When John Nolan planned “The Birthday Tour,” he had no idea how well it would work out.
Oh, sure, fans loved getting the chance to see Nolan, the Baldwin native best known as guitarist-singer for Taking Back Sunday, perform songs from his Straylight Run days and his recent solo albums with a full band. And musically, it worked out so well, Nolan decided to capture the tour for a live album and a video he is releasing through Pledge Music. He has brought the band — which includes his wife, Camille, and his sister, Michelle DaRosa, who was with him in Straylight Run and is now in Destry — together for two final shows at Sip This in Valley Stream on Saturday, April 28.
However, the bigger success, Nolan says, was that the tour got his mind off his 40th birthday. “I thought it would be a fun thing to do,” Nolan says. “But I also have a tendency on milestone birthdays to overthink it too much. I get worried about how much I’ve done and how much time I have left.”
He says that revisiting songs like “Your Name Here (Sunrise Highway)” has been amazing because of the fans. “I relate to the songs more through the audience,” he says. “Their reaction is what always makes the song new.”
Nolan declined to comment on Taking Back Sunday guitarist Eddie Reyes, who co-founded the band in Amityville in 1999, leaving the band for “personal reasons” last week. He says Taking Back Sunday is looking forward to its upcoming summer tour with Coheed & Cambria and has been working on new songs.
The band released a statement Friday on its Facebook page stating: “Guitarist Eddie Reyes and Taking Back Sunday have parted ways due to personal reasons. Eddie was a founding member of the band and his contributions can be felt all along the way. John, Shaun, Mark and Adam love Eddie, wish him well in his future endeavors.” Neither the remaining members of Taking Back Sunday nor Reyes has elaborated on his exit, though Reyes had missed much of the band’s tour last year, with guitarist Nathan Cogan filling in on several dates, including their headlining slot at the Great South Bay Music Festival in Patchogue. No word on whether Cogan, or anyone else, will replace Reyes.