PHILADELPHIA - The Paul Green School of Rock All-Stars will be heading on a 10th anniversary victory lap this holiday season, personifying the revolution in music education launched a decade ago in a Philadelphia garage by mounting a 14-city, 17-show tour through the Northeast and Midwest between Christmas and New Year’s.
That garage is where one man’s dream became a national phenomenon. Green’s vision has since produced 45 schools nationwide and an explosion of future rock stars, many of whom have traveled quite far along the trail he blazed when he took music instruction out of the classroom and onto the live rock stage by founding the original and premier performance-based rock music school in the country for kids 8-17 in 1998.
The celebration kicks off in grand style Dec. 26 in New York City, when, for the first time ever, all three touring squads of School of Rock All-Stars converge on B.B. Kings for three classic rock shows in one day – each headlined by a different group – before dispersing on their separate routes for the final week of the year. All touring School of Rock Stars – the “best and brightest” embodiment of Green’s philosophy that hard work leads directly to applause – will reconvene for a New Year’s Eve blowout in Asbury Park, NJ, capping a week in which they’ll play the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, as well as top clubs in Chicago, Detroit, Boston, Baltimore, Washington DC, Philadelphia (two shows), Burlington VT and more cities with School of Rock branches. Throughout the tour, the School of Rock All-Stars will be playing classic rock from the 1960s to 1990s, ABBA to Zappa.
"Even after all this time, all our expansion, and everything we have achieved,” says Green, “the best way to teach kids to play music remains the same: load a bunch of them on a bus and take them out on the road to PLAY music."
The Paul Green School of Rock is well on its way to producing the next generation of rock stars. Among its alumni, drummer Eric Slick became a sought after touring drummer immediately upon graduation, playing shows with Zappa Alumni band Project/Object, Steve Vai bandleader Mike Keneally, and various WEEN side projects. Together with his bassist sister, Julie Slick, they currently tour with guitar legend Adrian Belew (David Bowie, King Crimson) as the Adrian Belew Power Trio. Drummer Branden King, is not only Philly legend Chuck Treece’s go-to drummer, but also played with three bands at last year’s SXSW, and has done two tours of Europe with various projects. Slide guitar phenom Sarah Zimmerman recently signed a management deal with Tor Hyams (Joan Osborne, Perry Farrell, Deborah Harry) and is working with top writers and producers on her debut album. ShredmasterCJ Tywoniak, star of the acclaimed 2005 documentary Rock School, is being courted by record labels eager to release his debut EP. He recently sat in with Steve Miller, and dazzled all of those in attendence. Many former School of Rock students also are attending top music colleges such as Berklee and the University of Miami, as well as working their own bands with dreams of stardom.
“I put these shows together with real music fans in mind,” says Green. “Any true rock fan who comes to our show will be delighted by the deep cuts these kids take on, the difficult material they tackle, and the love and enthusiasm they bring to the stage."
THE PAUL GREEN SCHOOL OF ROCK ALL-STARS HOLIDAY TOUR ITINERARY:
Fri., Dec. 26 BB Kings New York, NY (3 shows)
Fri., Dec. 26 The Haunt Yonkers, NY
Sat., Dec. 27 Martyrs Chicago, IL
Sat., Dec. 27 Ned Devine’s Irish Village Sterling, VA
Sat., Dec. 27 Higher Ground Burlington, VT
Sun., Dec. 28 Magic Stick Detroit, MI
Sun., Dec. 28 Bedrock Baltimore Baltimore, MD
Sun., Dec. 28 Johnny D’s Boston, MA
Mon., Dec. 29 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Cleveland, OH
Mon., Dec. 29 World Café Live Philadelphia, PA (2 shows)
Tue., Dec. 30 Amicus Theater Long Valley, NJ
Tue., Dec. 30 Rock School Garage Wilmington, DE
Tue., Dec. 30 Black Bear Saloon South Norwalk, CT
Wed., Dec. 31 Asbury Lanes Asbury Park, NJ
About The Paul Green School of Rock
The Paul Green School of Rock is the original and premier performance-based rock music school in the country for kids 7-18. Founded on Green’s original program of weekly, individualized instruction sessions augmented by rigorous group rehearsals, the Paul Green School of Rock effectively motivates students to practice—driven by frequent performances where they discover that hard work leads directly to applause, the most beautiful music of all. In 2009, the 45 School of Rock branches around the country will play 1500 shows in front of 400,000 people, at established venues including The Whiskey, BB King’s and Carnegie Hall and at festivals such as Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, Zappanale (Germany) and the third annual SORFest. The School’s All-Stars have performed with Alice Cooper, Eddie Vedder, Les Paul, Slash and Perry Farrell, among others, and have toured with Jon Anderson of Yes and the Butthole Surfers. Founded in 1998, the Paul Green School of Rock Music was the subject of the documentary Rock School, which regularly airs on A&E since its 2005 debut at Sundance. The School also served as the apparent inspiration for the Jack Black hit comedy, School of Rock, soon to spawn a sequel Currently in a period of rapid expansion, the Paul Green School of Rock (http://www.schoolofrock.com) plans to open in more than 60 locations by end of 2009 and 400 before expansion is finished. The Paul Green School of Rock Music Inc has recently launched a new division: School of Rock Media. With Paul Green at the helm, School of Rock Media will oversee all media projects for PGSORM, currently including a series of instructional books, a TV series, a major recording project, the second annual national music festival at historic Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia co-produced with Live Nation, and an artist development division.