THE BIG WU
The story goes that the Big Wu, bound for rock stardom, sold their souls for a case of Old Style beer one thirsty night long ago. The legend and the band live on. Still rocking their powerful, moving, and energizing original music for the fans. A jam band with a unique style and presence, the Wu combine strong, free flowing improv and vocal harmonies, with finely crafted songs for all tastes. Oh, and their fans are famously friendly.
DEAD MAN WINTER
Playing a bull-bodied, emotionally resonant brand of Americana-infused indie rock, Dead Man Winter is a group led by Dave Simonett, best known as one of the founding members of the progressive bluegrass group Trampled by Turtles.
Furnace marks a whole lot of firsts for the accomplished songwriter. It’s his first time putting his long-running, popular string band, Trampled by Turtles, on hiatus to focus all of his efforts on a more personal project. It’s his first time speaking so plainly and literally about something happening in his private life. And it’s his first time dedicating an entire record to a single topic — a topic so significant and intimate that he questioned whether or not he should even release it into the world.
“I'm not even that big of a fan of breakup records, myself,” he says. “I mean, there's some I really love. Like Blood on the Tracks, fuck, I love it. But it was just kind of a necessary — that's the only way I know how to let it out. It would have been pretty hard to write about anything else at the time.”
There is palpable sadness and moments of poignant reflection, to be sure, but Furnace also propels Simonett forward with an undeniable sense of newfound freedom. At some points, like on the upbeat third track, “Red Wing Blue Wing,” you could describe the music as downright rollicking.
JON WAYNE AND THE PAIN
For nearly a decade, electronic reggae-dub innovators Jon Wayne and The Pain have been crafting a unique sound, one that features a mesmerizing blend of modern age electronic beats fused with upbeat traditional roots reggae and a fresh layer of grooving funk to keep the soul moving in all the right ways. The Twin Cities-based ensemble burst onto the festival scene in 2007 following their debut self-titled album, and has since built a highly devoted following through multi-dimensional jamming, extensive touring and thoughtful, relevant songwriting. Inscrutable and unpredictable, Jon Wayne and The Pain’s cutting edge style has taken them across the nation to some of the country’s biggest music festivals including Electric Forest, Summer Camp, Cali Roots and Wakarusa. Their transcendent live performances and fluid chemistry has propelled them to the forefront of a new generation of reggae music, and with an ever-changing musical landscape, it is evident that this Midwestern quartet is becoming a force to be reckoned with.
THE PEOPLE BROTHERS BAND
One of the staples of Madison's vibrant music scene, The People Brothers Band has been spreading their brand of Rhythm and Soul around the Upper Midwest for nine years. Currently working on their second studio album, the band is known for energetic live shows and ability to connect with the audience. They are the winners of the Wisconsins Area Music Industry Award for 2014 Soul/R&B Band of the Year and the Madison Area Music Award for 2015 Pop/R&B Album of the Year (Middle of the In Between), 2013 Blues Album of the Year (People Brothers Live) & Blues Song of the Year (Looky Here Mister).
Frogleg is a fresh young band out of Minneapolis. Since their first show in late 2012, a major buzz about the band Frogleg has been spreading throughout the Midwest music scene stemming from their ever-growing weekly tradition, “Frogleg Thursdays @ Bunkers” in downtown Minneapolis. With the Frogleg closing the book on this chapter of their musical path, they are setting their sights on more cities outside of their current circuit.
The band has now headlined shows at most of the major venues in Minneapolis from the Cabooze to the Skyway Theatre downtown as well as an appearance on the First Avenue mainroom stage. Frogleg has shared the stage with the Steven Tyler, Jeff Austin Band, New Orleans Suspects, Devon Allman, Orgone, Raw Oyster Cult, Samantha Fish, Allie Kral, Robert Randolph and has multiple dates with Melvin Seals and the Jerry Garcia Band.
Known for their songwriting and improvisational live performances, this seven piece would be best described as a soul band, as their influences are not drawn from one specific genre. A typical Frogleg show will usually features a unique blend of Funk, Reggae, Rock, Jazz and Bluegrass.
