In the Valley Below, Lokella, Sarena Rae, Kari Lynch, Grace Theisen, Kate Hinote, Loren Johnson and more will fire up “Local Spins Week” in mid-May. The lineup and details.
APRIL 29 UPDATE: Earth Radio is the “mystery guest” and will play Local Spins Fest at 8 p.m. Scroll down for the full lineup/schedule and a message from the Local Spins founder.
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Local Spins Fest is back for 2023.
After marking the music website’s 10th anniversary with a big Grand Rapids splash in 2022, Local Spins Fest returns to Studio Park downtown on May 20 with a diverse, six-band lineup of Michigan acts led by female artists or centered around female performers.
The day-long Saturday festival – which serves as the kickoff to an action-packed summer of music festivals and outdoor shows – will boast sets by In the Valley Below (Indie-rock), Kari Lynch Band (Americana/country), Sarena Rae (soul), Lokella (rock) and Grace Theisen Band (folk/blues/Americana), with a special mystery guest to be revealed in late April. (Update: Earth Radio will play Local Spins Fest.)
To build excitement for the Saturday festival during “Local Spins Week,” the special May 17 edition of Local Spins Wednesdays at SpeakEZ Lounge will showcase two more female-driven artists – the Grand Rapids debut of Detroit’s Kate Hinote Trio and West Michigan singer-songwriter Loren Johnson, who releases a new album in April.
“I’ve never seen a more impressive array of powerful female artists emerging from this region than I have over the past few years – an explosion of talent that deserves attention and will certainly create waves beyond Michigan,” said Local Spins publisher and founder John Sinkevics.
“I wanted the 11th anniversary of Local Spins to celebrate and show off the eclectic and commanding music produced by these Michigan-bred stars. Women have been woefully under-represented in the music industry and faced obstacles that male artists haven’t had to tolerate. It’s time to give them their due.”
Tickets, $20, for the May 20 Local Spins Fest – running 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Studio Park – are on sale now online here (with a $5 processing fee). Tickets are available without the fee in person at the Studio Park front desk or Midtown. Also, $1 from every ticket sold will go to support the nonprofit Access of West Michigan and its anti-poverty programming.
“I am beyond thrilled and honored to be kicking off the summer music festival season as a part of this year’s Local Spins Fest,” said Sarena Rae, whose 6 p.m. set will feature “original songs inspired by the stylings of Motown and classic R&B.” (Sarena Rae also leads the popular “Music That Raised Us” show paying tribute to iconic female artists.)
“I feel privileged to have the opportunity to take the stage amongst so many incredibly talented artists that I love and to get the West Michigan community excited for a summer filled with art and music. Summer is the season of healing and expression; it’s the time of year that people connect with one another and have more motivation to do fun activities; What better way to make memories than to dance to live music right in the middle of our city?”
A ‘ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME EXPERIENCE’ WITH A COMMUNITY SPIRIT
Indeed, that’s the goal of other bands on the Local Spins Fest bill, including headliner In the Valley Below, a nationally acclaimed, Grand Rapids-based band led by Angie Mattson and Jeff Mendel.
“We are so excited that Local Spins asked us to be part of their downtown Grand Rapids festival. We love it when the weather warms up and being outside is a thing again,” Angie said, noting that “every show is a once-in-a-lifetime experience” for In the Valley Below and its fans.
“Ever since we moved to Grand Rapids, we have followed Local Spins to keep up on all the latest music news. We can’t wait to share all our little musical stories with you in May. … Bring your ears and be prepared to laugh, cry and lose yourself with us.”
In the Valley Below recently received a gold record designation from Canada for its 2013 hit single, “Peaches,” a track which put the band on the map and has racked up more than 4.7 million views on YouTube. Its latest single, 2022’s captivating “Candy Hearts,” has racked up more than 31,000 listens on Spotify and the band currently is at work on a new album.
And for the second year in a row, Rockford Brewing Co. will be brewing and releasing its popular red ale tribute to Local Spins for the anniversary event: Local Spinsation Ale, which will be available at SpeakEZ, Studio Park and Rockford Brewing.
Because Local Spins Fest is all about community, the May 20 event will also feature booths/tables representing several local organizations, including Access of West Michigan, the nonprofit Michigan Music Alliance, The Diatribe and The West Michigan Songwriter’s Festival.
Local Spins Fest is supported, in part, by Dan Terry and the West Michigan Songwriter’s Festival, Rockford Brewing Co., Studio Park, Midtown and WYCE-FM, with more sponsors to be announced in coming weeks.
And while it’s not officially part of Local Spins Week, Midtown will mirror the female-oriented theme of the anniversary celebration by hosting a May 19 album-release show featuring Grand Rapids singer-songwriter Caitlin Cusack, the night before Local Spins Fest. Read more about her here at Local Spins.
Check out coverage of Local Spins Fest 2022.
VIDEO: A Message from the Publisher
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