EDITORIAL: Down on Main

Concert series returns after 2009′s success
Monday’s announcement of a three-concert 2010 Down on Main summer series affirms the hugely popular free performances started in 2009, creating a musical venue out of the spacious front lawn of Tupelo City Hall in the Fairpark District.
Tupeloans’ response in 2009 was in the spirit of Joe Cocker’s lyrics in “Summer in the City”:
“Hot town, summer in the city
Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty
Been down, isn’t it a pity
Doesn’t seem to be a shadow in the city
… But at night it’s a different world
Go out and find a girl
Come-on come-on and dance all night
Despite the heat it’ll be all right …”
Organized by an independent civic group of young Tupelo professionals, with the involvement of the Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association, the three-concert series will feature six bands and/or solo performers, all regionally popular, with performances set July 8, Aug. 12 and Sept. 9.
The Down on Main series was created by direct citizen action – young business leaders who enjoy contemporary music, are themselves musicians, and who sought to reshape Tupelo’s image as a somewhat stodgy town that has not been competitive with similar cities in drawing young adults as working, permanent residents.
The all-volunteer group raises private-sector funding and pairs it with a voluntary assessment collected on Tupelo residents’ utility bills, then channeled through the Quality of Life Committee. Downtown Tupelo association executive Debbie Brangenberg said the 2010 budget falls in the $35,000 to $40,000 range.
All the performers are selected by music-savvy volunteers who closely follow the music scene in Oxford, Starkville and Memphis.
All the concerts are free, and people are allowed to bring small party tents, lawn chairs, blankets, and picnic meals. Beer is sold under license to age-eligible attendees. This year’s series will add a venue for artists to display and sell their goods.
All performances are Thursdays, starting at 6:30 p.m.
The series adds a layer of quality seasonal choices for Tupelo’s citizens – good entertainment for a summer night with family and friends.

Down on Main
2010 Concert Series
Where: Fairpark
Cost: Free
Info: (662) 841-6598

- July 8 Hill Country Revue,
John Paul Keith & the 145s
- Aug. 12 The Infamous
Stringdusters, Sanders Bohlke
- Sept. 9 The Dirty Dozen
Brass Band, Moon Taxi

NEMS Daily Journal