Nestled between Interstate 4 and Florida’s Sunrail tracks in downtown Orlando is the outdoor concert venue of Ace Café Orlando. Friday night, February 12, 2021, the outdoor setting hosted Buckcherry and two up and coming star bands Moon Fever and Magnolia Bayou. All Music Magazine was on the scene to capture the event by reviewing the show and capturing the images as they occurred on stage.
It was a warm evening with temperatures in the high 70’s. I arrived early as it was my first show at Ace Café. Moon Fever was finishing up their sound check as I tried to clear up my credentials. The venue is a bar with a large back lot that hosts concerts. Orlando’s high rise buildings tower over the event on the east side. Separating the building from the venues back lot is the Sunrail train tracks. A train passes about every 10 minutes. Initially I was concerned this was going to be a distraction. You soon get use to it and because the tracks are elevated the sound is muffled except for the occasional whistle blow. On the west side is Interstate 4. It too is muffled as it’s about 30 feet above. The stage was on the south end of the back lot and the bar to the north. Plenty of hand cleaning stations and facilities were available. The ground was covered with green indoor/outdoor carpet which really made you feel you were on a grass lawn. After meeting the promoter, tour manager, and the manager of the venue I was ready to check out the stage and what I would be using as my photo studio. Everyone I encountered at the venue was super nice and very helpful. This was going to be a great night!
To kick off the night was the new band from Los Angeles, California, Moon Fever. The band has released five singles and all five are old school in your face rock and roll. Their debut single “Fever” got the world’s attention and started the momentum. Then they released “Casanova’’, “Shaking Off The Evil”, “Undertaker“, and “Cocaine” wrapping up 2020.
The band hit the stage strong with their opening song “Cocaine”. Moon Fever erased the surrounding distractions and any skepticism that a usual opening band brings. Immediately the audience moved closer for a better look. Cody Jasper on vocals was captivating, Mitch Micoley was just slamming the rifs, and the rest of the band completed the fever.
I was fortunate enough to get a heads up from other magazines that reviewed their show the two previous nights in Ft Meyers and St Petersburg, Florida. Moon Fever was being compared to a band that hit the world by storm in 2018, Dirty Honey. They all used this reference as a talking point. I have to agree, Moon Fever brings old school rock and roll which I find refreshing.
Usually, a band will build their set leaving the best for last. But I agree with starting the show with “Cocaine” as first impressions are lasting impressions. The band immediately grabbed your attention. Ladies and gentlemen, Moon Fever was in the house, and in your face!
Cody Jasper – Vocals
Mitch Micoley – Guitar
Will Travis – Guitar
Joshua Buchanan – Bass
Greg Garcia – Drums
Ride With Me
Something Like Criminals
Shaking Off The Evil
Lost & Found
After a great performance by Moon Fever, The Ace Café crowd welcomed another newcomer, Magnolia Bayou to the stage. Magnolia Bayou was out in support of their second album “Strange Place” released September 24, 2020. Magnolia Bayou is from Gulfport, Mississippi. The Mississippi swamps have music flavor all their own, and it’s a cross between blues, funk, and southern rock with very strong vocals.
Andrew Fulton is the strong vocals and Dylan Palmiero’s bluesy guitar is mixed in with leg kicks and some leaps. What you get is one hell of a rock ‘n’ roll show. Magnolia Bayou appeared to bring their “A” game on this night. Their sound reminded me of Bishop Gunn which is understandable as they record in the same Natchez Sound Studio with Bishop Gunn’s drummer Burne Sharp who is the engineer and studio owner. Magnolia Bayou is the new sound of the south, and may the South rise again!
Dylan Palmiero – Guitar
Cedric Feazell – Drums
Andrew Fulton – Vocals/Guitar
Josh Estes – Bass
When a Good Dog Goes Bad
Sleepin’ In The Dog House
After a short delay, Buckcherry graced the stage at around 8:45pm to a crowd that had grown slowly throughout the night to see them perform. Buckcherry has released eight albums over their 26 years with the last release in 2019, “Warpaint”. The title is very appropriate if you have seen them perform on stage with their array of body art.
The show started out with lead singer Josh Todd in a leather jacket and his signature bandana. The air was still very warm and humid. Todd took off his jacket and bandana after the first song and was then in a black sleeveless t-shirt. One song later the shirt was gone too displaying his full body art of multi colored tattoos. The most interesting was the suicide king tattoo that covers his back.
Buckcherry has always been a hard hitting rock ‘n’ roll band and on this night they would still be crowned the King! They played the fan favorites Lit-Up, Crazy Bitch, and their first Billboard Hot 100 top ten hit, “Sorry“.
The first time I saw Buchcherry was in 2006 at the annual 101.1 FM’s Earth Day Birthday festival. We were all younger back then, but even now Josh Todd still performs in perpetual motion on stage. No wonder he still in great shape. The band had disbanded then reunited in 2005. The lineup on this night had only two members that were with the band in 2006, Josh Todd and guitarist Stevie D. I know Stevie D didn’t recognize me, but he greeted me on this night by flipping me the bird in the first song and then proceeded to give me rock ‘n’ roll posses that my Nikon just couldn’t resist. Thanks Stevie D, you made my night!
As long as Josh Todd can walk, he will be on stage flashing his warpaint and entertaining crowds for years to come. Buckcherry always puts on a fun show and the audience gleefully showed their appreciation their entire set.
Josh Todd – Vocals
Stevie D. – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Kelly LeMieux – bass
Billy Rowe – lead guitar, backing vocals
Francis Ruiz – drums
Out of Line
Somebody F’D With Me
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Freelance Photographer and Editor/Founder of AllMusicMagazine.com. My love of live music has taken me to incredible experiences with the top bands of all time in stadium shows to the smallest venues with equally inspiring musicians. Using the medium of photography and my publication, these memories will last forever.