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Five Star Iris

About Five Star Iris: Last year was an incredible one for Five Star Iris – some might even say life-changing. The band – Alan Schaefer, his twin brother Rob Schaefer, Alex Winfield, and Dan Fishman – started out 2007 on a high-note. Supporting their debut full-length album FIVE STAR IRIS produced by the Grammy-winning Sylvia Massy-Shivy and Rich Veltrop, the band traveled far and wide to take their “modern version of classic rock” to fans all over the world.

A definite high point was getting radio airplay in a major market, as Salt Lake City’s KENZ 101.9 embraced the Atlanta-based band as one of their own. Championed by program director and afternoon personality Parker, the songs “Is There Something I Can Do” and “Let It All Out” connected with listeners there – enough for the station to have the band come out and play. The band has already been back a second time to show their support for the fans there.

A performance at the South By Southwest Music Conference, however, led the band on a very different touring path. Performing at a showcase attended by Armed Forces Entertainment (AFE) and Navy Entertainment, they showed they had what it takes to perform for the best of the best – our servicemen and women. Three months later, Five Star Iris was performing in the middle of the summer in Iraq.

Dubbed the “Summer In The Sandbox” tour, this joint effort by AFE and Navy Entertainment took the band to Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, UAE, Bahrain, and Djibouti. Flying on military transport planes and sleeping in tents, it was truly the experience of a lifetime, and the impact it had on the band was immeasurable. On their return, to give something back, the band created a commemorative “Summer In The Sandbox” T-shirt with the proceeds going to the wonderful Fisher House charity. The shirt is available for sale on the band’s website along with a page dedicated to the Middle East tour.

The band’s military involvement didn’t end there. They were flown to Washington, D.C. to perform at the Pentagon for the U.S. Air Force’s 60th Anniversary celebration. And for New Year’s Eve they helped the sailors stationed at the U.S. Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba ring in 2008. Fuse On Demand accompanied the band, and a special on their trip will air as part of the channel’s On Demand, Web, and Digital programming for May. Additional performances are on the books for Australia in the spring as well as the South By Southwest Music Festival.

2008 promises to be another event-filled year for Five Star Iris both on the road and in the studio. The band is finding great opportunities that will help them spread their music and positive message to everyone. For Five Star Iris, it’s about sharing what you’ve got so that other people can share it too.

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