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Nothing beats listening to great live music, on a beautiful summer evening, under our simply grand skies.
This past Tuesday, I got to revel in the sounds of one of the best bands around, while simultaneously enjoying the beauty of our University of North Dakota campus. Based out of New York City, the rock ‘n soul group Revel in Dimes entertained the masses on the North Dakota Museum of Art (NDMOA) grasses during this season’s first Concerts in the Garden event. On a warm summer night in Forks, nothing beats listening to great live music under SimplyGrand skies. If you agree, I’ve got some awesome news…there are still four more concerts left to go before the leaves begin to fall!
Make sure to bring along a lawn chair or blanket, plus several of your favorite people. All the fun takes place in the Museum’s sculpture garden, located at 261 Centennial Drive, beginning at 6 PM. Tickets are $12 at the door and free for those 12 and younger. There is no charge for parking but due to campus construction, best come a little early to find a prime spot. I suggest having some extra cash on hand, as talented NDMOA Café chefs will be grilling up burgers, brats, veggie skewers and lots more tasty fare. There’ll also be beverages for both adults who like to imbibe and those preferring root beer floats over beer and wine.
Performance dates, along with scheduled artists, are as follows:
"Gonna hang on a little bit longer…put my faith in something I can't see," sings Lilly Hiatt on the title track of her third LP Trinity Lane. It's a set of honest words from an album of personal truths; a collection of songs that take stock of where she's been, where she's going and the challenges weathered to get there. Produced by Michael Trent of Shovels & Rope, Trinity Lane is about working hard and keeping the faith. It’s centered on songwriting that melds the observational with the confessional and never tries to follow any particular musical genre code. The guitar riffs are as Seattle as they are southern; the topics are as modern as they are built on the past.
As Begonia, Alexa Dirks is bold and brazen, with a surprising pop sound that is tempered with sensitivity and wisdom. Dirks' first solo outing was the 2017 EP Lady in Mind. Her debut work was extremely well-received, being listed on NPR’s 10 Artists You Need to Know, with the single “Juniper” reaching #1 on the CBC 2 Music Charts. Begonia has been described as having one of Canada’s most extraordinary voices and her unique sound is “the place where synth-pop meets old soul and scrappy meets sexy.” Dirks’ intimate lyrics and audacious sound allows for her audience to relate to the messiness of life with an honesty that is refreshing.
In the fall of 2017, David Huckfelt left behind the familiar – the comfort of his home in Minneapolis, the camaraderie of his critically acclaimed band The Pines, the luxuries of heat, hot water and electricity – and relocated to Isle Royale, America’s most remote and least visited national park in Lake Superior. There, as an Artist in Residence selected by the National Park Service, Huckfelt spent ten hours a day for two straight weeks writing in solitude, channeling the mysterious and lonesome island’s spirits into his stunning debut solo album Stranger Angels.
Little Fevers was born out of Minnesota darlings Lucy Michelle and the Velvet Lapelles back in 2014. With a sprinkle of stereo lab, dash of Emily Haines and bit of Violent Femmes, Little Fevers has been performing for the past four years, playing tunes from their acclaimed debut release Field Trip. The band is currently writing a new album, spending the summer hunkering down in lead singer Lucy Michelle’s basement and recording at Pearl Studios in Northeast Minneapolis.
For more details about the Concerts in the Garden Series, along with a map of free parking locations, click on www.ndmoa.com.
If you’d like a listing of all the SimplyGrand to-dos in our Forks, plus information on lodging, dining and shopping, go to www.visitgrandforks.com and follow Visit Grand Forks on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.