The third annual Coach-A-Palooza was held at Coach’s Grill on Saturday, Oct. 2. The eight-hour musical event was an all-ages, family friendly show that began outside at 6 p.m. and lasted until 2 a.m. With an admission price of only $7 per person, this live music extravaganza is a great and inexpensive way to spend an evening.
The live festivities kicked off with the country-rock stylings of the Barefoot Renegades, whose repertoire included songs from Alabama to Georgia Satellites and Luke Bryan. The hour-long set also included a smattering of the band’s own originals delivered with bravado from barefooted lead singer Wes Cook. The small but intimate crowd seemed to enjoy the band’s sound, which could be described as a combination of the Zac Brown Band and Hootie and the Blowfish. The band’s playful onstage antics included comical banter about out-of-tune guitars and vocals due to the weather, before stating they had to head out of town for another gig.
(The Barefoot Renegades)
After a brief stage re-set, the evening continued with a strong set of rocking cover tunes provided by Octane Jane. “Let’s get ready to party,” exclaimed lead singer Angel Nash before breaking into their brand of high energy rock. Nash’s powerful lead vocals ripped through such favorites as Joan Jett’s “I Hate Myself for Loving You” and Ozzy Osbourne’s “Crazy Train,” as well as newer songs by Kings of Leon and Maroon 5. The band switched things up a bit when their lead guitarist delivered a rousing version of Weezer’s “Say It Ain’t So” complete with powerfully aggressive vocals of which Rivers Cuomo himself would be envious. Octane Jane’s set ended with AC/DC’s “You Shook Me All Night Long,” which kept the audience on its feet and singing along.
The music-filled night progressed with another local favorite, The Compromise. The band’s set was comprised of a mix of original and cover songs, which bring to mind a harder edged Gin Blossoms. “Rock ‘n’ roll is what we’re playing,” declared lead singer Brandon Bell before tearing into Foo Fighter’s “Learning to Fly.” By the time The Compromise took the stage, the crowd had been well primed for good music, and judging from their response, the audience was thoroughly enjoying what they were hearing.
Upon completion of The Compromise’s performance, the event moved inside Coach’s Grill for the final band of the night, JT and the Funky Bunch. The funky band’s party music provided the perfect ending for the show. The audience responded enthusiastically to their funked-up white soul, as well as their talent to blend humor and music. JT and his band’s smooth groovin’ style seemed as if it had been handpicked to bring the evening full of music and fun to a close.
Coach-A-Palooza took place on a crisp, cool, breezy night, and all in attendance seemed to have a lot of fun. The crown ranged in age from late teens to late 50-somethings. The event had the feel of an old-fashioned block party combined with a giant karaoke sing-a-long. Audience member, Tina Vaughn from Smyrna, said she heard about the event from a friend on Facebook. A self-proclaimed music lover, Vaughn confessed, “I love music. I came to hear all of the bands.” When asked if she planned to attend next year, Vaughn responded, “Absolutely. This is awesome. I’m going to make this an annual thing.” Coach’s Grill is located at 127 S.E. Broad St.