Beyond 5 has big plans for 2014
By Kathy Stephenson
The Salt Lake TribuneFirst published Dec 27 2013 01:01AM
In mid-January, the members of Beyond 5, an all-male band launched in Utah County, will move to Nashville hoping to jump-start what looks to be a promising musical career.
Before leaving, they’ll perform two times for Utah fans.
The first is Monday, Dec. 30, as part of Eve, Salt Lake City’s end-of-the-year celebration.
The other will be a Jan. 11 fundraiser for the South Jordan Community Theatre, where TJ Ryan, the youngest member of Beyond 5, has performed.
The 15-year-old lives in Salt Lake City with his parents and twin sister and is the only Utah member of the band formed by award-winning Mormon songwriter and producer Tyler Castleton and co-writer and business partner Russ Dixon.
Earlier this year, the producers held "American Idol"-type auditions in Highland for the group, initially dubbed Hollintown. Auditions also were held in several other U.S. cities and foreign countries to find the rest of "the guys," who are 17 and 18.
Besides Ryan, other members are Ammon Tuimaualuga, from Corona, Calif.; Zac Love, of San Antonio; Patch Crowe, from Gold Coast, Australia; and Tanner Myler, of Eagle, Idaho.
Ryan talked to The Salt Lake Tribune earlier this week about the band’s big move and recent tour of Asia, which was sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
What made you decide to try out for the band?
Zach and I were in the first batch to try out. We went through five months of callbacks and auditions and were two of the lucky five that came out of it. I went into the process kind of saying, "Why not?" I had done a lot of theater and was in between shows and not doing anything. I thought it would be a good learning experience whether I made it or not. Once I got to the auditions and learned about the dancing, I became super nervous. I hadn’t had any formal dance training. But I got through it.
What Utah theater productions have you performed in?
My first show was when I was 8 at Hale Centre Theatre in West Valley City. I was Tiny Tim in "A Christmas Carol." It’s an annual show, so I’ve moved through different parts. I was Tiny Tim twice, the Ghost of Christmas Past and last year the oldest Cratchit child. A few years ago, I also was Oliver at the South Jordan Community Theatre, which is how our benefit concert came about.
Have you had any formal training?
I’ve taken vocal lessons from Dean Kaelin, David Archuleta’s vocal coach. He is the reason I’m in the group. He got the audition notice and was the driving factor.
What can people expect at your Eve concert on Dec. 31?
We just released a self-titled CD few months ago, so we’re excited to spread the music. It will be awesome exposure and a great time.
Do you have a favorite song on the new album?
All of them are so bouncy and full of energy, but if I have to choose one it would probably be "I Think I’m in Love." It’s a genius song. The beat is catchy; and at our shows, even if they haven’t heard it before, people sing along.
Talk about your 30-day tour of Asia that took you to seven regions.
We did 27 free shows in 30 days and it was one of the most memorable, crazy, fun experiences, especially, for being an unknown from the other side of world. But in Asia they love boy bands and they love America.
You’re not a country band, so why are you moving to Nashville?
Country music is what Nashville is famous for, but it’s really gone super mainstream with a lot of big-name acts. But we really chose Nashville because everyone there has such a great attitude. It’s small, but music is everywhere, in every fiber. For people who live there, music is not just their job, it’s their passion.
What’s the plan once you’re there?
Our goals is to perform 200 dates next year. We’ll mostly be performing at fairs and festivals, but there’s some bigger shows in the works.
How do you have time for school?
Right now I’m a sophomore and I’m taking my classes online. My producers have been really helpful and the guys are like my older brothers and help me with my math and chemistry.