Shuffle: The Family Bond That Drives Canton Rockers "The Scenic Route"
The Canton pop rock band The Scenic Route is a family business that’s picking up steam. The six-piece is fronted by 23-year-old founder, Rachel Crozier, and managed by her dad, Brad Crozier, who's been preparing his daughter for big stages for most of her life.
Growing up on stage
Rachel Crozier was performing long before she formed The Scenic Route. Starting around age 10, she was singing national anthems at sporting events and performing at nursing homes and at county fairs. Brad Crozier says that by the time she was 14, she already had 200 performances under her belt.
She says singing was in her blood. “The only reason I've stuck with it this long is because I truly do love music more than anything else in the world.”
'Her first boyfriend was a band member. Her first kiss and her first breakup was at a gig'
Almost every one of Rachel's major life milestones are linked to her music. "Her first boyfriend was a band member. Her first kiss and her first breakup was at a gig. She had a gig on her high school graduation day, as well as on her 16th, 18th and 21st birthdays," Brad said.
As for having a father-daughter business relationship, they say it works.
“We get along very well," Brad said. "We're very similar and we have a very, very strong working relationship. You know, she always talks about people assume that because I manage her, I am somehow pushing her. This is what she wants to do. And I am facilitating.” Rachel's mother, Christa, is also part of the band, working as the group's business manager. She handles the booking, scheduling social media and photography.
'You can outwork and out hustle and outlast people in our business'
Forming a band and finding success
The Scenic Route formed when Rachel decided she wanted to be more collaborative with her music. And while the lineup has changed over the years, Brad said he thinks they've found their core group. Along with Rachel on vocals, Van Lovelace plays bass, Chad Wimberly and Dominic Merlitti are on guitar, Sam Merendino is on drums and Matt Speziele plays keys.
The band has released two albums and two EPs, most recently "Ultraviolet" this past summer. Brad believes the band is on the brink of big success, playing about 150 gigs a year.
“It's very difficult to take that step into being a professional musician. I feel like members of The Scenic Route are about two years away, based on what we're booking and how the percentages go up every year. You can outwork and out hustle and outlast people in our business.”