Sum­mer­fest

The Big Gig’s mu­sic from the view­points of two gen­er­a­tions

Wisconsin Gazette - - Front Page - By Mike Hol­loway and Michael Muck­ian

Sum­mer­fest brings more than 800 acts to more than a dozen stages.

Now in its 51st year, it’s long been hailed as one of Amer­ica’s best — and largest — mu­si­cal fes­ti­vals.

The event started in 1968 steeped in fam­ily en­ter­tain­ment, with co­me­dian Bob Hope as the in­au­gu­ral head­liner and then-Mayor Henry Maier’s “The Sum­mer­fest Polka” as the of­fi­cial theme song.

It didn’t take long for or­ga­niz­ers to re­al­ize the way to Mil­wau­kee’s heart was through the ear: book­ing con­tem­po­rary and pop­u­lar mu­si­cal acts that would ap­peal to young peo­ple — in those days, baby boomers.

The boomers’ mu­sic is still easy to find at Sum­mer­fest, but au­di­ences have be­come more di­verse over the decades — and so have the fes­ti­val’s per­form­ers.

This year’s lineup re­flects the wide mu­si­cal tastes Mil­wau­keeans have de­vel­oped.

WiG mu­sic writ­ers Michael Muck­ian and Mike Hol­loway — rep­re­sent­ing two dif­fer­ent gen­er­a­tions of fes­ti­val-go­ers — look at some of the acts booked to play the Big Gig.

IAN AN­DER­SON PRESENTS JETHRO TULL 50TH AN­NIVER­SARY TOUR

June 27, 9:45 p.m. BMO Har­ris Pavil­ion with Miller Lite

Ru­mor has it that Ian An­der­son and his fel­low English mu­si­cians were try­ing out dif­fer­ent names for a rock group that blended English folk mu­sic with Amer­i­can blues. The night in 1968 when the group hit its stride — and got no­ticed by the mu­sic press — they were ap­pear­ing as Jethro Tull, the name of an ac­tual 18th-cen­tury English agri­cul­tur­al­ist who in­vented the seed drill and the horse-drawn hoe. The name stuck.

Since then An­der­son, gui­tarist Martin Barre and a re­volv­ing door of fel­low play­ers par­layed their unique sound into one the most iconic acts of the Bri­tish In­va­sion’s sec­ond wave.

Vis­ually, Jethro Tull seemed as ec­cen­tric as its mu­sic. An­der­son, then sport­ing a full head of bushy red hair and red beard, brought into the mix not only a dis­tinc­tive voice, but also one of rock mu­sic’s first flutes. He often per­formed stand­ing on one leg, the other bent at the knee, mak­ing his thin, usu­ally long-coated body re­sem­ble the num­ber 4. Barre’s hard blues-rock chords rounded out the sound.

The band also waded into clas­si­cal mu­sic adap­ta­tions, in­clud­ing a jazzy ar­range­ment of J.S. Bach’s “Bour­rée in E mi­nor BWV996” on Stand Up, the group’s sec­ond al­bum.

An­der­son’s red hair is long gone, but his me­an­der­ings into the clas­si­cal world are not. As the pri­mary sup­porter of the Jethro Tull brand, he’s also in­cor­po­rated world mu­sic and in 2003 re­leased a Christ­mas al­bum that stands with some of the best — thanks to the group’s long­stand­ing English folk mu­sic in­flu­ence.

Fans of the band seem pleased with Jethro Tull’s lat­est it­er­a­tion and will want to catch the Sum­mer­fest per­for­mance just to see what av­enues An­der­son has been ex­plor­ing lately.

— M.M.

JAMES TAY­LOR/BON­NIE RAITT

June 28, 7:30 p.m., Amer­i­can Fam­ily In­sur­ance Am­phithe­ater

They seem an un­likely duo to pair on­stage, but on sec­ond thought…

Boomer crooner James Tay­lor, born in Bos­ton but raised in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, was the first Amer­i­can artist to sign on to the Bea­tles’ Ap­ple Records af­ter au­di­tion­ing for Paul Mc­Cart­ney and Ge­orge Har­ri­son. Tay­lor de­parted Ap­ple be­fore his 1970 break­through hit, “Fire and Rain,” recorded for Warner Broth­ers.

