Hot Water Music’s post-hardcore sound is raw and rugged, but for the past five years, frontman Chuck Ragan has led the Revival Tour, bringing together musicians for an intimate acoustic tour inspired by the folk music tradition. Last year, Ragan was joined by Cory Branan and Jay Malinowski of Bedouin Soundclash, touring the world in stripped-down style. In this documentary, Ragan looks back at what and who he’s brought together for what have turned out to be emotionally powerful experiences.
“From the top, we [all] play and sing together, showcasing a song from each artist’s catalog that’s on the bill that evening,” Ragan tells Rolling Stone of the tour’s special format. “There’re usually five to six artists as well as back-up accompaniment of fiddles, upright bass, mandolins, banjos and more. After this, most will peel off to spotlight one of the artists aboard who’ll present their own works.” In the spirit of collaboration, the following artist joins the one onstage to play along, creating a series of seamless transitions.
“Revival is always different, always a learning experience and always exhilarating,” says Ragan. “We all realize why we’re there and find a moment in time where we leave our troubles at the door [and] to find something in common with strangers.”
This year’s edition of the Revival Tour, the sixth one, features Ragan, Votolato, Rise Against frontman Tim McIlrath, Streetlight Manifesto’s Toh Kay, Los Angeles musician Jenny O, Loved Ones’ Dave Hause and New Jersey-based singer-songwriter Jenny Owen Youngs. The tour kicks off on March 15th at Corpus Christi, Texas’ House of Rock and wraps up April 23rd at L.A.’s El Rey Theatre. For full tour dates and tickets, visit the Revival Tour’s website.