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CenterStage Minnesota Concert with Annie Mack

Annie Mack @ The Reif, Thursday, April 14

For the last CenterStage Minnesota concert of 2022, we are so pleased to bring a singer filled with such soul and vibrancy to the Mary Ives Studio Theater in Grand Rapids. Annie Mack grew up heavily influenced on the music of Minneapolis. From that musical education, she has created a sound that incorporates soul, funk, roots and blues. For a blues singer, Mack has shared the stage with artists and bands of all kinds: Ondara, Cloud Cult, Dessa, even Robert Cray.

This series began in 2016, at a time when finding live music in Grand Rapids from up-and-coming musicians was not easy to find. My my how things have changed! Throughout this CenterStage Minnesota Concert series, we have had the opportunity to see acts of all genres and performances of all types.

One of my favorite things about the series has been how the room creates for such an intimate experience. It throws the musicians for their first couple songs, like they need to adjust to playing in a space like that with such a captive audience. The space and vibe also creates a little pocket of energy that feeds the musicians, seems to be conducive to trying new things, making the performance truly a one-of-a-kind experience for the audience.

Some highlights have been the solo show with Dave Simonett, a full stage with Davina & The Vagabonds, hearing songs never-performed before from Chastity Brown, a packed house with The Cactus Blossoms when they were first getting their start, emotion-filled evenings with The Pines, We Are the Willows, Gaelynn Lea, David Huckfelt and Annie Humphrey, rocking out with Haley, hearing new exciting sounds from Humbird, watching Chris Bates on bass with Red Planet, a surprisingly jazz-filled evening with indie rock band Early Eyes, and so so much more.

I am forever grateful for each and every one of these nights of music in Grand Rapids. I look forward to seeing you next Thursday, with Annie Mack.

The music director at KAXE since 2014, Kari (pronounced Car-ee) Hedlund reviews music on the daily. She also hosts New Music every Wednesday (2 and 10 p.m.) and Sunday (noon), along with the KAXE Morning Show on Thursdays.