rockford illinois entertainment guide
Date: 09/22/2003
'Dress Rehearsal' a Farse and a Bad String of Septembers
by Patrick McDonough
From their humble beginnings as a joke between friends back in 1998, Dress Rehearsal has come a long way. It all started when four friends Aaron Goodin, Jeff Jenkins, Jared Cacciatore and Quinn Nadig met up at an annual youth music festival. While there, they came up with the name 'Dress Rehearsal' in jest of a goth band named 'Wedding Party.' Later, they took the joke one step further and named one of their first songs "Til Death do us Part."

Not only were their name and song titles a mockery, they also saw themselves as a joke. They had all been in separate bands in high school and saw this as an opportunity to be carefree musicians and really didn't care what happened. Since the band was comprised of four guitarists it made for quite an interesting sound. That was until one day, when Jarod, Jeff and Quinn walked into Aaron's place of employment and said, "we should get together and practice."

That sounded easy enough, but they knew four guitars wouldn't be a sound very much sought after, so they picked new instruments. Jeff had a bass at home so he became the bass player, Quinn played drums in high school so that seemed a natural fit, then it was decided Jared would play lead guitar and Aaron would sing and play rhythm guitar. According to Aaron, "We were limited to say the least, but we started expanding."

They proceeded to write a few more songs. "I Hate White Rabbits" is actually serious in its content. Not about the campfire saying, just named after it for no apparent reason. "West on East" is about a hooker running up and down East State seen while driving down East State, West.

Around the time Aaron had written their fourth song, "Around the Block and Back" it no longer seemed to be that funny. They were actually becoming a band. What started simply as four friends having a good time quickly became a creative -- emotionally driven group of musicians.

Then in September of 1999 Quinn decided that, "there was nothing for him here in Rockford," He really wanted to be in the band, but he didn't want to stay around here. It was shortly after his last show with them that he left for the Coastguard.

Then the band went from Sept 1999 - June 2002 without playing a show. It was in January of 2002 that they finally found a replacement for Quinn. His name was Jake and he stayed with them until September of 2002.

So it was September again and again they found themselves with no drummer. Luckily a few weeks prior to Jakes departure Stan Hulsey had answered an old ad that Aaron had placed when Quinn left which was the same ad Jake had seen and called us about. So within a few hours of Jake leaving, Aaron was on the phone to Stan asking him when he could start. Oddly enough the guys had known Stan through mutual friends and Jeff and Aaron had gone to the same high school as Stan. So here they were again, a group of friends playing together as a band with a common love for music. Stan said, "I've played with other bands before but these guys are really good."

If you were to hear the band perform you would probably notice the undertones of their influences that range from 'U2' to 'Sunny Day Real Estate' to Radiohead. Early influences on their music came from bands from the mid to late 90's such as 'Nirvana', 'Stone Temple Pilots', and 'The Smashing Pumpkins.' Probably more easily, you will note that as a whole, Dress Rehearsal sounds like no other band you have ever heard. It is the emotion that they put into each song that gets into your psyche and keeps you wanting more.

Since they have been together with the current line-up, they have been nominated for last years RAMI award for "Best New Act of the Year," and have been performing in venues throughout the Midwest. When asked about what the future holds this is what Aaron had to say "We don't plan on being where we're at. The ultimate goal is to make music, and make enough to have a comfortable living."

PS: we sound nothing like Dave Matthews.


According to the band, their new release entitled "A Tendency to Please," is a commentary on human nature. "It basically brings together the theme of the lyrics." "Not in a cocky or arrogant way, its about how people respond to each other. It's about trying to make people around you happy."

"A Tendency to Please" (11 songs, 44:30 running time)
Price: $10


1 This is Only a Test
2 Fear of Subtraction
3 Slightly Stepping Sideways
4 To Hell With Your Standard
5 Self Sufficient
6 Around the block and back
7 A Half-Empty Bottle of Orange Juice
8 A Slave to Circumstance
9 Always Hanging On
10 Stiffnecked
11 Somewhere Between Swearing and Jesus
Contact Information
Dress Rehearsal
Aaron Goodin
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