Frogleg’s debut, self-titled album was met with much excitement last year, selling out their first pressing in under six months. The band is back in the studio working up their follow up release. They’ve brought in local heavy weights Rob Genedak and Jimmy Anton as co-producers. The album is tentatively scheduled for a spring release. Despite being a 7 piece band, they have not shied away from taking this show on the road. With national tours filling out 2017, active work in the studio on their follow up album, Frogleg is showing no signs of slowing down. Do yourself a favor and go see a Frogleg show!
THE LOWEST PAIR
The Lowest Pair features the duo banjo picking of Kendl Winter and Palmer T. Lee, draped in Kendl’s high lonesome harmonies and Palmer’s Midwestern croon. In Spring of 2016, Team Love releases two new collections: Fern Girl and Ice Man and Uncertain As It is Uneven. The albums could be viewed as two windows into the growing world of The Lowest Pair. Uncertain stays the course of their previous releases, 36cents and The Sacred Heart Sessions, being focused on stripped down, intimate arrangements to support their timeless songwriting and haunting vocals. Fern Girl is a more moody and adventurous exploration of new sounds, new studio production directions, and what it might sound like for The Lowest Pair to be backed by a full band, while keeping one foot planted in the rootsy aesthetics which drew them together from the beginning.
Old Shoe is a five-piece Americana Roots Rock band based out of Chicago, Illinois. Made up of talented songwriters from across the country, hailing from as far away as Alaska, the band’s compositions paint a diverse landscape of American life.
The band’s new album Family is not merely another notch in the belt for the Old Shoe, but is more so a poignant culmination of their growth and progress since the last release in 2011. Family went on to be selected as the Best of 2013 Local Album by AAA radio station, 93.1FM WXRT. They also rounded the Midwest festival circuit at high-profile events like Summer Camp, Wakarusa, Harvest Fest, and Phases of the Moon and opened for Grammy-award winning Bruce Hornsby, Leftover Salmon, Keller Williams, and Greensky Bluegrass and even produced 6 consecutive installments of their own festival, Shoe Fest.
The all-original 13-track release showcases the band’s diverse influences, ranging from bluegrass to prog-rock to jazz, with it all settling into a familiar comfort zone akin to one’s favorite “old shoe.” The album reaches new heights from previous releases with a star-studded guest roster featuring musicians from the Henhouse Prowlers, The Low Down Brass Band, and Chicago’s production of The Jungle Book.
Useful Jenkins is a contemporary acoustic band with a bluegrass foundation. They use their grass-roots to readily tap into other genres such as folk, funk, rock, and hip hop. Their music generates emotion and sends a message to a wide range of listeners, giving them an eclectic group of followers from all walks of life. Useful Jenkins thrives on energy; they flourish in the moment and have an unmatched resonance with the crowd. The band is made up of 2 acoustic guitars (lead and rhythm), violin, cello, bass and mandolin. 4-part vocal harmonies accompany the wall of stringed instruments, leaving listeners with a strong, clean, and unique sound.
Formed as a 5 piece band in 2007, Useful Jenkins remained under-the-radar during their first few years performing. Open mics and campfire jams were their source of inspiration, which allowed them to form a strong and intimate bond between band members and fans alike. As their message grew, so did the network of friends who supported their direction. In February of 2009, the band released their first full-length album “Fast Eddie” which was the catalyst for their initial and continued success in the Midwest Festival Scene. Their second album, “Festival Express,” was released in September of 2012. It provided a more dynamic sound by capturing the raw bluegrass elements from the first album, and combining them with bowed string and brass instrumentation. In April of 2015 Useful Jenkins released their third full-length album, “Forward Motion,” which was a statement of how the band continues to move and grow.
The best way to experience Useful Jenkins is live in concert. Whether you are barefoot at a festival or standing in a theatre you will undoubtedly feel the pulse of their music, and leave the show with a smile on your face. Their songs are memorable and easy to relate to, leaving them stuck in your head long after the performance. So if you are a sucker for acoustic music with a strong message, do yourself a favor and go see a Useful Jenkins show. It’s a moment you will not soon forget.
Kind music for kind people. Kind Country is a Jamgrass band playing American standards as well as their own brand of Cosmic American music. Since their formation in 2012, the band has focused creating live performances with high levels of improvisation and energy gathering with a goal of creating a moment of musical bliss that can be shared by audience members and band alike.
PHO is a Twin Cities funk band creating a new Minneapolis sound utilizing modern taste and classic influences to break musical boundaries.
