Sponge frontman Vinnie Dombroski isn’t a cyclist, but he has plenty of experience performing for big groups of them. His other band, the Orbitsuns, has played after parties for the
Ore 2 Shore mountain bike race in his native Michigan.
“The people are so pumped up. They work so hard all year training, so when it’s done they like to party,” Dombroski said during a phone interview. “It’s always a great experience.”
RAGBRAI riders don’t always do a lot of training, but they do like to party, so Dombroski should feel right at home when Sponge plays the RAGBRAI Events Village Tuesday. The concert is part of the Summerland Tour, featuring Sponge and other 1990s alternative rock acts Everclear, Live and Filter.
Sponge’s big hits came in the mid-’90s and included “Plowed,” “Molly (16 Candles Down the Drain,)” “Wax Ecstatic” and “Have You Seen Mary.”
The band has been making music for 22 years, and Dombroski thinks the longevity of the bands on the Summerland Tour is part of its appeal.
“What you have on this tour is bands that have been doing this for many years, so A) they’re probably doing something right, and B) they’re probably not jerks,” Dombroski said. “In my experience, all these guys have been nothing but enjoyable. It may sound kind of cliche and corny, but we’ve all been through the ringer together, and now we want to play music. We’re all sitting in on each other’s songs over the course of the night. We all like to have a good time, but we also all sowed our wild oats long ago.”
While the band is best known for songs off the 1994 album “Rotting Pinata,” Sponge has kept making albums since its chart-topping heyday. It recently self-released its seventh album, “Stop the Bleeding.” The Summerland Tour shows are currently the only place to buy it, but in September it will see a national release through the End record label.
In addition to Sponge and the rest of the Summerland Tour bands, RAGBRAI revelers will have plenty to do and watch on the Locust Street and Court Avenue bridges and the surrounding area starting at 11 a.m.
There will be a stage of music on the Principal Pavilion behind the World Food Prize building starting at 11 a.m. with David Zollo, Chad Elliott, DJ Nice Kicks, DJRLSTN and Pyrotechnique.
Music starts at 4:45 p.m. on the Court Avenue bridge main stage with Dustin Smith and the Sunday Silos and No Good Deed followed by the big headlining Summerland Tour acts starting at 6:30 p.m.
And bonus: After the final band there will be a fireworks display over the river.
Meet the bands of Summerland Tour
Why you would know them: The hits “Santa Monica,” “I Will Buy You a New Life,” “Everything to Everyone,” “Father of Mine” and “Wonderful.”
What they’ve been up to: In 2012 the band launched the Summerland Tour, which in the first year featured Sugar Ray, Lit, Marcy Playground and the Gin Blossoms.
Why you would know them: The hits “I Alone,” “Lightning Crashes,” “Selling the Drama,” “Turn My Head” and “The Dolphin’s Cry.”
What they’ve been up to: The band broke up in 2009, then reformed in 2011 without original singer Ed Kowalczyk. Chris Shinn of Unified Theory handles the vocals now.
Why you would know them: The hits “Hey Man, Nice Shot,” “Welcome to the Fold” and “Take a Picture.”
What they’ve been up to: Filter went on hiatus in 2003 when Richard Patrick joined the Damning Well. He reformed the band in 2007, and Filter played Lazerfest in 2008. Filter released its sixth album, “The Sun Comes Out Tonight,” in June.
Why you would know them: The hits “Plowed,” “Molly (16 Candles Down the Drain)” and “Wax Ecstatic.”
What they’ve been up to: The band has had lineup changes over the years, but frontman Vinnie Dombroski has kept it going for more than 20 years. The band has a tour exclusive version of its album “Stop the Bleeding” available at shows, and it will see a nationwide release this fall.
See the bands
WHEN: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday (other music starts at 10 a.m.)
WHERE: Court Avenue bridge, downtown
– Joe Lawler, staff writer
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