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Live on the Levee returns for 11th season

By Bill Lynch, Staff writer

Charleston’s Live on the Levee returns to Haddad Riverfront Park Memorial Day weekend and kicks off a new summer season of live music.

This year’s lineup, announced Friday morning in front of Schoenbaum Stage at Haddad Riverfront Park, features several new faces, among them USFLOYD and Time and Distance, some nationally known performers like Donna the Buffalo and American Idol finalist Josh Gracin and a pair of West Virginia Music legends, John Ellison, the writer of the hit song “Some Kind of Wonderful” and Billy Cox, bassist for Jimi Hendrix.

The announcement drew a sizable crowd of media, city officials, several local musicians and some Clay Center staff.

Adam Harris, executive producer of “Mountain Stage” and who helps oversee the selection of performers for the series pointed out that many of the Live on the Levee shows were tied in with events happening in the city throughout the summer.

Aside from FestivALL in June, he mentioned the July 25 show with Donna the Buffalo will kick off a special music weekend in Charleston, which will also include a concert with Old Crow Medicine Show Saturday night and a “Mountain Stage” show Sunday evening with jam and funk rock band, Umphrey’s McGee.

Jim Strawn, who chairs the organizing committee for the event, said that after the rough winter experienced in Charleston, “We deserve some play.”

City Councilman Tom Lane, credited as being the father of Live on the Levee asked for people to continue to support the charities showcased during the shows.

He said, “One measure of a city is how well we take care of our least fortunate.”

He encouraged people to purchase raffle tickets.

Marshall Petty, a long time local performer who is making his first appearance on the summer series, was just glad to be at the announcement and pleased to be part of the series.

“It’s an exciting lineup,” he said. “There are a lot of things I want to see.”

The Friday night concerts begin at 6:30 p.m. and usually conclude at 9:30 p.m.

May 23, Thump Daddy with Downtown King (Fireworks follow the performances).

May 30, Time and Distance with Beggar’s Clan.

June 6, Mother’s Nature with Lola Spencer (Special Olympics).

June 13, Midnight Special with Cat Daddys (Capitol City Biker Bash).

June 20, USFLOYD with Farnsworth (FestivALL).

June 27, Colton Pack with Autumn Blair (FestivALL).

July 4, The Black Diamond Experience with Stonestreet (Fireworks follow the performance)

July 11, QIET with Tofujitsu

July 18, The Bob Thompson Unit with Marshall Petty and the Groove

July 25, Donna The Buffalo with Fletcher’s Grove

August 1, Johnny Staats and the Delivery Boys with The Band Wagon

August 8, Hybrid Soul Project with Mark Cline Bates

August 15, Josh Gracin with Dean Alexander

August 22, Billy Cox with John Ellison

August 29, Yarn with The Company Stores


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