Few fans knew the song was about the drug over­dose of a close friend and Tay­lor’s ef­forts to beat his own ad­dic­tions. He has since re­leased a string of hits, earned five Grammy Awards and in 2000 was in­ducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Born in Bur­bank, Cal­i­for­nia, Bon­nie Raitt hailed from a mu­si­cal fam­ily that in­cluded her fa­ther, Broad­way bari­tone John Raitt, who was known for his roles in Carousel and Ok­la­homa! Raised a Quaker, Raitt and her fam­ily moved east and the fledg­ling mu­si­cian learned to play gui­tar at sum­mer camp in up­state New York.

In 1970, she took a se­mes­ter off from Rad­cliffe and im­mersed her­self in the Philadel­phia blues scene. Af­ter re­ceiv­ing good no­tices in Newsweek for play­ing backup for Mis­sis­sippi Fred McDow­ell at the Philly Folk Fes­ti­val, Raitt signed a con­tract with Warner Broth­ers, re­leas­ing her first al­bum in 1971. She since has scored 10 Grammy Awards and was in­ducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the same year as Tay­lor.

Both per­form­ers tap into Amer­i­can roots mu­sic. Their ap­proaches are sin­gu­lar, yet com­ple­men­tary in style and sub­stance, re­flect­ing a by­gone mu­si­cal pe­riod with as­ton­ish­ing con­tem­po­rary rel­e­vance. — M.M.

WiG mu­sic writ­ers Michael Muck­ian and Mike Hol­loway — rep­re­sent­ing two dif­fer­ent gen­er­a­tions of fes­ti­val­go­ers — take a look at some of the acts booked to play the Big Gig.

BUDDY GUY

June 30, 10 p.m., Har­ley-David­son Road­house

When you think of Chicago blues gui­tarists, Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Wa­ters, Magic Sam and Buddy Guy all come to mind. Guy is the only one still alive and play­ing the blues.

He em­bod­ies the clas­sic blues story. He played his first licks on a home­made in­stru­ment in his na­tive Lettsworth, Louisiana, be­fore go­ing to Chicago at age 21 and fall­ing in with the blues play­ers record­ing for Chess Records. Muddy Wa­ters men­tored the young man, who soon dis­tin­guished him­self among his fel­low blues­men.

Guy’s style has been de­scribed as deeply vir­tu­osic blended with a hammy stage act that makes him a player of ex­tremes. His play­ing moves sud­denly from loud to soft, and from a raw, raspy blues style to one deeply melodic, even sweet in both tone and tim­bre.

He also was known for play­ing a loud and ag­gres­sive Fender Stra­to­caster and pi­o­neer­ing dis­tor­tion and feed­back tech­niques, sounds later mas­tered by Jimi Hen­drix, over whom Guy had a pro­found in­flu­ence.

Guy’s play­ing is fre­quently cited by younger mu­si­cians, and Mil­wau­kee fans may know him best for open­ing the Rolling Stones’ last few Cream City per­for­mances. He has won count­less awards, in­clud­ing seven Grammy Awards and a Na­tional Medal of Arts from Pres­i­dent Barack Obama, whom he coaxed into per­form­ing “Sweet Home Chicago” with him dur­ing the Wash­ing­ton, D.C., pre­sen­ta­tion cer­e­mony.

Guy is a leg­end who, at age 81, doesn’t seem to be slow­ing down.

— M.M.

THE EDGAR WIN­TER GROUP

July 1, 6 p.m. Har­ley­David­son Road­house

If there is a true find in this year’s Sum­mer­fest lineup, some­one who rarely if ever shows up in the area, it may be Edgar Win­ter.

As the late blues gui­tarist Johnny Win­ter’s younger brother, mul­ti­in­stru­men­tal­ist Edgar set out to fol­low in his brother’s foot­steps. The pair grew up in Beau­mont, Texas.

Edgar Win­ter, along with his band White Trash, met with a mod­icum of suc­cess early on, re­cod­ing hits like “Free Ride” and the in­stru­men­tal “Franken­stein,” both of which re­lied on the mu­si­cian’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties with key­boards as well as elec­tron­ics. Win­ter is said to have in­vented the key­board strap, which al­lowed him to strut across the stage, his elec­tric key­board strapped to his body.

Although he often flies un­der the radar, Win­ter has kept a busy sched­ule ply­ing his unique brand of R&B. His last stu­dio al­bum,

Rebel Road, was re­leased in 2008, and he has per­formed in mul­ti­ple it­er­a­tions of Ringo Starr’s All-Starr Band.

In 2017, he toured with Deep Pur­ple and Alice Cooper in one of last sum­mer’s lead­ing rock legacy shows. Maybe his taste of Sum­mer­fest will in­spire him to come back to the area a lit­tle more often.

