CLEVELAND (May 21, 2014) – Summer is almost here and Summer in the City, the Rock Hall’s FREE live concert series, returns this season to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. Beginning on Wednesday, July 16th some of the country’s most buzzed about up-and-coming artists will perform on the Museum plaza (weather permitting, if necessary it will be moved inside to the Main Stage), and concessions will be available for purchase from the Museum and local food trucks on the plaza, as well. Summer in the City is sponsored by KeyBank, Yuengling and Fender Premium Audio.
Each Summer in the City artist or band has been invited to blog on rockhall.com/blog to share their experiences with fans: how they got started, their inspirations, their aspirations for the future and what their thoughts are on performing in Cleveland at the Museum.
Summer in the City 2014 concert schedule:
JULY 16, 7-10 p.m.
St. Lucia with Seafair
Originally from Johannesburg, South Africa, Jean-Philip Grobler grew up performing with the Drakensberg Boys Choir School, learning everything from Bach to minimalist opera. St. Lucia was born out of a moment in early 2010 when Grobler was looking to the past for inspiration. Growing frustrated with a rock project that was starting to feel forced, he delved back into the music that had first inspired him: Fleetwood Mac, Peter Gabriel, Madonna and other songs from his youth. When The Night, the synth-pop outfit’s full-length, expands upon St. Lucia’s unique brand of dreamy, nostalgic pop. The band recently embarked on a headline tour of the US, selling out all 23 shows (including 4 shows in New York City), and served as direct support on Foster The People’s Spring 2014 tour.
Rock? Pop? Indie? When looking for words to describe Seafair’s sound, these are usually what come to mind. Although, if you have seen Seafair live, the proper way to describe them is “exhilarating”. The band has a sound that is only to their own. A live Seafair show is an experience, a party. Chayla Hope’s voice is one that will be remembered for years to come. Her lyrics are heartfelt and honest, and band can make you sing, dance, scream and rage all at the same time.
JULY 23, 7-10 p.m.
Reignwolf with Thaddeus Anna Green
Reignwolf is invading the streets unleashing throaty soulful howls, bleeding guitars plugged into smoky half stacks, and the stomp of a vintage Ludwig bass drum. The wolf sound is fierce and instinctual, a collision of rock and roll. Reignwolf announced their arrival to the music scene using the DIY approach, gaining a loyal following by performing at local clubs and festivals such as Sasquatch, Coachella, Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits Music Festival, Voodoo Experience, and an opening slot for the 2013 Pixies tour. American Songwriter’s Top 10 Moments of Austin City Limits ranked Reignwolf #2, second only to Atoms for Peace, #1. Reignwolf hit the scene hard and gained momentum, and landed a coveted supporting slot on Black Sabbath's Spring Canadian Tour in 2014.
Thaddeus Anna Greene is a rock ‘n’ roll quartet. This Cleveland powerhouse formed in 2010 and has been brewing up a buzz ever since. With honest, and familial lyrics, Tj Maclin (lead vox, guitar) dictates the often felt yet unexpressed voice of the young man; while Ryan Augusta (guitar, vox) fills in the cracks and pairs with Maclin, providing a full-bodied presence. Matt Augusta (bass) and Anthony Foti (drums, vox) supply a rhythm section seldom seen with deep pockets and a satisfying groove. Thaddeus Anna Greene reminds the listener what it is to feel, and breaks the standard be redefining notions of blues, soul, and rock and roll.
AUGUST 13, 7-10 p.m.
Har Mar Superstar with Nowhere
Sean Tillmann named his flamboyant alter-ego after the Har Mar mall in suburban St. Paul, MN where he spent his youth watching movies and writing songs about passers-by in the food court. Tillman explains, “Har Mar Superstar used to be a different person. It used to be my excuse to get away with the more fantastic things in life… It was easier to get onstage as this other guy and be outrageous and have it be glorified. I guess the confidence I got from being Har Mar Superstar translated into my real life, so now we’re one and the same.” Bye Bye 17, the new album from acclaimed singer, songwriter and performer Har Mar Superstar, is currently out on Cult Records. Already receiving widespread critical praise, BULLETT calls the album, “impossibly groovy and infectious,” while KCRW asserts, “I’d call the album a guilty pleasure but I don’t feel guilty at all. It’s just packed full of hooks.” Additionally, of the album’s first single, “Lady, You Shot Me,” Death + Taxes declares, “Har Mar Superstar returns with the song of his career,” while MTV Buzzworthy calls it a “Buzzworthy Obsession.”
Cleveland’s own Matthew Rolin while locked away in his studio over the years and recording as Nowhere has been busy crafting something truly special. Playing every instrument, singing and recording every note, he’s adding to the psych-rock Tower of Babel building atop such solid foundations of Syd Barrett and the Paisley Underground's Rain Parade, as well as some contemporaries in Dungen and Tame Impala. The net result of his efforts finds Nowhere sounding just bubbly enough to be considered pop, just driven enough to be rock, and just tweaked out enough to be psychedelic. In other words, it’s classic while at the same time being altogether new. With a self-titled album out on Jurassic Pop Records and another new LP due out soon, Nowhere could end up playing everywhere very soon.
AUGUST 27, 7-10 p.m.
Diarrhea Planet with Herzog
Diarrhea Planet is a six-piece rock and roll band from Nashville, TN. Their sound has often been described as The Ramones holding Van Halen hostage with an arsenal of fireworks and explosives. Diarrhea Planet's four guitarists provide enough riffs to make Jack Black squeal like a schoolgirl, while lead singer Hodan delivers enough hooks to straighten the curl out of Justin Timberlake's hair. In a world of unintelligible lo-fi recording, reverb drenched vocals, and tuneless guitars, Diarrhea Planet aims to put the backbone back into rock and roll. The band was formed in 2009 by Casey, Jordan Smith, and Evan P. Donohue, later fleshing out their sound with Mike Boyle and Brent Toler. The overwhelming volume and sheer brutality of their live onslaught satiates those who crave power and thunder, while the meek grovel on the beer-soaked floor. The wall of heavy riffage and intricate shredding infuses audiences with enough electrical energy to stave off sleep for the rest of the weekend. Despite their leanings towards punk and heavy metal, Diarrhea Planet swears by the Bible of pop. With a distinct emphasis on vocal hooks and harmonies, their shows often morph into massive, drunken sing-alongs.
Herzog has quietly been building a devoted following with their relentless take on guitar-driven power-pop. Comparisons to ‘90s luminaries such as Built to Spill, Sebadoh, and Dinosaur Jr. abound---apt and warranted---but similarities with present-day bands like Thee Oh Sees and FIDLAR are equally appropriate. Boys is the new album by Cleveland's Herzog on Exit Stencil Recordings and is by far their most ambitious, cohesive, and sonically diverse album to date.
About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc. is the nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its library and archives as well as its educational activities. For more information, visit rockhall.com.