Levitt AMP Springfield Announces 2021 Summer Schedule

We are here, we are ready to post on our site the first thing related to live music happening again in right here in this city. Today is the day. We still aren’t ready to have shows in our own space, but some nice outdoor events in a great big open field starting in June sounds pretty good to us. Especially if all of us are vaccinated.

Today, Levitt AMP Springfield (presented by PNC Bank) announced their big schedule for 2021 – including 10 outdoor concerts every Thursday night from June 3rd to August 5th. These concerts will be taking place out on the “Y-block” next to the Illinois governor’s mansion as they did in the 2019 season, just through the alleyway from our store. Most of these concerts feature two acts – the first one going on at 6:00 pm and the second going on at 7:00 pm and until 8:30 pm. Oh, by the way all of these shows are FREE. This series was made possible by Springfield applying for and getting a grand through the Levitt Foundation, as well as other local sponsors teaming together.

Check out the full announced schedule online right here.

Springfield Featured in Spotlight on Levitt AMP Blog


Although the Levitt AMP Music Series that was supposed to be taking place once again this summer out on the Y-block here downtown has been post-poned until 2021, the Levitt AMP site remains active and the foundation has also been active hosting online concerts. Springfield’s very own group, The Deep Hollow was featured as part of the online series late last month, and along with that the Levitt AMP site blog had a nice write-up spotlighting Springfield. You can check that all out right here. From the post:

Nearly 8,000 people attended the inaugural Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series last summer, and lawn surveys conducted by volunteers show an enthusiastic response from the community. Over 80 percent of respondents said that they would like to see a permanent concert venue in the space, and would regularly attend concerts if a permanent band shell was constructed. Other suggestions from the community include a dog park, tennis courts, food truck plaza, and more. “No one was using this block before Levitt AMP,” says (Lisa) Stott, “and now people see the possibilities.”

Keep following that Levitt AMP Springfield facebook page for more Levitt related going-ons and news on the 2021 season to be announced later on.

Levitt AMP Music Series Postponed Until 2021


It comes as no surprise that major outdoor music events and festivals that were going to be taking place this summer are impacted by COVID-19 and limits on social gatherings even as restrictions are lifted and we move to different phases of re-opening. Shows at our space still aren’t happening, and we still aren’t anywhere near being able to plan for them happening again.

Last week the Levitt AMP Music Series, which our city received a grant for for the second year in a row, announced that the series is going to be postponed until 2021. The concert series was going to be taking place every Thursday this summer out on the Y-block once again, just through the alleyway from our downtown location. The Springfield Levitt AMP page made a full stagement last week. Here is some of that:

Given the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the status of large public gatherings in Illinois due to the COVID-19 pandemic — and out of concern for the health, safety and well-being of our community — the organizers of the Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series, in consultation with the Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation, have made the difficult decision to postpone the second season of the popular ten-week music series to 2021.
“This concert series is about bringing all of Springfield together, and we’ll put on an amazing series at the Y Block when we can once again gather in large groups safely,” said Lisa Clemmons Stott, Executive Director of Downtown Springfield Inc., one of the partner organizations.
Added Scott Troehler, President of the Board of Directors of the Downtown Springfield Heritage Foundation, “This decision did not come easily, as it impacts many people in our community, including our dedicated volunteers and crew, artists, presenting partners, community partners, vendors and sponsors, in addition to the thousands of friends, families and neighbors who were looking forward to free Levitt AMP concerts on the Y Block this summer.”
We will also try to post more updates on other major summer events being postponed or cancelled, or when more info is announced regarding next year’s Levitt AMP Series.

Springfield Winner In Second Levitt Amp Music Grant For Summer of 2020


Wow, we did it! Thanks to all who voted for Springfield once again this year to receive a second Levitt Amp Music Grant! Winners were just announced this past Friday, which includes 20 cities selected by a panel based on crowd voting in Levitt’s ongoing poll. This means that once again, there will be 10 free concerts happening out on the Y-Block downtown right by the governor’s mansion, and near our downtown location featuring diverse lineups of national acts featuring different genres throughout the summer. The dates have yet to be officially announced, but it is looking likely to be from the end of May through the end of July that concerts take place.

