genres, including pop band Parachute, Acoustic Generation, Industrial Drive and Mystress.