Performances by Neil Young, Cardi B, Willie Nelson and the Jonas Brothers highlight the music roster for September.
David Lindquist, [email protected]
The Brown County Music Center is all about firsts this summer. It’s about to let people in the doors for the first time in mid-August. Shortly after, it will have its first show with Vince Gill. And it’s in the midst of announcing its first slate of fall and winter concerts.
The new center is a big deal for south-central Indiana. With 2,000 seats, it’s the first performing arts venue of its size since the famous Little Nashville Opry burned in 2009, and it’s expected to fill an entertainment gap in the area. Along with local programming, the center will host rock, classical, country, pop, jazz and bluegrass shows.
More amenities include beer and family gardens, state-of-the-art sound and lighting, and an art gallery that showcases the work of artists in what’s long been considered a hub for them.
Here’s the Brown County Music Center’s lineup to date. The venue doesn’t have a set season but will continue to announce shows year-round, executive director Dana Beth Evans said.
Postponed: Gordon Lightfoot
Lightfoot was scheduled to perform Sept. 28 but sustained an injury while working out and won’t have recovered in time to travel, according to a release from the Brown County Music Center. Patrons should keep their tickets for a rescheduled concert set for early 2020. A date hasn’t yet been announced.
The “Sundown” singer-songwriter has made his name composing folksy songs with an easy-feeling pop flair. His hits have earned him top chart positions, multiple Grammy nominations and a spot in the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
This “Girls Lie Too” singer became a member of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 2018. Clark, host of the syndicated radio show “Country Gold,” released a studio album titled “Raising a Bar” last September.
Gordon Bonham Blues Band
Vocalist-guitarist Bonham grew up in Hammond, Indiana, and worked at Inland Steel’s blast furnace before devoting his career to blues music. In addition to frequent collaborations with late Indianapolis mandolin player Yank Rachell, Bonham has shared a stage with Pinetop Perkins, Robert Lockwood Jr. and Bo Diddley.
The all-vocal band began in 2000 and entered country-loving hearts everywhere when it won Season 4 of NBC’s “The Sing Off.” They group will release its fifth studio album this summer.
Singer Josh Turner performs onstage at the HGTV Lodge during CMA Music Fest on June 9, 2017, in Nashville, Tennessee. He’ll be performing at the Brown County Music Center. (Photo: Jason Davis/Getty)
His velvety deep voice has captured audiences with “Would You Go With Me” and “Hometown Girl.” Turner has sold millions of records while adhering to his traditional country style, and he’s a member of the Grand Ole Opry.
George Thorogood & the Destroyers
The highly energetic blues-rock band known for “Bad to the Bone” and dozens of other hits has played thousands of live shows with its characteristic unrelenting energy since 1975. The 2019 tour, “Good To Be Bad Tour: 45 Years Of Rock” looks back and nods to the group’s gritty, bad-boy image.
One of the original members of REO Speedwagon, Tumatoe has carved out a reputation as a hard-working guitarist, singer and songwriter who has led the All-Star Frogs and Power Trio. He’s known for inserting humor in his compositions, like “Lord Help Our Colts” and “Tie You Up!”
Peppa Pig Live!
Life-sized puppets and costumed characters will bring “Peppa Pig’s Adventure!” to life. In this one, Peppa travels through the woods with her friends, packed lunches and Daddy Pig driving the bus.
Here Come The Mummies
Here Come The Mummies perform onstage at the APA Party during IEBA 2017 Conference on October 15, 2017, in Nashville, Tennessee. They’ll be coming to the Brown County Music Center. (Photo: Jason Davis, Getty Images for IEBA)
The funk outfit stays wrapped up in their mummy uniforms on stage, but they deliver danceable tunes to audiences. They’ve opened for ParliamentFunkadelic, Al Green and Mavis Staples, among others.
The singer and pianist discovered his talent while he attended the North Carolina State School for the Blind, and he went on to move easily between pop, R&B and country on his way to dozens of No. 1 hits. He’s performed with Ray Charles and James Brown and inspired a new wave of artists, including Kacey Musgraves and Little Big Town.
Mac Powell and the Family Reunion
Former Third Day vocalist Powell launched his solo career earlier this year. He described his current work as “a little bit of rock, a little bit of country, a little bit of gospel, and a whole lot of love” in a Billboard magazine interview.
Boy Band Review
With this Chicago-based tribute act, you don’t have to choose between being a fan of either the Backstreet Boys or ‘N Sync. You’ll hear covers of songs popularized by both boy-band titans, plus possibly a tune or two associated with 98 Degrees.
The Why Store
The Muncie-built band’s rock first captured Indiana in the 1980s before expanding to new fans in the 1990s with hits “Lack Of Water,” “Surround Me” and “Father.” The band parted ways in 2000 but has come back together again. Its 2016 live album was recorded at the Slippery Noodle.
