October 25, 2020

BBQ, Blues, Bluegrass, and Baggage

Modern Rock
By Kristi Kates | May 6, 2017

Summer is set to kick off with a little extra (spicy) heat at this year’s BBQ, Blues and Bluegrass festival in St. Joseph, Mich., where the headliners will include Michigan’s own Slim Gypsy Baggage plus Jonny Lang, The Steeldrivers, Marcus King and The L’il Smokies. Fans of Baggage will be excited to see the very special piano player taking the stage with the band at the festival, namely Matt Rollings, one of country music’s top session musicians and the producer of Willie Nelson’s recent Grammy–winning album Summertime: Willie Nelson sings George Gershwin. BBQ, Blues and Bluegrass will take place May 20 at the Whirlpool Centennial Park in St. Joseph.

In other festival news, Vegas–bound Michiganians will be pleased to hear that iHeartRadio has announced the full lineup for its Daytime Village Festival, the major music event that happens across from the Luxor Hotel and Casino on Vegas’ strip, coming up this fall. This year’s iHeartRadio Daytime Village (Sept. 22–23) will feature live performances from a whole host of emerging artists, including Bleachers, Niall Horan, Flume, Noah Dyrus, All Time Low, Little Mix and L.A. buzz band Hey Violet. The Village will also feature special interactive experiences, fan zones and meet and greet opportunities. Tickets are on sale now at the discount advance price of $39 at iheartradio.com.

Singer–songwriter and former Taylor Swift paramour John Mayer finally dances in a music video after years of being pestered by fans to do so; the vid in question is the new mini movie for his latest single, “Still Feel Like Your Man.” In it, Mayer combines a little bit of footwork with Asian–inspired imagery, from giant panda bear costumes and kimonos to K–pop–reminiscent choreography. Mayer worked with director Mister Whitmore on the video; the song is the first single from Mayer’s new full–length album, The Search for Everything, which is in stores now.

Grand Rapids’ Founders Fest is set for June 17, with a diverse lineup of both bands and microbrews on tap for Founders Brewing’s 20th anniversary. On top of the bill are hot jam band Umphrey’s McGee along with several other jam band favorites, namely Blues Traveler and Leftover Salmon plus Grand Rapids’ own ska outfit Mustard Plug. DJ Omega Supreme and a band called the FBC All–Stars (made up of some of Founders’ musically skilled employees) will round out the lineup; roving entertainers and acrobatics will keep the audience busy between acts. Tickets are $40 in advance or $50 the day of the show at foundersbrewing.com.

Modern Rock Link of the Week
The 26th Annual Detroit Music Awards took place at The Fillmore last weekend, with performances from Royce, the Theater Bizarre Orchestra, The Sphinx Organization and the Craig Brown Band; check out who won what at the awards’ official site, detroitmusicawards.com.

The Buzz
Detroiters Flint Eastwood and Tunde Olaniran have teamed up to record a brand new single called “Push,” in outlets now.
Deadbeat has a new track out, too, the energetic “You Lift Me Up,” recorded at Jeff Else’s Alden Park studio.
Experimental rocker Primus has just announced a tour with support act Clutch; the band will be making a stop at Monroe Live in Grand Rapids May 20.
After a quick jaunt through Europe, a second Primus/Clutch show will take place at the Michigan Lottery Amphitheater in Sterling Heights July 20.

Josef Coney, Kovax and Jack Burton are a triple threat on the new Foulmouth–produced track “Not a Game”… And that’s the buzz for this week’s Modern Rock.

Comments, questions, rants, raves, suggestions on this column? Send ‘em to Kristi at modernrocker@gmail.com.

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