Dan Reynolds Thanks Train for Giving Imagine Dragons Its Big Break

The Singer Recalls the Performance at Bite of Las Vegas That Changed it All, Talks Tyler Robinson Foundation Gala

September 14, 2018
Imagine Dragons

Bryan Steffy

There’s good karma in always giving credit to those who have helped your career, whether they did it intentionally or not.

Take Imagine Dragons singer Dan Reynolds, for instance. Despite a decade of success that has garnered the band several mantles full of awards and a global fan base, Reynolds admits it would have never happened without a little help from Train frontman Patrick Monahan, whose sudden illness at 2009’s Bite of Las Vegas forced Imagine Dragons to step in at the last second.

“That was the first time I was on stage for thousands and thousands of people,” Reynolds said as he recounted the story on Mix 94.1’s “Mercedes in the Morning.” 

At the time, Imagine Dragons was still an up-and-coming outfit, playing shows at local venues such as Las Vegas’ Beauty Bar and Bunkhouse Saloon. 

“We had just been a tiny band,” Reynolds explained. “But of course we said ‘yes’ [and] went on stage. It was scary, I felt, because everybody was waiting for Train and we were like, ‘Okay, sorry to let you down, we’re just this little local band!’

“That was one of the pinnacle moments that took the band off.”

Eventually, Reynolds met Monahan in person and thanked him for the opportunity, though he was unsure the Train singer realized how just how big of an opportunity it turned out to be.

“He was amazing, he was, like, the nicest guy I’ve ever met in the industry,” Reynolds said. “He was just so down to earth.”

The southern Nevada native said he’s hoping to attend the 2018 Bite of Las Vegas, where he may get a chance to see the next local band get its big break. But first, he’ll be headlining this year’s Rise Up Gala at Caesars Palace on Friday, September 14.

The fifth annual event benefits the Tyler Robinson Foundation, which supports families of children with cancer. While tickets to the gala are sold out, fans can watch a live performance by Imagine Dragons streamed live via the Tyler Robinson Foundation Facebook page