REMAs provide editor with great local entertainment

My friend and I were lucky enough to receive a ticket to Sunday’s Rock Erie Music Awards show at the Bayfront Convention Center. Not only was I lucky enough to go this year, but this was my second year in a row I attended.

For those who aren’t familiar with the REMAs, think of it like the Grammys, except for local artists. There are awards for 25 different categories of music, including hip-hop, jazz, country, rock, metal rock, etc.

However, there was “glaring” difference between the Grammys and Erie’s version. The seating was unusual for an awards show. Contrary to the Grammys, where the audience sat in rows, the REMAs organized the audience into table seating, much like the way the NBA or NFL conducts their rookie drafts.

Like the Grammys, the show had its own host and live performances by nominated artists and bands. The show lasted about three hours, with an intermission in the middle.

As it was last year, this year’s host was comedian Tammy Pescatelli.

I have to say, with Pescatelli, the live performances and the atmosphere, the Bayfront Convention Center put on a great show for Erie.

The REMAs, now in its fifth year, are a way to let the whole Erie community realize that great talent exists in its own backyard. Sure, they’re not Rhianna, Eminem or Taylor Swift, but most of the artists who performed Sunday night were a treat to listen to.

Notice there I say “most.” There was one I disliked – “Friend Request (She Ignored My)” by Ron Yarosz and the Vehicle. The name of the song says it all. Yarosz sings about how one girl ignored his friend request on a social network while jamming to the lyrics that consisted of popular Internet slang terms like “LOL.” Unbelievably, this song was nominated for “Song of the Year.”

Thankfully, this was performed right before the intermission as people were beginning to file out to hit the concessions and restrooms during the song.

As the show went on and the audience became more inebriated, however, one local band shined Sunday night, The Romantic Era who performed their Song of the Year nomination “Rocket” in the second half of the show. As some of you may know, much of the band’s members consist of current or graduated Gannon students.

I’m not one who has an interest in pop rock, but “Rocket” sounded like a song that could someday make it on top of the national charts.

It went on to win Song of the Year.

With all this said, it’s certainly nice to see local artists get recognized for their talents. Maybe someday these artists will be recognized for their talents at the Grammys in the not-too-distant future.

JACOB TARR

[email protected]