Suburban Legends
Suburban Legends
Background Information
A.K.A. The No Tones
The Bomb Squad
Origin Huntington Beach, California
Genre Third Wave Ska
Years active 1998-present
Label(s) Self-Released
Subrange (Japan)
Brand New Hero (UK)
Associated Acts Avenged Sevenfold
The Belvederes
Big D and the Kids Table
Kids Imagine Nation
The Littlest Man Band
Personal Satisfaction
Skrotum Kiss
Vincent Walker
Brian Klemm
Derek Lee Rock
Brian Robertson
Chris Lucca
Aaron Bertram
Brad Polidori
Former Members
Chris Batstone
Luis Beza
Dallas Cook
Brent Figue
Mikey Hachey
Phillip Inzerillo
Fred Johnson
Josh Lander
Chris Maurer
Tim Maurer
Justin Meacham
Jimmy Sullivan
Jason Box

Suburban Legends are a third wave ska/pop band that formed in Huntington Beach, California, in 1998, and are currently based out of Santa Ana, California.

History Edit

Influenced by artists such as Reel Big Fish, Michael Jackson and Oingo Boingo, the band was formed in 1998 as The No Tones, and shortly after, changed their name to Bomb Squad, under which name they released an EP. By 1999, they had become Suburban Legends. Their first album, Origin Edition was released in 1999 as a fun demo to sell at shows. Shortly after its release, lead singer Tim Maurer left the group and was replaced by Chris Batstone on vocals. Chris Batstone's only official release with the band was in 2001, when the Suburban Legends EP was released on We The People Records. Chris Batstone left the band in 2002 and was replaced by Tim Maurer, who returned to the band on vocals and subsequently re-recorded the vocals on the EP to create the Wikipedia:Suburban Legends (Tim Remix) EP. It was around this time the band started playing at the Disneyland Resort. In 2002, they played 962 performances at Downtown Disney, where they gained many new fans. They would later perform there for a Disney-organized 2002 World Series Anaheim Angels rally. Queen was originally supposed to have the main set, but they did not show up and Suburban Legends had two sets.[1] They also performed on many occasions for the X Games Xperience promotion at Disney's California Adventure in 2003, and at the Club Buzz/Tomorrowland Terrace stage in 2005, 2006 and 2007. The line-up then went on to record the band's debut album Rump Shaker in 2003 with heavy touring to support it. Season One was released in 2004. The DVD featured a live set from Oakland, California as well as two music videos.

On May 12, 2006 the band released its first CD in 3 years since Rump Shaker. An EP, entitled Dance Like Nobody's Watching. The EP was the first release from the band to feature Vincent Walker on vocals and was supported by heavy touring over the next year. It's sound was drastically different from Rump Shaker and had a much less prominent third-wave ska sound, moving more towards a Pop/Rock sound with slight elements of Funk. The band promoted the EP by appearing on G4's Attack of the Show! on April 18, 2006. Heavy touring again supported this release and in early 2007 the band announced that a new CD would be released in Japan entitled Dance Like Nobody's Watching: Tokyo Nights. It contained the original tracks from Dance Like Nobody's Watching as well as an additional five tracks which include a cover, 2 new songs and remixed songs from Rump Shaker with a new vocal tracks from Vincent Walker.

In early July 2007, the band started releasing videos on their YouTube account documenting progress recording new material in the studio. Later that month the band announced the album Infectious and confirmed its release date at their HOB show on July 29. The album continued the change in sound heard on Dance Like Nobody's Watching, with little ska influence heard, instead featured songs with various genres. The band's second DVD Poisonous Candy Factory was released in March 2008. Similar to Season One, it featured live sets containing songs from Rump Shaker through to new, unreleased material, music videos and extra videos from the band.

Shortly after this release, the band headed back into the studio and recorded their most recent album, Let's Be Friends, released on July 10, 2008, while touring with Less Than Jake, Goldfinger, and Big D and the Kids Table on the Shout It Loud II Tour. This album mixed elements of previous albums, featuring a return to ska on some songs as well as a continued focus on a Pop/Rock sound.

In the winter of 2008, they toured with The Aquabats on the Hooray for the Holidays Tour.[2] In February 2009, they appeared along with The Aquabats' MC Bat Commander on MC Lars' new song, "This Gigantic Robot Kills", from Lars' new album of the same name. MC Lars describes that "this song is about bringing ska back. It's about this kid who builds this giant robot" who "as he destroys Orange County, he leaves behind a trail of Less Than Jake CDs, a field of Aquabat limited edition vinyls, and a stack of CDs by Suburban Legends."[3] As well, they performed at Miley Cyrus' 16th Birthday Party celebration[4].

