South Florida’s punk rock scene, from the beginning, has suffered a number of circumstances that have forced it to grow independently from the rest of the American subconscious. This can been a good thing. It has led to the formation of a discernible Floridian sound, and this little scene of ours commands attention at the international level.
But, sadly, bands come and go, and Miami has yet to birth anything akin to the Rolling Stones. Oftentimes after splitting, band members relocate far away, making reunion efforts rather complicated.
Still, there has been a recent resurgence of beloved local punk acts coming together again, and we’ve been treated to some incredible live music once more. The most recent example: Caught Inside.
“We originally wanted to plan this reunion for 2015 because that would’ve been the 20-year anniversary of the birth of Caught Inside,” says Robert Lyon, Caught Inside's guitarist. “With two of the guys living in California and us local guys with busy schedules... it was a little complicated to put together.”
But they managed to get on the same page, and this Saturday will see the return of three esteemed outfits to a Miami stage: Caught Inside, Foolproof, and Milkshed. Before pop-punk became an overdone and repeatedly imitated subgenre, these three bands were fine-tuning the sound with fresh rhythms and tinges of hardcore. Back then it was considered the SoCal sound, but in reality what these groups were doing was a slightly different and more tropical take on the music.
Some notable newcomers will be joining the lineup of this reunion: Games We Play, a pop-punk trio featuring Jake Kraner, Jose Crespo, and Emmyn Calleiro, the latter being the son of Glasseater’s original vocalist Jason Calleiro.
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Emmyn's father, a bit of a punk legend in these parts, helped his son snag a spot on the upcoming show, and Emmyn couldn't be more pumped. "My dad has been showing me all these bands throughout the years so I'm crazy excited to play this show and get to see some of these bands I never thought I would see.”
Time has passed and many of the folks involved in these bands have gone on to work in diverse fields like film and television production, theater, and business.
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Personally, I came up in this scene when these bands were active. Back in 2001 I booked a reunion show for Caught Inside at the now-defunct Gables Pub (watch the performance below). It was a great night – once I calmed down the concerns of the Coral Gables Police Department (whose HQ is a block and half from where the bar stood) twice and placated dozens of concerned parents who kept the bar’s phone ringing off the hook. It'll be nice to be a spectator this time around.
Milkshed’s Joe Caro, who gets mock-surly and punk-rock snotty with questions of this reunion going forward puts it best: “Future? What future? We’re going to have fun while we're still young enough to get down.”
Foolproof, Milkshed, Caught Inside, and Games We Play. 8 p.m. Saturday, May 28, at Churchill’s Pub, 5501 NE 2 Ave., Miami; 305-757-1807; churchillspub.com. Admission is $8.