By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal
The Double Decker Arts Festival is full of good music this year, and alt-country band Deer Tick is ready to play its part.
The festival has the arts, food, kids events, a walk/run and double decker rides, as well as a string of performances by top-notch bands.
A ticketed concert on April 26 includes prolific singer-songwriter Iron & Wine, Deer Tick and Mississippi native Charlie Mars, while Saturday features free shows by legend Mavis Staples, New Orleans funk band the Funky Meters, Memphis folk-pop band Star & Micey, and Oxford-based bands like Young Buffalo and the Minor Adjustments.
Deer Tick front man John McCauley said his band, based out of Rhode Island, is ready for Double Decker.
“When we started going to Europe, the shows are run a little different, so we’d get a short set time, like an hour. So we learned how to make like a greatest hits kind of set,” he said. “When we do festivals, you’re not allowed a whole lot of time. We do the greatest hits stuff.”
Whether Deer Tick is on a large festival stage or a small club stage, the band is looking to engage the audience that stands before them.
“It’s better if the audience participates,” McCauley said. “The crowd can get in on it. You can pull people out of the crowd and make them sing. We’re getting good at putting on a good rock ‘n’ roll show.”
The group’s latest album, “Divine Providence,” was released late last year, and with a busy touring schedule ahead, it looks like McCauley and crew will see more of the stage than the studio for a while. For a band as laid back as Deer Tick, that suits them just fine.
“Our summers are basically booked up,” McCauley said, “I don’t know about when our next record’ll be finished, but I don’t think that we’re too worried about it. We’re just gonna play it by ear.”
WHAT: Double Decker Festival, featuring music, art, walk/run, double decker rides, food, children’s events and more
WHEN: April 27-28
WHERE: Downtown Oxford
COST: The festival is free. The Friday night concert is $13.41 plus fees, with a higher price day of show.
INFO: oxfordcvb.com/doubledecker/index.html or
• 7 p.m. – Charlie Mars
• 8:30 p.m. – Deer Tick
• 10 p.m. – Iron & Wine
Caterpillar Main Stage
• 10 a.m. – Rooster Blues
• 11:30 a.m. – Star & Micey
• 1 p.m. – Grace Askew
• 2:30 p.m. – Jimbo Mathus & the Tri-State
• 4 p.m. – George McConnell & the Nonchalants
• 5:30 p.m. – Patterson Hood
• 7 p.m. – Funky Meters
• 9 p.m. – Mavis Staples
Oxford American Magazine’s
20th Anniversary Stage
• 11 a.m. – Elemovements
• Noon – Machine Gun Kelley & the G-Men
• 1 p.m. – Kenny Brown
• 2 p.m. – Minor Adjustments
• 3 p.m. – Rocket 88
• 4 p.m. – Young Buffalo