Although in recent years, the band has toured nationally as both a headliner and support, Suburban Legends still often perform at the Disneyland Resort, though not at Downtown Disney. Rather, the band performs inside Disneyland at Tomorrowland Terrace. The band has performed as entertainment for Disneyland's popular New Year's Eve celebration every year since 2007.

On January 1, 2011, the band's song, "You," from their 2003 album, Rump Shaker, was performed by the Western Carolina University Pride of the Mountains Marching Band in the 2011 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California. The band chose to perform the song in honor of the late Ryan Dallas Cook.


Suburban Legends' style of music has evolved over time and is different from that of other ska bands. While earlier material being heavily rooted in ska, the 2006 release Dance Like Nobody's Watching brought a different sound took ideas and influence from disco, funk, and pop, some songs on the EP containing little to no ska sound at all. The band furthered its distance from ska with the 2007 release of Infectious, heavily focusing on disco on the record. The band has not abandoned their earlier sound, though, regularly performing older material alongside their current work. The 2008 album Let's Be Friends combines elements from all their previous releases. In May 2009, the band announced that they would be recording a "full blown ska rock album," not simply a ska-influenced album because they have horns or an album with only a few ska songs[5]. Further supporting the band's transition back to ska, less time was devoted in Summer 2009 live performances to songs found on more recent albums, such as Infectious, with the band reintroducing older songs such as "Alternative is Dead," "Gummi Bears," "I Want More," and "Waikiki," all of which were found either on Origin Edition (1999) and Suburban Legends (2001). The band has also performed a new ska song which is planned for their next studio release, "Open Up Your Eyes."

Part of the band's claim to fame has been its live shows which often involve dance routines far more complicated than those often found in ska bands, as horn playing usually inhibits movement on stage.

Van fire & robberiesEdit

At around 4:30 AM CDT on July 19, 2006, while they were on tour and in St. Louis, Missouri, Phillip Inzerillo woke up to notice the band's tour van was on fire. The fire destroyed the front driver's side of the van. The band's tour money had also been missing from the van. It is suspected that the fire and robbery was caused by an arsonist.

On November 11, 2007, the band was robbed again, while supporting Streetlight Manifesto on their Somewhere in the Between Tour. This time, Suburban Legends' van was stolen along with approximately $80,000 worth of all their equipment and instruments. Fans were first alert of this when Dallas Kruse posted a MySpace bulletin reading:

" You all know just HOW MUCH suburban legends have been through throughout the years! .... lets all gather to HELP THEM through this!

I just got a call from my dear friend MIKEY, bassist for Suburban Legends. They are on tour in Philly and woke up to head down to the van and trailer from the hotel room and the van and trailer were stolen. Every piece of equipment and merchandise the band owns is gone. Drum sets, horns, clothing, basses, guitars, amps, etc. The value of the equipment alone is appx 40k. The value of the trailer alone is 30k. Estimated value of everything is probably close to 80k (in my estimation) including the van, trailer and gear.

They are troopers and going to try and rent another van, rent gear and finish the tour.

This is devastating. Most, if not ALL of you know just how dear and sincere these guys are and how close I am with them.

Is there ANYTHING we can do to help them? My idea was to find someone with money who would be able to immediately front them an investment for gear and work out terms for the band to pay that person back. Or does someone here have connections to a car dealership? Instruments? SOMETHING!?!

Please help! if you have some help or ideas, PLEASE, lets help the guys out!"

Another MySpace bulletin which was posted on November 13, said that the van was recovered in a neighborhood in Philadelphia apparently after somebody saw the news story on the van theft and gave information of its whereabouts. When the van was recovered, it only required minor repairs. However, the contents of the van and trailer were missing. While insurance issues are still being resolved, the band apologized to the fans for any shows they miss and state that they will be back on the road again.

The song "Fire" from their 2008 album, Let's Be Friends, is about the van fire and robberies.

