This morning, Track 29 announced that it will host Grammy Award-winning alt-rock/dream-pop legends The Flaming Lips on May 4. Tickets, which will cost $40 each, will go on sale Friday at 10 a.m.
The Lips formed in 1983 by Oklahoman brothers Wayne and Mark Coyne (guitars and vocals, respectively) and bassist Michael Ivins. In addition to its musical eccentricism, the Flaming Lips is renowned for Wayne Coyne’s over-the-top antics during live shows, says local fan Drew Hartl, 28.
Hartl has seen the Lips twice at out-of-town venues, most recently in Cincinnati in 2010, the same year the band was a featured performer at the Bonnaroo festival in Manchester, Tenn. He says he’s excited to see what Coyne will do during the local concert.
“Typically, those shows are only out West or one or two shows in the East,” he says. “It’s going to be epic. I can’t wait.”
Track 29 co-owner and general manager Monica Maples Kinsey says that, for the Lips show, the venue’s moveable stage will be set for the club’s maximum 1,800 capacity.
Today’s announcement comes hot on the heels of the news that the group Bassnectar will perform at Track 29 on May 12. That show sold out in less than 15 minutes and, while Kinsey says she and her staff are unsure on whether tickets for The Flaming Lips will go quite as quickly, she’s hopeful that locals like Hartl will rally behind it.
“I think, overall, the majority are very excited about it, as are we,” she says. “It’s been one of those that’s been tough to keep under wraps because of our own excitement.”
The Flaming Lips flew mostly under the radar until the mid-’90s, when Wayne Coyne, then the band’s lead vocalist following the departure of his brother, oversaw the release of the band’s breakout album, 1993’s “Transmissions from the Satellite Heart.” The album yielded the group’s first Top 40 single, “She Don’t Use Jelly.”
In the years that followed, the Lips were nominated for six Grammys, winning three: Best Rock Instrumental Performance in 2003 and 2007 and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical 2007.
In 2002, Rolling Stone named the band’s 2002 release, “Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots,” the 27th best album of the decade.
As of now, there is no opening act listed in support of the Lips, but Kinsey says the venue always suggests local artists in the absence of a predetermined opener. Recently, Track 29 secured slots for Old Time Travelers and Summer Dregs as openers for The Infamous Stringdusters on March 8) and Lotus on March 17.
“We definitely do submit every chance we’re given, and we’ll do the same this time, if given the opportunity,” Kinsey says.
Contact staff writer Casey Phillips at email@example.com or 423-757-6205. Follow him on Twitter at @PhillipsCTFP.
Casey Phillips has worked as a features reporter in the Life department since May 2007. He writes about entertainment, consumer technology, animals and news of the weird. Casey hails from Knoxville and earned a bachelor of science degree in journalism and a bachelor of arts in German from Middle Tennessee State University, where he worked as the features editor for the student newspaper, Sidelines. Casey's writing has earned numerous accolades, including first and second place ...