Steeped in centuries-old traditions and songwriting, bluegrass is a discipline as much as it is a musical genre. It’s rare to hear artists that break the mold. But Billy Strings – one young, steadfast Mid-Westerner, has recently exploded onto the Americana scene and caught the ear of many veteran musicians with his punk-rock spirit, arresting voice and sheer virtuosic ability with guitar and banjo. Recently named as one of the “10 New Country Artists You Need to Know” by Rolling Stone, audiences at Levitt AMP Sheboygan will experience the up-and-coming talent of this bluegrass and folk maestro this Thursday at 6PM, at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center’s Festival Green!
Placemaking places people at the heart of its process—empowering individuals by giving them an active voice in shaping the spaces around them, mapping and designing their own communities. This week, we’re highlighting a few fascinating placemaking projects from around the globe that illustrate the beauty of people coming together and creating a shared vision for their community.
Tonight audiences at the Levitt AMP Jacksonville Music Series, presented by Jacksonville Main Street, are in for a truly eclectic night of music with Portland big band Dirty Revival. Their kaleidoscopic take on funk, jazz and gritty soul is thrilling audiences around the country on an ongoing tour – and they’re making a stop in Jacksonville to welcome Levitteers at Central Park joining in on the fun!
This weekend, the internationally renowned and virtuosic Malian musician, Cheick Hamala Diabate, brings his danceable and richly textured West African songs to two — yes, two — Levitt AMP stages! He graces Levitt AMP Berea tonight at 6pm, and Levitt AMP Greensboro tomorrow evening at 6pm. Considered a master of the ngoni, a traditional, lute-like stringed instrument, Diabate’s music started in his motherland and migrated to Washington, D.C., where he has worked with acclaimed producers, created a GRAMMY-winning World music album and toured relentlessly.
The first four minutes of Ben Sollee’s 2013 Tedx Talk is a spontaneous, collaborative jam session with just him and a drummer. What you see Sollee playing is indeed a conventional cello, but the sounds coming out of it are anything but. While singing about modern society, he stretches the instrument to its limits, creating a soundscape of languid strings and futuristic, percussive notes. Whatever shape or form the music takes, it is undeniably dazzling, virtuosic and intriguing. It gives one a glimpse of the innovative spirit of Ben Sollee, a multi-instrumentalist and composer who takes the Levitt AMP Berea stage in Kentucky tonight at 7:30pm.
Calling all small to mid-sized towns and cities across America: show us how you’ll transform an underused public space through the power of free, live music! Now in its fourth year, the Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards is an exciting matching grant opportunity that supports impactful creative placemaking projects around the country.
Up to 15 nonprofits serving small to mid-sized towns and cities will receive $25K each in matching funds to produce their own Levitt AMP [Your City] Music Series—an outdoor, free concert series featuring a diverse lineup of high caliber entertainment. And just like in previous years, the public will decide the Top 25 finalists through an online voting process taking place this November. So get ready to rally your family, friends, colleagues and neighbors to vote and bring free, live music to your community!
The Levitt AMP Music Series has officially kicked off! Whether it’s classic, down-home blues, big band cumbia, singer-songwriter folk or electro-funk, the 2017 Levitt Amp Music Series has a culturally diverse range of genres featuring emerging and established talent.
With Levitt AMP concerts having begun in Denison and Santa Fe, and just around the corner for the 13 other AMP towns and cities, enjoy this specially curated Spotify playlist of Levitt AMP artists taking the stage this summer and fall! You’ll hear something from each town and city – the vintage roots music of Guitar Shorty, the frenetic rockabilly of The Trip Daddys and the hit ballad “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” by Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes, among many more. Here’s to a great season of free music under the stars!
Check out each city’s artist lineup and schedule here. And be sure to tag your Instagram and Twitter posts with #musicmoves for a chance to win an iTunes Gift Card!
The inspiration for Los Gaiteros De San Jacinto’s music is rooted in tradition; technically, the band started 77 years ago. As they share in this Meet the Artist video, their music narrates their experiences growing up, “the villages, the farmers, and the men who work the land” in their native Colombia. That’s why it was such an honor for them to take the stage at Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles back in 2012 on Colombian Independence day.
Dedicated to preserving their culture, and encouraging the practice of traditional Colombian Cumbia – a genre that has become less ubiquitous as generations pass by – the GRAMMY-winning Los Gaiteros De San Jacinto is recognized as one of the most important musical groups from their native country. They have even recorded music on Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, a label that continues to press decades-old songs from the traditional North and South American songwriting canon.
The new generation of Los Gaiteros are passionate about bringing their music to the world, and spreading the joy of their music to cultures that aren’t typically exposed to Colombian Cumbia. Having an opportunity to perform at a community-building space like a Levitt Pavilion, for families from near and far, is a great joy for the group.
Meet more artists who have performed on Levitt stages on our website!
Check out the official dates for Levitt venues and Levitt AMP Music Series this summer! Across the country, free concerts will activate public spaces through the power of music and community building. Audiences will be thrilled by the exciting range of artists spanning a wide range of genres and styles! Scroll down to check out Levitt concert series dates in your community.
Permanent Levitt Venues
Each permanent outdoor Levitt music venue presents 50 free concerts every year and is managed, programmed and supported by a Friends of Levitt nonprofit partner, with Levitt Los Angeles run by the Foundation.
Levitt Pavilion Arlington: May 19 – July 23; September 1 – October 22
Levitt Pavilion Denver: July 20 – September 23
Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles: June 17 – September 10
Levitt Shell Memphis: June 1 – July 16; September 7 – October 28
Levitt Pavilion Pasadena: June 29 – September 3
Levitt Pavilion SteelStacks: May 25 – September 9
Levitt Pavilion Westport: June 25 – August 27
Levitt AMP Sites
The Levitt AMP Music Series will take place in 15 small to mid-sized towns and cities at pop-up sites in public spaces, each presenting 10 free concerts throughout the summer or fall.
Berea: July 7 – September 8
Carson City: June 23 – September 2
Chattanooga: August 24 – October 26
Denison: May 26 – July 28
Greensboro: June 3 – August 5
Hattiesburg: July 7 – September 22
Jacksonville: June 2 – August 4
Middlesboro: August 3 – October 4
Ocala: May 19 – July 21
Santa Fe: May 27 – August 12
Sheboygan: June 22 – August 24
St. Johnsbury: July 9 – September 17
Stevens Point: June 1 – August 3
Trenton: June 29 – August 31
Utica: July 3 – September 4