For almost 30 years, Blues Traveler has been entertaining crowds with its blend of blues rock, folk rock and soul.
The band will perform with Sugar Ray and Uncle Kracker on Sunday, July 6, as part of the “Under The Sun Tour” at RiverEdge Park, 360 N. Broadway St., Aurora.
The show starts at 7 p.m. and tickets are $30, available at RiverEdge’s website, www.riveredgeaurora.com.
Kane County Chronicle reporter Eric Schelkopf had the chance to talk to Blues Traveler drummer Brendan Hill, a founding member of the band.
Eric Schelkopf: What do you like about being on this tour, with other bands that also enjoyed success in the ’90s?
Brendan Hill: We got asked to do the tour back in January or February, and we were really excited to kind of reconnect with some of the bands we played with back in the ’90s as part of the H.O.R.D.E. Festival. The audiences will hopefully get a chance to see what we are all up to now.
Schelkopf: Do you think you complement each other’s sound?
Hill: I think so. We were all [on] the radio back in the ’90s. There was kind of [a] scene back in the ’90s, so I think we do complement each other. Blues Traveler is bringing the jam band element into this tour.
Schelkopf: Of course, you are a founding member. You met John Popper while attending Princeton High School in New Jersey. Originally you were called Blues Band and then you changed your name to Blues Traveler. Was there a reason you changed your name?
Hill: We were a high school band. When you are growing up in a small little suburban town, you could be called Blues Band and you could be the only one.
But then we moved to New York City, and there were a thousand blues bands. And right around the time that “Ghostbusters” the movie came out, we just loved the idea that when we jammed on our own, it always felt that there was sort of another entity that we were creating, another force.
The four of us made something special and unique. In “Ghostbusters,” there was the character Gozer, also known as “The Traveler,” who could morph and change into anything in that movie.
We kind of liked that idea, and Blues Traveler had a nice ring to it. And it proved to be true. We’ve been doing this for almost 30 years, and traveling is our bread and butter.
We’ve kept together because we’re a band of friends, and traveling down this road together.
Schelkopf: Your song “Run-Around” was a huge radio hit when it was released, and the band won a Grammy Award for it. Did you think the song would connect so well with people, and not only that, also earn the band a Grammy Award?
Hill: Of course not. When we were making the album, “Four,” it was when the band really clicked and connected with the producer and we were connecting with each other.
It was kind of all the right elements, the right timing, and a lot of luck.