August 20, 2017
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  • Taking the stage at Downs Park on June 11, Ain’t Misbehavin’ plays big band music from the swing era.
    Taking the stage at Downs Park on June 11, Ain’t Misbehavin’ plays big band music from the swing era.
  • On June 18, the band Different Sisters will perform classic old-time rock ‘n’ roll, blues and some contemporary songs that get people dancing.
    On June 18, the band Different Sisters will perform classic old-time rock ‘n’ roll, blues and some contemporary songs that get people dancing.
  • The band 4 on the Floor with Overdrive performs covers from multiple eras, ranging from Motown to rockabilly to country and doo-wop.
    The band 4 on the Floor with Overdrive performs covers from multiple eras, ranging from Motown to rockabilly to country and doo-wop.
  • The band 4 on the Floor with Overdrive performs covers from multiple eras, ranging from Motown to rockabilly to country and doo-wop.
    The band 4 on the Floor with Overdrive performs covers from multiple eras, ranging from Motown to rockabilly to country and doo-wop.

Big Band And Top 40: Downs Park To Present Summer Concert Series

Kerrigan Stern
Kerrigan Stern's picture
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June 14, 2017

The Friends of Downs Park have made no secret of their intention to make the Bayside Summer Concert Series an event that transcends eras. After all, this year’s bands bridge the multigenerational divide from blues to Motown to rock ‘n’ roll.

Pet Rock kicked off the 2017 session on June 4. The remaining first leg of the free Downs Park Bayside Summer Concert Series will feature Ain’t Misbehavin’, Different Sisters, and 4 on the Floor with Overdrive on Sundays throughout June from 6:00pm to 8:00pm.

The Pasadena Voice caught up with each band to find out what audiences can expect.

Ain’t Misbehavin’
Concert Date: June 11

Band director George Stelmach is excited to wow the crowd with music from Ain’t Misbehavin,’ a 21-piece group. More information on the artists, who come from all different walks of life, can be found on www.aintmisbehavinbigband.com.

Q: What is special about your band?

A: The band has performed at many concerts, dances, retirement communities [and] celebrations of all types in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. metropolitan areas. Unfortunately, because of huge advances in technology, the need for live bands of any type, and especially big bands, has almost disappeared. For any occasion, where there is a need for music, hiring a DJ is much less expensive than hiring a 21-piece band, which is [obvious]. We play strictly for donations, which are used for operating expenses and a great party at year’s end. The band is a great hobby for the members. Some folks like to hit a golf ball, some like to fish. We like to play.

Q: For people unfamiliar with your band, what can they expect to hear?

A: We play big band music mostly from the ‘30s, ‘40s, ‘50s – the swing era. Many folks still like big band music, which is evidenced by the audiences that come to listen.

Q: How excited are you all to perform at Downs Park?

A: Ain’t Misbehavin’ has played yearly for the Friends of Downs Park organization for several years. If you have the opportunity, come to see us at Downs Park. The band consists of five saxophones, five trumpets, four trombones, guitar, bass, tuba, piano, drums, a percussionist and a vocalist.

 

Different Sisters
Concert Date: June 18

Different Sisters puts a unique spin on the covers they perform with their lead singers, said Mike Foreman, the manager and keyboard player. No genre is unprecedented for this band as they play popular songs from over the years. This is their first concert at Downs Park.

Q: At what notable events has the band appeared?

A: We play a fair number of summer concerts. We’re playing at Main Street on Reisterstown Road and another one in Hunt Valley. These are open concerts and are usually all free. We do different events like American Legion, clubs, [Veterans of Foreign Wars] and private parties. We’ve done fundraisers for retirement communities like Glen Meadows that we do every year.

Q: For people unfamiliar with your band, what can they expect to hear?

A: The difference between our group and a lot of other groups out there is the attraction of our lead singers. We’re called Different Sisters and it’s kind of our catchphrase because they’re identical twins. They’re both very accomplished singers and were voice majors in college, so they’re very experienced. The keyboard player and the guitar player and the drummer all have a lot of experience [as well]. We have been playing together for the past 10 or 12 years.

Q: What are the biggest crowd favorites in your set?

A: Some of the classic old-time rock ‘n’ roll probably. “Don’t Stop Believin',” “Play That Funky Music,” “Summertime.” … We play a mix of blues in there too, and “Stormy Monday” is a big favorite. We play tunes we think people will like so they get up there and dance. “Girl Crush” is a favorite right now. Heart’s “Straight On” is a big one and “Gimme Some Lovin'" by the Spencer Davis Group. When we play them, people always get up and dance. They’re old, tried and true.

 

4 on the Floor with Overdrive
Concert Date: June 25

The lead female vocalist for the five-piece band 4 on the Floor with Overdrive, Lauren Landerman said the audience has plenty to be excited about when her group performs at Downs Park. Among their accomplishments, 4 on the Floor with Overdrive has backed up doo-wop shows for the Mystics and Kathy Young.

Q: What can concert attendees expect?

A: We’re going to play a variety of happy dance music. It’s uplifting swing, cha-cha, rock ‘n’ roll, Motown, rockabilly – a variety of flavors of music from country to doo-wop. We will cover classics from the ‘50s through the ‘90s.

Q: What are the biggest crowd favorites in your set?

A: We tailor our sets for the venue that we play. So everything from the ‘50s – “You Belong to Me” by the Duprees and “All Shook Up” – to “Get Ready” by the Temptations from the ‘60s, “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie” from Asleep at the Wheel in the ‘70s, “Pride and Joy” by Stevie Ray Vaughan and “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” by Queen in the ‘80s. Oh, and I can’t forget our theme song, “Little Deuce Coupe” by the Beach Boys.

Q: You have never played Downs Park before. Are you eager to perform there?

A: We’re super excited. A new venue always adds excitement on both sides, on the audience side and the band side. There’s a synergy, whether the audience is just listening or dancing along.

 

Downs Park is located at 8311 John Downs Loop in Pasadena. The free concerts require that attendees bring only what they need to be comfortable, whether that’s a lawn chair or a blanket. Just make sure to keep the alcohol at home since those beverages are prohibited in all Anne Arundel County parks.


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