Good Living Tour expands in second year; Nebraska Folk & Roots lineup announced; Launch Party concert coverage; Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal, Satchel Grande, Rothsteen at Slowdown; Foxtails Brigade, Mr. Bill & KJ Sawka tonight

Good Living Tour expands in second year

Hear Nebraska’s mission to meaningfully connect and engage fans, artists and communities through music journalism, education and events will again take it across Greater Nebraska.

The Good Living Tour is back for a second year, expanding from nine to 12 Greater Nebraska cities over three weekends this summer. Like last year’s inaugural run, the tour will mix a concert series and storytelling project to celebrate the state’s unique livelihood and increasingly vibrant, original music culture.

New cities to this year’s Good Living Tour are Ord, Red Cloud, Hastings, Norfolk, Lyons, O’Neill, Grant, Sidney and McCook. They join 2015 participants Kearney, Grand Island and Imperial on weekend routes July 21-24, July 28-31 and Aug. 4-7 (view the full schedule below).

“The work of Hear Nebraska is important to our greater collective goal of retaining our best and brightest and attracting young adults with the tremendous opportunities and great amenities we offer,” said Courtney Dentlinger, Director of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, the project’s presenting sponsor. “Our younger generations hold the key to the ideas and creative problem-solving that will propel our communities, businesses and state economy forward, and music and the arts are an excellent way to connect with them.”

An unprecedented project, the tour will bring free, all-ages concerts featuring a diverse mix of all-original Nebraska bands and DJs to each location. Its mission is to connect the state’s urban and rural communities, expose young audiences to music performance, educated the world about Greater Nebraska’s music and art scenes and ultimately help each participating town attract and retain young people.

Hear Nebraska Executive Director Andrew Norman said the nonprofit chose cities based on the respective community’s efforts toward creating authentic, compelling opportunities for young residents.  

“Loss of youth to bigger cities is a growing trend for many rural communities. We want to show young people that these communities are worth investing in, and that you can create something cool right in your own backyard,” Norman said.

The Good Living Tour will again feature a storytelling component, which will include: feature stories highlighting music community and industry-related subjects in each city; an “Experience Nebraska” video featuring interviews with young professionals that speak to each community’s uniqueness; and a music video featuring a local artist performing a song at a landmark community location.

Running over nine consecutive evenings in 2015, the inaugural Good Living Tour concerts drew more than 2,200 people. Its feature stories have been viewed more than 15,000 times (including 39% outside of Nebraska and 6% international). The associated 2015 Experience Nebraska videos have been viewed more than 12,000 times.

Through combinations of public and private funding, each Good Living Tour city invested to bring the tour to its community. Statewide sponsors include presenting sponsor Nebraska Department of Economic Development, Peter Kiewit Foundation, Pinnacle Bank and Center for Rural Affairs.

The Good Living Tour’s carbon footprint is being 100% offset by Nebraska Renewable Energy Credits donated by Sandhills Wind Energy, LLC.

Hear Nebraska will announce the artist lineups for the 2016 Good Living Tour on April 18, 2016. Learn more about the project and view last year’s storytelling features and videos here.

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Nebraska Folk & Roots lineup announced; Launch Party concert coverage

Nebraska Folk & Roots also returns this summer for its third-annual concert weekend. Organizers revealed the lineup for this year’s festival —  which returns to its outdoor location at Branched Oak Farms June 10 & 11 — Saturday night at its Launch Party concert at The Bourbon.

South African singer/songwriter Gregory Alan Isakov headlines Friday night, while longtime country artist Darrell Scott tops Saturday’s billing. They join a slew of local artists that include Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal, Kris Lager Band, Evan Bartels & the Stoney Lonesomes, Jack Hotel and much more. See the full lineup poster below:

The festival — sponsored this year by Kinkaider Brewing — will also feature an art wall, on which local contributors will paint throughout Saturday. There will also be a vendor site which will feature to-be-determined food selections and arts, crafts, clothing and other goods.

HN contributor James Dean attended the 2016 Nebraska Folk & Roots launch party Saturday, snapping photos of The Bottle Tops, CJ Mills, Evan Bartels & the Stoney Lonesomes and Pleiades & the Bear.  View his photos below:

The Bottle Tops

Evan Bartels & the Stoney Lonesomes

CJ Mills

Pleiades & the Bear

Photos by James Dean

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Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal, Satchel Grande, Rothsteen at Slowdown

HN contributor Cruise Curtis was at Slowdown Saturday night for Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal’s album release party. The Lincoln soul band dropped Running From Love on Silver Street Records, which marks its third studio release in three years. Watch this week for our On The Record podcast review, and view Curtis’s photos from the celebration, which also included R&B artist Rothsteen and grand funk band Satchel Grande:

Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal

Satchel Grande


Photos by Cruise Curtis

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Concert Round-Up

Tonight, Bay-Area indie rock band Foxtails Brigade comes to O’Leaver’s, 1322 S Saddle Creek,  while on tour in support of its forthcoming self-titled LP, which drops April 8 on Oakland-based OIM Records. Frontperson Laura Weinbach’s Hollywood-Hills upbringing (the daughter of cult horror filmmaker Robert Weinbach) is present throughout her work from the lyrical imagery to the hand-drawn artwork and sophomoric Instagram cartoons. Of note, bassist Anton Patzner has toured with the likes of Bright Eyes, The Faint and Mates of State. Local acts Misers and Chemicals open the 9 p.m. show. RSVP here.

Also tonight, EDM artists Mr. Bill and KJ SAWKA perform with visual artist Jordan “Pickles” Leonard at Vega, 350 Canopy St. Prior to the show, Mr. Bill will host a production workshop from 6-8 p.m., for which you can sign up here. Entry is $25. Tickets to the concert proper are $15. RSVP here.

For a fuller listing of this week’s shows, head to our statewide calendar at We added nearly 100 upcoming events over the weekend. If you do not see your concert or one you plan to attend, email us at, list it in the comments or add it yourself here. And keep those news tips, story ideas and song submissions coming.