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Homegrown Music Festival 2019: Day 2

Man playing standup bass, man playing guitar and singing into a microphone
Stevie Twining for KUMD
Woman standing at the window of a yellow food truck
Credit Christine Dean for KUMD
Oasis del Norte, Chow Haul, and the Rambler food trucks were all out and about Monday night of Homegrown

  It’s getting harder to tell a Monday night of the Homegrown Music Festival from a Friday night. Both have live music all up and down a part of Superior Street, food trucks out in force, a shuttle to whisk fans between venues, and capacity crowds. It’s fair to say that if a mostly Lincoln Park-centered night was an experiment, it was a huge success.

Bearded man playing a mandolin standing next to a man playing guitar
Credit Christine Dean for KUMD
Erik Berry and Actual Wolf

But, we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Rewind to Monday morning, when Actual Wolf kicked off what’s become an unofficial Homegrown tradition in recent years, his daily 10am-noon performances at Duluth Coffee Company with different guest musicians joining in each day. Marc Gartman and Erik Berry, aka LazyLightning420, joined in for a set of Grateful Dead covers that felt like the perfect soundtrack to cozy up a cold, grey, and damp Monday morning. Favorite sighting in the audience:  a purple tie-died t-shirt with a Minnesota Vikings logo smack dab in the middle of the Dead’s iconic Steal Your Face image.


Framed photo of a man standing in water up to his neck with just his head showing
Credit Stevie Twining for KUMD
Photo from the Wolfskull Creative musician portrait show opening

  The evening included a few downtown events, including an unofficial Homegrown opening reception for Wolfskull Creative’s not-to-be-missed musician portraits at Duluth Coffee Company with a Low Forms performance in the Roastery. The first showing of the Homegrown Music Video Festival happened at Zeitgeist (catch the repeat tonight at 7), followed by Nerd Nite, Homegrown edition including a presentation from Bratwurst’s Tyler Scouton.

Woman playing tambourine, woman playing guitar, man playing guitar, woman singing into a microphone
Credit Rhys Finnegan for KUMD
Norshore Summit

In Lincoln Park, Norshore Summit charmed the full house at Duluth Folk School with their breezy indie folk/rock (which can be heard on their brand new debut album). Featuring several current and former vocal students from UMD, the band excels at harmony.

Man wearing a silver shirt and pants
Credit Christine Dean for KUMD
Robot Rickshaw after his set

Meanwhile, Robot Rickshaw got things started at a bustling Lake Superior Brewing, which opened on a Monday specifically to be a Homegrown venue. For this performance, which Troy Rogers,the man behind the gas mask,  had billed on social media as “Likely the last stage appearance of the rickshaw in its current state before a complete tear-down and overhaul,” he was joined for his set of polyrhythmic space dance music by Matt Wasmund on sax and belly dancer Ziola of Tribal Alchemie.

At Bent Paddle Brewing, the 11-member Northland’s Finest Horn Choir was very fine indeed, warming up the crowd with an originals medley and classic covers like “Louie, Louie” and the Star Wars theme.

The annual Homegrown Poetry Showcase moved to the Duluth Folk School this year, and it felt like a good fit for both the selection of poets who read (accompanied by guitarist Richie Townsend of Lesser Planets and One Less Guest violinist Lauren Cooper) and the audience. Several blocks down the street, Four Mile Portage played their usual fun and lively set accompanied by Kyle Ollah and a guest bassist playing her first Homegrown.

Things were also lively back at Bent Paddle, where the Fish Heads entertained a full house with a set including originals and covers like a bluegrass-flavored version of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing.”

Band onstage
Credit Stevie Twining for KUMD
Solmon Witherspoon performs with his band and brother Stephan

  If Duluth native Solomon Witherspoon ever played Homegrown, it was a very long time ago, so it was a pleasure to have a chance to see him on stage at the hometown festival. He and his funky band delivered a solid R & B set, encouraging audience participation and bringing his brother Stephan onstage at one point, wrapping it all up with a killer version of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition.”

Back at Bent Paddle, Newberrigan, a guitar/bass/drums trio led by local music veterans Paul Newberg and Tom Berrigan, delivered a grooving rock set featuring both originals and covers.

Woman playing guitar and woman playing saxophone
Credit Stevie Twining for KUMD
Paper Parlor

  By the time Paper Parlor was ready to take the stage at Duluth Cider, a couple of venues were hitting capacity, although the wait to get in never became more than a few minutes long. Fans lucky enough to catch their set were treated to rocking originals like “Silver Spoon” as well as covers including a phenomenal version of “Maggot Brain,” that would have made Funkadelilc guitarist Eddie Hazel proud.

Things were also rocking down the street at Caddy Shack with punkers Nopamine inspiring a small but extremely enthusiastic mosh pit in front of the stage.


Man playing drums and man playing guitar as seen from behind
Credit Stevie Twining for KUMD
Tyler Dubla and Jimi Cooper performing with Woodblind

  Woodblind’s expanded band performance was one of the highlights of the night, a joyful set of dub and ska grooves with Teague Alexy, Jen West, drummer Tyler Dubla, guitarist Jimi Cooper, and violinist Eli Bissonett joining in. The already enthusiastic crowd went nuts when the band broke into a fan favorite, their cover of Black Sabbath’s “War Pigs,” and the folks up front didn’t stop grooving and jumping till the last note of closing tune “Big Voice.”

Our favorite folk/rock punk Rick McLean finished off the night at Caddy Shack, playing favorites like his tongue-in-cheek “Million Dollar Country Song.”

Punk band on stage
Credit Christine Dean for KUMD

  Coming up tonight, we’ll see you in Canal Park for shows at Amazing Grace, Vikre Distillery, and The Sports Garden. The action spills out to downtown and beyond, with another new Lincoln Park venue, Ursa Minor Brewing, hosting music from 6pm till around 9.  Quirky accordion and guitar duo Dance Attic, who kick off the lineup, will unveil what promise to be fabulous new stage costumes. Sir Benedict’s Tavern and Prove Gallery will also host music, while those of us that missed out on the first showing of the Homegrown Music Video Festival have a second chance at Zinema 2 at 7pm.


Chow Haul will be hanging out at The Sports Garden tonight to keep you fueled up, and if you’re still playing along with the Homegrown fashion challenge, wear your favorite tropical shirt tonight and you’ll fit right in.  


Looking ahead to tomorrow morning’s Actual Wolf set at Duluth Coffee, he’ll have the Hobo Nephews joining him from 10am-noon.

Connect with us on social media and stay up-to-date on all the Homegrown action. Find us on: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

This Homegrown Week on KUMD is made possible by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.



Man playing guitar, man singing
Credit Stevie Twining for KUMD
Solomon performs at Duluth Cider

Closeup of a man singing into a microphone
Credit Stevie Twining for KUMD
Kirdan Wenger of Paper Parlor

Several people playing French Horn while sitting in a row
Credit Maija Jenson for KUMD
Northland's Finest Horn Choir

Acoustic band performing on stage
Credit Christine Dean for KUMD
Four Mile Portage


Christine is The North 103.3's Music Director, a host of Music Through the Day, and the producer of Live from Studio A. One of her favorite things about her job is the opportunity to share music from the Twin Ports’ many talented local artists. In her spare time she takes full of advantage of Duluth’s outdoors opportunities.
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