Listening to music performed outdoors is one of summertime’s many pleasures. Moab residents and visitors alike will have several opportunities to enjoy live music outside at Swanny City Park during the Moab Free Concert Series in July.
New Orleans-based trombonist and vocalist Glen David Andrews and his six-piece band will kick off this year’s concert series on July 6. The band is known for performing a mix of funk, rhythm and blues, jazz, gospel and zydeco.
Currently on tour in Switzerland, Andrews is promoting his album “Redemption.” The album was recorded in The Living Room, a converted church on the West Bank of Algiers, outside of New Orleans. Andrews performs regularly at the annual New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
The nonprofit Friends of the Moab Folk Festival founded the Moab Free Concert Series with funding provided by the Moab Area Travel Council, the City of Moab and a number of local businesses.
While the Moab Folk Festival features Americana, roots-type music, the summer concert series showcases all kinds of music. Other upcoming shows include the Heather Gillis Band on July 13, I Draw Slow on July 20 and The Last Revel on July 27. A Moab-area musician or band will open for each of the headliner acts.
The Fiery Furnace Marching Band, which describes itself as a “mobile dance party,” will open for Andrews at 4:30 p.m.
Fiery Furnace plays a mix of New Orleans brass, pop, Balkan brass and traditional jazz, making the opening act a good match for the Glen David Andrews’ band, said Fiery Furnace trombonist Bobby Hollahan. Concertgoers can expect to hear a set of original tunes by this unique Moab band.
Friends of the Moab Folk Festival provide a portable stage, and a “professional sound man,” for the event. The Moab Community Stage is another nonprofit under the umbrella of the Moab Folk Festival.
A variety of prepared food vendors will be at Swanny City Park so that people can enjoy dinner while listening to music. Beer from the Moab Brewery will also be for sale, and proceeds will go toward sustaining the annual free concert series. A growing list of local business sponsors is also helping to keep the concerts coming, MFF Assistant Director Cassie Paup said.
“We’re really excited for this second year,” Paup said. “It’s a really great community event.”
The concert series was planned to coincide with the Moab Farmers’ Market to attract more attention to the market, held on Fridays at the park from 4:30-7:30 p.m. Last year’s inaugural concert series season drew more people to the market, causing sales to increase by 200 percent, Paup said. A number of local farmers will be selling their freshly harvested produce at the market.
“(The concerts) really brought out a nice crowd to Swanny Park,” said Hollahan, who attended all four concerts last year. “It’s just a wonderful series.”
Elaine Gizler, executive director of the Moab Area Travel Council, said, “It’s an excellent way for tourists to enjoy an evening in Moab after a day of outdoor activities. It encourages the visitors to stay in town, dine and visit the shops.”
Glen David Andrews to play free July 6 show in Swanny Park; Fiery Furnace Marching Band to open
When: Friday, July 6, 4:30-7:30 p.m. (During the Moab Farmers’ Market)
Where: Swanny City Park, 400 N 100 West
Information: Call 435-259-3198 or visit moabfreeconcerts.com or glendavidandrewsband.com
“We’re really excited for this second year. It’s a really great community event.”