— M.M.

BLACK VI­OLIN

July 1, 10 p.m. John­son Con­trols World Stage

On Black Vi­olin’s 2015 ap­pro­pri­ately ti­tled al­bum Stereo­types, the clas­si­cal­in­fused, hip-hop duo set out to dis­prove mis­con­cep­tions about black men in mu­sic. Kevin Sylvester — one-half of Black Vi­olin — can re­call mul­ti­ple in­stances where peo­ple couldn’t be­lieve that he played clas­si­cal mu­sic.

Sylvester and his band­mate, vi­o­list Wil­ner Bap­tiste, met as high school stu­dents in Florida, where they at­tended the same or­ches­tra class. Fast for­ward 20 years and they’re still per­form­ing to­gether, open­ing up con­ver­sa­tions about the in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity of hip hop and clas­si­cal mu­sic and the pos­i­tive ef­fect they can have on our com­mu­ni­ties.

There are no vo­cals that ac­com­pany most of Black Vi­olin’s mu­sic, although they’ve per­formed with rap­pers and fea­ture artists such as DMX on some stu­dio tracks. The act’s sound is that of a hip-hop beat with clas­si­cal so­los lay­ered over the top. The songs are rem­i­nis­cent of a back­ing track that the Wu Tang Clan or Jedi Mind Tricks might rap over. But they stand on their own as beau­ti­ful neo-clas­si­cal pieces.

The name Black Vi­olin is de­rived from the last al­bum of the late jazz vi­o­lin­ist Stuff Smith, who was a huge in­spi­ra­tion to the duo. Black Vi­olin won the Show­time at the Apollo 2005 Leg­end ti­tle, so­lid­i­fy­ing the duo’s rep­u­ta­tion. They per­formed with Ali­cia Keys at the 2004 Bill­board Awards.

Com­ing from a mu­sic-ed­u­ca­tion back­ground, Sylvester and Bap­tiste have per­formed for thou­sands of stu­dents in North Amer­ica and Europe. They’ve part­nered with the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion for Mu­sic Mer­chants, ad­vo­cat­ing for ac­ces­si­ble mu­sic ed­u­ca­tion.

Black Vi­olin of­fers a unique Sum­mer­fest per­for­mance that’s likely to draw fes­ti­val­go­ers from all sorts of back­grounds — whether they pre­fer hip hop, clas­si­cal or some­thing in be­tween. Check out their per­for­mance and be a part of some­thing truly di­verse.

— M.H.

REV­EREND PEY­TON’S BIG DAMN BAND

July 5, 6 p.m. Har­ley-David­son Road­house

His­tory claims that Pete Town­shend was the first rock and roll mu­si­cian to smash a gui­tar on­stage.

Wit­nesses to Mil­wau­kee’s 2010 Warped Tour ap­pear­ance had the chance to be a part of what very well could have been the first wash­board to ever be smashed on­stage. Breezy Pey­ton — wash­board player in Rev­erend Pey­ton’s Big Damn Band — hyped up a crowd of mostly teenagers who were at Warped Tour to see other bands by de­stroy­ing her wash­board and throw­ing the pieces into the crowd. The au­di­ence scram­bled to catch them as if they were drum­sticks or gui­tar picks.

The fact that a coun­try-blues band was part of a na­tional trav­el­ing fes­ti­val known for its punk roots is a tes­ta­ment to the orig­i­nal­ity of Rev­erend Pey­ton’s Big Damn Band. It’s all coun­try-blues at heart, with a heavy em­pha­sis on blues gui­tar. Josh “The Rev­erend” Pey­ton’s fu­ri­ous fin­ger-pick­ing abil­ity — which he at­tributes to hand surgery he had in his early years — pro­vides rhythm and lead gui­tar parts, com­plete with squeal­ing slides. The Rev­erend has a pow­er­ful, South­ern-ac­cented voice, and he’s ac­com­pa­nied by backup vo­cals from Breezy. Lyri­cally, their songs ex­plore ev­ery­thing from home cook­ing to party an­thems.

The Big Damn Band shines in live shows. The Rev­erend is known for his ar­se­nal of DIY-crafted gui­tars, such as one made from a cigar box and an­other made from a shot­gun. The lat­ter went vi­ral in a video in which The Rev­erend per­formed a song with it, then pro­ceeded to fire it, hit­ting a tar­get.