Lineup Edit

The band has had many lineup changes over the years. One of the band's early drummers, the late Jimmy Sullivan left around 1999. He went on to help create the popular band Avenged Sevenfold, going by the name of The Rev along with former Suburban Legends bassist Justin Meacham who left around the same time. In late 2004, bassist Chris Batstone left the band to marry his fiancée and to focus on his education. He was replaced by Mike Hachey. Trumpet player Vincent Walker also left the band in 2004 to focus on his education. He was not replaced and the band used only 3 horns until his return to the band on the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon (see below). Similarly, in late May 2005, trumpet player Aaron Bertram left the band to marry his fiancée, Rachel Charest. He was replaced by trumpet player Luis Beza. In October 2006, while on the Fall Of Ska tour, Phillip Inzerillo disappeared with no official announcement; he was not seen playing with the band on the tour or in subsequent shows afterwards. Around the same time, keyboardist Dallas Kruse began playing with the band. While not an "official" member, not appearing on the band's website and not announced by the band, he has been performing with the band since the tour at local shows. He has also produced the bands' albums from Dance Like Nobody's Watching: Tokyo Nights on. In May 2009, Luis Beza left the band, the first lineup change in nearly three years. In the wake of his departure, Aaron Bertram returned for the summer,[6], with Justin Lewis on trombone, Chris Lucca on trumpet, and Byron Panopio on trumpet appearing with the band frequently as guest musicians. Lucca was eventually added permanently to replace Beza.

Tim Maurer left the band after the recording of Origin Edition, and was replaced by Chris Batstone. Batstone was later kicked out, and Mauer rejoined. Maurer left again after the 2005 Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon to spend more time with his family. He was replaced by former trumpet player Vincent Walker, who returned to the band in the same performance, oddly switching roles from horns to vocals.

Vincent Walker and Brian Robertson are the only remaining members from the band's inception as Bomb Squad (although Vince was not in the band from 2004–2005).

Ryan Dallas CookEdit

At 12:25 AM on October 19, 2005, trombone player Dallas Cook was killed in a hit-and-run motorcycle accident on the Costa Mesa Freeway.[7] A few days after the incident, a large group of Suburban Legends' fans and Dallas' friends and family gathered nearby the ESPN Zone at Disneyland Resort's Downtown Disney, where the band played their many performances in the early 2000s, to share their memories of Cook. On November 29, 2005, former and current band members performed a benefit show for the Dallas Cook Memorial Fund, which was as set up in Cook's honor to donate money to the Huntington Beach High School instrumental music program.


The band has been known to cover the song "Under the Sea" from the Disney movie The Little Mermaid live since 2002. More recently they have played this and other live covers of "I Just Can't Wait to Be King" from the Disney film The Lion King, Frankie Valli's "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" (with Brian Klemm singing lead), The Foundations' "Build Me Up Buttercup," Kool and the Gang's "Celebration," Gary Glitter's "I'm the Leader of the Gang (I Am)," Elvis Presley's "Rubberneckin', and Stevie Wonder's Higher Ground." These covers are often regarded by fans as the proverbial "Coup De Grace," or a perfect finish to the show that "sells" the band to the audience. However, due to licensing issues, album releases of even live recordings of these covers are unlikely, the Disney covers in particular. However, one of the few covers the band has recorded was the theme song to Disney's Adventures of the Gummi Bears. Their other recorded covers include "Rose Tint My World" from the Rocky Horror Show, and "Dancing Machine" by The Jackson 5. They did a ska cover of the Bed Intruder Song during their Fall 2010 tour and while on the "Reel Big Fish vs Aquabats" tour.

The band appears on a tribute album for influential '80s group Oingo Boingo, entitled Dead Band's Party. Their contribution is a cover of the song "On The Outside."


Additional membersEdit

  • Dallas Kruse - Keyboard, Keytar (2006–present, local shows only)
  • Justin Lewis - Trombone (2009, some live shows)
  • Byron Panopio - Trumpet (2009, some live shows)

Former members (Listed in order of departure)Edit


All of the band's material has been self-released, with the exception of the red, blue, and green versions of the Tim Maurer Suburban Legends EP (released by We The People Records) the UK version of Rump Shaker (released by Brand New Hero Records) and the Japan-only Dance Like Nobody's Watching: Tokyo Nights (released by Subrange Records). Some out-of-print and/or rare recordings are available on the Suburban Legends official forums in the "Suburban Legends Collection" forum, under permission of trombonist Brian Robertson.


References Edit

  7. Motorcyclist dies after Santa Ana crash

External linksEdit

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