Organizers of Ink’s Middle of the Map Fest have announced more than half of the 100-plus bands that will perform April 4-6 at venues in and near Westport.
This year’s lineup of established national acts includes Grizzly Bear, Deerhoof, the Joy Formidable, Tennis and Wovenhand. It will also include dozens of emerging national and regional bands, as well as dozens of bands from Kansas City, Lawrence and the surrounding region.
“I am really excited to have Grizzly Bear in the lineup,” Reusch said. “They have been one of my favorite bands over the last five years, and its an honor to have a band of their caliber on the festival. They have never played this market; the closest they have come is Columbia.”
Last year’s Middle of the Map drew thousands of fans and attracted attention from outside Kansas City. Its lineup featured the band Fun just as the band’s single, “We Are Young,” reached No. 1 on the Billboard 100 chart. The band has since become a major headlining act. Fun will perform at Sunday’s Grammy Awards show, where it is nominated in six categories.
“It’s exciting to see the profile of the festival rise and head towards being a spring tradition in Kansas City,” Reusch said. “I think this is our strongest lineup at launch. Last year it was really interesting to watch a band like Fun grow, but we really had no idea how big they were going to get that fast.”
In addition to the music festival, this year’s Middle of the Map will feature two other components: the Art, Culture and Tech Forum (April 18-19) and the Middle of the Map Film Fest (May 1-5). Details on those events are forthcoming.
A three-day pass to the music festival is available for $45. Passes to the technology/culture forum are $50, and a pass to the film festival costs $25. A pass to all three components is available for $100. Tickets are on sale now at the Middle of the Map web site.
OfficePort in the Crossroads District will host the technology forum. The Alamo Draftouse in the Power and Light District will host the film festival.
The music festival had to adjust to the closing of the Beaumont Club, which was its hub for the first two years.
“To accommodate the loss of Beaumont Club, we’ve added the Uptown Theater,” Reusch said. “It will allow us to grow a little bit and have larger bands. We will be taking advantage of some of their different rooms.”
In addition to the Uptown, the other venues are the Riot Room, the RecordBar, Gusto Lounge, the Union and Westport Coffeehouse. The festival expects to add another music site.
The lineup so far
Grizzly Bear, the Joy Formidable, Tennis, Deerhoof, Jeff the Brotherhood, Kids These Days, Iceage, the Whigs, Wovenhand, the Appleseed Cast, the Casket Lottery, White Lung, People Get Ready, Denison Witmer, Kitten, Guards, Cowboy Indian Bear, Soft Reeds, Palace, Making Movies, Détective, Owen Pallet, Mister Lies, Last Bison, Pujol, Joe Pug, La Guerre, Spirit is the Spirit, Sleepy Kitty, My Gold Mask, Dots Not Feathers, Smoker, the Soil & the Sun, Trouper, Little Legend, Maps For Travelers, She’s A Keeper, Bloodbirds, Quiet Corral, Akkilles, Radkey, Steddy P & DJ Mahf, Thee Water Moccasins, Doris Henson, the ACBs, Shy Boys, Fourth of July, Ghosty, Shadow Paint, the Slowdown, Cherokee Rock Rifle, Clairaudients, White Girl, Antennas Up, Heartfelt Anarchy, Six Percent, the Regrets, the Belles, the Noise FM.
| Timothy Finn, The Star