BIZVINE IN VEGAS
Written by Elvis Lemus
Many people hear 'Las Vegas' and different things come to mind. Casinos, gambling, drinking, and so on with the stereotypes. But in this world, the world I've stumbled onto, 'Vegas' just means another house party in a different city. The roulette tables, the strip clubs, Fremont Street; all these things are secondary to the crowd I’m with. In a caravan of 4 cars including 2 bands, 3 security guards, 2 roadies and a hell of a lot of, even I wasn’t expecting the amount of fun I had on this particular road trip.
We met Dylan Alva early 2016. He was in full swing with the Bizcuitz and we (Three) were looking for anyone to get in contact with about playing shows in the Whittier area. With some word of mouth and twitter feeds, Three meets The Bizcuitz at a Norwalk venue called Room 84. Little is said and names are barely exchanged. Dylan pays little attention to us that night, but we made sure they at least knew we showed up. Its at this time that the Bizcuitz pack up and GoldVine hits the (stage). We catch a couple songs, but ultimately end the night on a lull.
A couple of days later, we see the Bizcuitz are throwing another show, this time at Dylan’s mom house in Whittier. After a few email exchanges, we came to an agreement that we'd donate a homemade stage to them in exchange for an opening slot at their house show. Dylan now claims he was hesitant with us, unsure almost, until he heard us play, But a small gesture was all it took, and from that, sprung one of the most profound friendships I've ever been a part of.
Flash forward to November 2016. It has been 11 months and Heartcore is now a precious entity Dylan and myself run with a loose agenda and 1 goal in mind: to play music. After Heartcore Fest, the first big event we threw as a team under new management, and after Nightmare on Milton St, one of the most out-of-control Halloween parties I've ever attended and seen, here Dylan and I were, sitting in my kitchen as usual on a Wednesday morning. Normally, we discuss future shows and plans over coffee and breakfast, but today's meeting is different. We discuss Vegas. We go over seating arrangements, hotel pricing, and of course, our re-up for the weekend. The mood is light, the laughs occur frequent but the plan is set.
It’s now Friday, midnight and I’m sitting in my kitchen when it finally hits me that I’m going to have to drive for about 3 and half hours and I haven’t slept. I tend to procrastinate, so of course I left packing my camera until the very last possible moment (editors note: I know a lot of people can relate to procrastination so I don’t feel that bad!). It takes me a while, finding memory cards, battery chargers, changing and cleaning lenses, but it gets done.
I sleep for about 4 hours before my alarms go off and I’m back on my feet. I shake Randy up, my co-pilot for the weekend, and the calls start coming in, slowly but surely. The boys begin to enter my living room one by one and a few things are apparent to me; the first is that this is my life now. Playing a dad-type figure to these bands formed of some the most talented individuals I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. The second revelation came as I watched Dylan pull up. It was that this was happening because of him. These boys banded together to trek across the desert and were able to construct a solid plan because of the group effort for a second time this year.
DIY takes on a whole new meaning with BizVine and Heartcore. You’re not going to meet a harder working, more passionate group of people than these kids here. They pour years of insecurities, doubts and fears into these songs and they’re impervious to judgement and ridicule because in this dark room, in this ill lit backyard, for that 30 minutes, they’re kings. They run the room and make the crowd fall in love with music again. This is what I hope Turn Out the Light will be. A small window into the kingdom of todays’ indie world. How a couple of garage bands don’t need a label to play in iconic cities. How they do it for their love of playing music. How they do it because no one else will.