Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The 6th Annual 91.7 KAXE Mississippi River Festival

by Doug MacRostie

OMG, this is going to be awesome! The 6th Annual 91.7 KAXE Mississippi River Festival is THIS Sat. starting at Noon and the forecast as of Tuesday: partly cloudy/partly sunny with temps in the low 80s and only a 20% chance of rain. Be prepared - maybe have a raincoat or tarp just-in-case, feel free to bring your own chairs & coolers, there will be food & soda/ice coffee/root beer floats by the Grand Rapids Kiwanis Club. And there will be a table of handmade goods by KAXE members including wild rice, clothing, jewelry, honey, soap, wood-turned bowls and more.

And we haven't even talk about the music yet! I'm torn on who I'm most excited to see, but Scott Hall said on the Morning Show that, "Doug thinks Eilen Jewell will be the big surprise," so I'll go with that :p And yeah, I've wanted to see her perform since the first time I heard her new-style of roots music on KAXE. I'm also really pumped to see Willie Murphy, partly because who he is and what he represents (having helped define the sound of R&B and Soul music and a prolific Blues career) and also because I know he's going to make everyone dance. When I interviewed him on Centerstage MN last year that was one thing that he made perfectly clear, "I like longer songs because they're better for dancing, and my music is all about dancing." Hell yeah.

But wait, there's more. The day will kick off with Pelican Railroad from Bemidji, a rockin' blues band (or was it a bluesy rock band, lol) - they play regularly in the Bemidji area, and we are really excited to bring their good-time to Grand Rapids. And, another son-of-Bemidji will be performing: Steve Kaul and The Brass Kings. To quote myself, "Steve Kaul is the caliber of guitarist you compare with the likes of Doc Watson, Leo Kottke and Bruce Cockburn." Check out the video of Steve playing at our studios below :) The Brass Kings are a world-class roots/blues trio.

And we've also got Keri Noble, a soul-pop artist from Minneapolis - in her late teens she was inspired by Joni Mitchell's "Blue" to start writing her own music. Her music is about relationships (not just the romantic kind), "as a kind of closure...you have to feel music." She will be my guest this week on Centerstage MN - so tune in for that preview.

That's the 6th Annual 91.7 KAXE Mississippi River Festival this Sat., July 17th from Noon-8:30pm. Tickets for this full day of excellent music are just $40 and KAXE members get a $10 discount. 13-18 year olds are $10 and kids 12 and under are free. Call 218-326-1234 to get your tickets and more info, or go to KAXE.org. See you Saturday!

Here's Steve Kaul of The Brass Kings performing in our conference room (the studio was being "upgraded" at the time, hehehe):

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