The Norton Commons 2017 Summer Concert Series kicks off on May 20. As in years past, this year’s series is dubbed Music By The Water, which is appropriate since the concerts are held in the beautiful amphitheater near the lake.
The series of seven concerts promises something for everyone with a wide variety of musical styles, including soul, blues, country, patriotic, classic rock, and music from the‘60s and ‘70s. The concerts are free, open to the public, and family friendly. The beautiful grounds surrounding the amphitheater can easily accommodate over two thousand guests. Parking is also free and convenient, and can be found on-street throughout the neighborhood.
Before the show, enjoy dinner at one of Norton Commons’ many award-winning restaurants. The 502 Bar & Bistro offers seasonal specials and local favorites. Mercato Italiano excels in upscale Italian. Enjoy drinks and great food on the patio at Johnny Brusco’s New York Style Pizza or Citizen 7. Norton Commons also boasts two locations for Asian cuisine—Wild Ginger and Tea Station Asian Bistro. For an extensive wine and bourbon list or unique cocktails, Commonwealth Tap is a local favorite.
Who better to kick off a summer concert series named Music By The Water than a band named Tony and the Tan Lines. We had a chance to catch up with the band for some insider information about what concert goers can expect on May 20.
NC: What do you love about outdoor concerts?
T&TL: The outdoor concert is all about freedom. And we’re going to let it ring.
NC: I know you’ve played several events in Louisville. What does the band like to do or eat while in Louisville?
T&TL: While in Louisville we love to eat tacos, tacos and probably some more tacos. Tacos.
NC: Fortunately, the band won’t have to go far from the amphitheater to find great tacos at Citizen 7 in Norton Commons. You have to try our favorite Blackened Shrimp and Mojo Pork Belly. I see the band hails from Miami, another place for great tacos. How did the band come together?
T&TL: Our bass player Vinnie Starlito was driving a cab in Miami part time while his dance studio was being built. He needed some extra work, so he answered an ad in the paper looking for a bass player to shake bottoms. He met up with Skip Bartles, our singer, and the rest they say is history.
NC: You say you like ‘70s soul and ‘80s Miami sound. What is it about that era for you?
T&TL: The music of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s was all about partying, having a good time and shaking your tail feathers. This is something the Tan Lines have based their entire being upon.
NC: I see that your musical inspirations are Hall & Oates, Billy Ocean, Michael McDonald, and Kenny Loggins. What is it about those artists that inspire you?
T&TL: Each one of these artists has such a unique voice. Their songwriting and musicianship are second to none.
NC: What can we expect at the Norton Commons summer concert series?
T&TL: Imagine if the dance scenes from Footloose, Grease, and West Side Story all had a baby. So that.
NC: So you’re saying to bring your dancing shoes. I like that. I see you specialize in “Yacht Rock”. What exactly is “Yacht Rock”? I think I could use some right now!
T&TL: In general, yacht rock is an era of super smooth music created in the late ‘70s and early ’80s made famous by artists like Toto, Hall & Oates and Kenny Loggins. A guilty pleasure to some, but we simply like to call it pleasure.
NC: What music do you listen to in your car?
T&TL: Fun fact—not one of the Tan Lines owns a car. We always travel by boat.
NC: I see you have a “resident bartender” as part of the band. What are some of the band’s favorite beverages?
T&TL: We have a signature drink, well more of a pairing. It’s called the “Starlito Sunrise” named after our bass player. It’s a shot of tequila paired with a Miller High Life. Really gets you going in the morning.
NC: I love the clothes in the band’s photos. Where do you shop?
T&TL: When in Louisville, we always stop at the Nitty Gritty. The ladies there keep us looking very sexy.
NC: Your Facebook page lists the Rupert Holmes song “Escape–The Pina Colada Song”. Why that song?
T&TL: Who doesn’t love Piña Coladas and makin’ love at midnight?
NC: You mention “musical adventure” in your promo. What musical adventure is in the band’s future?
T&TL: You never know where the Tan Lines will end up next. It’s always an adventure with us, on stage or off. Wherever the smooth winds take our sails, that’s where we’ll be. Just remember to always Stay Tan!
Tony and the Tan Lines take the stage on May 20 at 6:30 p.m., so bring your picnic blankets and lawn chairs. See you at the amphitheater!