Arts Commission’s SoundTrek celebrates local music’s past, presentWritten by Chase Will | | email@example.com
If your taste in music is eclectic and you want more bang for your buck, The Arts Commision’s SoundTrek ’14 will blow your mind. For a $10 advance wristband, locals can watch 37 regional bands play from 7 p.m. to midnight July 19 art venues in UpTown. According to Ryan Bunch, performing and literary arts coordinator for the Arts Commission, this event, now in its fourth year, celebrates the city’s rich musical history.
“A couple years ago we received some funding from the Toledo Community Foundation to help increase opportunities for local performers,” Bunch said. “One of the things the performers were telling us was there’s not a lot of opportunities for them to perform and get paid for doing so.”
This inspired Bunch and his associates to create an event which highlights musicians of all backgrounds and skill sets in order to increase their fan bases and further their careers.
Dolfish, a singer-songwriter in Cleveland Heights, will join the lineup again this year at the Ottawa Tavern.
“He loves the city and has agreed to come back for this,” Bunch said. “He headlines all kinds of events and is really well-known in his genre. ”
Larry Meyer, drummer for acoustic Americana band Old State Line, uses his experience as a musician when serving as a volunteer on the planning committee.
“Playing the festival every year has given me some insight into things that need to be in place in terms of infrastructure, providing a [production assistant] in each venue, and things like that,” Meyer said.
Old State Line will play at The Attic on Adams, which Meyer claims is a rare opportunity since the venue typically doesn’t host live bands.
“It’s really exciting to be part of the festival and to play, but the trade-off is having that block of time spoken for and not being able to go out and see as many other bands as I’d otherwise like to,” Meyer said.
Meyer also stated the beauty of the event is mixing well-known bands in with lesser-known bands, providing opportunity for networking.
Other bands include Nathan Roberts & the New Birds, DJ What the Bleep and Katie’s Randy Cat. The full lineup can be viewed at www.theartscommission.org/programs/soundtrek.
Bunch added any one of these performers can be the next big thing.
A few participating venues are Ottawa Tavern, The Truth Art Gallery, Manhattan’s and Wesley’s.
Although one of the biggest challenges in organizing SoundTrek is coordinating schedules between several bands and venues, Bunch credits the community as a whole for making the event work so well.
Bunch said there will be an after-party at Wesley’s and many other venues will have events following the festival.
Meyer added, “It’s really nice because it’s so concentrated. All these bands are playing at venues on one line of sight up and down Adams Street. It’s like a big party.”
Wristbands to SoundTrek are $10 in advance, $15 the night of show or $5 for individual venue admission. Purchases can be made at www.theartscommission.org or by calling (419) 254-2787.