Warped Tour is for for these Kings
Since 1995, Warped Tour has been the must go to festival of the summer. One of the coolest things about this summer-long event is those few precious minutes where we are able to catch a quick word with the musicians who make the tour worth seeing. Follow along with S16’s Warped Tour rep Cindy McBride as she tells the tales of bands like GWAR, The Acacia Strain, Big D and The Kid’s Table, and more! Today’s Warped Tour interview is with Christian metalcore group Fit For A King.
My second interview of the day was with Fit For a King’s Ryan Kirby. Fit for a King (Solid State Records) formed back in 2007 in the great state of Texas, first splashing onto the Warped Tour scene back in 2015. One of the first questions I asked was how Warped Tour has changed since the group’s first run in 2015.
“I like the organization more,” said Kirby. “There’s less stages and more people watching you at each stage. On top of that, we have put out an album since 2015, and our fanbase has grown a lot and it’s cool to see, like our crowds are four times bigger than they were in 2015, so that’s awesome.”
The album Ryan is referring to is entitled Deathgrip, which was released on October 7th, 2016 by Solid State record label, and included two guest vocalists: Jake Luhrs from August Burns Red and Levi Benton of Miss May I.
“Deathgrip focuses on a lot of different aspects of life involving death, whether it’s spiritual, emotional, or actual death,” explained Kirby. “There are songs that talk about the London genocide. One is about a mother who had an abortion when she was younger, and she was just learning to get over some of the feelings she had about it because it was really hard on her, and it’s about her learning that she can be a good mother, even after the fact that she did. She learns she can still be a great mother even after all that. It just touches on death on so many subjects.”
With all the chaos that is going on in the world today, it is sometimes easy to forget that bad things have been happening for a while now. In 2015, FFAK was in Paris four days after the Bataclan terrorist attack. It was no surprise that emotions were running high for the group who was debating on their safety, as well as the safety of their fans.
“Everyone felt unsafe because a show had just got shot up by terrorists,” recalled Kirby. “Then everybody decided ‘let’s do it,’ and everybody was freaked out.”
Although the projected number of attendees for the show was dropped drastically in highlight of the Paris attack, numerous fans braved their fears and attended the show. This just goes to show that music, no matter what you listen too, can be a sanctuary for us even with all the darkness in the world.
Without the scary possibility of unspoken danger, touring can be nerve-wracking in general. With Warped Tour being an all summer tour, emotions can run a little high when band members and touring workers start to miss home. It can be a rough knowing your family and friends are so far away, and the fact that you may be missing events like birthdays, weddings, or anniversaries can be beyond nerve racking.
“I’ve been gone since June 9th from home, so almost a month, and there’s still another month to go on tour. I just have to look at it as a marathon, and take each day as we go,” said Kirby.
Being on a strict schedule is a way of ensuring all the bands and their members are all aware of what’s going on throughout the tour. Keeping the monster that is Warped Tour running is a hectic job, not only on the artists playing, but for the workers who are making this beast run from behind the scenes. But is it worth it? Hell yes.
“It’s rough, but it’s an experience I would never want to give up,” claimed Kirby.
After our interview with Ryan, we hung backstage for a few minutes while the artist showed off his unique drawing skills with a quick doodle, and guess what: we are giving it away! If you would like to be entered in the drawing to win a Ryan Kirby original masterpiece all you have to do is retweet this article to be entered! Stay tuned for more exclusive interviews from various bands tackling the beloved tour.