PHO released their debut album 'CASH IT' in February of 2015 and created lasting buzz for recording such a mature and creative record as early 20 year olds. They reached out to friends Alan Evans of Soulive and John Davis, producer for Lettuce/Jo Jo Mayer to help achieve a sound that would resonate internationally. They have supported and toured with bands such as The Motet, Larry Graham and GCS, Jonathan Richman, Dopapod, and Oddisee. In early Early 2016 Prince found the band via Youtube and posted about them on his social media. This sparked a huge buzz for PHO around the globe and landed them an invite to Prince's Paisley Park Studio's opening for Larry Graham. Fans are watching this band eagerly into 2017 as they predict them to be one of the bigger names of the funk/festival scene.
Get ready to dance. Period.
Ifdakar blends the unique flavors of rock, funk, electronica, and reggae into a tasty, eclectic sound all its own.
Heading into their 10th year together, Appleton rock band Ifdakar has never sounded better. The addition of keyboardist Michael "The Wizard" Romenesko has added a missing element to the music, with the result being a mature, accomplished sound that puts the band on par with the scene's brightest.
The 5 piece -also including Curt Biese on guitar and synths, Jon Schinke on guitar and vocals, Zach Chisholm on bass, and Frank Deringer on drums and vocals- has spent the beginning of 2017 in Appleton's legendary Rock Garden Studio recording their long awaited sophomore album, scheduled for release later this spring.
A new line-up, a new album on the way, and a fresh, new sound all contribute to the continuing story of one of Wisconsin's most enduring original bands. A story as rich and colorful as the music itself.
THE FAMILY BUSINESS
Rock-n-Roll band from Madison, WI
The west coast of Wisconsin is not typically thought of as a hotbed of alternative reggae music. However, TUGG, hailing from La Crosse, WI has done an amazing job channeling tropical grooves and breezy melodies and has quickly become a top draw in the Midwest and beyond. Coming from a state known more for the Green Bay Packers, cold weather, and cheese, they boast an impressive resume of rubbing shoulders with reggae heavyweights. From shows with Ziggy Marley, Barrington Levy and Slightly Stoopid to Tours with The Wailers, The Dirty Heads, and PASSAFIRE… TUGG continues to prove why they’re a fast rising star of the alternative reggae/ska scene. All of the bands last 5 releases have debuted in the Top 50 of the iTunes Reggae Chart. Their 2012 EP “Home Brew” climbed all the way to #2 and spent 3 weeks in the Hot 100 iTunes Reggae Album Chart. Their 2013 album “Mazes” was recorded and produced by PASSAFIRE’S Ted Bowne.
THE SMOKIN' BANDITS
Taking a unique combination of Rock & Bluegrass to a jam-like frenzy before bringing you back down with their sweet and well-placed country & Midwestern vocals, the Smokin' Bandits have been a staple on a powerful Midwest music scene for 14 years with their high-energy form of original music dubbed "Grass n' Roll." With a catalog of original material mixing influences ranging from Willie Nelson to The Allman Brothers Band, Little Feat to Leftover Salmon, the band brings a powerhouse performance each time they take the stage sure to make you move, shake, and promising for every show to be one of different form. Forming as a string band in La Crosse, WI in 2003, the Bandits electrified in 2004 to form a sound that is uniquely theirs but reaches to music lovers of all different genres and generations.
In nearly a decade and a half of touring, the Bandits have shared the stage with the likes of Merle Haggard, Little Feat, Dr. John, Jason Isbell, Todd Snider, Great American Taxi, The Band of Heathens, Horseshoes & Hand Grenades, ekoostik hookah, Jazz Mandolin Project, The Big Wu, Melvin Seals & JGB, Steve Kimock, Bill Miller and Trampled by Turtles among many more.
THE HEAVY SET
The Heavy Set is a rock band out of Minneapolis whose latest studio release “Everybody’s Got A Mountain” has been met with local and regional acclaim. Just their first full-length album, “Mountain” was recorded at Real Phonic Studios, with local legend Erik Koskinen producing and engineering, and also has Kevin Bowe credited with engineering a track at IPR. Their single “River” was featured on The Current’s Local Show, and was placed twice on their annual Top 89 Polls (Top 89 Songs and Top 89 Local Songs). No strangers to the road, the band just finished a midwest tour in support of the album, and also landed a Daytrotter session, regional press and radio in-studios. Their debut studio release, the self-titled "Jake Ilika & The Heavy Set EP" was released in March of 2014.
