I have never been a big fan of Charlie Wilson, I guess because I never really paid much attention to him. I remember the Gap Band he fronted and they were OK, but Charlie just wasn’t on my radar- until tonight. My plan was to grab a bite and head to the Unum Stage for Junior Brown, but I never made it. I thoroughly enjoyed Charlie Wilson’s show. When I say show, I really mean SHOW. He brought dancers, horns, electric outfits and all sorts of cool stuff. But, he also brought a good band and his own dynamic personality. They were fun, professionally choreographed, and sounded great.
Tonight, the Coke Stage features the Goo Goo Dolls, in a hard rock show that should be loud and proud. They are a Grammy nominated rock group, formed in the rock star mecca of Buffalo, NY. With album sales exceeding 10 million worldwide, the group has had 14 top ten singles, as well.
However, as thousands of fans discovered at the Here Come The Mummies show, there is other music at Riverbend – not just the Coke Stage acts. The big draw of the night will probably go to Blackberry Smoke, playing the Bud Light stage at 7:45 p.m. The Thunder & Fire Tour headlines the Unum stage, with Carmine and Vinny Appice going head to head in Drum Wars. They will be joined by Michael Angelo Batio, once declared the “world’s fastest guitarist.”
The TVFCU stage has Newtown and the Features co-headlining the evening under the Market Street Bridge. At the Meo Mio Stage, you will find Billy Iuso and the Restless Hearts playing their brand of New Orleans funk.
Several local bands perform Friday night, with The Communicators opening up for Blackberry Smoke on the Bud stage at 6:15 p.m. My guess is Blackberry Smoke will come away with a new found respect for Chattanooga talent when they hear these guys.
On the Unum Stage, Kofi Mawuko and Ogya open for the Appice brothers. Kofi always brings a “show” with dancers, and lots of percussion. It should be fun!
The TVFCU stage has one of the hottest local groups in town, with Jordan Hallquist and the Outfit opening at 6:15 p.m. Longtime local favorites Mother of Pearl open the Meo Mio Stage at 7:30 p.m.
The VW Stage features John & Michelle in the opening set at 6 p.m., followed by a great country band – The Collins Brothers, A special 11 p.m. show features the electonica group Digital Butter.
For the entire line-up, go to www.riverbendfestival.com. Just click on “line-up”. You can then sort by day or stage or artist. A cool thingy you can get is a “pointsmap” for your smart-phone. It gives you a map of the festival grounds and who’s playing when and where. It’s free and available by clicking http://riverbendfestival.com/pages/pointsmap.
Don’t forget to check out lunchtime activities as Riverbend stars visit local establishments in town to sing a song or two and sign autographs. For a schedule just click on – http://riverbendfestival.com/pages/riverbend-outreach. Just look on the left side and click on any of the three for schedules, places and times.
For all the 411 on Riverbend, check out my Riverbend Survival Kit at http://chattanoogan.com/2012/6/6/227794/Chattanoogas-Live-Music-Scene.aspx . Just click and away you go!
See you there!
Email Bob Payne at firstname.lastname@example.org or www.facebook.com/davrik2000
- Photo2 by Karen Shostak