Hard Day’s Night
This Cleveland-based Beatles tribute act formed in 1996. Hard Day’s Night performs songs from the Beatles’ entire catalog, employing a sitar as well as Vox, Hofner, Gretsch, Rickenbacker, and Ludwig instruments in the tradition of John, Paul, George and Ringo.
Bloomington Symphony Orchestra
Welcome St. Nick and the best holiday tunes for “Celebrate the Season.” Musicians from several counties in south-central Indiana comprise the Bloomington Symphony, which is now in its 50th season.
The Oak Ridge Boys
The Oak Ridge Boys’ 30th annual holiday tour will visit the Brown County Music Center. The iconic quartet of Joe Bonsall, Duane Allen, William Lee Golden and Richard Sterban will release new album “Down Home Christmas” on Oct. 25. The Oak Ridge Boys became country-to-pop crossover stars in 1981, thanks to the song “Elvira.”
Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox
If there are YouTube stars and YouTube superstars, Postmodern Jukebox is the latter with more than 1 billion views. The group will reimagine the holiday show with “A Very Postmodern Christmas” tour that includes singers, dancers and instrumentalists performing a mix of hot jazz, doo wop, Motown and more.
Phil Vassar, Lonestar
Country singer Vassar and country group Lonestar will perform Christmas songs as well as their most popular tunes during a show aptly titled “Holiday & Hits.” Vassar’s discography includes No. 1 singles “Just Another Day in Paradise” and “In a Real Love.” Lonestar, a quartet featuring lead vocalist Richie McDonald, topped the country and pop charts with 1999 single “Amazed.”
Holiday tunes will be heard when country vocalist Sara Evans brings her “At Christmas” tour to the new venue. Evans, known for chart-topping singles “Born to Fly” and “Suds in the Bucket,” released her “At Christmas” studio album in 2014. Her repertoire of holiday standards includes “Silent Night” and “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.”
The Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band
The Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band will perform Dec. 31 at the Brown County Music Center. (Photo: IndyStar file photo)
Here’s a chance to catch the globetrotting Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band on its home turf. Brown County’s Big Damn Band, nominated for a Blues Foundation award in the category of blues rock album for 2018 release “Poor Until Payday,” will be the first-ever New Year’s Eve headliner at the Brown County Music Center. Chance McCoy (known for his work in Old Crow Medicine Show) and Indiana’s the Hammer & the Hatchet will appear as supporting acts.
The Beach Boys
Vocalist Mike Love leads this edition of the Beach Boys (which does not include songwriter-vocalist Brian Wilson). In May, Love released his cover of the Ramones’ “Rockaway Beach.” Attendees can expect Beach Boys standards such as “Surfin’ U.S.A.,” “I Get Around” and “Good Vibrations” at the Brown County Music Center.
You missed itVince Gill
Aug. 24. Sold out.
He’s toured with the Eagles, won 21 Grammy awards and sent dozens of singles up the Billboard charts, like “When I Call Your Name.” Brown County’s date with the superstar comes just a day after the release of Gill’s new album, “Okie.”
Henry Lee Summer
The Brazil, Indiana, native hit mainstream success in the 1980s with “I Wish I Had a Girl,” “Hey Baby” and an appearance on Arsenio Hall’s and David Letterman’s shows. Summer always brings his signature bluesy sound and improvisational style.
Especially known for the ballad “Love Song,” Tesla coaxed fans to fall in love with its 1986 debut album “Mechanical Resonance.” The band has continued to carve out its blues metal style both in lyrics and image.
Since his time as half of star folk-duo Simon & Garfunkel, the countertenor has come out with solo albums, written poetry, acted in films and penned his autobiography. His music and writing carry his exploration of long-distance walking in Japan, across the U.S. and Europe, and Garfunkel’s latest studio album, in 2007, nods to 20th-century songwriters.
The Breakfast Club
This 1980s-themed party band borrows its name from the iconic John Hughes teen film set in Saturday detention. Formed in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, in 1993, the Breakfast Club band specializes in tunes popularized by Duran Duran, Journey, the J. Geils Band and other Reagan Era chart-toppers.
Featured on a 1970 cover of Rolling Stone magazine at age 15, Tucker is on the comeback trail. Her “While I’m Livin’ ” album — featuring Brandi Carlile and Shooter Jennings as producers — arrives in stores Aug. 23. Attendees also can expect to hear signature tunes such as “Delta Dawn” and “The Wheels of Laredo.”
The country icon will bring his “Still… Killin’ Time 30th Anniversary Tour,” which celebrates three decades after his debut album. Expect his No. 1 classics like “A Better Man” and “Nobody’s Home.”
Where it is and how to get tickets
The Brown County Music Center is off Indiana 46 at 200 Maple Leaf Blvd.
During construction, its box office is inside the Brown County Visitors Center at 211 South Van Buren St. Reach it by phone at 812-988-5323.
Purchase tickets online at ticketmaster.com/brown-county-music-center-tickets-nashville/venue/42187.
For more information about the venue in general, visit browncounty.com/bcmc.
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