2010-10-14 / Front Page
New Royalty releases first album, ‘When Poets Dream’
New Jersey band to host CD release party at ‘Rock for Education’ in Millstone Oct. 16
New Royalty features Trevor Smith, 18, Monroe, on lead guitar; Kyle Davis, 17, Millstone, on bass guitar; Nick Iafelice, 16, East Brunswick, on rhythm guitar; Iafelice’s twin sister Brittany, 16, on vocals; and Ricky Joyce, 23, Milltown, on drums.
While the band members credit their initial music school with bringing them together, and providing instrumental and vocal lessons they would not have gotten had they just started a garage band, they wanted to grow out of playing cover songs into an original act. Since the band started working with Music University, New Royalty has written numerous originals and recorded an album at Surefire Studios in Long Branch under the direction of multiple Grammy Award-winner Brian Vibberts, who has worked with Green Day, Michael Jackson and Mariah Carey, among others.
Davis said, “We’re a mix of everything. We just want to be our own sound — something completely different.”
The band members have all been involved in music since an early age. Iafelice said she initially liked rap music while her brother started exploring other rhythms and melodies at the age of 9.
“Everyone was always at baseball or soccer practice,” he said. “I wanted to do something different, so I took guitar lessons.”
Smith played the saxophone until he picked up an electric guitar at the age of 12.
“As soon as I started playing, I knew there was something in there for me,” Smith said. “It was love at first sight.”
Davis played the trumpet until sixth grade, when “the teacher told me I sucked.”
“I tried every horn and woodwind instrument, and then I gave up and went to the guitar and drums,” Davis said.
After thinking about how many people choose to play the guitar or drums, Davis took the middle road between the two and picked up the bass.
“Again, it was love at first sight,” Davis said.
Brittany Iafelice writes the band’s songs with the help of Music University owner and band manager Paul Sallee. The songs combine powerful, catchy melodies with meaningful lyrics that address the joys and difficulties of their generation.
Sallee said, “Everyone in the band has worked extremely hard to get to this day, from writing the songs, rehearsing and arranging the music. Each one has given up a lot of other activities to devote to the band and the pursuit of its success.”
The band played at the Warped Tour this year, and has regular gigs at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, The Stone Pony in Asbury Park and Court Tavern in New Brunswick. After taking fourth place in the 200-band Jersey Shows Battle of the Bands this year, New Royalty has set goals to tour on a bigger circuit after their album release and then “take over the world,” Davis said.
During its world domination attempt, New Royalty wants to give back to the community as much as it can. They regularly play benefit concerts for local churches and charities, such as the Graeme Preston Foundation for Life, which supports individuals and groups who demonstrate and uphold the principles of courage, compassion and caring.
“We can sympathize with these charities … and do what we can,” Nick Iafelice said.
The band got involved in “Rock for Education” through the Millstone Township Foundation for Educational Excellence. Wanting to help the local public schools, New Royalty asked Finale Hill and Michael “Jersey” Moriarty from Hey Monday to get involved in the event. Joyce and Moriarty know each other from attending school together in Spotswood, Joyce said.
Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. Oct. 16 event cost $10, with all proceeds going to the Millstone Township Foundation for Educational Excellence, a nonprofit organization that operates independently from the school district to provide funds to the public schools.
Comedian Adam Mamawala, the 23-year-old deemed funniest college comedian in New Jersey at the New Jersey Comedy Festival, will host the concert, which will feature performances by New Royalty, Finale Hill and Moriarty. New Royalty will be available after the show to sign copies of the band’s new album.