The variety of music being offered this summer is really something. Really.
Everything from mariachi to jazz to classic rock. And it is all free.
Hot Summer Nights is part of Downtown Odessa and the Odessa Arts and offers free Friday night concerts most Fridays from June to August.
Food truck set up and Odessans are encouraged to bring a lawn chair or blanket and enjoy the music, which starts at sundown. The events typically end about 10 p.m. and are at Noel Heritage Plaza, 321 W. Fifth St. (across from the library).
Tonight opens with Mariachi Armonia. Their website, www.432jh.com, describes them as a dynamic mariachi ensemble of Odessans and Midlanders experienced in the Mexican tradition of mariachi.
COMING THIS SUMMER
June 14: The Permian Playhouse presents “Smokey Joe’s Café.” The musical was on stage at the Playhouse in February and is a musical review of lyrist Jerome Leiber and composer Mike Stoller’s greatest tunes.
Their names may not be household names but their music is certainly recognizable.
They helped create a number of rock icons with their music including The Drifters, The Coasters, Ben E. King, Dion and the Belmonts, Elvis Presley and more.
June 21: Disco Daze.
June 28: West Texas Jazz Project.
July 12: Basin Big Band featuring Eric and Emily Baker. The Bakers are well known to Permian Basin audiences.
The couple came to the Permian Basin in July 2006, where Emily Baker served as the assistant choir director at Bonham Junior High for one year and as the music teacher at Hays Magnet Academy for two years. In 2009, Mrs. Baker resigned her full time teaching position to stay at home with her three girls, Piper, Keller and Harper. In addition to directing the Voices of the Permian Basin Youth Choir for the Midland-Odessa Symphony & Chorale, she sings regularly with The Jumping Giants and teaches fourth to sixth grade music on Fridays at Midland Classical Academy.
Eric Baker was a member of The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps for three years and in July 2006 became co-principal trumpet with the Midland-Odessa Symphony and Chorale. He has also performed with the Big Spring Symphony, and the San Angelo Symphony, the Legend Brass Quintet, the West Texas Trumpet Workshop, and the Salt River Brass Band. He also performs regularly with the Lone Star Brass Quintet, Current Nine, The Pinstripes Jazz Quartet, and Emily & the Rhumba Kings. He performed with the touring production of the hit Broadway musical Chicago, and has performed on stage with The Temptations and The Four Tops. He free-lances all over West Texas, and is a highly sought-after marching band clinician and private teacher.
He was appointed to the position of Director of Bands at Odessa College in 2009 where he conducts the Concert, Jazz, and Athletic bands, teaches the trumpet studio, conducts the opera productions, and serves as Chair of Visual and Performing Arts Department.
July 19: Lone Star Attitude is an alternative Dallas party band. Since 2005, this Dallas rock band has played corporate parties and private events Texas.
Aug. 2: Free Spirit.
Aug. 9: Victor & Penny. The website victorandpenny.com details that the group delivers swing-infused folk-jazz in the band’s signature high-energy style with joy, humor, and soaring musical improvisation. Victor & Penny were named “Best Folk Ensemble 2015” by the PITCH; “Standout Concert of the Year” by the Joplin Globe; and are two-time Folk Alliance International official showcase artists.