Hamilton (Ohio) – Get the scrunchies and fanny packs.
Ladies, dig out your favorite slip dress or corset top. Guys, go grunge or get your Fresh Prince track suit ready.
Binge Dawson‘s Creek on VHS, grab a roll of Mentos and get ready to party, because the 1990s are back.
As if they ever went away for some people, including Alex Miller.
Miller plays rhythm guitar for Saved By the 90’s, the high-energy, nationally touring band coming to the Fitton Center for Creative Arts Saturday, September 30, to help kick its 30th anniversary season into overdrive.
With a setlist featuring everything from Britney to Whitney, from Sublime to Oasis, from the Spice Girls to Hootie and Blowfish, from Shania Twain to Alanis Morisette, Saved By the 90’s cuts a wide swath across the decade.
“What’s most important is that everyone is having a good time,” Miller said. “When we get that energy back from the crowd, we want to keep that energy going.
“We’ll feel the audience and sometimes make a decision two minutes before it happens. We’ll call an audible to keep them going. If this is the train that’s going to take us there, OK. Hop on.”
Miller grew up listening to the music he now plays all over the country. But he got to the 1990s from suburban Columbus and the 1950s. Specifically a high school production of the faux-Elvis musical, Bye-Bye Birdie.
“I’m a freshman in high school. I’m at a cast party and everyone was around a campfire listening to this guy playing guitar,” he said. “I said to myself ‘That is how I’m going to get everyone’s attention.’”
So Miller taught himself to play and after about nine months joined his first band – Presence – named after the 1976 Led Zeppelin album. And hasn’t looked back.
Except to the music he heard on the radio as a kid.
“I grew up listening to a lot of these songs,” Miller said. “You’re a teenager and that’s such an impressionable time. That’s the music that sticks with you.
“When I was in college, it was ‘80s-themed parties, but it just seemed logical that the ‘90s would be next to come back.”
Saved By the 90’s started in New York City in 2010. Miller joined the band as a substitute in 2014. But as different members moved to different parts of the country, by 2016 they had three iterations of the group. Miller – who has a degree in audio production from Ohio University – still lives in New York, but primarily plays with the Midwest crew.
“It’s fun to go to new cities, new markets,” he said. “It’s really fun to play in rooms where I grew up going to shows all the time myself. (He cited Bogart’s in Cincinnati and the Newport Music Hall in Columbus among them.)
“I don’t think there was ever really a plan to be a musician. I just decided this is what I’m going to do and I’d figure out how to make it work. And it’s been a lot of fun doing it.”
Saved By the 90’s appears at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, September 30. Tickets are available by phone at 513-863-8873, ext. 110, or online right here. Cost is $35 for Fitton Center members, $43 for non-members (with a $1 ticketing charge per ticket).
The Fitton Center for Creative Arts is located at 101 S. Monument Avenue on the Riverfront in downtown Hamilton, Ohio.
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