UNION — The Downtown Summer Music Fest officially kicked off Saturday.
The Downtown Summer Music Fest is held by the Union County Chamber of Commerce and the Union County Recreation Department at the USC Union gazebo. The concert series includes four shows, the first of which took place from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday.
First, Nashville-based artist Rickey Godfrey performed solo with an acoustic guitar and his signature soulful voice. Godfrey performed original songs, covers and hits from the former band Garfeel Ruff, which was signed by Capitol Records in 1979 and fronted by Godfrey and his brother, Ronnie.
Spectators gathered under shade trees and in the USC Union gazebo, dancing and singing along with the music. Children played in the grassy area, enjoying the sunny day, while parents took in the music.
Following Godfrey’s performance, Mill Billy Blues — a collaboration formed earlier this year featuring Upstate artists Shane Pruitt, Brandon Turner, Matthew Knights, and Buffalo native Freddie Vanderford — took the stage. Spectators delighted at the displays of musicianship and banter between songs.
Mill Billy Blues announced they will travel to Nashville in a few months to work on their second recording at Ricky Skaggs studio.
In addition to the music and atmosphere, those in attendance enjoyed treats from various food vendors and crafters, as well as information and fellowship from other vendor booths. Some donated blood at the Bloodmobile from The Blood Connection, which was also present.
Three shows remain in the concert series sponsored by The Union Daily Times, The City of Union, Timken, Kimbrell’s Furniture, Founders Federal Credit Union, State Farm, and Oakmont of Union:
- June 22 — Hit-N-Run and Not Even Brothers (light rock/easy listening)
- July 20 — The Downing Family and Praise 150 (gospel)
- Aug. 3 — Split Rail Bluegrass Band and West End String Band (country/bluegrass)
Each show will be from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the USC Union gazebo.
For more information about Downtown Summer Music Fest, call (864) 427-9039.
Staff Writer Derik Vanderford can be reached at 864-427-1234, ext. 29, or by email at email@example.com.