Off we go into the fall festival season with events galore. Sometimes it’s nice to write about one thing (like next week’s return of Tonguesnatcher Revue on Sept. 24), but when so much stuff comes across the desk (if I had a desk) what’s a feller to do but attempt to fit in all in, so you, our dear reader, won’t miss a thing.
First get out your calendars and mark down the final three Bedrock 66 Live! concerts of 2011, all held at the delightful Hoogland Center for the Arts. On Oct. 1 come hear Seattle-based Zoe Muth and the Lost High Rollers touring in support of her second CD Starlight Hotel. A real deal, honest-to-goodness, classic country music singer with a terrific band, the show includes local opener Blue Ribbon Revival. Nov. 11 marks the return of Springfield favorite Robbie Fulks, promising a blue-grassy sort of show for this performance. Whatever Mr. Fulks does is always laced with his phenomenal talent and brassy stage presence, a welcome respite from so many, too-serious musicians. Nora Jane Struthers stops by on Dec. 17 for her lovely brand of bluegrass-style folk music. I had the great pleasure of meeting Nora Jane once in Memphis and she’s a real treasure. The opening entertainment act, just in time for the holiday season, is Cowboy Andy’s Christmas Show.
Speaking of Cowboy Andy (that’s Andy Weisenhofer for the uninitiated) check out the humorous storyteller, fabulous guitar player and gifted singer all rolled into one at a Prairie Grapevine Concert (Abraham Lincoln Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Woodside Rd.), on Tue., Sept. 20, at 7 p.m. Cowboy Andy performs with His Jolly Band of Cowboys playing, what else? —- cowboy music. Yeehaw!
Down south in the friendly village of Chatham, Tom Hwang recently opened Hiya Music as a home for music lessons for all ages. Along with a neat curriculum for a youth group class called Harmony Road, the business also offers one-on-one instruction from local established teachers and musicians. (Please visit www.hiyamusic.com).
Area bars on the Fifth Street Strip banded together to create the Fall Fest in downtown Springfield between Monroe and Adams on Fifth this Saturday from 4:30 to 11:30 p.m. There will, no doubt, be drinking, as well as dancing in the streets to the music of Trippin’ Billies, a top-notch Dave Matthews tribute band, plus Screamin’ Vatos and other local groups. Out east a ways in Riverton’s Center Park, experience Riverfest, Sept. 16-18 with a carnival, games, food and several local bands. This marks 20 years of a rocking event. Congrats to Riverfest. The Clayville Fall Festival returns this weekend with all kinds of kids’ activities, demonstrations and food, plus live music shows at the old stagecoach stop near Pleasant Plains. Great to have Clayville back with us, and speaking of cool festivals, be on the lookout for a return of the wonderful Clayville Folk Festival by next summer.
On Sunday at the Douglas Park bandshell, Penny Lane commemorates 40 years of being the hippest store in town by sponsoring the Jerry Garcia Tribute Bash and Customer Appreciation Day from 1 to 9 p.m. Bands include headliners and local Grateful Dead interpreters, Perfunctory This Band, plus Dennis Maberry’s Rhythm Spirit, South Fork and Dave Littrell Band, among others, along with food and kids’ activities. Fun in the sun, unless it’s raining, and then it’s fun in the rain. On Wed., Sept. 21, 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., LLCC offers up its annual Multicultural Fest with food and music from various countries and ethnic groups at the Trutter Center. Always different but always interesting, come on out to munch and listen.
There, that should keep us out of trouble for a while anyway.
Contact Tom Irwin at firstname.lastname@example.org.