Since 1999, the Velmas – bassist Todd “Figaro” Minnick, guitarist Mike “Harvey” Grosshandler and drummer Michael “Bruce” Bruce – have been entertaining upstate New York. The band has become a favorite around Albany and Syracuse, NY, and is gaining popularity throughout the Northeastern U.S.
In 2002, the Velmas released their debut album, Another Day At School. Since its release, the album has received rave reviews and has opened doors of opportunity for the band (see press page).
“ADAS” was followed by Recess (2004), a 10-song “double EP” featuring new and unreleased studio tracks, as well as several live tracks. Recess included the song “Restless, Restless,” which was selected out of thousands of entries as one of the top 20 finalists on Howard Stern’s much-publicized “Restless, Restless” contest. The song also wound up being included on a compilation album called “The Best of Restless, Restless” with other entries including those from William Shatner and Robert Goulet.
The Velmas would follow that up with their second full-length album, Station, released on City Canyons Records on October 31, 2006. Station was recorded at Robby Takac’s (Goo Goo Dolls) Chameleon West Studios in Buffalo, NY. A new digital single, “Playground,” was released by City Canyons in April of 2009. November of that year saw the release of another single, “Wait”.
The Velmas are three singers and songwriters creating powerful rock music. Their sound is influenced by old-school to modern rock, punk, reggae, and even country and classical. In concert, the Velmas back their music with a playful, high-energy live show, which is the reason why Albany-area “Velmites” keep voting them the Capital Region’s “Best Alternative Band” and “Best Rock Band” (Metroland, 2006, 2007, 2009).
The Velmas have shared the stage with numerous acts, including Soul Asylum, Collective Soul, Everclear, moe., Tally Hall, Winger, Vertical Horizon, Richard Lloyd, Samantha Ronson, and Shaw Blades (members of Styx, Night Ranger, and Damn Yankees).