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Carnival Tour Is A "Family" Affair For Shinedown

of the Oakland Press

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The desire to “have a lot of fun this summer” and “a family environment on the road” is what led Shinedown to headline this summer’s inaugural Carnival Of Madness tour.

The “family” in this case is four other bands — Chevelle, Puddle of Mudd, Sevendust and 10 Years After — all, like Shinedown, managed by Bill McGathy’s In De Goot Entertainment. Shinedown frontman Brent Smith, in fact, started talking with McGathy “years ago” about such a package and is thrilled that it’s finally become a reality.

“I want the public to have a lot of fun, too,” says Smith, 32. “We really wanted to give them a massive show. Carnival Of Madness is something (McGathy) wants to grow into a major brand and a major tour, so he can continue to bring not only In De Goot bands but other bands into the picture and form a tour that when people see that emblem of the carnival, they know a huge show is coming.

“This is going to be the first year, so it should be absolute madness. It’s gonna be crazy. We’re definitely going to make it extremely entertaining.”

Big things are also ahead of Smith and Shinedown as the Florida hard rockers wind down their promotional cycle for their third album, 2008’s platinum “The Sound of Madness.” Smith — who’s also featured on “Not Strong Enough,” the first single from the new Apocalyptica album, “7th Symphony” — says Shinedown has written “about 30 tracks” for its next album, with plans to hit the studio in early 2011 after a 25-date acoustic holiday tour at the end of this year.

Meanwhile, Shinedown has new music in the form of “Diamond Eyes (Boomlay),” a song for the upcoming Sylvester Stallone film “The Expendables,” which releases Aug. 13.

“Sylvester Stallone was really, really involved in the song,” reports Smith. “He sent over the key points of what he wanted in the song and how he wanted the song to be done, with different sections and different parts and what kind of lyrics he wanted, and he referenced other songs. He was really meticulous, so that really helped us a lot.

“He did actually tell us that ‘Boomlay’ was the first song that he had heard since (Survivor’s ‘Rocky III’ theme) ‘Eye of the Tiger’ that he felt was really perfect for the movie he had just filmed. We were so flattered. I mean, who gets told something like that by Sylvester Stallone!” It was a huge compliment.”

The Carnival of Madness tour featuring Shinedown, Chevelle, Puddle of Mudd, Sevendust and 10 Years After starts at 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 7, at the DTE Energy Music Theatre, Sashabaw Road east of I-75, Independence Township. Tickets are $42.50 and $32.50 pavilion, $20 lawn. Call 248-377-0100 or visit www.palacenet.com.

Web Site: www.palacenet.com

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