Watch­ing The Rev­erend play his in­stru­ments, his large fin­gers danc­ing up and down the fret­board, is a vis­ual treat. Breezy en­ters a trance-like state as she pro­vides the back­bone of the rhythm sec­tion with her wash­board and drum­mer Sen­teney uses a 5-gal­lon plas­tic bucket as part of his kit.

Rev­erend Pey­ton’s Big Damn Band has eight full-length re­leases un­der its belt, with a few of the later re­leases de­but­ing at No. 1 on the iTunes Blues Chart and var­i­ous Bill­board charts. The lat­est al­bum, The

Front Porch Ses­sions, was re­leased in 2017 and was en­tirely self-pro­duced. The band took a qui­eter ap­proach with that record, at­tempt­ing to repli­cate the at­mo­sphere of a front-porch jam ses­sion.

On some of the tracks, Sen­teney per­formed us­ing a suit­case rather than a drum kit. The mu­sic video for the al­bum’s “We De­serve a Happy End­ing” shows The Rev­erend and com­pany per­form­ing on their front porch as a cast of char­ac­ters stum­ble in and out of the house.

If you’re look­ing for unique en­ter­tain­ment, look to Rev­erend Pey­ton’s Big Damn Band’s per­for­mance at Sum­mer­fest. You’ll wit­ness a col­or­ful cast of char­ac­ters per­form great coun­try-blues. And, at a fes­ti­val as large as Sum­mer­fest, it’s likely The Rev­erend will have a few spe­cial sur­prises in store.

— M.H.

RATBOYS

July 6, 6:45 p.m. John­son Con­trols World Stage

Keep­ing track of gen­res and the bands within them can be an un­nec­es­sar­ily com­pli­cated task, es­pe­cially con­sid­er­ing the

sub-gen­res that stem from the larger cat­e­gories. Ju­lia Steiner — singer/song­writer for the Chicago-based band Ratboys — half-jok­ingly took a jab at sub-gen­res like post-punk and posthard­core, cre­at­ing one of her own to de­scribe Ratboys’ mu­sic: post-coun­try. Ratboys isn’t a coun­try band — most of the time, it em­bod­ies more of an in­die-rock sound. But the band draws heav­ily from the tra­di­tional coun­try sounds and sto­ry­telling of the ’70s, cre­at­ing a unique, mod­ern spin on the genre. The South­ern in­flu­ences emerge from the twangy gui­tar riffs and Steiner’s sweet, re­strained voice. But what sep­a­rates Ratboys from other coun­try acts is the way the band tran­si­tions into a pound­ing, in­die-rock cho­rus or break.

With each new song Ratboys re­leases comes a new story. In “Elvis is in the Freezer,” Steiner writes about a time she came home from college, only to be warned by her mother that the fam­ily cat was dead in the freezer. In other less per­sonal songs, Steiner con­tex­tu­al­izes her own ex­pe­ri­ences through the per­spec­tives of fic­tional and non-fic­tional char­ac­ters, such as the Antarc­tic ex­plorer Dou­glas Maw­son in the song “Cry­ing.”

Ratboys got its start when Steiner met gui­tarist Dave Sagan in college. Steiner had been writ­ing mu­sic since she was 14, but she’d not yet been a part of a band. The two hit it off af­ter shar­ing some of their mu­si­cal in­flu­ences, and Rat­boy — orig­i­nally de­void of the “s” — was born. Af­ter re­leas­ing the RAT­BOY EP in 2011 and play­ing some shows, they were con­tacted by an­other artist with the name Rat­boy from New York, prompt­ing Steiner and Sagan to plu­ral­ize the band’s name. The RAT­BOY EP set the ground­work for Ratboys, show­ing a very DIY and early ver­sion of the band’s sound, the most no­tice­able as­pect be­ing Steiner’s sole use of the acous­tic gui­tar rather than the elec­tric, which she would come to play live full-time in the later years of the band.

Ratboys’ first full-length al­bum AOID was re­leased via Top­shelf Records in 2015, in­tro­duc­ing more of a full-band sound with new mem­bers. The band kept up with tour­ing na­tion­ally, build­ing a reper­toire as it toured along­side such acts as Soror­ity Noise and the Is­land of Mis­fit Toys.

In 2017, the band re­leased its sec­ond full-length al­bum ti­tled GN, fol­lowed by an EP in 2018 ti­tled GL. Writ­ten over five years and ar­guably the band’s most hon­est and heart­felt re­lease yet, GN is a road map of all of the per­sonal re­la­tion­ships Steiner’s had.

