The sad news came across late Wednesday afternoon (June 19) that actor James…
- Posted on Jan 25th 2011 8:24AM by Benjy Eisen
Douglas Mason, Getty Images
Keyboardist Joel Cummins led an expedition to the Cenotes of the Yucatan -- an underwater cave system -- that involved snorkeling, hiking and swimming. "We were walking around 40 feet under the earth, looking at these crazy stalactites and stalagmites," Cummins tells Spinner. "It's just kind of cool to be able to experience something like that all together, with fans I just met during the trip."
And while bassist Ryan Stasik (pictured) was supposed to join the outing, he stayed behind at the resort so as not to miss a moment of the NFL's Jets vs. Steelers playoff game -- a game he watched alongside fans in the resort's banquet room. Despite being in a vacationer's paradise, Stasik tells Spinner that watching the Steelers win the playoff was, perhaps, the highlight of his trip. Especially since it meant that he got to watch his friend and fellow bassist, the Disco Biscuits' Marc Brownstein (a Jets fan), have to wear a Steelers poncho onstage later that night as part of a bet.
Meanwhile, Umphrey's guitarist Jake Cinninger participated in another kind of competition -- he judged a handmade guacamole contest, poolside. "Having some extracurricular activities besides the music makes these things a little special for the fans and for us," he tells Spinner. "I got pretty full after about 25 tastes, but it was cool -- there was a lot of one on one with the fans."
But the real treat for the Umphrey's faithful came on the second night of Holidaze when the band celebrated their 13th birthday. In honor of the occasion -- or, more likely, in honor of the surroundings -- the band translated their hit 'In the Kitchen' into Spanish before wrapping up their show with a Mexican-influenced cover of Snoop Dogg's 'Ain't No Fun.'
But the truth was, it was more than fun. In fact, Mayan Holidaze turned into the kind of birthday party that nobody there will ever forget.