THEM COULEE BOYS
Allegedly founded at a bible camp, and born in the back valleys of Western Wisconsin, Them Coulee Boys craft a brand of Americana that blends punk, bluegrass, and rock & roll. Guitar, banjo, mandolin, bass, and a lone kick drum provide the pulse that drives underneath the conversational yet thoughtful lyrics. Them Coulee Boys seek to start a conversation with their performance, knowing just how diverse that interaction can be. From love letters and farewell fights, to fists raised in protest with a hand held in harmony, the songs are reflections on the current state of the world, and in turn, ourselves. The lyrics and singing of Soren Staff are complemented by the reckless banjo stylings of Beau Janke, the deft mandolin work of Jens Staff, and the thump of bass/kick drummer Neil Krause, Them Coulee Boys are sure to make it “impossible not to bob your head, shake your legs, or even strum your fingers along with the beat” (The Spectator).
After the release of their debut “I Never Lied About Being In Love” in 2014, Them Coulee Boys toured tirelessly until it came time to record their first professional studio effort in the winter months of 2016. After 7 days at Pine Hollow Audio outside of Eau Claire, WI the new record “Dancing in the Dim Light” was born. With new songs came new sounds, as evidenced by the use of electric banjo, drums, and piano. Engineer Evan Middlesworth also contributed pedal steel and baritone guitar, while Eve Wilczewski (Seasaw) added violin. It’s a grander sound, while still keeping the rawness of a live setting Them Coulee Boys are known for. Lyrically, “Dancing in the Dim Light” deals with the duality of life, in which we often remember the lows in our highs, but also see the light in the dark. Being weak or vulnerable isn’t what defines you. It’s about how you dance when the lights aren’t shining like they need to. “Dancing in the Dim Light” is set to be released June 28, 2016 with a tour to follow.
Since the release of "Dancing in the Dim Light", fans and critics alike have praised the giant step forward into Them Coulee Boys own sound. Reviewed by many U.S. publications, DITDL was also loved by Scene Magazine in Canada, and had press from the U.K. as well. It was named "Best Local Album 2016" by Volume One Magazine, and has been played on radio stations all across the country, most notably on NPR's "SImply Folk" program.
Established in late 2011, the Burbillies are a 7-piece bluegrass tribute to 80’s hair metal. That’s right, they have a traditional bluegrass lineup and play all of your favorite butt-rock hits from the 1980’s. Beneath their big hair, bitching clothes, and bad attitudes lies a group of rippin’ flat pickers who are never afraid to take it to the next level. Their high-energy compositions are performed with just the right amount of Minnesota twang, creating a genre all-their-own called “Ass Grass.”
ART OF ILL FUSION
This will be Art of ILL Fusion's 13th year on the road and in the studio for the band from Central Illinois that plays almost every genre you love, primarily, reggae, funk, and psychedelic rock !! They are slated to release another new album that they will finish recording later this year . It will be comprised of almost all new material, and new songs which only 3 out of 12 of them, have even been performed live as of yet. This will be the first album that they have been writing together as a band before they take them on the stage. They have been constantly evolving their songwriting as well as their sound and this album will prove again the extreme diversity and will display their crossover appeal. They toured heavily in 2015 promoting their February 2015 album release "The Same" which saw them play shows from Brooklyn, New York all the way to San Francisco, California and everywhere in between, including headlining several festivals in the Midwest and in the South, including SxSW in Austin, Texas last March. Their live show has developed in to a high energy affair that has seen the band really catch their stride in the improv game and getting in tune with each other.