This time around Levitt AMP Springfield is opening their email up to taking suggestions on national acts that you want to see play the Levitt stage!! That’s right, you can email levittamp@downtownspringfield.org with your suggestions. Also be sure to follow Levitt AMP Springfield on facebook

This past summer’s bands included The Skatalites from Jamaica, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band from New Orleans, John Moreland from Oklahoma, and more.

Springfield In Running For Second Levitt AMP Grant


Yes, you heard that correctly! You know that getting to have free outdoor concerts every Thursday night downtown on the Y-Block was a cool thing, even if you didn’t attend them all, so why not vote to make it happen again for our city?? This time our city is once again in the running for another $25,000 grant to bring free live music downtown this summer. Let’s vote!

Go register on the Levitt site and then vote for Springfield right here!

Springfield’s page on the Levitt site has a description that is more in-depth on how the grant next time around could potentially be used, and also how things went for us this past summer. Here is a piece from that:

No one was using this block before the first year of Levitt AMP. Now people see the possibilities. Yet the block is still in its infancy, as it does not yet have full infrastructure required to become a community gathering site. The city laid AstroTurf and a concrete pad for our first year as a necessary improvement over the dirt and weeds. Success after a second-year grant would include a long-term funding plan and RFP for design that can pass muster with all of our elected officials, from alderman to Governor.

The page on the Levitt site also currently shows that we are 7th place! (The top 25 cities make it on to the next round where the Levitt Foundation selects final recipients).

State Journal-Register: “Y-Block Passes Audition As Concert Series Ends”

Screen Shot 2019-08-02 at 11.09.51 AM.pngWith the final of ten concerts happening just last night, here is an article in today’s newspaper The State Journal-Register about the overall success of the series and what might be next for the “Y-Block” downtown not too far from our store. From the article:

One of the goals of the concert series was to test the possibilities of the block. While a building is eventually expected to rise on the end of the block along Capitol Avenue, the half closest to the Governor’s Mansion will have to remain open due to the presence of sewer pipes underneath.

The bustling scene – people armed with their lawn chairs and blankets as they mingled in lines for beer, food, and activities for kids while taking in another unique musical guest – is an example of what can be in the vacant block, according to event organizers and community leaders.

You can check out that full article on the SJ-R site online right here, or pick up your local paper at various places around town for two dollars like we did.

From our understanding our city is likely to apply for this same grant and concert series to take place next summer as well (something that doesn’t look like it has been officially announced just yet). We’ll be sure to keep you all updated with any updates or advancements in upcoming concert series or with the Y-Block. You can also follow the Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series facebook page for more updates.

Last Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series Concert tonight: John Moreland


Holy cow would you believe it but it’s August and the summer is just about over. Tonight is the last of the ten part concert series that has been going on at downtown Springfield’s Y-Block most of this summer since the end of May. From The Skatalites, to the Dirty Dozen Brass band and much more, it’s been quite the series of free concerts for everyone to enjoy. Tonight the main act coming in from Tulsa, Oklahoma is solo Americana act John Moreland. From the Levitt AMP site:

Today, Moreland’s understated melodies and uncanny knack for storytelling have left an unmistakable mark on the Americana music scene. The troubadour has received coverage from outlets including No Depression, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal among others. He has released four studio albums, with his latest, 2017’s Big Bad Luv, hailed as one of the best Americana/folk releases of the year by fans and critics alike, earning glowing write-ups in Rolling Stone and The New Yorker among others. He has enchanted the The Late Show with Stephen Colbert’s in-studio audience, is a regular opener for Jason Isbell and has had three songs featured on FX’s hit show Sons of Anarchy. Along with Miranda Lambert, Moreland has a super fan in the form of MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, who tweeted “If the American music business made any sense, guys like John Moreland would be household names.”

Check out John Moreland’s music streaming on the player below. The opening act tonight is Edward David Anderson. That starts off at 6:00 pm out on the Y-Block next to the governor’s mansion downtown and goes until 8:30 pm. It’s free to the public. Check out a facebook event for the concert right here. Also don’t forget we are having a show tonight afterwards at 8:00 pm!

