This year’s Dan’s Best of the Best celebration on November 11 at the Suffolk Theater in Riverhead will be a night to remember, as guests raise glasses to the best of the East End and rock the night away with a can’t-miss concert by 2016 Dan’s Best of the Best Hall of Fame inductees New Life Crisis (NLC). NLC lead singer Paul Mahos sat down with Dan’s Papers to share some insights about being a top rock performer on the East End, and the many splendors of being among the best of the best.
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What does it mean to you to be inducted into the Dan’s Best of the Best Hall of Fame?
It’s always nice to be recognized for your efforts and it feels like a validation that you are moving in the right direction. Being a Long Islander, however, and working on the East End, Dan’s in particular has always represented to me, and the guys in the band, a sort of benchmark as far as status and quality. It means such a great deal to he honored by such an iconic publication like Dan’s.
Put humility aside for a moment. What is it about New Life Crisis that has made the band a Best of the Best winner year after year?
Care, passion and loving what we do…oh yeah, and talent. We have an extraordinary group of guys in our band, Jeff Allegue, Rob Woebber and, new to our family, John Sawicki. As the old adage says, you are only as strong as your weakest link and that’s particularly true in a band dynamic. New Life Crisis is blessed to have so many people involved with us from the people behind the scenes, to the venues, our incredible fans, friends and supporters and each band member (past and present). We take a lot of pride in what we do and we always put our heart and soul into each and every aspect of the performances.
Why do you think New Life Crisis made such a special and lasting connection to the community here?
We try to keep reinventing ourselves, we are constantly working on original material, as well as reinterpreting our favorite songs. We keep it fresh and exciting for ourselves. But unlike a lot of bands, we play what inspires us so we can take the crowd on our musical journey and not the other way around. There comes a time in each performance where the band and the crowd are completely in sync and we are all performing and moving as one singular entity. It’s quite breathtaking to be a part of.
Where do you find inspiration?
We draw a good amount of inspiration for our live performances from our fans. We take it very seriously that people come out and spend their hard-earned money to be entertained. That’s something that we don’t take lightly. We also keep continuing to write and record original music and we will grab inspiration from music that moves us, past and present. From Elvis to Johnny Cash, The Beatles and Billy Joel, U2, Coldplay, Marvin Gaye, Bruno Mars, Lorde, Imagine Dragons, Justin Timberlake and so on…We also draw from the world around us whether it’s world events, politics, personal issues that we deal with. We have tremendous families and tremendous support groups that allow us to do what we do for a living.
Looking back to the days when the band first started, how would you describe the journey so far? And what do you foresee for the future of New Life Crisis?
Thankfully our individual journeys brought this particular group of guys together and when it comes down to it, it’s about the collective energy. We have gone from record deals and radio hits to being broke, up and down in every imaginable way…The common denominator is that none of us have given up on music or ourselves or even each other. We, of course are still “trying to make it,” whatever that means. We strive for world domination but to be recognized in your own backyard is very special and in some senses feels like we have “made it.” We still play with the same zeal as when we started as kids and we still feel that it’s important, I’m not sure why but it is. We believe we have so much more to offer and we are grateful to have the opportunity to keep making music.
What can fans look forward to during the 2016 Best of the Best concert? Anything special planned for that night?
Absolutely! We are looking forward to a night of raucous unbridled excitement. We actually do have a few new tricks up our sleeve, as well as some new songs! We have a new drummer that joined NLC this past summer who’s from the Broadway play Stomp. John Sawicki has incorporated his own unique style and ideas, along with our visions, that bring the production of our show to a whole new level, which collectively utilizes everyone’s strengths. This is something that the East End has not seen yet and we will unveil it on November 11. We jokingly refer to it as “performance enhancement” to reiterate that we are always trying to strive to be better. I also want to just say how much I love and admire my band mates Jeff Allegue, Rob Woebber and John Sawicki. It’s an honor, night after night, to perform with such great people and great talent. And to Rose, who makes so much happen behind the scenes. We know how fortunate we are to have one another.
Party with the winners, voters and entire East End community at the biggest bash of fall on November 11. Featuring 2016 Dan’s Best of the Best Hall of Fame Inductees New Life Crisis. General Admission: $25 in advance, $40 at door; VIP Table for 4: $200 includes reserved seating in VIP Balcony, table service and VIP gift bag with local wine. Winning businesses will be allotted complimentary admission for two to the exclusive BOTB Ceremony (5–7 p.m.) and Concert. Concert tickets on sale now at BOTBConcert.com. Suffolk Theater, 118 East Main Street, Riverhead.