Duluth Homegrown Festival’s Cancellation Impacting Artists and Business Owners

This year musicians, like the group Dance Attic, are taking to Facebook to play their music.

DULUTH, Minn. – Duluth’s Homegrown Music Festival has highlighted musicians and artists for more than twenty years from the comfort of local bars and restaurants.

Homegrown is known for packed venues and people enjoying the broad music scene Duluth offers.

This week Fox 21 caught up with one of the acts scheduled to play at the festival.

Suzi Ludwig and Jimi Cooper make up the group Dance Attic.

Both musicians have played at Homegrown for many years.

Like many other artists this year they took to the internet to play a show…virtually.

“I just think it’s really important to try to do the joyful things as we can so commemorating Homegrown was definitely a way to say we can still be joyful and be connected virtually at this time,” said Ludwig who sings and plays the accordion.

The band has been playing together since 2014.

Ludwig even played with the band Father Hennepin on the festival’s first night in 1999.

Local artists say Duluth is a special place for music.

“That’s why I’m in Duluth because there’s so many great musicians and so much music going on here and yeah to have a celebration of that like Homegrown that’s deeply missed by a lot of people in town,” said Cooper who sings and plays guitar, ukulele, banjo, and wazoo.

Homegrown is also a big weekend for musicians to debut their stuff and make a splash.

Ludwig says she is worried about what missing the festival will do for up-and-coming artists.

“It’s a loss for the new generation that would be coming and debuting this year and we kind of have to put a pause on it and hope we can do it next year,” said Ludwig.

It’s not just artists being affected by the festival’s cancellation.

Venues like Blacklist Brewing Company tell us losing the festival is so much more than just losing a big weekend for the business.

“As bartenders, we look forward to that all year long we plan our vacations we plan all of our stuff around being here for homegrown, it’s not just making the money and being apart of it it’s the camaraderie and all the people and everything else, it’s a hit but at the same time we gotta keep everybody safe and do the right thing,” said Ray Mindestrom, a taproom assistant at Blacklist Brewing Company.

All eyes are now looking to Homegrown 2021 hoping twill happen.

Ludwig and Cooper spoke about how they will feel taking the stage next year.

“Pure joy and relief and I’ll want to hug every single person in the audience. We are going to be unhinged.”

More information about Homegrown can be found here.

Dance Attic’s Facebook page can be found here.

 

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