Their new album “The Same” was released on February 5th on iTunes and several other digital media markets, It is the first album on their new label Transcendent Records. They were signed in 2013 to this new up and coming mid west independent label. The tracks were recorded at I.V. Labs Studios in Chicago, but also, they have refocused on writing new material for a new album and for their live show, they have added a good amount of bust out covers in the last few months of shows . The famed studio in Chicago is known for it’s work with Lupe Fiasco, Fall Out Boy , Umphrey’s McGee, Yonder Mountain , Old Shoe , and Chicago Farmer to name a few . AIF also just finished hosting their own festival called “The Art Fair ” . It was the 5th year for the festival . In past years they have had a host of acts from all over the country including them playing a Frank Zappa set in 2012 with Ray White and Ike Willis who both played with Frank himself and sit ins from Regi Wooten, Joe Day (Old Shoe) and Stephen Cook (Fresh Hops) . They also have steadily continued playing the festival circuit including: Summercamp, Shoefest, Whippersnapp Festival, Festy Fest, Jammin on the Wolf, Grateful Friends Fest , Grateful Garcia Gathering , Camp Kind , and countless other events around the country. They have toured Colorado a few times , as well as stops in New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri , Nebraska, Iowa , Wisconsin, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Maryland, Pennsylvania, North Carolina , Georgia, New York , Virginia . Their music can be described as a bit of a throwback consisting with equal parts Funk, Reggae, Rock , and psychedelic improv jams. They have also covered whole sets from artists for Halloween including , Grateful Dead , JGB, Curtis Mayfield, Jimmy Cliff, and in 2012 , Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic” album showing why they are considered one of the most versatile bands in the region. WINTER TOUR was FEBRUARY – MARCH 2015 and included shows with JGB, Consider the Source, and Naive Melodies (Talking Heads Tribute Nor Cal ) and a host of special guests including Marcus Rezak(Digital Tape Machine ). This last run they wentto California , Oregon, Nevada , and Austin, Texas for the first time as well as several states they have been before
The second leg of this “Same” tour had them playing 17 shows in 15 states and 15 cities in 23 days while traveling 6,125 Miles on the road !! Dee and Nick have recently started playing in a project featuring Steve Molitz from Particle on Keys and Jesus Coomes from Lettuce on Bass . Dee is also getting ready to do a run of shows with Jesus and the horn section from Lettuce as well as Joey Porter from the Motet on Keys. The Art of ILL Fusion crew will also be playing another Frank Zappa Tribute show this fall with Ray White and Ike Willis from Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention .
A fusion of highly danceable rock, intricate song craftsmanship and psychedelic funk. Set out to make every show inspiring. Imagine going to a double matinee showing of Led Zeppelin & P-Funk at Dream Theater and then heading to an Amsterdam discotheque to dance until the sun came up. That's about as close as can be described without seeing Soap for yourself.
Originally from just south of Chicago, Illinois, Soap uprooted and moved to Minneapolis in 2007 and has become a staple in the thriving Twin Cities music scene. For nearly four years Soap held down a weekly Wednesday residency at The Cabooze, a long-standing tradition at the legendary Minneapolis venue. Following the likes of The Big Wu and God Johnson, Soap not only continued that tradition, but has expanded on it with a new allegiance of fans. These strong Midwest ties have also helped the band tour successfully throughout the region and beyond, notching over 120 shows each of the past four years.
Soap has become a favorite on the festival circuit, performing at Summer Camp Music Festival (x2), 10,000 Lakes Festival (x2), , Wakarusa Music Festival, Big Wu Family Reunion (x2), Bella Music Festivals (x4), Prairie Grass Music Festival (x2), Whippersnap Music Festival (x2), Shoe Fest (x4), Wookiefoot’s Project Earth and Shangri-La Festival (x4), as well as sharing the stage with notable acts and performers, such as Tea Leaf Green, Zach Deputy, Bernie Worrell, The Motet, Rebirth Brass Band, Hot Buttered Rum, Wookiefoot, Kinetix, Jon Wayne & The Pain, Heatbox, Steve Molitz and more.
Kendra Swanson is a song-writer and performer of lively, folksome music: clawhammer banjo, rigorous guitar, soulful strings, and hearty vocals to boot. Her music distinctly embodies a truly Americana sound from (and about) the heartland, with intimate reflections on its flora, fauna, and people. She has released two all-original albums, “Kendra & Kin, Live in Rockford” (2013) and “Go Down to the Low Down” (2015), and shared bills with the likes of The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, The Way Down Wanderers, Danny Barnes, The Quebe Sisters, and Charlie Parr. She performs throughout the Midwest at opera houses, festivals, nursing homes, bars, libraries, nature centers, cabarets, and everything in between. Her third album will be independently released in 2017.
