Bring your favorite fold-out chair, sport some cool shades, come with a small appetite and great thirst, and join the crowds at the Akron Art Museum (AAM) on Thursday evenings for the 28th season of the Downtown@Dusk summer music series.
This year kicked off with the smooth rhythm and blues sounds of the Wanda Hunt Band. Lead singer Hunt teased and dared the mostly sit-down audience to get into the groove of summer and start dancing as her band played “Proud Mary.”
Guess when people get “situated” they don’t like to move so much, but eventually the braver souls began getting into the swing of things. It turned out to be a pleasant and music-filled evening in downtown Akron with the imposing beauty of the fairly newly-remodeled Akron Art Museum, a Knight Arts grantee, in the background.
If you don’t dig rhythm and blues, just wait. AAM offers a wide variety of musical styles and tastes to pretty much suit everyone who isn’t exclusively hitched to one style and it alone.
Next on the D@D agenda on Thursday, June 28 from 6:30-8:30p.m. is pop, country and folk-inspired Anne E. DeChant, an area singer/songwriter/guitarist whose lyrics range from heartache to current political and social ills and issues.
As you’re listening, you can go into the museum’s snack bar and purchase a ready-made sandwich and side orders. A fully stocked bar is also available in the museum lobby, while outside are a a couple of very busy beer tables (’cause that’s the kind of venue this is).
The main part of AAM is open during this and all performances. Art talks are going on throughout the summer as companion pieces to the current exhibit of El Anatsui’s monumental woven sculptures. With the DeChant concert Christy Gray will speak at 7:30 p.m. on “ZeroLandfill, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Dumpster” and its connection to found or discarded items being transformed into art objects.
There are also plenty of things for children to do while parents mix it up on the makeshift dance floor that is actually the museum’s parking lot.
Free parking is available across the street in the parking deck as well as plenty of surface level parking behind the museum facing Summit Artspace galleries.
In case of rain, concert-goers can crowd closer together under the canopy of the extended museum patio adjoining the cafe.
Other shows this summer include:
- Blue Lunch, known for its Chicago blues, jump and swing style, on July 5
- Lost State of Franklin, rock-a-billy and more, on July 12
- Robin Stone, soul pop and intelligent groove, on July 19
- The Speedbumps, a variety musical act, on July 26
- 15-60-75 The Numbers Band, abstract blues, on August 2
- Zydeco Kings, zydeco, on August 9