It's summertime, and that means it's that time of the year when big, national acts pass through Kansas City at Crossroads KC at Grinders -- the wood-chipped, beer-guzzlin' outdoor venue where so many of us have experienced the "rain or shine" variety of concert. But for those of us who are cash-strapped, snagging one of those often pricey tickets for a Crossroads show can be a bit of a pocket buster. Well, now the folks at the venue would like to say thank you, fans, for supporting live music in the open air.
Customer Appreciation Night at Crossroads KC goes down Tuesday, June 14, with the vaudevillian spectacular MarchFourth Big Band, and yes -- it is free.
Originally started as a cover band for a Mardi Gras party in Portland, Oregon (consequently, the date of that first show was March 4), the MarchFourth Big Band is an involved, raucously wild collection of musicians, performers and visual artists who refuse to be confined to the boundaries of a traditional stage or the restrictions of a typical rock show. The self-proclaimed "Duke Ellington meets Sgt. Pepper in an international big-top Fantasia" collective utilizes big-band instruments -- saxophones, trombones and marching drums -- in combination with electronic music as well as acrobatics (stilt walkers!), dancers, clowns, and elaborate costumes. The result is one big carnivalesque throw-down of a party that blurs the distinction between performer and observer.