GL presents four new songs from the band, each re­mark­ably dif­fer­ent from the pre­vi­ous, yet all deal­ing with the over­ar­ch­ing theme of heart­break.

Ratboys played a free show at High Dive in River­west in 2015. Those who were able to watch Ratboys per­form in such an in­ti­mate en­vi­ron­ment should con­sider them­selves lucky. For the rest of us, we’ll just have to set­tle for see­ing the band shine at the Big Gig.

— M.H.

SOC­CER MOMMY

July 8, 4:15 p.m. John­son Con­trols World Stage

So­phie Al­li­son is quickly mak­ing a name for her­self at 20 years old. Af­ter gen­er­at­ing buzz with her DIY record­ings on Band­camp as Soc­cer Mommy, Al­li­son took the plunge and dropped out of a mu­sic busi­ness pro­gram in college to be­gin per­form­ing full-time. Soc­cer Mommy built a rep­u­ta­tion and toured with Phoebe Bridgers as a sup­port­ing act, per­form­ing at mul­ti­ple sold-out shows. The New York Times men­tions Al­li­son in an article head­lined “Rock’s Not Dead, It’s Ruled by Girls” — and now she has a spot per­form­ing at this year’s Sum­mer­fest.

Soc­cer Mommy’s sound is that of slow­burn­ing lo-fi — dreamy-emo pop melodies at a mel­low tempo. Al­li­son’s voice man­ages to drone on while still main­tain­ing a cool, calm and col­lected melody, with lyrics deal­ing with vul­ner­a­bil­ity as well as strength. The band’s Band­camp page sums it all up: “Chill, but kind of sad.”

While Soc­cer Mommy’s ear­lier re­leases em­body a DIY, bed­room-pop, self-recorded sound, the band has evolved with its de­but full-length al­bum Clean, re­leased ear­lier this year. Although the record was re­leased via Fat Possum and was recorded in a stu­dio rather than a bed­room, it main­tains that lo-fi, gritty sound that put Soc­cer Mommy on the map, while cap­tur­ing a more ma­ture level of song­writ­ing from Al­li­son.

There’s still much to be seen and heard from Soc­cer Mommy. To be able to catch a Sum­mer­fest per­for­mance by the band at such an early stage in its ca­reer is some­thing you won’t want to miss. — M.H.

MANCH­ESTER OR­CHES­TRA

July 8, 7:30 p.m. Amer­i­can Fam­ily In­sur­ance Am­phithe­ater

Like many who were teenagers in the early 2000s, the mem­bers of Manch­ester Or­ches­tra had an emo phase. Not the black­eye­liner, swoopy-bangs kind of emo, but rather the emo­tional, wear-your-heart-ony­our-sleeve style of song­writ­ing emo.

It was dur­ing this pe­riod the band — fronted by singer and song­writer Andy Hull — be­gan to turn heads with the 2006 re­lease of I’m Like a Vir­gin Los­ing a Child.

Fu­eled by post-ado­les­cent angst, the de­but al­bum of Manch­ester Or­ches­tra bridged the di­vides sep­a­rat­ing emo, main­stream pop and folk mu­sic. The songs are at times quiet, sub­tle num­bers, but they often climb to a pow­er­ful, emo­tive cli­max with­out ever go­ing over the top. The ar­range­ments are typ­i­cally lay­ered in heavy gui­tar riffs ac­com­pa­nied by key­boards, and sing-a-long seg­ments that show­case Hull’s abil­ity to re­strain his voice at times and bel­low from the heart at oth­ers. The band’s songs often use the quiet-loud-quiet for­mat to cre­ate a

fluc­tu­at­ing rush of emo­tions.

Af­ter the re­leas­ing the sopho­more al­bum Mean Ev­ery­thing to Noth­ing in 2009, the band was on the path to main­stream suc­cess. Emo heavy­weight band Brand New — which per­formed at Sum­mer­fest in 2014 and in 2015, with Manch­ester Or­ches­tra open­ing for the lat­ter — brought the band on tour for mul­ti­ple runs. Manch­ester Or­ches­tra’s songs were picked up for movies, tele­vi­sion shows and video games. The seed was planted for as­pir­ing mu­si­cians who would cite the band’s mu­sic as a ma­jor in­flu­ence dur­ing the “emo re­vival” a decade later.

