APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) – The 10th edition of the Mile of Music is in the books. Although music fans were certainly weary from a weekend full of music, the final day made for magical moments for those who could power through until the end.
Kansas City, Missouri harpist Calvin Arsenia got a standing ovation while performing in the “Songs Before We Go” at the Lawrence University Chapel.
His song about the angst of love drew people to their feet during a beloved portion of the festival where musicians representing each genre of music get a chance to perform one more song before everybody heads their separate ways.
Local 5’s Michele McCormack was in the back row and saw firsthand how the music touched one festival-goer who couldn’t form the clapping motion with his hands but made several vocalizations to show how even with his barriers of communication the music was getting through.
At the Gibson’s venue, Appleton-based Christopher Gold and the New Olds rocked their original songs but then brought the crowd to a hush and some to tears with an acoustic military tribute.
“My war is over, no more battles left to fight, no more hymns to be sung,” went part of the song. “My war is over, I’m coming home, though I know not what I come home to. My war is over and home to me is coming back to you.”
Gold did an array of performances both solo and with the band.
For those who wanted to break out of the intimate venues set up in the shops, bars, and restaurants along College Avenue there was live music at Houdini Plaza with food truck vendors and craft beer stands.
Some street musicians also broke out their instruments and filled the once-busy corridor with music as the weekend-long festival came to a close.
Organizers say they have every intention of returning for the “11th Mile” as they affectionately refer to it. They plan to release the start of an artist lineup in the spring.
Mile of Music kicked off in 2013 as a cover-free festival highlighting handcrafted artistry.
The theme quickly caught on with music lovers everywhere and is still the focus today as The Mile continues to make music accessible to everyone with nearly all shows free to attend.
They help to continue growing support to keep the finest talent, including singer-songwriters, duos, and multi-piece bands showcasing original roots music ranging from indie and folk-rock to soul, folk, bluegrass, and more.
The festival prides itself on also highlighting homegrown talent and recruiting the best-emerging artists from all over the U.S.