Ready To Rock: Big shows bring big celebrations to AMP this week

Ready To Rock: Big shows bring big celebrations to AMP this week

The weather’s not cooling down any, but neither are the tunes at the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion in Rogers. More thrilling shows continue the 2021 summer season this weekend Northwest Arkansas favorites and Americana rockers The Avett Brothers make their fourth visit to the AMP Aug. 13 and ’90s grunge icon Alanis Morissette makes her AMP debut Aug 14.

“Hopefully, in bringing back live music, it’s going to add to the mental health and well-being of our patrons,” AMP Vice President Brian Crowne told What’s Up! ahead of the season opening earlier this summer. “It’s something that, when it was taken away from us, it really became apparent how important it was to not just us, the producers, not just the economic piece of it, but it truly is therapy for people to get to check out of reality for a couple hours and just get lost in their favorite band. Extremely excited to be bringing that back to people.”

As are the artists. Here, The Avett Brothers’ Seth Avett (guitar/lead vocals/piano) discusses returning to live music and touring.

The Avett Brothers

“For now, we are just enjoying being able to work and to get out on the stage again,” says The Avett Brothers’ Seth Avett. “It feels different than it ever has, and I believe we are more capable than ever to be present and to be committed to these incredible nights when we get to make music together. “Beyond that, I think we have a good start on a new album, and though our dedication to it is complete, the methods these days for executing it are understandably slow-going. Basically, what’s next is what’s always next: we’re gonna keep playing shows and writing songs forever.” (Courtesy Photo)

“We are exceptionally fortunate to feel genuinely welcome in most every town, state or country we have the good luck to visit,” Seth Avett begins ahead of the band’s return to Rogers. “Arkansas however, is EXCEPTIONAL (all caps intentional) in its welcoming spirit when it comes to our band and our music. I don’t know how to articulate it, but the enthusiasm and warmth we feel when we visit the state of Arkansas is truly special, and the shows we have there are what they are because of the sincerity of the people. We will keep returning as long as y’all will have us.”

The amount of gratitude has been overwhelming, Avett says when thinking about returning to the stage after so much time away. It’s all been a bit dreamlike so far, he admits. But he’s noticed a renewed sense of appreciation between his colleagues and for an opportunity to connect.

“At first, I was a little worried about performing again, about making mistakes and all that, but now I know that we could be forgetting lyrics left and right, hitting wrong chords, etc., and that it wouldn’t ruin anything. Everyone just wants to be together, enjoying some music that we have in common — and truthfully, we were hitting plenty of wrong chords well before the pandemic!”

The group’s most recent release was the third EP in their ongoing stripped-down “Gleam” series — its predecessors having dropped in 2006 and 2008. “The Gleam III” “reminds us all why we fell in love with them,” NPR said of the project after its debut last summer. “The Gleam III” saw The Avett Brothers getting back to basics in both the acoustic instruments, but also in content after 2019’s “Closer Than Together” divided audiences with its sociopolitical themes.

Whatever they’re writing, the songs that discuss the more timeless themes (love, loneliness, death, forgiveness, family, God) are part of a timeless conversation, Avett muses. That conversation is bound to be heavily informed by those involved in it and where they are in life, he says, which has led to a deeper connection to music for many, as the experiences of the past 18 months inform listeners’ relationships to the songs.

“For us, and for anyone who might be inclined to attend one of our shows, some unique inventory has been taken over the last year and a half or so, personally and collectively, so it’s understandable that the music is perhaps hitting a bit harder (in a good way),” he says. “Some songs feel more specifically appropriate to the current head space, but I think on the whole, it’s the dynamic of everyone considering life wholly (and celebration in particular) together, rather than apart, which stands out more than the literal themes of the songs. We are feeling deeply these days, it seems, and I think this depth is reached not just by our recent fears and discoveries, but by this lovely reunion which is haphazardly unfolding.”


Walmart AMP Concerts

The Avett Brothers

WHEN — 7 p.m. Aug. 13

COST — $45-$89.50

Alanis Morissette

WHEN — 7 p.m. Aug. 14

COST — $110.50-$345

WHERE — 5079 W. Northgate Road in Rogers

INFO — 443-5600,

Categories: Music