The band’s third al­bum, Sim­ple Math, re­leased in 2011, is a con­cept al­bum that marked a turn for the group. The record fo­cused on a story told from the per­spec­tive of a 23-year-old Hull, who ques­tions var­i­ous facets of life and phi­los­o­phy, in­clud­ing all of the anx­i­eties that come with adult­hood. If the band’s first two al­bums were the emo phase of Manch­ester Or­ches­tra, then Sim­ple Math was the post-college, “fig­ur­ing-out-life” phase. Con­cept al­bums would con­tinue to be a theme for the band as it added more com­plex lay­ers to its song­writ­ing and sto­ry­telling.

With each new re­lease, Manch­ester Or­ches­tra’s sound be­came in­creas­ingly dif­fi­cult to la­bel. As Hull ma­tured, so did the mu­sic. In 2014, the band re­leased its fourth and re­lent­lessly heavy, full-length al­bum Cope.

In 2016, Hull and band­mate Robert McDow­ell com­posed an orig­i­nal score for the in­de­pen­dent com­edy film Swiss Army

Man, star­ring Daniel Rad­cliffe and Paul Dano. Us­ing lay­ers upon lay­ers of vo­cals and no in­stru­ments, Hull and McDow­ell crafted the a capella sound­track, which is hi­lar­i­ous but heart wrench­ing. The score was nom­i­nated for “Best Orig­i­nal Score for a Com­edy Film” and “Film Mu­sic Com­po­si­tion of the Year” in the 2016 In­ter­na­tional Film Mu­sic Crit­ics As­so­ci­a­tion Awards com­pe­ti­tion.

Af­ter that mas­ter­piece, Manch­ester Or­ches­tra went for a stripped-down, more min­i­mal ap­proach to its fifth full-length al­bum, A Black Mile to the Sur­face, re­leased in 2017. Hull, who is in his 30s and has a son, shows his growth as both a mu­si­cian and as a hu­man as the al­bum ex­plores themes of love, mar­riage and father­hood through the con­text of a South Dakota town that is the sub­ject of the Deep Un­der­ground Neu­trino Ex­per­i­ment.

Although Hull is the only re­main­ing orig­i­nal mem­ber of Manch­ester Or­ches­tra, the band is as im­pres­sive as ever as it adapts and grows with new mem­bers. As is usu­ally the case with Sum­mer­fest per­for­mances, fans can ex­pect the band to play some of its heav­ier back-cat­a­logue work, as well as some of the newer stripped-down songs.

Re­gard­less, ex­pect emo­tions to run high. — M.H.

BOZ SCAGGS

July 8, 9:45 p.m. Briggs & Strat­ton Big Back­yard

Although born in Ohio and raised in Plano, Texas, Boz Scaggs can credit some of his ear­li­est mu­si­cal op­por­tu­ni­ties to Mil­wau­kee na­tive Steve Miller. They at­tended St. Mark’s School to­gether in Plano when Miller’s fam­ily moved there and played to­gether in their first band.

Scaggs fol­lowed Miller back to Wis­con­sin to at­tend the Uni­ver­sity of Wis­con­sinMadi­son, help­ing plant the seeds for what even­tu­ally be­came the Steve Miller Band. Af­ter a stint in Europe, Scaggs joined Miller in San Fran­cisco, per­form­ing on Miller’s first two al­bums be­fore strik­ing out on his own.

The 1970s be­longed to Scaggs the solo artist, with hits like “Low­down,” “Lido Shuf­fle” and oth­ers. Mix­ing rock riffs with a style once known as “disco soul,” Scaggs gar­nered a global fol­low­ing. Although he’s taken some fairly long hia­tuses dur­ing his al­most 40-year ca­reer, he re­mains a strong and con­sis­tent per­former.

These days Scaggs and wife Do­minique grow wine grapes in Napa Val­ley, Cal­i­for­nia, but he still hits area stages with some reg­u­lar­ity. Ex­pect the clas­sics as well as cuts from his 2015 al­bum A Fool to

Care dur­ing his Sum­mer­fest set.

Chances are he won’t play any num­bers

from Chil­dren of the Fu­ture and Sailor, his two Steve Miller Band record­ings, but you can al­ways ask.

— M.M.

PHOTO: SUM­MER­FEST, MIL­WAU­KEE, WI

Har­ley-David­son Road­house

Jethro Tull

James Tay­lor

Bon­nie Raitt

Buddy Guy

Rev­erend Pey­ton’s Big Damn Band

Black Vi­olin

The Edgar Win­ter Group

Manch­ester Or­ches­tra

Ratboys

Soc­cer Mommy

Boz Scaggs

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