Join the band on Make Music Day June 21

June 10, 2014

By Peter Clark

Someone has to make music and it might as well be the whole community.

For the second year in a row, the Downtown Issaquah Association will lead the city to join the rest of the world in International Music Day on June 21. With festivities highlighting the talents of the community, the day will offer plenty of opportunities to listen to and make music.

Photos by Greg Farrar Above, David Harris (left) plays a bongo drum with Emma Erhardt (left) and Bella Evans, during an all-instrument flash mob performance of ‘Louie Louie’ in 2013 on the City Hall steps for Issaquah Make Music Day in honor of International Music day

Photos by Greg Farrar
Above, David Harris (left) plays a bongo drum with Emma Erhardt (left) and Bella Evans, during an all-instrument flash mob performance of ‘Louie Louie’ in 2013 on the City Hall steps for Issaquah Make Music Day in honor of International Music day

“It’s going to be pretty significant,” DIA Executive Director Karen Donovan said. “We’re going to have over 25 bands in seven outdoor locations, four regular venues and six nontraditional spots.”

International Music Day, originally begun in France as Fete de la Musique, allows people around the world to celebrate the importance of music in their lives for one day a year. The event is celebrated in more than 450 cities and 100 countries when musicians take to the streets, sidewalks and parks to play.

After a successful inaugural year, organizers are eager to bring the event back to Issaquah.

“Last year, it was so much fun,” Donovan said, adding she hopes 2014 proves an even better event.

Groups performing include Acoustic Fantasy, Bluegrass Ryders, Bob Brock and Lee Haro, Cry Daddy, Fabulous Roof Shakers, Gordy and Boys, Little Lion, The Redondoes, Scinite, Travis Hartnett Trio and ukulele sing-a-longs. Solo performers include Donna Mansfield, Marty Smith, Randy Bowles, Tom McDonald and Tori Whitten. Music schools participating include the Chopin Academy of Music and Eastside School of Music.

A favorite of last year will return as the All Instrument Flash Mob, made up of musical members of the public, will join on the steps of City Hall at 6 p.m. to perform “Louie, Louie.”

Local music maven David Harris, who has spearheaded the Concerts on the Green series and spent 31 years handling Salmon Days entertainment, brought the event to Issaquah.

“Yeah, I guess I got it started,” he said. “I just thought, well, I’ve done a little bit here with music and why don’t we have it here?”

He said it was part of his goal to bring renown to the city and part of his passion for music.

“It’s a big, big, big hobby of mine,” Harris said. “I’ve tried to make Issaquah kind of known as a music town and it’s kind of what it’s become.”

Donovan and Harris have a goal to cultivate the event into a real draw for the city.

“In the Northwest, we’re the only one of significance,” Donovan said. “Our music community has five music schools downtown, which is really amazing.”

Harris said he thinks this year will build on last year’s celebration and continue the event far into the future.

“We are a lot more organized this year,” he said. “And we really want to encourage the whole community to come out for the flash mob playing ‘Louie Louie.’”

Musicians will take to the streets in downtown and Gilman Village. In addition to the several venues that host live music every Saturday night, merchants are bringing live music into their venues for the evening. More than 20 performers signed up to participate in Issaquah’s Make Music Day, contributing their time for free.

Learn more at www.downtownissaquah.com.

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