Bigfoot Winter Shakedown

Paul Whyte

Underlying some shows in the area are promotions and productions companies that usually involve just a few people that are truly dedicated in making this area’s music scene more exciting and involved.
Joey Flynn is among one of these people who are setting up shows in the area. Joey along with Matt Ray (Matt Ray & Those Damn Horses) set up Bigfoot Music Productions this summer and held two festival type Bluegrass shows out at Wasko’s in Lake Nebagamon, WI. Recently Flynn has set up a number of shows at Twins Bar in Duluth featuring acts such as Teague Alexy and Black River Review playing on Wednesdays in Januarty and Colleen Myhre who’ll be playing on Friday, February 1. We had a chance to talk to Flynn about his latest show that will be held at Clyde Iron this Saturday, February 2.

Reader: How did you get into booking music and end up where you’re at today?

JF: I’ve seen thousands of concerts, I’m 43 years old. I was over at Wasko’s watching some country music that they have there on Sundays. I became friends with Chris (the owner of Wasko’s) and just noticed the stage and said, “hey man, we should throw a festival.” That was last summer. The first one was a real success and the second was kind of a flop because of the weather and everything.

Reader: Yeah, I remember it was really cold that weekend.

JF: Yeah, but the first one was the tester and we thought this could really be something. With this show (Saturday), I expect to this to really be pretty big.
Reader: With this show at Clyde Iron it seems you have a lot of people from the area and region all the way down to Minneapolis are like White Iron Band. How did this come together?

JF: Yeah, I’m friends with those guys. That’s the thing, I’ve been seeing so much of this music for all these years. And I’ve got guys like that I’ve known for 15 to 16 years that are good friends of mine. These guys are great, I’d bend over backwards for them and I guess they’d do the same for me.

Reader: It specifically looks you’re doing bluegrass music.
JF: It ranges anywhere from outlaw country, psychedelic music, stuff like Grateful Dead, to bluegrass.

Reader: It seems like you might be a Grateful Dead fan.
JF: Yeah, a little bit. I’ve seen them quite a bunch. I went on tour with them from 88 to 92. After that I started going to college and did summer tours after that.

Reader: Explain a little more about how you started booking shows.

JF: Well, it was Matt Ray and myself and he’s my partner with Bigfoot. We were hanging out at Wasco’s for a BBQ and jamming. I said, “what says we can’t start our own festival?” I’ve seen him at festivals and there’ll be a stage and there’ll be nobody there and the other stage is packed. So he was getting a little bit frustrated with kind of scenario. I knew Chris, so we had a spot where we could do this.

Reader: Well someone’s got to do it.

JF: I’ve been trying more or less to have some of the bands up here headline stuff. It’s about trying to get the bands that need it some publicity like the Underwriters and Big Country, Matt Ray. All these guys should be known. There’s a lot of these bands playing separately on a Tuesday or something and it’s not working.

Reader: Yeah, but they make a little bit of money and some people do see those shows.

JF: But not everybody get’s a chance to see them. Not like playing on a Saturday with 10 to 15 bands. Everybody gets to check it out.

The line up for the show includes: White Iron Band, Matt Ray & Those Damn Horses, The Underwriters, Next of Kin, Hobo Nephews of Uncle Frank, Ol’ Yeller, Thomas & The Rain, Andy Lipke Fiasco, Brothers Burn Mountain, Tin Can Gin, Colleen Mhyre, Sans Souci Quartet and Farmhouse Band with Sam Squatch. The show on Saturday will have vendors, food and beer. The show will be kid friendly til 6 p.m. and there will be a face painting booth. Tickets are $20 in advance and can be found at Electric Fetus, Carmody Pub, Legacy Glass or at Clyde Iron. Tickets are $25 at the door. The show goes from 1 p.m. to bar close.
By: Paul Whyte


Paul Whyte

A South Shore native and University of Wisconsin-Superior journalism graduate. Lifelong musician, and former open mic host. Passionate about the music scene and politics.

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