Botanical Roots Concert Series
Fridays, July 25, August 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Doors open at 7:30 pm
Opening act 8:30 pm
Get ready for our ninth year of musical fun! Six concerts with regionally and nationally touring artists featuring funk, blues, reggae and more, with local bands opening. Concerts will be held outdoors in our Terrace Garden, rain or shine. Seating is limited, so please bring your own chair. Food and beverage will be available for purchase from Mad Anthony Brewing; no outside food or beverage allowed.
Admission: $6/13 years and older. Free for ages 12 and under.
For more details, call (260) 427-6440.
Official Lodging Sponsor
2014 Botanical Roots Concert Series:
August 1st Zion Lion (Reggae) w/ U.R.B
Zion Lion is the “baddest” band to hit the Kalamazoo music scene. The members are a combination of several bands from the Kalamazoo area that crossed paths along the way and decided to form what we believe to be the right mix of reggae, African zouk, mucosa, zoukous and some Afro-latin influences. Some of the members have had the honor of opening and sharing the stage with local, national and international reggae artists such as Freddie McGreggor, Pato Batun, Winston Jarrett, Culture, Beenie Man, Lucky Dube, Mikey Dread and the Meditations.
These musicians have played in small clubs to large cultural festivals including, the Kalamazoo Island Festival, Kalamazoo Black arts festival, Grand Rapids Caribbean Festival, Muskegon Summer Festival, Louisville Reggae Festival and Rock Island Caribbean Festival to name a few. You can't help but get up and dance and have an "IRIE FEELIN' " whenever you hear Zion Lion.
August 8th John Nemeth (Blues) w/ Todd Harrold Trio
Boise, Idaho is hardly the place anyone would conjure up as a hotbed of soul music. But for John Németh, it’s where his love for the genre began—and the starting point for a journey that’s taken him from his first gigs fronting a teenaged band to five Blues Music Award nominations in 2013 alone. It’s where this preternaturally talented son of a Hungarian immigrant gained his early chops on the harmonica, building on the style of rootsy heroes like Little Walter and Sonny Boy Williamson.
In early 2013, Németh traded his life on the west coast to settle down in Memphis, Tennessee. “I moved to Memphis because it is the epicenter for soul and blues,” Németh confirms. “The wealth of knowledge runs deep in the instincts of its musicians and its studios.” Memphis Grease, the long-awaited follow up to Németh’s fourth solo studio release, 2010’s Name The Day!, embodies everything that sets this artist apart from the revivalist pack: it’s innovative and unique while epitomizing the absolute best of the genre
August 15th Jessica Hernandez & The Delta’s (Indie Soul) w/ Trackless
“Jessica Hernandez & the Deltas have already been rocking the local music circuit in hometown Detroit, but their soulful sound is bound for bigger things.” – Paste Magazine
Comprised of five charismatic tracks that highlight the raw talent of this Detroit act, Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas’ Demons EP is out now via Instant Records. Showcasing influences as diverse as the gypsy punk outfit Gogol Bordello and pensive singer/songwriter Tom Waits, Jessica brings a soulful attitude that is far beyond her years to each of her songs.
August 22nd Orgone (Funk) w/ Fort Wayne Funk Orchestra
It started with a boardwalk, a bar, and two kids united by a passion for raw soul recordings. For over a decade, Orgone has been steaming up stages all over the country and drenching the biggest music festivals in sweat. Now, the band is back in its home-grown studio KillionSound crafting and recording its seventh full-length album featuring their new powerhouse singer Adryon de León. Orgone’s sound is a cold-blooded blend of deep soul, rare funk, and afro-disco with a raw rock star edge that is uniquely LA. Shifting effortlessly from slyly slinky to seismically cinematic, the music remains tough and uncluttered. For their heart-pounding live performances and classic, gritty recordings, Orgone has been called by Dusty Groove America, “One of the heaviest acts we’ve heard in years.”
August 29th Nikki Hill (Blues) w/ Swick & Jones
Hill and her band (who Nikki deems ‘The Pirate Crew) are climbing to the top of the roots music scene step by step and leaving jaws on the floor along the way. With a no-filter energy, they take all the flavors of American roots music and deliver a sound that will make you believe in rock and roll again! Nikki’s gritty and raw voice with Stax soul dynamics, driving rhythm guitar from Matt Hill, and a tight rhythm section provided by Ed Strohsahl and Joe Meyer come together and make a sound that just sounds like the truth.
Hailing from Durham, North Carolina, Nikki comes by her Deep South soul honestly. Her musical roots began while singing in gospel choirs at church as a child. A stint living in nearby college town Chapel Hill introduced her to many different styles of music and the awareness of music (and more importantly, unique and non-mainstream music) as a possible career. After pairing up with her guitar-playing husband Matt Hill, they have made an unstoppable team and have established themselves as roots rock and roll powerhouses!
The Botanical Conservatory invites the community to grab a lawn chair, settle in, and enjoy music that’s fun and funky, creative, and upbeat. Bands are selected from regional and national touring acts with an emphasis on uniqueness, quality, and representation of a specific musical style.
Shows are Friday nights through August 29. Local bands will warm up the scene. Food and beverage will be available for purchase from Mad Anthony Brewing; no outside food or beverage allowed. Admission is $6 at the gate. Youth ages 12 and under are admitted free with a parent or guardian. Gates open at 7:30 p.m.; shows start at 8:30 and the events take place outdoors, rain or shine. The Conservatory is located in downtown Fort Wayne at 1100 S. Calhoun Street.
Botanical Roots is sponsored by Fort Wayne Metals Research, The Downtown Improvement District, PBS 39, 96.3 XKE Fort Wayne’s Classic Rock, Whatzup, and Mad Anthony Brewing.
Restrooms and concessions are conveniently located to the south of the Terrace in the Exploration Garden with additional restrooms located in the Conservatory. The Terrace area and Conservatory are non-smoking. Smoking is however allowed in the Exploration Garden. Smokers are encouraged to use extra caution disposing of smoking materials during drought conditions.
For more information phone 260/427-6446
Sponsorship opportunities for the 2015 season are NOW available. For more information contact Mitch Sheppard 260/427-6441.
For information about additional concerts and movies, check out the Foellinger Theatre page too!
Enjoy some photos from previous Botanical Roots Concerts! Looking for new bands for 2015!
U.R.B (Opener) (Previous show)
The Ark Band (Previous show)
The Botanical Conservatory's Terrace is the perfect outdoor setting for enjoying music downtown!
The Rewinders (Opener) (Previous Show)
The New Familiars (Previous Show)
Otis Gibbs (Opener) (Previous Show)
Country Joe McDonald (Previous Show)
The Staggerers (Opener) (Previous Show)
The Tossers (Previous Show)
The crowd enjoys the music of the Tosser's on a beautiful night.
Dan Smyth Band (Opener) (Previous Show)
John Primer and the Real Deal Blues Band (Previous Show)
John Primer-Couples dance to the blues music.
Whiskey Hollar (Opener) (Previous Show)
Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience (Previous Show)
The crowd dances to Terrance Simien's Zydeco music.
Audience members playing the rubboard with Terrance Simien
Photos courtesy of Greg Hughes
Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory
1100 South Calhoun Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46802
Tuesday - Saturday 10am - 5pm
Thursday 10am - 8pm
Sunday Noon - 4pm
Closed: Mondays, New Years Day, Christmas Day
Children (ages 3-17) $3
Age 2 and under Free