Union Stage, IMPACT Collective and Meant 2 Live are excited to host the reunion of SEV, one of the DMV’s finest hard rock groups from the late 90s and early 2000s!
The D.C. area band SEV played their first show on October 27th of 1996. In the two decades since then, the band has toured North America and shared the stage with dozens of other local bands and platinum–selling artists of the era, including Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, 311, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Incubus, Kid Rock, Avril Lavigne, and Korn. They endured member changes, secured deals with two major record labels, and performed on national TV shows and television commercials. In 2006, the band parted ways and scattered across the country. Until now….
SEV’s catalyst, guitarist Max Alley, wrote the music for the band’s first album Sunflower with bassist Will Mazur and drummer Dennis Fay. The trio quickly identified vocalists Danny Schools and Phil Clayman from other local projects and were soon selling out shows at local venues. The combination of metal, rap, pop, and electronic music, mixed with their signature high-energy shows, made every performance a unique experience not to be missed. SEV gained the attention of the Mid-Atlantic music scene by winning the “Big Break” contest hosted by at-the-time alternative rock radio station 99.1 WHFS. They opened the 1999 HFStival with a performance on the Street Stage.
Their rising success garnered the attention of several national record labels, and the band originally signed with the Interscope/Universal joint venture Farmclub in 2000 with record industry moguls Jimmy Iovine and Doug Morris. However, the label closed its doors in 2001 and the band subsequently signed with Geffen and released their debut album, All These Dreams, in 2002. The success of their first single, Same Old Song, caught the attention of Pepsi and the band filmed a commercial for the launch of Pepsi Blue.
Gotta bring it back! IMPACT Collective caught up with drummer Dennis Fay to discuss the reunion, what they’ve been up to, and what fans can expect at the reunion show. SEV plays Union Stage with Jimmie’s Chicken Shack on 4/27! Get your tickets now.
IMPACT Collective: What’s your favorite memory of SEV in it’s prime?
Dennis Fay: Too many great memories to pick a favorite, but the one that sticks out the most to me these days is our label showcase at The Garage. This club had a 20 foot tall metal roll-up garage door that ran across the front of the stage and it was closed as the bands changed gear onstage. We’re all in place and about ready to start and the crowd is getting really hype and banging on it. Now… this door was for decorative purposes only – like, not a real security door or anything sturdy. And it was bowing and rattling and flapping — I thought it was going to fall off the ceiling. And I remember thinking, “if this sonofabitch breaks, we’re going to play the show with the door closed….”
IC: What inspired you to join the reunion?
DF: Two main reasons. First, it’s for a great cause. Poverty is possibly the greatest enemy to human happiness. Meant 2 Live Foundation is an organization that (among many other things) leverages music to benefit those in need. I’m very grateful for the opportunities I’ve had in life and this reunion show is one of the ways I’m able to give back. Second, I’ve met a lot of people over the years that never had a chance to see us play live and I wanted to be a part of the reunion to experience it all over again with them.
IC: What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not playing the drums?
DF: This is starting to sound like a meet-singles-in-your-area profile… I think I’m supposed to say long walks on the beach, exercise, travel. But mostly I love hanging out with my wife, drinking some wine and laughing at stuff.
IC: What’s your best SEV track and why?
DF: I like 24/7 a lot – it evolved a lot from the first to the final and I still really enjoy both versions. It has some of my favorite Phil and Danny lyrics, Max’s guitar riff kills, and I just have to buckle up and hold on.
IC: What outcome are you hoping for at the reunion?
DF: The combo of crowd and music create the same high-energy excitement as it did 20 years ago. I like our chances.
About Meant 2 Live Foundation: Meant 2 Live Foundation uses the universal power of music to restore hope to underprivileged communities, by providing a VIP experience to those in the greatest need of encouragement. Working with both local and international non-profit organizations, M2L improves the quality of life for youth through education, mentor-ship, food programs, musical inspiration, and spiritual nourishment. Currently focusing on Washington DC, Virginia, Zambia, and Haiti, M2L believes members of society can fulfill their social responsibility by sharing their time, talents, and resources to impact impoverished communities worldwide.
About IMPACT Collective: IMPACT Collective is a dynamic event management company based in Washington, DC. They specialize in experiential marketing, concert production, wedding planning, and venue sales. IMPACT is a socially conscious company that impacts its clients through passion, collaboration, and dedication.