MIKEL WRIGHT & THE WRONGS
some of the collective best of what Midwest has to offer. Mikel broke fast onto his local music scene in 2007 and has since earned a respected national reputation for cultivating ridiculous bands and unforgettable nights of music. Mikel's vision has been embraced by some of the best players in The Twin Cities. Due to his no nonsense attitude and natural ability to connect with audiences, players such as American Idol finalist Reed Grimm and The Voice’s star Nicholas David, as well as the very best from a city full of top notch musicians have chosen to join Mikel on the tour stage.
Being huge fans of bands like String Cheese Incident, Umphrey's McGee and Lettuce, their music is rooted in funk but transcends many genres with every set.
Mikel Wright & The Wrongs are always a get down!! Audiences will agree as they wipe the sweat from their brows and nurse sore legs from dancing.
With a well received debut album "We Get Down", and now their sophomore release "Album #2.0", they are touring nationally to spread the word!
THE CIVIL ENGINEERS
Eight friends hungry for a little something funky, The Civil Engineers brings ride their Madison-based high-intensity groove machine of funk, rock and soul throughout the Midwest, entertaining Madison, Milwaukee, La Crosse, Rochester, Appleton, and Chicago.
THE PINE TRAVELERS
Pine Travelers create original music that combines the gritty Americana of outlaw country, folk, and bluegrass with old school funk rave-ups and roots rock & roll.
Based in Madison, WI, Pine Travelers have played close to 400 shows in 7 states since their inception in 2013, including Wisconsin, Illinois, Colorado, Texas, Minnesota, Michigan, and Iowa. In addition to playing notable Madison venues like High Noon Saloon and The Crystal Corner, the band has also held a monthly residency at Alchemy, a favorite venue on Madison's east side, for a year.
The group's songs allow for a dance-able, energetic live show paired with honest, meaningful lyrics reflecting their northern midwest roots. Pine Travelers hope their music reflects their modest, hard-working values: rural values meshed with urban sensibility; engaging sets of rustic roots music with a funky modern twist.
They've also performed fresh and exciting sets at quality festivals including: Midwest Music Festival (MN), People Fest, Steel Bridge Songfest, Moondance Bluegrass Fest, Ifdakamp Festival, and Toodeloo Shakedown Fest, sharing the stage with acts like Particle, Horseshoes & Hand Grenades, Pert Near Sandstone, Mr. Blotto, Old Shoe, Cornmeal and many more. The group also just released its debut self titled album this May, and is set for another studio release in 2017!
OLD SOUL SOCIETY
Old Soul Society is a Wisconsin based group rooted in Americana with branches into Folk, Rock, Soul, Blues & more.
Old Soul Society’s focus on the craft of songwriting is displayed in the rich, textured musical layers they create to underscore songwriter Derek Ramnarace’s emotionally raw, honest and heartfelt lyrics. These details combine into a powerfully stirring live performance that has been winning over audiences everywhere.
THE LOWER 5TH
The Lower 5th incorporates folk, rock, R&B, reggae, country and bluegrass to produce a unique blend of Midwestern Soul that swings, sways, rocks, and wails. Luke Jorgensen, Cory Swadley (The Northern Pines) and Paul Metz(The Mascot Theory) began to work together to write and perform songs that draw from and build upon their common diverse musical roots. With the addition of Jayme Cash (keys)(The Northern Pines, Moonhouse) Jeremy Henning (Trombone) and Audrey Pescatelli (bass), The Lower 5th is a band of powerhouse musicians that play high energy music from the heart and leave it all on stage with every performance. The band has performed in many venues in Madison and across central Wisconsin including featured sets at Wiskeyonsin Family Reunion, Ragged Roots Bandit County Fair, Madison Charity Jamboree,and Sunshine Soul festivals, radio and television performances and weekday residencies at The Come Back Inn and The Up North Bar.
FlowPoetry is the originator of Jam Poetry. Straight up spoken word performance. One man one mic. These are socially conscious poems and stories woven together reflecting themes of the American music festival experience. Able to do full length sets and/or perfect for a unique main stage tweener. FlowPoetry can set the tone for a show as opener and/or can be integrated into later sets. Also available as an Artist At Large or Emcee.
