Earlier today, Sam Houston Race Park announced the Houston date for this year's edition of the Vans Warped Tour. The long-running punk-rock/emo summer tour hits the northwest side July 2. Start hydrating now. The festival has been humming since its initial regional start in 1995 in Southern California. Today it encompasses almost all musical genres, including electronica and country - just last year, Shooter Jennings (back in town Friday at Wired Live; Rocks Off will have an interview both in print and online later this week) played a midday set on the tour. This year is all over map, with Andrew W.K., Alkaline Trio, Dillinger Escape Plan, All-American Rejects, Every Time I Die, Face To Face and the Bouncing Souls making time on the tour. With this AWK date, and counting his marathon SXSW gigging, we will have seen him at least six times this year.
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Last year's Warped was ridiculously hot, and the concrete and gravel in the horse track's adjacent lot where the day-long event was held drew no quarter. We spied at least 50 kids in the medic area with beet-red faces clutching new shirts and water bottles. Even some of the bands who were playing that day made the rounds in the tent talking to kids about music and whatnot.
The older we get, the more alternately foreign and thrilling Warped Tour gets. This will be our tenth Warped go-round when the tour hits Houston. We are getting to the age where we actually enjoy sitting in the cooled, catered parents tent and watching DVDs, only peeking out every now and then to spy a new band. See ya in the pit!