GODSMACK's SULLY ERNA On Upcoming 'Vibez Tour': 'This Is Something You Can Take Your Parents' To

February 7, 2024

In a new interview with Houston Life, GODSMACK frontman Sully Erna spoke about the band's upcoming "Vibez Tour". The trek will see Erna and his bandmates deliver a series of intimate evenings featuring acoustic/electric performances and untold stories in theatres across North America. The first leg is scheduled to begin on February 15 in Catoosa, Oklahoma, while the second leg will kick off April 9 in Valley Center, California.

"We actually haven't done this kind of a show since 2004," Sully said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET). "When we were touring with METALLICA, as that tour ended, we went out and we did an acoustic tour, just kind of stripped it down. And it went over really well and people really enjoyed it.

"It's a nice kind of event to even take your family to — your moms, your dads," he continued. "If you're a kid or a teenager or in your 20s or 30s, and you happen to like GODSMACK for the big, powerful rock shows that we usually do, then this is kind of the other side of that. This is the actual, the more intimate, sexy side, we can say, of the band versus the big angry 'grrr' [side]. This is something you can come to, take your parents or whoever you want, a date or your wife or whatever, have a nice glass of wine and watch a really cool musical performance, hear some cool stories, and just kind of take the journey with us. That's what we wanna do on this tour, is really create a way to take the audience on a journey, a musical journey."

Erna previously talked about the "Vibez Tour" this past December during an appearance on "The Mistress Carrie Podcast". Asked what the trek is all about, Sully said: "Well, the 'Vibez Tour', it's almost kind of like a break from the big-show touring. We went out all last year and we worked a lot and it was the big show — it was the show that we did in the arenas and the amphitheaters. And when we go out with the big show, as people know, we have this big double-drum battle we do, there's moving lighting and pyro and it's just a big arena show like we grew up on when we were kids. It's the kind of show I always wanted to put out there for the people. But as we get older, the body needs to heal. But we didn't wanna take a break from when we wrapped up at the end of October until summer hits again, when they open up amphitheaters and we start doing these big festival shows or whatever again. There's just too much of a gap there. We wanna be loyal to our crew, so we wanna keep them working. And we also wanna kind of stay tuned up, but to try to do those kind of shows in the winter, it just doesn't make sense. So we wanted to come back to what we did back in — it was like '03, '04, right around the time we were doing the METALLICA thing. And we did an acoustic tour in theaters."

He continued: "People have asked us about when we would ever do that again for so long now — almost 20 years it's been since we did that. So we decided, like, why not do a couple of quick runs, keep us tuned up, play some of the other stuff that we don't get to play on the big show? 'Cause the big show fires up and you wanna hit people and make it the big rock songs, but there's so many cool songs that we also enjoy playing from our catalog that we don't ever get to do 'cause we don't have time. So that this 'Vibez Tour' is gonna be exactly that — we're gonna set a vibe in the theater. Incense candles. We're gonna bring in some of the old memorabilia from other tours, like the gargoyles that we had on the 'Awake' tour and the brass sun that we used on the 'Faceless' tour. And we're gonna try to decorate the stage with all these elements and hopefully take people through the history of the band, so it becomes really cool vibey songs with some storytelling behind it that helps educate the new generation that's been turned on to the band, and just give people a different experience of what else, the other side of what we do as a band."

Erna added: "So it won't be fully acoustic — there's gonna be electric performances as well — but it's gonna be a blend of all that: piano songs, acoustic songs, electric songs. We're gonna mix in some really cool vibey covers. I don't wanna give those away because we haven't done 'em yet, for one, practiced them, so we wanna make sure that we can pull the ones we wanna do off. But I can tell you that it will fit in that same vibe of what we're doing with the 'Voodoo's and the 'Serenity's and the 'Spiral's, and even some of the stuff on the new record, like 'Growing Old' and 'Truth' and 'Under Your Scars' and all that stuff. So we wanna just create like a really cool night of music and storytelling."

When GODSMACK last embarked on "An Evening With" tour 20 years ago, the stripped down acoustic-based performance was aimed at showing the group in a different light and offering it the opportunity to play its music with different arrangements. The show featured the GODSMACK members performing while seated on stools, a la "MTV Unplugged", and included some creative staging and lighting, dim candles and a few spooky props, Times Leader reported at the time.

GODSMACK's eighth studio album, "Lighting Up The Sky" was released in February 2023 via BMG. The LP was co-produced by Erna and Andrew "Mudrock" Murdock (AVENGED SEVENFOLD, ALICE COOPER).

The first single from "Lighting Up The Sky", "Surrender", which arrived in September 2022, marked the first release from GODSMACK in four years, following their globally acclaimed and gold-certified 2018 album "When Legends Rise", which earned the Erna-fronted outfit a No. 1 spot across U.S. Hard Rock, Rock, and Alternative album charts.

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