Aside from its status as a bastion of independent film making, Sundance is known for its music scene. Starting on Jan. 22 and ending Jan. 29, the Rich Haines Gallery (751 Main Street, Park City) will house the 2016 Music Cafe, sponsored by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers.
Performances at the Music Cafe start each day at 2 p.m. and are scheduled to run for four hours. Credential tickets, available only to people 21 and over, are required to access the bands and are available at http://www.sundance.org/festivals/sundance-film-festival/get-tickets.
Monday Jan. 25:
Playing at 2 p.m., Thao Nguyen of Thao & the Get Down Stay Down is from Falls Church, VA, and has a long history of music performance. Her singing and guitar use is unique and quirky. For example, “Nobody Dies” offers challenging melodies that shouldn’t work as well as they do.
Following acts will include rock ‘n’ roll singer-songwriter Billy Raffoul (2:40 p.m.), Alaskan musical sensation Byron Nicholai (3:20 p.m.), the pop artist Motopony (4 p.m.) and R. City, best known for their song “Locked Away” featuring Adam Levine.
Tuesday Jan. 26:
Ready to rock? Nina Gordon and Louise Post are vocalist-guitarists who first worked together in the band Veruca Salt. Prepare for loud drums and electric guitars when they play at 2 p.m.
Following the duo, Billy Raffoul performs again (2:40 p.m.) and classically trained, but modern at heart, pianist Alicia Witt performs after (3:20).
Following Alicia, Motopony takes the stage for an encore performance (4 p.m.) and a sampling of music from the film “Sonita” (4:40 p.m.).
Wednesday Jan. 27:
Nina Gordon & Louise Post of Veruca Salt hit the stage at 2 p.m. followed by Freedy Johnston at 2:40 p.m. Quieter in style than most the other performers, Freedy Johnston’s sound seems perfect for background music at the end of a long day.
The Bluebird Cafe Series featuring Chris DeStefano, Ashley Gorley, and Josh Osborne will begin at 3:20 p.m. These three artists, all songwriters behind many popular songs, have very distinct styles; it will be interesting to hear them all together.
After this set, see Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum fame away from the group that made him famous (5 p.m.). His first-ever solo album is upcoming, but his already released single makes the wait intolerable.
BMI Snowball Showcase at 8 p.m. will feature KT Tunstall, Alexander Jean and Drew Holcomb. The Sundance website describes it as “an intimate night of music featuring a phenomenal mixture of emerging and iconic artists.”
Thursday Jan. 28
NewSong Artist Rachael Kilgour will perform at 2 p.m. Despite her Christian and all-American roots, Rachael Kilgour’s songs are not for the naïve. Rachael Kilgour challenges dominant society, specifically Christian hypocrisy in her song “He’ll Save Me” and takes on the American dream in “In America.”
Indie-pop group Sibling sings from their upcoming EP album at 2:40 p.m., smooth-listening band Other Lives performs at 3:20 p.m), the Bluebird Cafe Series makes another appearance at 4 p.m. and IIHEARTCOMIX, featuring Ho99o9, MOORS, Danny Perez, Franki Chan and Visuals by Demonbabies will begin at 8 p.m.
Friday Jan. 29:
Genevieve, whose most recent work is all about celebrating one’s true self, will perform at 2 pm. Her song “Colors,” sounds similar to Taylor Swift’s “Out of the Woods,” though Genevieve’s song makes no references to relationships.
Following her comes one last chance to see the acts of Freedy Johnston (2:40 p.m.) Sibling (3:20 p.m.) and Other Lives (4 p.m.), while also seeing rapper Moors take the stage at 4:40 p.m.