By Ed Karvoski Jr., Contributing Writer
Northborough – Shortly before the five local young men collectively known as 3rd Man Factor (3MF) head to Boston as college freshmen, they'sl do what they enjoy most: make music together. Last year, 3MF opened the Summer Concert Series of the Northborough Community Affairs Committee; this time they'se scheduled as the season finale to be presented Thursday, Aug. 22, 6 to 8 p.m. (rain date Sunday, Aug. 25, 4 to 6 p.m.), at Ellsworth-McAfee Park.
They'se excited to return to that particular venue, according to the band's drummer, James Massucco.
“Our high school friends will be parting ways that week because the concert is right before college move-in week, so we'se hoping this will be like a reunion for everyone,” he said. “We played a concert there last year and had a huge attendance. It was really cool how everyone came out and supported us.”
The band formed in late-2008 when Massucco was an eighth-grader at Melican Middle School and in the same jazz band with three other 3MF members: Kyle Champeon, saxophonist; Riley Feeney, bass guitarists; and Luke Tobin, guitarist and vocalist. They recruited Tobin's cousin, Jake Shea of Shrewsbury, a guitarist and vocalist.
“There was something about our mutual musical styles that clicked right away,” Massucco said. “We all have a real interest in the rock music of the “60s “70s and “80s.”
Their big break came the next year when they entered the Battle of the Bands at Algonquin Regional High School, where four of them were freshmen at the time.
“We were the underdog competing against the defending champs,” Massucco said, “but we ended up winning.”
Furthermore, they competed and won Algonquin's band competition each of the following three years.
“We were never really super focused on winning,” Massucco noted. “We just liked playing, and having people notice and like us. Our biggest goal was recording an album.”
After a year of recording, 3MF released their debut album, “So the Story Goes,” last November.
“The album turned out so much better than we could have hoped for,” Massucco said. “It sounds like us at our absolute best.”
The band appeared several times at the Center for the Arts in Natick and competed in its 2011 Rock Showdown, sponsored by the Berklee College of Music. Scholarships for the college's summer programs were awarded to band members Champeon and Feeney, and 3MF received music equipment and gift certificates as prizes.
Also in 2011, 3MF placed second at the NEGB1 Radio Network's Battle of the Bands at the Raven Music Hall in Worcester, which Massucco described as “an eye-opener” for the band.
“We got some harsh feedback about our stage presence, which was a bummer,” Massucco shared.? “Up until that point, we's been dedicated to the music, but we weren's really fulfilling our role as much as entertainers. That competition was really important because the feedback helped us turn that around.”
Last summer, 3MF competed in the “Youths Rock!” Battle of the Bands, produced by the West Boylston Arts Foundation at Goodale Park. They were presented the Judges” Award.
They'se appeared at Boston clubs including Church, the Midway Café and the Hard Rock Café, as well as Patriots Place in Foxborough. Locally, they'se performed at the Applefest barbecue in Northborough, the Westborough Spring Festival and the Northborough-Southborough Relay for Life.
“Local concerts are really a blast because we can get a ton of our friends out to attend,” Massucco said. “We'se not trying to get people there to corral votes; we just want people to share in the fun that we have making music.”
Download 3MF's album at iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/album/so-the-story-goes…/id583200205?ign-mpt=uo%3D4.