By Daniel Rayzel
On Saturday, October 11th, the REO town district will be hosting an album release party for The Lansing Unionized Vaudeville Spectacle’s (LUVS) upcoming album, ”Dream Machine.” REO Town President, Ryan Wert, describes the upcoming event as a combination of a “CD release show and [a] preview of the Robin Theater,” which will be opening this coming spring.
Two shows will take place in the evening, one at 6:30pm and another at 9:00pm, both featuring not only a live performance of the new album and past hits by The LUVS, but also a local food truck parked outside the new theater that will be serving dinner. Sleepwalker Spirits and Ale will be brewing beer for the album release, including special run of “LUVS Dark Lager”. All proceeds from beer sales at the event will go to the REO Town Commercial Association.
Lindsay Gluf, the band’s Mallet Percussion player and Communications Manager (and IMPACT Alumni!), spoke with us about the band and its history. The LUVS consists of a total of 14 members that put on a vaudeville era style show, consisting of 11 musicians and three puppeteers. Their sound pulls its influence from Eastern European culture, as well as New Orleans and “gypsy blues,” as Lindsay described. The band was formed a few years back when the band’s lead singer, Dylan Rogers, was in his own one-man band, featuring a kick drum, kazoo, and guitar. He then spotted Scott Smith playing his banjo from across the street, and the rest became 21st century vaudeville history.
Lindsay added that previous shows have had great reception, including one show in Curtis, Michigan that had female audience members wearing dresses that reflected the “flappers” of the early 20th century among other members of the packed venue. The group also performed in venues that embodied their music and its history, such as the Vista Theater in Negaunee and the Calumet Theatre in Calumet. While the LUVS have toured throughout Michigan in the past, Lindsay states there are no immediate plans to tour for the release of “Dream Machine,” due to the current unavailability of all 14 members. However, Lindsay noted that more performances at the Robin Theater in the spring are not unlikely for the group.
More information on The Lansing Unionized Vaudeville Spectacle, including photos, music, and ticket purchases, can be found at 517luvs.com.