By BLASS GUERRERO and CLAIRE EKAS, Staff Reporters¦
Music groups with Amarillo roots will take center stage this September. Panhandle PBS and FM90 will hold the second annual Yellow City Sounds Music Festival, Saturday, Sept. 1, at Memorial Park next to the Amarillo College Washington Street Campus. The event will bring family-friendly activities including, music, vendor booths, food trucks and more.
This year’s theme will be “Music Made Here,” bringing many Amarillo bands together. The bands will include The Groobees, Mount Ivy, Krakt and others from a variety of genres. Some of these groups have not performed together for many years. “This year it’s going to be bigger than our first festival,” Chip Chandler, a PBS digital content producer, said. About 3,000 people attended the festival last year.
All of the bands were started in Amarillo. The Groobees, a regional Americana band, will be reuniting for the first time since they broke up in 2001. “I think playing at Yellow City Sounds will give us the chance to thank some of the folks who helped us along in the very beginning,” Susan Gibson of The Groobees, said.
Another Americana band that’s coming back is Turbine Toolshed, reuniting after their 2014 split. There will also be performances by Mount Ivy, an indie band; Comanche Moon, an Americana band and OddFellas, a rock band.
Festival organizers expect a dozen local food trucks, including Cowboy Gelato Smokehouse, Pizza Nomad and Tacos Plaza. There will be more food options than last year, Chandler said.
Along with the music performances and food, the music festival will host vendors and other booths along with Chick-Fil-A Kids’ Area activities with help from AC’s Teach Club, Amarillo Fire Department Smokehouse, Don Harrington Discovery Center and more.
AC students and employees have a positive outlook on the impact the festival has on performers and concert-goers. “I believe festivals like these give local bands a chance to really show their talent and get their name out there so they can grow and do more,” Christopher Romo, a business administration major, said.
“I think events like Yellow City Sounds helps give bands and artists an outlet,” Ariel Oviedo, a social work major, said.
“The Yellow City Sounds Music Festival helps Panhandle PBS and FM90 bring music to the community. The event itself is free, which means the public can come and watch bands that they may have never seen before. This festival allows the bands to reach to new listeners,” Amy Hart, program director of FM90, said.
Hart also noted that FM90 will feature music from the bands on upcoming shows, and will be doing live streams with each of them.
The festival was made possible with help in part from a grant from the Texas Music Office. Additional support includes A-1 Rocket, the Amarillo Convention & Visitor Council, Budweiser Distributing Co. of Amarillo, Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum’s Pop Culture exhibition, Tarpley Music and other organizations.
The Yellow City Sounds Music Festival will run from 2 to 10 p.m. and admission and activities are free. The event will be part of the ongoing celebration of the 30th anniversary of Panhandle PBS.
For more information about the festival, call 806-371-5224.