'Music in the Park'

‘This Old Guitar’ to perform
classic rock at Madison's
Broadway Fountain

Seymour, Ind., band performs
up to 30 concerts a year

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

(August 2011) – Classic rock fans will want to hear the Madison Main Street Program’s “Music in the Park” featured band for August, This Old Guitar. If you like music from the ‘60s and ‘70s, this band will take you back to a different era with their version of cover songs, while also performing current hits and original tunes.
This Old Guitar Band “has four members who perform 30 concerts a year in private venues,” said member Larry McDonald. “All of us grew up playing music.”
All band members grew up in Seymour, Ind., and include McDonald, Mike Gerth, Steve Langlais and John Hill. Gerth and Hill write many of the band’s original songs.
The band formed eight years ago with inquiries to hire musicians. Gerth and McDonald teamed up first to perform cover songs and later added Langlais and Hill as the demand for additional concerts increased.
This will be the first time the the band has performed in Madison. The band is based out of This Old Guitar Specialty Music Store in Seymour. McDonald runs the store.
One of McDonald’s biggest influences was John Mellencamp, because “I was John’s drummer through 1970 and was featured in John’s biography on A&E,” a cable network show, he said.
This Old Guitar will perform at Music in the Park from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Aug. 12 at the Broadway Fountain on Madison’s Main Street. This free family concert is part of a monthly series that kicked off on June 10 with the Dixieland Band.
“A lot of communities do this sort of thing,” said Gerry Reilly, who chairs Music in the Park. Reilly is also a member of the Madison Main Street Project and Site Manager of the Lanier Mansion State Historic Site. “Larger communities have them every week.”
Reilly said the concert series began in 1994, before he joined the organizational team. It is sponsored by the Madison Main Street Program along with the financial support of sponsors that includes the Indiana Arts Commission, City of Madison and various Madison-area businesses and friends.
Music in the Park provides a variety of different musical performers. “We try to get a mix of soft rock, bluegrass, country rock and even specialty or traditional groups. One year we had a Celtic group perform,” said Reilly. Last year’s lineup included a tropical rock (trop-rock), Jimmy Buffett style band.
Not all performers are local, but many are regional artists who may be from Louisville, Indianapolis or Lexington. “Normally, we have about 200 attend these concerts,” said Reilly. Last month’s act, the Jimmy Davis Band, drew a crowd of 340 people.
The Music in the Park concerts are held the second Friday in June, July, August and September. The last concert falls during the Madison Chautauqua Festival of Art and is sponsored by the festival itself. This concert is usually performed by The Doctors’ Band, an act Reilly labeled “a big draw. We have close to 500 attend.”

• For more information, contact the Madison Main Street Program at www.MadisonMainStreet.com or (812) 265-3270.

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