From the moment the self-proclaimed “kids from Memphis” took the stage on Tuesday, April 19, at The Plaza Live in Orlando, The Band CAMINO was purely cathartic.
My friend and I arrived an hour late for the concert. We drove to the small and intimate venue right after work (this 9-to-5 life interferes with my concert watching), so we missed the two opening acts: Flor and Hastings.
Thankfully, the headliners had not taken the stage yet. Thirty minutes after our arrival at 9 PM, The Band CAMINO kicked off the show with the booming ‘Know It All.’ The hook resonated throughout, keeping the audience in a trance until the very end: “I know he doesn’t know it all / Like why you love the color yellow but you hate the song / And how you told me I would always be the only one / I bet you told him about me / But I know he doesn’t know it all.”
Endearingly titled The Tour CAMINO, the band’s headlining tour has been highly anticipated following their 2021 self-titled debut album. Many songs off the record, such as the funky ‘I Think I Like You’ and the angsty ‘1 Last Cigarette,’ made up the concert setlist. Old fan favorites from their first three EPs like ‘What I Want,’ and ‘2/14’ also made the cut.
Whether you knew their earlier songs or not, you found yourself singing the catchy melody back to them as if you were friends dancing at a party by the end of each piece. The audience was as much a part of the show as the artists. The Band CAMINO is a live band at its core.
Jeffery Jordan (vocals, guitar, keyboards) is undoubtedly the hype man for The Band CAMINO. As co-frontman for the indie pop-rock ensemble, he buzzed with energy the entire time. So much so that halfway through the performance, Jordan ditched his striped blue and yellow Guess shirt and was left in merely a white sleeveless undershirt and denim jeans, his tattooed arms in full display. He moved frantically and swayed his hips to the beat while wearing theatrical expressions. As he jumped on the stage platform and spread his arms wide to the room, basking in his rock-star glory, you couldn’t help but get high off his eccentric stage presence alone.
Fellow co-frontman Spencer Stewart (vocals, guitar, keyboards) is more laidback. His stage presence is calm and relaxed. Often, his long dark curls curtained his face as he dug into the keyboards and shredded at the guitar. This rang especially true during his performance of “Crying Over You,” a heart-wrenching ballad by Chelsea Cutler in which they were featured. He looked almost angelic as a white spotlight illuminated him standing with an acoustic guitar and wearing a white Diamond Bar band t-shirt and green camo pants.
The ballad was not originally on the setlist. Still, The Band CAMINO decided to include it mid-tour because it had become one of their most streamed songs on Spotify, and they felt that they had to perform it.
Like a king sitting on his throne, Garrison Burgess (drums) sat in the back, watching over the stage and into the audience. Bopping his head along and keeping the heartbeat of each song alive, Burgess was indeed in his element. He heightened the electric energy in the room with every bass kick and drum fill. Dressed in a simple black shirt, Garrison provided the foundation that makes The Band CAMINO such a remarkable musical act and unstoppable force. Or better yet, he has the juice, as we both simultaneously called it when I met him and Jordan talking to fans outside after the concert.
“Everyone changes. I’m not the same person I was seven Jeffreys ago,” Jordan spoke to the sold-out venue of roughly 2,000 people as he introduced their song ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ “This song is about that growth and change and whether the person you used to be would recognize the person you are now.”
In true 21st century fashion, some audience members had their phones up filming their favorite songs for safekeeping, myself included. But surprisingly, the extended screens were kept to a minimum. Most arms raised in the air were bare and moving back and forth to the beat—rocking out. I might have headbanged a couple of times, but my curls were nowhere near as luscious as Stewart’s. Everyone was singing along and respectful of the personal space, the venue, and the artists. Some had drinks in their hands, and others were even vaping. It felt like I was at an underground gig straight out of Skins.
The show’s lightwork added to the comfortable and lively ambiance by accentuating the shredding guitars, booming bass lines, and earthshaking drums. They flashed erratically during high-energy moments, especially during instrumental breaks (and if you know The Band CAMINO, there are many of those), and reined it in during ballads.
With two songs left on the setlist, Jordan announced that there would not be an encore. “You guys don’t want us to walk out and then come back and play more songs.” The crowd objected.
“Should we play five more songs?” he teased. “Nah, we’ll play two more, okay? Gotta leave you wanting more so you come back.” He hung his head back, laughing at his own joke.
My friend turned to me and said fondly, “He thinks he’s hilarious.” All in good fun.
The night ended with an electrifying performance of ‘Daphne Blue,’ one of their most popular songs. Bathed in blue light, Jordan and Stewart’s voices harmonized with the audience in an instant of pure euphoria as the words “black jeans and Daphne blue still make me think of you” filled the room. I left that night with a grin plastered on my face, already anticipating the next time I’ll get to see The Band CAMINO live.