How SunFest’s stars get to the stage

Headliners Slightly Stoopid think of their bus as their home away from home
Posted at 1:39 PM, Apr 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-30 19:23:13-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Friday night at SunFest for the Slightly Stoopid concert it was mostly muddy and wet for fans. But the band said they love playing the festival.

"SunFest is a great organization... This is our fourth or fifth time out here. We absolutely love it. We love the volunteers and the family vibe that West Palm has here. (They've) always welcomed us with open arms and give us everything we need to have a good day," said Slightly Stoopid’s tour manager Eric Swanson.

How each band finds their way onto the three stages is different. For Slightly Stoopid it's with a driver they just met, Parker Jonathon.

“I've driven for Carrie Underwood. I did a tour with her. I just I just finished last week a tour with Slipknot,” said Jonathon.

“I thought they were a rap act,” admitted Jonathon.

Slightly Stoopid is known for their fusion of many genres including reggae, funk, and rock.

“We demand professionalism, like any business but when it comes to a driver, they're in charge of our safety going down the road,” said Swanson.

Swanson said the stage is for the public but the bus is the band’s home.

“ There are 12 bunks on [the bus]. There's a small kitchen and bathroom. We live there. You know [the band is] FaceTiming their kids. They're watching TV, maybe playing video games. It's like your mobile home, literally,” Swanson said.

For Jonathan, he knows their home is their sanctuary.

“ The driver is really in a service industry. He is somebody who has to cater to the client and has to know boundaries,” he said.

Jonathon said drivers have to remember which side of the curtain they are on.

“Are you on a fan side or an audience side or are you on the stage side, on the crew side?” Jonathon said.

“ [The band and crew] are talking to their wives and kids and their personal lives are happening [on the bus]. That's our home,” said Swanson.

Keeping the stars safe at their home so they can get to the stage is Jonathon’s top priority.

“People who slam on their brakes when they don't need to, you know, and I've got to react to that,” Jonathon said.

As for the band, Jonathan said, “They're very laid back and chill and they just kind of do their thing.”

Backstage Friday night with the band last night you could see the family vibe Slightly Stoopid has, and the strong work ethic that makes this laid-back group so successful.