Last Thursday at the Fairplex in Pomona was the first day of the 2018 Vans Warped Tour, and I have been looking at my photos for the last few days wondering what’s next. When it was announced that this would be the “final, full cross-country run of the Vans Warped Tour” I wasn’t sure what to think. I’ve photographed so many Warped Tours I have lost count, and it has been something very special to me. This is a tour where upcoming bands get to really work to win new fans, and when these bands hit the stage they tend to give 110% every time.
This legendary tour kicked off in 1995! Think about that for a minute, 1995…. and founder Kevin Lyman has managed to keep it relevant every year since. That first year we saw bands like A Day To Remember, who now bring the Self Help Festival to the IE every year, and over the years you’ve been able to catch a ton of artists before they became as big as they are today, artists like Avenged Sevenfold, Blink-182, Limp Bizkit, My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy, Paramore, Katy Perry and Yelawolf. The Black Eyed Peas were even featured on the 1999 Vans Warped Tour. And this year there is even a Warped Tour in Japan featuring Prophets of Rage, Limp Bizkit, and Korn.
So what does the “final, full cross-country run of the Vans Warped Tour” mean? I have no idea. The good news is that wording does leave room for hope that there will still be Warped type shows. Shows where the big artists of tomorrow get a chance to leave it all on the stage for you today. For this “final” year they brought out some old favorites, a few bands I’ve wanted to see for a long time, and a few I hadn’t heard of before. Overall it was a great day.
The one down side of Warped is on the photography side. There are so many bands that it is impossible to photograph them all, or I should say almost impossible. There is one guy that usually does, his name is Jack Lue – Guns N Roses original photographer – but I’m not as crazy as Jack. I did photograph a selection of artists for you, so you can hopefully get the feel for what Warped Tour is, or should I say was.
Some of may faves from Thursday that I had seen before were:
Issues – This band is always a blast, one of my faves to watch
Doll Skin – I’ve photographed this band 3 times now, and I hope to again soon
Assuming We Survive – Always great
Wage War – My second time seeing them and I definitely will again
Black Veil Brides – One of the best shows you’ll see
And for the bands I hadn’t seen, these stood out:
As always, there is a gallery full of photos below, and I’d love to hear your thoughts on the show. Follow me online at:
All Images Copyright 2018 Steve Brazill, All Rights Reserved.