Levitt AMP Music Series Tonight: Liz Cooper & The Stampede, Kate The Band


It’s another Thursday night so that means it’s another night of a Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series out on the Y-Block downtown right by us. What’s going on tonight? Well for one there is a heat advisory or something going on, so tonight’s performance has bene pushed back to a start time of 7:00 pm to allow things to cool off some. Opening up the event tonight is a band familiar to our stage – Kate The Band. Nice. Tonight is supposed to be indie-rock night out on the lawn, and headlining act is Liz Cooper & The Stampede from Nashville. From the Levitt AMP site:

Liz Cooper and The Stampede are a three-piece folk, psychedelic rock band formed in Nashville. Inspired by the roots, blues and rock music ingrained into the musical fabric of their hometown, but determined to add touches of pop, folk and psychedelia into the mix, Liz Cooper and The Stampede began its musical journey in 2012. Cooper’s ability to switch from a husky baritone to sweet, lilting vocals, over the group’s enchanting and vibrant musical palette makes for a distinct musical voice unlike any other band in the Nashville circuit.

Nice. You can stream some of Liz Cooper’s music on the player embedded below. Tonight’s event will be going from 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm it sounds like, and we still have a show going on at 8:00 pm. Find a facebook event for this one right here. Also check out the Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series website to see the other two concerts that are coming up after this one this summer.

Levitt AMP Springfield Tonight: Dirty Dozen Brass Band


We may have a big punk/hardcore show at Bread Stretchers tonight – but did you also know there is a big free concert going on right through the alley tonight as well as part of the Levitt AMP Springfield Concert Series. This is concert number 6 out of 10 free concerts – just 3 more after this! Tonight is a big concert for the series – The Dirty Dozen Brass Band from New Orleans is making a grand appearance! Here’s a description from the Levitt AMP Springfield page:

Celebrating more than 40 years since their 1977 founding, New Orleans-based Dirty Dozen Brass Band is a one-of-a-kind experience that the band describes as a ‘musical gumbo.’ The term ‘gumbo is appropriate because—much like the traditional local dish—Dirty Dozen Brass Band seamlessly brings together musical influences across jazz, big band swing, funk and soul to create an electrifying experience that feels like an instant party. The core of their sound is classic New Orleans jazz and swing, which they developed as young musicians playing in churches and the local club circuit in New Orleans itself.

The free concert out on the lawn tonight (and that’s the lawn directly in front of the Governor’s Mansion in between 4th and 5th streets) starts at 6:00 pm and goes until 8:30 pm. There is an opening act and that is local jazz musician Frank Parker.

If you want to see what other Levitt AMP concerts are coming up on the block or learn more, check out their website right here. Find a facebook event for tonight’s concert right here.

Levitt AMP Music Series Tonight: Fareed Haque, Jazz Robots


It’s another Thursday night so that means it’s another Levitt AMP night out on the Y-Block here downtown. This is concert number 5 in a ten part concert series happening every Thursday night this summer, thanks to the Levitt AMP Grant our city won and a few other organizations for making this possible. Tonight the headliner is “Fareed Haque’s Flat Earth Ensemble“. What’s that all about? From the Levitt AMP Springfield website:

Fareed Haque’s Flat Earth Ensemble realizes Haque’s decades-long musical vision, bringing together some of the world’s finest classical guitar and Indian tabla players from opposite sides of the world to create music that reverberates from the tubes of guitar amplifiers to the streets of Mumbai. Haque’s The Flat Earth Ensemble is a culmination of several decades of experimentation with diverse musical genres.

There you have it. The opening act tonight is Jazz Robots from Chicago – another group that have actually played before over at The Radon Lounge. We’ve included some of Jazz Robots’s music streaming on the player below.

All of that starts tonight at 6:30 pm, goes until 8:00 pm on the Y-Block right next to the governor’s mansion downtown, and it’s all free. It might be a hot one tonight. Check out a facebook event for this concert right here. Also check the Levitt AMP Springfield website for a look at the remaining concerts in the Thursday night series!