HUGHESVILLE - Jet City Vega will perform at 10 p.m. Saturday at Big Dogz Sports Bar, 5010 Route 220.
The Harrisburg-based rock band formed two years ago - influenced by bands such as Led Zeppelin, Van Halen and KISS - and has been motivated to spread its music to audiences across the country.
The band has gone by two other names before settling on Jet City Vega. Originally, the band was called Silver Screen Prom Queen, but Obie O'Brien, who has worked with Bon Jovi and Alice Cooper and was helping the band with their EP, told them the name was too much of a tongue twister and suggested they change their name to Manian, despite the protest of the band's singer, Manian Van Hacker.
The band soon discovered there was a European techno DJ who already was going by the name Manian, and the band found themselves in need of yet another name change.
Van Hacker said the band's name started with his profound love for David Bowie and is a play off of the song "Suffragette City."
"I had Jet City and another band member came up with Vega and we thought about the three words for a day and we realized how cool that sounded ... Jets are fast-paced, city is just kind of a broad term and we play a lot of big cities and Vega is one of the brightest stars. We want to be the brightest, the loudest and have a big impact," Van Hacker said.
Jet City Vega is Van Hacker, vocals; Brandon Reece, guitar; Tim White, bass; and Keith Collins, drums. All members hail from Harrisburg, except for Collins, who is from Frackville.
Van Hacker described the bands' sound as "full-on assault rock 'n' roll, but with a nice pretty little bow wrapped around it."
He said they like to get down and dirty and groove, but they also like to make it sweet. All of the members have different backgrounds and musical tastes, which makes for an interesting mix.
They have toured the mid-Atlantic area and the west coast and performed in the South by Southwest SXSW Annual Music and Film Interactive Conference and Festival in Austin, Texas.
The band also played Rockapalooza in Michigan and Cleveland, has received regular radio airplay and has shared the stage with the likes of Bon Jovi, Three Doors Down, Shinedown, Fuel, Candlebox, Warrant and many others.
"The best think I like about performing live is the audience," Van Hacker said. "If you're doing your thing and you're doing it right, the audience will respond. That can be just as great as having sex. We look for that there and that fix. None of us are drug addicts, so this is like our drug. We love a great audience who gets into it and has fun. It becomes a great marriage of enjoying life and music and that's what it's all about."
Jet City Vega's self-titled EP came out late June and features three songs, which were recorded in Nashville and Philadelphia. Van Hacker said it is like their calling card and they have plans to record a full-length album after the new year.
Van Hacker said he loves being a part of a band and the comradery among himself and his bandmates.
"We are a bunch of goofballs," he said. "Traveling is just full-on humor. We are more like brothers than co-workers in a sense. We fight like brothers and get along like brothers - like family."
He also said another great thing about being in a band is the creativity and collaboration that goes into creating music and motivating each other before shows.
When he's not on the road, Van Hacker said he likes to spend as much time with his wife as possible. And maybe equally as much time on the couch watching historical and biographical music documentaries on Netflix.
He said the band is working on building a tour since the release of the EP and aims to bring their music to the masses.
For more information about Jet City Vega visit jetcityvega.com or find them on Facebook.