With over 1100 shows in the USA with bands and as a solo poet, FlowPoetry was honored as a finalist for the MNSWA "Urban Griot" International/National Performer of the year alongside Leonard Cohen and Saul Williams. In 2014, 2015, and 2016, FlowPoetry was voted by the city as one of Madison (Wisconsin) Magazine's Best Spoken Word/Poetry Performers. He is a three-time finalist for Best Artist in the Annual Madison WI Area Music Awards.
FREAKS OF NATURE
Gypsy funk soul, from Viroqua, WI
Moonhouse plays a diverse mix of original and cover tunes. You will always have fun at a Moonhouse show. You will always feel loved at a Moohouse show. You will always feel touched at a Moonhouse show and you will always leave a Moonhouse show a better person than you came in.
The Twin Cities’ Shoeless Revolution brings you their unique brand of funk/dance/rock, making them a refreshing take on original music. To date, the band has released two full-length albums and performed hundreds of shows all across the country. Led by singer/drummer Reed Grimm (American Idol Season 11 finalist), they have morphed into a nonstop musical juggernaut, a band whose do-it-yourself attitude, dedication, and passion for live shows have enabled them to reach impressive heights.
Reed has been blessed with the ability to connect with crowds and share his musical vision. His confidence as a performer comes from his musical family, with whom he began performing at the age of two, and his recent appearance on American Idol has given him the opportunity to show the rest of the country just how special a talent he is.
For the past few months the band has been working hard to revamp and revitalize their live show. Expect to hear new original material that will showcase the band’s new sound and direction. Fans of Shoeless Revolution will not be disappointed as the band will continue to play their old favorites with a new twist. his combination of Reed Grimm and the Shoeless Revolution
Friends since kindergarten, Anima came into existence as Raina and Jaia began making music together at the beginning of their high school years. They started by busking at local farmers markets and frequenting open mics, but with the help of their abundantly musical community in the hills of Driftless Wisconsin, Anima's on-stage presence has grown, as well as their musical range. Both self-taught musicians, Anima has never quite known what genre they fit into, or if they fit into one at all. With influences ranging from the Incredible String Band and the Grateful Dead, to Cloud Cult and Alt-J, to Wisconsin favorites such as Dead Horses and Horseshoes & Hand Grenades, they have found an eclectic sound filled with hauntingly captivating harmonies, double-lead guitar riffs, and an affinity for the box drum.
Their lyric content contemplates human nature, healing, relationship, and oneness, and passes through a lens of transcendentalism saturated with images of the deepest roots of nature -- our earthen home, the patterns that exist, the fact that we are animals, and the endless fractal of breathing. Anima helps to remind us that we are all connected.
They have had the the great honor of sharing the stage with many different national and Wisconsin-based bands such as the Barefoot Movement, Dead Horses, Natty Nation, Auralai, Tugg, Rucksack Revolution (Adam Greuel of Horseshoes & Hand Grenades, Sara Vos of Dead Horses), Eddie Danger, and many more…
Dead Larry’s powerful blend of high energy rock, dance and funk shakes the foundation of modern music. From rock driven sea shanties to pulsating dance beats. From Beatle-esque harmonies to spine chilling screams. From shake-yo-booty funk jams to orchestral themes of space and time travel. Dead Larry is one thing: Original. The band was formed in a basement in high school, and after nearly 10 years of writing, touring, and chasing the dream Dead Larry has a grown to be one of the most prominent independent rock bands coming out of the Midwest.
"An all too short set by psychedelic funk pop band, Dead Larry, from Iowa City, Iowa, was all I needed to realize where the great music truly was. Lead singer/rhythm guitarist Mark McGuiness screamed his lyrics with rock 'n' roll conviction to the raw and dark simplicity of the musical compromise that is the rest of the band. Each member worked their musical niche to create something greater than themselves that is Dead Larry." - Travis Beck (The Daily Nebraskan) on Dead Larry's set during 10,000 Lakes Festival 2008.
"Dead Larry’s music combines psychedelic rock, funk and pop to create a non-stop party." - Tim Gavin (The Daily Iowan)
"Dead Larry is amazing! They have that rare combination of incredible diversity and substance, while still dropping funky beats that keep your booty moving!" - Mark Murphy, WookieFoot
GARY DAVID & THE ENTHUSIASTS
Rock and Roll band from Madison, WI