Rock band Train makes tracks in wine world
In this photo taken Wednesday April 11, 2012, from left, Jimmy Stafford, Patrick Monahan, and Scott Underwood of the band Train sample some of their wine before their concert at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Backstage with the rock band Train before a performance at San Francisco's hallowed Great American Music Hall may not be quite what you expect from a Grammy-winning, multiplatinum group.
What's missing from the dressing room — groupies, bling and that we're-about-to-trash-this-place vibe. What you get instead — a small table set with a few glasses and a bottle of the band's Save Me San Francisco wine which they are making in concert with ACME Wine Movers, a newly formed division of The Wine Group.
It's a pretty refined scene, but one that shouldn't come as such a surprise considering that Train started out in San Francisco, just a microphone stand's throw from the Napa Valley and its many wineries, says lead singer Pat Monahan.
"A couple of years ago, we decided that we wanted to start bringing San Francisco to the rest of the world and we decided that we would start by bringing one of the best things that we know about San Francisco, which is the wine," he says.
In collaboration with ACME, the band started the Save Me, San Francisco Wine Co., named after their 2009 album which included the hit "Hey, Soul Sister."
Their first bottling was a red named after another hit, "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)." A second wine, Calling All Angels chardonnay, followed and the latest release is California 37 cabernet sauvignon, named after the band's newly released album.
In this photo taken Wednesday April 11, 2012, Jimm Stafford of the band Train samples some of their wine before their concert at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
The wine is made in the Livermore Valley wine region east of San Francisco and sells for a suggested retail of $9.99.
Band members visited the winery before finalizing the collaboration and work with the winemaker in approving the final blend.
"They're regular guys." says Damon Musha, marketing director at ACME Wine Movers. "Moreover, they're people who are really passionate about the project. It certainly made our lives a lot easier. This is something that's genuine to them, rather than something they're trying to do to make a quick dollar."
Train's Save Me, San Francisco wines are available online and have made restaurant lists around the country, including the Hard Rock Cafe chain, appropriately enough. A portion of the proceeds from sales of the wines goes to support Family House, a San Francisco-based nonprofit providing temporary housing to families of seriously ill children.