Pop Band Fastball Will Play Fall Rock Show

The Austin, Texas, pop band Fastball, known for its hit song "The Way," will headline the 1998 Fall Rock Show. Concert Board announced Friday that Fastball will come to Tufts, and the fall concert will take place Saturday, Oct. 31, in Dewick-MacPhie.

Concert Board Booking Chair Eric Warasta said, "Fastball was one of the biggest names that have come up for this show. They're a very popular band, especially with their hit song 'The Way,' and they just recently made a video." He added, "Fastball happened to be in Boston, and they were available for Halloween. They also fit our budget, which is not that big in comparison with the budget for something like Spring Fling."

Fastball is a power-pop trio composed of Miles Zuniga (guitar, vocals), Tony Scalzo (bass, vocals) and Joey Shuffield (drums). The group formed in the early '90s and originally called itself Magneto U.S.A. It became popular in the Texas region, and after signing with Hollywood Records, it changed its name to Fastball.

In June of 1996, Fastball released its debut album, "Make Your Mama Proud." The album was not the breakthrough the band was expecting. When its second album, "All the Pain Money Can Buy," was released in March of 1998, the group's sound became more pop and they added more varied and more serious subjects to the lyrics.

Fastball's hit song "The Way" paved its path to popularity. The group's songs are a mix of harmony-laden pop, twangy, snazzy and sometimes gospel-tinged sound. One of its songs will be featured on the soundtrack for the new Adam Sandler movie "Waterboy."

Warasta said that he believes Fastball "will put on a really big show." Originally, Concert Board wanted to have the show outside so that more people would be able to attend, but that was not possible. It seemed clear from the beginning, though, that Fastball would draw a crowd. "We didn't really consider a lot of other bands given the stature of Fastball. There was a lot of consent on this. I believe this is a great opportunity for Tufts," he said.

Past performers for the Fall Rock Show include Fishbone, Letters to Cleo, Natalie Merchant and Cracker. Tickets for Fastball are $8 and go on sale Monday, Oct. 26, at 9 a.m. at the information booth in the campus center. You must bring your Tufts ID to purchase a ticket, and tickets are limited to one per person. The doors will open at 8 p.m., and there will be an opening act; the name of the band has not yet been announced.

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